Buffalo Sabres draft Brendan Guhle with pick 51
The Sabres draft a defenseman in the second round to help refill the organizational pipeline.
With the 51st pick in the 2015 NHL Draft, the Buffalo Sabres have selected defenseman Brendan Guhle from Prince Albert in the WHL.
Guhle (pronounced GOO-lee) fills a big need in the Sabres pipeline not only as a big, physical defenseman, but as a left-handed shot. He stands at 6'2'' and plays a big physical game - not necessarily by trucking guy on the ice, but more that he's built like a truck. He tied Jack Eichel at the combine with seven top-10 finishes in various events, and while he isn't afraid to hit someone or fight, he still has room to grow into his sizable frame.
Brendan Guhle was a Combine superstar. He also had the longest standing long jump virtually jumping off the end of the mat.— Joe Yerdon (@JoeYerdon) June 27, 2015
But he's not just a physical specimen. Guhle is a smooth skater, something that's becoming a must-have attribute for a top-4 defenseman. He put up 5 goals and 27 assists in 72 games last year for Prince Albert, and will be taking on a bigger role with the team this year.
The #Sabres select D Brendan Guhle 51st overall. Beautiful skater. Solid physical presence. Was great at CHL Top Prospects Game.— Kris Baker (@SabresProspects) June 27, 2015
If you read the draft preview yesterday, you're well aware that I like Guhle a lot. I had him as the pick at 92, but this is not a reach.— Kris Baker (@SabresProspects) June 27, 2015
Guhle is from the same hometown as Mark Pysyk, which gives him a nice in with the organization. In an interview last month, he described his game as "A defencemen that joins the rush, creates scoring chances, and plays against the other team's top line and is strong in the D zone".
What the scouts are saying:
Brendan Guhle really has it all as a prospect. He's absolutely an elite skater with a long, fluid and effortless stride. His offensive toolbox is raw but packed with everything you need while his defensive ability is also coming along. I do have lingering questions about his general hockey sense at times but considering the tough minutes he faced in Prince Albert this year, he didn't do too bad.
A heads-up defenseman who can really take a beating and dish it out as well. Built like a tank; grueling play doesn't phase him. Calm, collected, and poised with the puck; great body and stick positioning without the puck. Reliable at both ends of the ice and can be trusted with a hefty amount of ice time. All-in-all, a defenseman who strives to be difficult to play against, consistently, with and without the puck.
Let us know your thoughts on Guhle in the comments.