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Windsor Spitfires forward Josh Ho-Sang’s quite the ‘‘wild card’ prospect

The NHL's 22nd-ranked North American skater is a 5'11," 175-pound winger who posted 32 goals, 53 assists and 85 points for the OHL's Windsor Spitfires this past season, and NHL.com's draft profile for said player offers the following scouting report:

NHL Central Scouting’s Chris Edwards: "He handles the puck very well at top speed and sees the ice well. His skating is excellent and his first step is explosive. He cuts to the middle often and can split the defense with surprising speed.”

As the Windsor Star's Bob Duff notes, there's a reason that this player isn't seen as a "top prospect" per se:

Red Line Report, a prominent professional scouting service, had this to say about [Josh] Ho-Sang in their 2014 mock draft, in which they predicted he would go 22nd overall when selections begin Friday in Philadelphia: “Super skills, but can be erratic as Toronto’s mayor.”

They just compared Ho-Sang to Rob Ford, the foul-mouthed, crack-smoking boss of the GTA. That’s gotta sting.

Well, maybe it would, if Ho-Sang paid attention to such talk.

“Everybody has their opinion and everyone is entitled to their opinion,” Ho-Sang said. “Every NHL team is entitled to their opinion and if a team thinks they should take me 10th overall, or if a team thinks that they shouldn’t, then that’s up to them.”

Duff continues, and there are more than a few reasons that Ho-Sang rings alarm bells, including this incident noted by NHL.com's Mike G. Morreale:

[H]is ill-advised contact from behind on London Knights defenseman Zach Bell in Game 4 of his team's Western Conference first round series on March 27 that earned him a 15-game suspension to open the 2014-15 Ontario Hockey League season shouldn't deny him a relatively high draft selection.

The 5-foot-11, 175-pound Ho-Sang won't be able to show his offensive stuff until almost a month into the OHL season after closing out 2013-14 with team highs in assists and points. He is No. 22 on NHL Central Scouting's final list of the top North American skaters eligible for the 2014 draft.

The OHL suspended Ho-Sang after reviewing the incident that occurred early in the second period and caused Bell to crash into the boards and sustain a broken leg. Ho-Sang was given a two-minute minor for holding on the play; he did apologize for Bell being hurt. Windsor was swept by London in the best-of-7 series.

"You have a player that pushes another player from behind causing him to lose his balance," OHL vice president Ted Baker told reporters. "Unfortunately for both players, it results in a serious injury; therefore, the accountability was to Josh."

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Comments

Slumpy's avatar

Who was the last Windsor Spitfire player the Red Wings drafted?
Not hard to scout this team although drive slightly longer from old barn where they use to play downtown.
This kid was highly sought after by Rychel and I believe he traded a lot of players to get him at the 5th overall pick OHL draft.
He’s worth the risk imo.

Posted by Slumpy from Detroit on 06/23/14 at 07:00 AM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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