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Sunday, January 30, 2011

Destry Straight: A Guy You Should Know

Coquitlam Express (BCHL) center Destry Straight makes his debut on Bruins 2011 Draft Watch at the end of January, and he's someone who could also be classified as a sleeper.

The 6-1 center is from West Vancouver and has 20 goals and 53 points in 49 games.

Earlier this fall, he committed to Boston College for the 2012 season, so he'll have another season of junior to play before he reports to the Hockey East. Red Line Report also mentioned that he was listed by the Portland Winterhawks of the WHL, so he has some options if he decided against going the NCAA route.

Straight is good skater with a long, fluid stride with strong playmaking ability, vision and offensive hockey sense. On the downside, he's on the soft side and doesn't possess much in the way of strength. Tending to stay out of traffic and on the outside, scouts can be frustrated with his tendency to not take the puck to the net or use his prodigious offensive gifts more effectively. Defensively, he has a lot of work to do. RLR cited him as "one-dimensional" and without the big numbers in the BCHL to back it up, he's likely to fall down the boards a bit as a result.

If he were 5-9, people wouldn't be talking much about this player, but because he's got that tall 6-1 frame with potential to grow into his body better, he'll be on some lists come draft time. Clearly, though, Straight is a long-term project who will require a team to utilize a lot of time and patience with him.

One could say that he's a poor man's Joe Colborne at this point, though not possessing the same kind of dominant size the B's '08 first-rounder has. But, he's similar in terms of having the quick hands and offensive potential...he also is lacking in the kind of physical, go hard to the net kind of effort you want to see from a player like this. Colborne is still developing and evolving for Boston, showing the potential to be a force in the middle in flashes, but still not quite there. Straight will need a similar leap of faith for any NHL club who drafts him.

But, the potential payoff down the road is there. Therefore, he's someone to keep in mind if the value on the board is right.

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