Haydn Fleury is one of those defenseman that has everything GM’s and scouts look for. Size, speed, hits hard, can move the puck, puts up offensive numbers, etc. It’s no wonder why there are many mocks and experts saying that Fleury could be drafted inside the top 10 of this years draft.
Fleury really doesn’t have many "flaws" in the traditional sense. I guess the one criticism I see from him is that he does everything good, but nothing great. And that’s not really something I’m looking at for an 18 year old, really. He shouldn't be great yet. The only other sticking point is his offensive numbers.
A sharp increase season-over-season could be false hope about what his NHL potential could be, but as stated above, he has good mobility, a decent shot, and jumps on the rush, so I’m not going to worry about that too much.
If I had to guess, Fleury isn’t going to be a No. 1 shutdown defenseman in the future, but I can see him being a No. 2-4 defenseman, which, in the middle of the draft, would be really good value for whoever selects him.
- Born: 7-8-1996
- Nationality: Canada
- Height: 6’3"
- Weight: 201 lbs
- Position: Defense
- Team(s) – Red Deer(WHL); Canada (WJC)
Haydn, if drafted by the Flyers, will come in as another piece to a solid core of young blueliners. It’s no secret that the Flyers defense has left a lot to be desired since Chris Pronger went down three years ago. Add to that an aging Kimmo, the loss of Matt Carle, and the trading/signings of superstars such as Andrew MacDonald and Nicklas Grossmann, the blueline has become bountiful feast for skilled forwards everywhere.
But the sky is always darkest before the dawn. Samuel Morin, Shayne Gostisbehere, and Robert Hagg all project to be competent if not highly skilled NHLers at the position. Adding another high potential two-way defenseman like Fleury will definitely give the fanbase some extra hope for the future on defense. It’s always been a baseball ideal of mine to have a stocked farm of pitchers, because it’s easier to find deals for position players in the open market. I think the NHL faces a similar scenario with defensemen right now. By adding Fleury, even if one of those other guys is a total bust, theres a good chance that at least one will become a legit top 4 defenseman, if not more than one.
In an NHL that is dying for more defenseman, stocking the farm is never a bad idea. I don’t really expect him to be there at No. 17, but crazier things have happened at the Draft. We wouldn’t have done a profile on him if I didn’t think there was some sort of reasonable chance he would be available. And if he is there when the Flyers go on stage, I wouldn’t be surprised at all if Fleury is the name Hextall calls in front of the home crowd.
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