Player: Connor Hurley
Drafted By: Buffalo Sabres (38th overall)
Final Central Scout Ranking: No. 45 North American skater
Height/Weight: 6’0”, 181 lbs
DOB: September 15, 1995 (17 years old)
Most Recent Affiliation: U.S. National Development Team
Hurley has worn many sweaters as an amateur hockey player. He spent the 2009-10 season with the powerhouse Shattuck St. Mary’s program, where he had 59 points in 58 games. The next year he had 36 points in 25 games for Holy Angels High School in Minnesota before transferring to the storied Edina High School, where he had 48 points in the 2011-12 season and 43 in the 2012-13 season.
He then had stints with the Muskegon Lumberjacks of the USHL, where he had eight points in 11 games, and then tallied a goal and assist in 10 games with the U.S. National Development Team.
Safe to say the peripatetic teenager will not be unfamiliar with change when he puts on another uniform, that of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, in 2014-15.
Full Scouting Report
It had to be crazy trying to scout this guy because he’s been in so many places, but the experts have seen enough to rave about his versatility—not just in terms of jumping from a boarding school (Shattuck) to a private school (Holy Angels) to a public school (Edina) to a USHL team (Muskegon) to a development team (USNDTP), but from role to role while playing at so many different levels.
“Hurley has the look of a future NHLer,” writes Future Considerations’ Aaron Vickers, “as he can play in any role given; checker, antagonist or offensive force.”
For Hurley to succeed at the next level, he must add strength during his time at South Bend. If he can build upon his 6’0”, 180-pound frame, he will be one of the most well-rounded prospects in the game.
NHL Player Comparison
David Krejci of the Boston Bruins. He can play both ends of the ice, sees the sheet well and is more of a setup guy than a scorer.
Hurley is going to have to spend two or three years building up his body and polishing his game in order to make it to the next level. (And, hey, it wouldn’t hurt to stay put in one place for a while, right?) Expect to see him during the 2015-16 season at the earliest.
If all goes well, Hurley will be a top-six forward capable of setting up talented linemates while keeping opposing scorers in check. If not, he can probably adapt to a role as a depth player on a grinder line.