Alex Turcotte Scouting Report
- Upside: Top Line Playmaking Center
- Floor: 2nd Line Playmaking Center
- Comparable: Logan Couture
This is my scouting report on U.S. NTDP center Alex Turcotte. When I first got to watch Alex Turcotte play as a 16-year old, I was probably one of the very few who wasn’t a huge fan of his game. I’m not really sure I can pinpoint what it was exactly because it has nothing to do with who he is. He looks like a great kid with his head screwed on straight so-to-speak but it was something about his on-ice play. Whenever that happens so early on in the process, I try to keep an open mind because development isn’t necessarily linear for all players. I think that Turcotte has matured very well this past season and did a good job turning me into a fan.
First off, let’s get this out of the way – Turcotte is a really impressive skater. His skating stride and the way he handles the puck is reminiscent of a young Matt Duchene. He has tremendous balance and is really sturdy on his skates. He has excellent offensive awareness and is a very good playmaker. I like the fact that he is versatile and is able to play both wing and center. However, it should be noted that he is a natural center and that’s where he’s most comfortable and at his best.
He is strong on the puck and doesn’t give it up very easily. He’s not a particularly physical player – not that he avoids contact but he doesn’t really initiate it either – it’s just not really a big part of his game. He’s a team player and uses his teammates well. He’ll take a hit to make a play. He’s a very good forechecker and can force opponents into turnovers if they don’t respect his speed.
I’ve found that at times, he’ll attempt flashier plays at the expense of the safer, higher percentage play and there’s going to be an adjustment period for that – called college hockey.
He’s a defensively conscious player who takes pride in playing a solid two-way game but he can also tend to maybe lose focus at times in terms of positioning. He’s a good backchecker and puts in the required effort in that regard.
Last year I compared Jesperi Kotkaniemi to Logan Couture not in terms of playing style but in terms of what kind of impact he could potentially have on and NHL team. Well, this year I’m not only comparing Alex Turcotte to Couture in terms of impact, he IS very much the very same style of player and plays the game in much the same way. So if you’re wondering what kind of player you’re going to get, in my view, you’re getting a point-producing player in much the same mold as Logan Couture. I don’t think Alex Turcotte is going to last long on draft day.
- TSN – #4
- Central Scouting – #4 NAS
- ISS – #4
- Future Considerations – #5
- McKeens – #7
- THN – #10
- Craig Button – #10
- Hockey Prospect – #4
REFERENCE via HF BOARDS