One step closer to the top 10 in our countdown, Western Michigan star Wade Allison comes in at number 12. Ever since Jeff Carter was traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets in the wacky, wild, franchise history changing summer of 2011, Flyers fans have begged for a pure goal scorer. Although I’m not sure if Allison has the capabilities to become Jeff Carter, he sure as hell has the skill set to be the kind of sniper Flyers fans are craving.
Before tearing his ACL in mid January, the star winger was possibly on his way to a Hobey Baker trophy-winning season as a sophomore. Allison enters his junior season after a 30-points-in-22-games season, a scoring pace that would have ranked him tied for seventh in Division 1 point scoring with 49, and his goal scoring pace would have ranked him sixth. Western Michigan went 2-8-1 after Allison went down with his injury, after starting the year strong at 13-7-1. They were swept out by eventual national champion Minnesota Duluth in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference Quarterfinals (try saying that five times fast) after failing to score in back to back games.
If Allison had not torn his ACL, it’s very interesting to wonder how far Western Michigan could have gone in the NCAA Men’s Hockey Tournament.
No. 12: Wade Allison
Age: 20 (10/14/1997)
Size: 6’2”, 205 (via)
Acquired Via: 2016 NHL Draft — Round 2, Pick 52 (Pick acquired from Chicago along with a second-round pick in 2015 in exchange for Kimmo Timonen on February 27, 2015)
2017-18 League/Team/Statistics: Western Michigan (NCAA) - 15 G, 15 A in 22 GP
Ranking in BSH Winter 2018 25 Under 25: 14
Allison was drafted in 2016 after finishing up his second season with the Tri City Storm of the USHL, a season in which the winger scored 25 goals and assisted on 22 for 47 points in 56 games. He posted a solid freshman season for WMU with 12 goals and 17 assists in 36 games. So when he jumped out of the gate in 2018-19 looking like one of the best college players in the country, it was all positives.
Obviously, the injury is a huge concern moving forward considering the severity. He was unable to attend development camp this off-season due to the injury, and while in the grand scheme of things this is not a huge issue, it would have been nice to track his development from 2017’s camp to 2018’s.
Next season, Allison hopes to (of course) stay healthy and lead Western Michigan to the tournament and hopefully a Frozen Four appearance, as he dons the “A” for the Broncos. Talent will almost always outweigh leadership, but a 20 year old like Allison to being given leadership responsibilities already is a good sign.
This past season, 11 of Allison’s 15 goals came at even strength, and in 2016-17, seven of his 12 goals came at even strength. His goal scoring prowess at 5-on-5 appears to have only carried over from his time with Tri City in the USHL. In his final season in the USHL, Allison ranked 11th among skaters in 5-on-5 goals with 19, and ninth among skaters with at least 40 games played in primary points at 5-on-5. If that level of production can continue this season, and once he reaches the pro level whether that be with the Phantoms or Flyers, he should be a very good player at even strength.
Although known for his goal scoring ability, Allison also possesses a fair amount of creativity to his game. As seen in the play below: the goalie and the defense are expecting Allison to take the shot. He executes a perfect drop pass right before he makes the motion to skate wide and shoot, fooling the defense and goaltender.
But of course, Allison’s greatest asset is his shooting ability. He puts that on display in this next clip.
Not only does this clip showcase his shooting accuracy and power, but it displays his hockey smarts also. Allison sizes up the play, sees the screen, fires away. This is something that the Flyers need more of, especially on the power play. His wicked release on his wrist shot screams elite scoring potential. He’s also able to pull off the toe drag wrister effectively and score with it, a move that seemingly all the great goal scorers possess.
Another positive for Allison is his will and ability to crash the net effectively. His hands are good enough in tight, and he’s willing to drive to the net for the greasy rebound goals, a great element to have for a winger. His speed and overall skating ability make this all the easier for Allison who at top speed is blistering quick.
Throughout the World Junior Summer Showcase, something we all here at BSH and scouts everywhere raved about with Joel Farabee was his tenacity on the forecheck. He’s so effective at breaking up passes and chasing the puck carrier. Well, it appears Wade Allison has the same kind of ferocious forechecking. His frame will help him a great deal with this, as the current day version of the NHL’s power forward. Elite goal scoring potential, good creativity, great speed, and great forechecking are some of the tools that Allison will use to continue his climb up the Flyers prospect ranks. I think it’s a fair argument to make that Allison is the best winger prospect in the organization, assuming we don’t count Oskar Lindblom as a prospect. It should be fun to see Allison put all of these skills on display for (hopefully) a full season plus tournament play of NCAA hockey.
Stats courtesy of Elite Prospects, prospect-stats, and uscho.com
How We Voted For Wade Allison
How We Voted At No. 12
|Isaac Ratcliffe||Isaac Ratcliffe||Wade Allison||Isaac Ratcliffe||Robert Hagg||German Rubtsov||German Rubtsov||Mikhail Vorobyev||Joel Farabee||Joel Farabee||Robert Hagg||German Rubtsov||Joel Farabee||Wade Allison||Samuel Morin|
How The Community Voted For Wade Allison
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Previously in Philadelphia Flyers Summer 2018 Top 25 Under 25:
- Intro & Honorable Mentions
- No. 25: Noah Cates
- No. 24: Mark Friedman
- No. 23: Danick Martel
- No. 22: Matthew Strome
- No. 21: Taylor Leier
- No. 20: Nicolas Aube-Kubel
- No. 19: Felix Sandstrom
- No. 18: Tanner Laczynski
- No. 17: Jay O’Brien
- No. 16: Samuel Morin
- No. 15: Isaac Ratcliffe
- No. 14: German Rubtsov
- No. 13: Mikhail Vorobyev