Travis Konecny could very well prove to be the Flyers' best choice in the 2015 draft. A top-tier skill set coupled with dynamic creativity with and without the puck, Konecny has immediately improved the offensive prospect pool. (Also, his name is Travis, which we're partial to around these parts.)
Honestly, it would save all of us a lot of time if, instead of listing Travis Konecny's many strengths, I simply noted aspects of his game that the young forward needs to work on and you could assume the rest was stellar. His accuracy, his quick release, his stick-handling, his skating speed, his playmaking, his forechecking...I could go on. He's got the hockey sense, he's got the vision, and he's got the skills to back it up.
Even more special is that Konecny is smart with the puck. He doesn't force plays. He waits for an opportunity to present itself. Then he either sets up the play for his teammates, or he does the work himself. It all looks quite effortless for him.
Seriously. Watch the kid. He's absolutely electrifying.
I need a fan. A glass of water. Something. I mean, dang, this kid is straight fire.
And though his hockey looks effortless, Konecny has been praised for his determination and intensity. He's one of those kids who refuses to give up, which makes for a excellent leader, on and off the ice. Leadership is always valuable.
There's no telling where Konecny's talent could take him, but he certainly has it in him to become an incredibly productive top-six forward. When he inevitably returns to the OHL to continue his junior career with the Ottawa 67's, look for Konecny to put up some great numbers as one of the league's most dangerous forwards.
Konecny clearly has it in him to do something incredibly special every single time he touches the puck, which is why his growth depends primarily on becoming a more consistent producer. Even though his effort level is always terrific, we all know that points matter most, so making smart, dynamic plays on every shift, in every game, will be key for him. Most NHL stars go through ups and downs, of course, but a consistent season will be the main goal for Konecny.
Despite the fact that scouts have said that Konecny plays much bigger and stronger than his 5′10", 175-pound frame would suggest, strength training will obviously play a big part in Konecny's development, as it does for most junior players. It will help him to hone his defensive skills and his transitional play in the neutral zone. It will also bolster the elements of his game that are some of the most intriguing: his physical play along the boards and in high traffic areas, and his willingness to drive the net like a power forward would. It's not something you see a lot in smaller players, but it certainly adds another layer of versatility to Konecny as a player.
I've seen people compare Konecny's game to Zach Parise, Mike Richards, and even Phil Kessel. The takeaway? He's got dimension in his game, something eye-catching and unignorable. There's no reason to believe that Konecny won't be a major piece in the Flyers successes in years to come. I'm just excited to see it all come to fruition.
How we voted for Travis Konecny:
Who we voted for at No. 7:
|Travis Konecny||Travis Konecny||Samuel Morin||Scott Laughton||Shayne Gostisbehere||Shayne Gostisbehere||Shayne Gostisbehere||Shayne Gostisbehere||Shayne Gostisbehere||Nicolas Aube-Kubel||Travis Konecny||Travis Sanheim|