And With The 18th Pick The Detroit Red Wings Select: Frederik Gauthier

Frederik Gauthier
Age: 18
Position: Center
Height: 6’5″
Weight: 210lbs
Junior Team: (QMJHL) Rimouski Oceanic
Stats: 62 GP/ 22 G/ 38 A/ 60 P/+ 22/ 26 PIM

Through the years the Detroit Red Wings’ utility players are as beloved as their star players. In Frederik Gauthier, of Mascouche Quebec, Detroit would add a checking center ready to follow in the footsteps of role playing Red Wing centermen like: Kris Draper, Darren Helm, and Joakim Andersson.

Gauthier is ranked as the 8th best North American skater on NHL.com’s Draft Prospect Rankings, and by all accounts it’s well deserved. Gauthier’s head coach for the Oceanic (Serge Beausoleil) believes he has all the tools to be successful at the NHL level.

Beaulsoleil told Chris Messina of futureconsiderations.ca that Gauthier’s “reading of the game is what scouts like.  He’s always well positioned that’s one of his greatest strengths.” Gauthier could fit quite nicely in a future Wings’ lineup alongside fellow Quebecer and defensive standout Xavier Ouellet.

Frederik Gauthier’s breakdown:

Assets:

  1. 2 Way Forward- Shut down specialist of opponents’ best players. Excels at all defensive aspects of the game.
  1. Faceoffs- Wins majority of his draws especially in d-zone.  In critical situations he is taking the draw.
  1. Versatility- Difference maker in any situation. Can block shots on the penalty kill and score goals on the power play.

Flaws:

  1. Offensive Production-  Shows flashes of offensive flare, but needs to show up on the score sheet more often.
  1. Tentative-  Needs to step up his physicality and utilize his size to his advantage on a more regular basis.
  1. Strength- Although he has good size, adding some more bulk to his frame would help him to better adjust for bigger and stronger players at the next level.

NHL Comparable(s):

  1. Mike Fisher- Does a lot of the little things that it takes to be successful.  Defense first attitude.
  1. Brandon Sutter- Quality shutdown guy who thinks the game beyond his years.
  1. Travis Zajac- Similar build as the Devils’ forward.  Player you want in the faceoff dot in the last minute of a big game.

Why He Interests The Wings:

In today’s NHL you need to be deep down the middle. Detroit has a penchant for acquiring centermen who can be counted on at both ends of the rink.  Gauthier’s mindset is in line with the Red Wing way of doing things.

Career Potential:

Future 2nd or 3rd line checking center. Will have to work his way up through the farm system like almost every other Wings’ draftee before him. Probably a few years a way from being an NHL regular.

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