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[Article] Abby kid Juulsen would love to be a Canucks pick


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The Vancouver Canucks faithful would appreciate Noah Juulsen. His resumé would resonate with fans of California teams as well.

Juulsen, 18, an Everett Silvertips defenceman, is from Abbotsford. The Canucks were his team growing up, and he modelled his game after Kevin Bieksas. Juulsen wears No. 3 with the Silvertips, the number thats belonged to Bieksa.

Juulsen can move the puck; he had nine goals and 43 assists in 68 regular-season games with Everett this past season, which left him 10th in the WHL in scoring by defencemen.

He is solid in his own zone, too, and has some bite in his game. That sounds like the scouting report Bieksa has had for much of his career with Vancouver.

Juulsen does think that his knack for putting up numbers has been aided as well by six summers of roller hockey. You hear that from a guy from Los Angeles, where the game is more common, and youre not surprised. Its not the type of thing that comes across regularly from a guy from the Fraser Valley.

There are only four guys out there per team and there are no offsides, so theres lots of room, said Juulsen, who quit roller hockey last summer. You get to go wherever out there.

Suggestions about just when Juulsen might be selected come the NHL draft this weekend in Florida vary greatly. McKeens Hockey, for one, ranks him 20th overall. TSNs Bob McKenzie has him going 37th overall. Thats a hefty swing.

The Canucks first-round pick is No. 23. They have interviewed Juulsen. Vancouver doesnt have a second-rounder, although theres been plenty of speculation about dealing to get one.

It would be unreal if it happened, Juulsen, a 6-foot-1, 175-pound right-handed shot, said of being selected by the Canucks. You just dont know whats going to happen. But, yeah, it would be cool to get drafted by the team thats an hour down the road from where you grew up.

If the Canucks are keen on Juulsen, they do have someone in the organization with extra insight. Juulsen grew up playing with Jake Virtanen, the winger who was Vancouvers first-round pick last year. They are also both products of the Yale Hockey Academy, which is run by the likes of Billy Wilms and Brad Bowen.

I know Jake pretty good, Juulsen said.

Theres an argument to be made that Juulsen is rapidly trending in the right direction. He had two goals and eight assists in 59 games as a rookie two WHL seasons ago. Further to that point, NHL Central Scouting had him at No. 38 among North American skaters in its midterm rankings this season, and than shot him up to No. 22 in its final poll.

Everett assistant coach Mitch Love says that Juulsens disposition might be his most appealing attribute.

The biggest thing that intrigues me as a coach, and a lot of NHL people that Ive talked to about him, is his sense of professionalism at a young age. He plays the game the right way, said Love, 31, who spent six seasons as a minor league defenceman after his final campaign with the Silvertips.

He came in as a 16-year-old and, like most guys, he was very, very raw. His ability to be coached, his ability to be pushed and not go under a rock, has been part of whats made him such a good defenceman.

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Plays like Bieksa. If we get a 2nd and (___________) something for Bieksa trade i'd use it on him. I wouldn't take him with the 23rd overall pick. Or 31st with Buffalo's pick( Lack trade ) . But if we get 35-45 I would definitely pick him no question

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I would consider using the 1st on him. He's development accelerated so much in the last year, if it keeps going he could be a steal.

Take him with 23rd, then acquire a 2nd and take Rasmus Andersson. Lack of young defensive depth: solved.

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I didn't know he was from Abbotsford.

I've read descriptions of his playing style and he seems like a great pick. Good stats too. I wouldn't mind using the 23rd on him. He seems like the lowest risk defenseman to take at 23, IMO.

Still would prefer to take another defenseman as well, and maybe acquiring a high second to pick Juulsen

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Everett assistant coach Mitch Love says that Juulsens disposition might be his most appealing attribute.

Mitch Love
808 Penalty Minutes in 278 AHL games with 104 fighting majors, and he likes Juulsens disposition.

I'd say that settles it, we're drafting Juulsens :D (though hopefully later than 23rd)

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