For anyone looking for up to the minute Hurricanes prospect coverage, my recap/notes from game 3 of the Traverse City tourney can be found HERE (with a link inside for notes on the first 2 games).

Hudson Elynuik was the Carolina Hurricanes third round selection in the 2016 NHL draft. As a prospect, Elynuik brings an enticing package of size at 6 foot 5 inches tall at only 18 years of age and skill. Unless he shocks the organization in training camp, Elynuik will continue his development in the 2016-17 hockey season with the Spokane Chiefs of the Western Hockey League.

A nice collection of Hudson Elynuik articles from before the 2016 NHL draft can be found HERE.


Menu of Carolina Hurricanes prospect profiles thus far

In case you missed them, here are links to the previous Hurricanes prospect profiles:

Matt Filipe (Northeastern University)

Jack LaFontaine (University of Michigan)

Max Zimmer (University of Wisconsin)

David Cotton (Boston College)

Luke Stevens (Yale University)

Steven Lorentz (Peterborough Petes)

Noah Carroll (Guelph Storm)

Jake Bean (Calgary Hitmen)


Interview with Spokane Chiefs coach Don Nachbaur

Don Nachbaur is entering his seventh season as head coach of the Spokane Chiefs. Nachbaur has twice been named WHL Coach of the Year during his illustrious coaching career. Nachbaur’s playing career included parts of 8 seasons in the NHL, 469 games in the AHL and a Calder Cup championship with the Hershey Bears in the 1987-88 season.


Canes and Coffee: How would you describe Hudson Elynuik’s game in 2-4 sentences. What are his strengths?

Spokane Chiefs coach Don Nachbaur: Hudson is a big bodied player who has excellent vision, smarts and skill.  He brings a 2-way game with strong defending skills while possessing outstanding hands to create offense.  His strengths include is size, shot, passing skills, creativity and reach.  These allow him to be effective in defending, PKing and all offensive situations.


Canes and Coffee: What areas of focus/ongoing improvement do you see for Elynuik in the 2016-17 season and over the next couple years as he continues to develop and work toward becoming an NHL player?

Spokane Chiefs coach Don Nachbaur: Ely has grown to 6’5 at an early age and is still in the process of filling out. His game will take off once his overall strength improves.  This will allow him to play the game at a quicker pace and will provide more power to all aspects of his game.


Canes and Coffee: To which NHL player(s) would you compare Hudson Elynuik?

Spokane Chiefs coach Don Nachbaur: Jordan Staal.


Canes and Coffee: What is something about Hudson Elynuik that might be overlooked and maybe not noted in draft profiles and scouting reports?

Spokane Chiefs coach Don Nachbaur: He has made tremendous strides in his game because he is very coachable.  I believe Hudson is an excellent person who is a great teammate and friend.  He strives to improve his game daily while being a self-motivated athlete.


Interview with Brandon Rivers from DUB Network on Hudson Elynuik

Brandon Rivers (Twitter=@hodgesheroes) covers US Division WHL teams for DUB Network and also contributes at Seattle Sin Bin from SBNation.


Canes and Coffee: How would you describe Hudson Elynuik’s game in 2-4 sentences. What are his strengths?

Brandon Rivers from DUB Network: The thing that stands out to you the most when you see him play is his height. He stands 6’5″ and he towers over most others on the ice. As the 2015/16 season proceeded, he showed an increased ability to finish around the net, taking advantage of the many young play-makers that the Chiefs boast.


Canes and Coffee: What areas of focus/ongoing improvement do you see for Elynuik in the 2016-17 season and over the next couple years as he continues to develop and work toward becoming an NHL player?

Brandon Rivers from DUB Network: There is a ton of area of improvement for Elynuik as he is still rather awkward on his skates and can be out-muscled by stronger players getting the center of gravity advantage on him. He needs to get stronger on his skates and learn to use his reach and size to his advantage more in the corners and along the boards.


Canes and Coffee: If his development goes well, in 4-6 years Hudson Elynuik’s game will look similar to _______.

Brandon Rivers from DUB Network: If he continues to develop well, he could compare to another player like Jordan Staal.


Canes and Coffee: What is something about Hudson Elynuik that might be overlooked and maybe not noted in draft profiles and scouting reports?

Brandon Rivers from DUB Network: Something that gets overlooked about Elynuik is his ability to improve. He seriously came out of nowhere last year to get drafted in the third round. Spokane coach Don Nachbaur obviously has his ear in practice and as a coach with 500 WHL wins, he knows how to develop a player.


Canes and Coffee: Do you have any other thoughts/comments on Hudson Elynuik that are not covered by the questions above?

Brandon Rivers from DUB Network: In his first two years with Spokane, he was a bottom-six forward that only played around eight to ten minutes a night. He showed limited touch and really was most noticeable for his physical play than any high-end talent. He sometimes took things a little too far, as evidenced by a three-game suspension he received a for a kneeing major he took against Seattle last preseason.

Then last year he started finishing with ease and scoring big moment goals. He showed marked improvement in most aspects of the game. Despite that though, even Spokane fans were shocked that he was drafted so high by Carolina. I don’t think that I would rank him in the top-five of NHL prospects they currently have on their team. He does have size though and if he can add strength, he could be a solid checking line center for the Hurricanes one day. Even with improving in these areas, I see him developing in the AHL for three or four years before getting into the NHL.


Canes and Coffee would like to extend a huge thank you to Spokane Chiefs coach Don Nachbaur, the Spokane Chiefs organization and Brandon Rivers from DUB Network and Seattle Sin Bin for their help profiling Hurricanes prospect Hudson Elynuik.

Go Canes!

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