Thanks to being the first overall pick in the 2017 WHL bantam draft, Kaiden Guhle has been in the spotlight for a while, but it hasn’t fazed him.
The slick-skating blueliner has already won a league title and played in the
Memorial Cup for the Raiders, while also earning silver with Canada at the 2019 Hlinka Gretzky Cup. “First and foremost, what I like about him is his skating ability,” said one scout. “He’s on top of the ice, has really good edges, his pivots to track and defend are very quick, and he’s got some bite to his game as well. I’ve seen him throw open-ice hits. He closes the gap really quickly. He’s defensively responsible and he has offensive upside.”
The younger brother of Anaheim blueliner Brendan Guhle, Kaiden has the type of profile that NHL teams value, even if he doesn’t put up big numbers. “Physically, he’s like a man,” said another scout. “When he hits you along the boards, you’re not moving. He’s a pro-style kind of player. He plays on both special teams, and while I don’t know if he’s that power-play guy at the pro level, he’s a big horse out there.”
BEST CASE | Jacob Trouba
This excerpt is from The Hockey News’ Draft Preview issue. Purchase a digital copy of the issue here.