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Carter Yakemchuk Scouting Report: 2024 NHL Draft #16

Welcome back to Top Shelf Prospects, the column that brings you the next crop of professional hockey players. Each day our LWOS Prospects Writers will bring you a new player profile or topical article in the lead-up to the 2024 NHL Draft. Be sure to bookmark the site, follow  and  on Twitter, and spread the word for the site that will bring you analytical and critical profiles and scouting reports! Last Word On Hockey Prospects is your new headquarters for everything “NHL Draft”! Today we bring you our Carter Yakemchuk Scouting Report.

Born on September 29, 2005, Carter Yakemchuk is one of the older first-time eligible prospects in this draft. The Cal🐓gary Hitman defenceman really took off in his third WHL season. He led all WHL defenders with 30 goals. Yakemchuk also added 41 assists for 71 points in📖 66 games this season. He was also added to the WHL (Central) First All-Star team. It was the type of breakthrough performance that has moved Yakemchuk way up draft boards.

Yakemchuk was also solid �💧�in 2022-23. He put up 19 goals and 28 assists for 47 points in 67 games. Yakemchuk also added three assists in five playoff games. He was named to the WHL (Central) Second All-Star Team. After the playoff elimination, he joined Team Canada at the IIHF Under-18 World Championships, coming home with a bronze medal.

Yakemchuk was drafted in the third round, 65th overall, in the 2020 WHL Draft. He scored four goals and nine assists for 13 points in 56 games in his rookie season of 2021-22. Born in ꦕFort McMurray, Yakemchuk moved to Calgary at a young age and played most of his minor hockey for the Junior Flames.

Carter Yakemchuk 2024 NHL Draft Scouting Report

Right Defence — shoots Right
Born September 29th, 2005 — Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Height 6’03” — Weight 190 lbs [191 cm / 86 kg]

Skating

Yakemchuk’s skating is a bit of a work in progress.  His straight line speed is good. However, his acceleration can let him down. Yakemchuk has a bit of a choppy first step, and it takes him a few extra strides to reach that top speed. While he can keep up with the play, there is room to improve in this area. A taller defender, he could still be adjusting to recent growth and could improve these areas with time.

The rest of Yakemchuk’s skating is at a high level though. This helps him to play a good two way game. Good pivots allow him to transition quickly from offence to defence and vice versa. He also has very good edgework and agility. His side to side movement allows him to open up passing and shooting lanes in the offensive zone. It also helps him to stay in front of defenders and force them to the outside in the defensive end. He is also strong on his skates, able to win battles on the boards and clear the front of the net.

Offensive Game

Yakemchuk is an excellent goal scorer. His slapshot and one-timer are powerful and accurate. However they are not the only way⭕ he scores goals. Ya🔴kemchuk also has an excellent wrist shot. It has good power and accuracy. It also features a quick release. Yakemchuk is willing to join the rush and pinch in from the blue line. He has very good hands and can deke his way in close to the net. Once there he can elevate the puck quickly on both the forehand and backhand, allowing him to beat goalies in tight.

Yakemchuk is also an excellent playmaker. He has excellent vision and passing skills. He also has high-end hockey IQ, making smart plays✨ with the puck and anticipating where his teammates are going. Yakemchuk is a good stickhandler and can lead the rush through the neutral zone generating effective zone entries. He can also control the puck on the blue line. His excellent lateral agility allows him to open up passing and shooting lanes. Yakemchuk can start the rush with a good first pass as well as collect loose pucks and skate them out of the defensive zone. Overall his offensive game is amongst the best in junior hockey.

Defensive Game

Yakemchuk is willing to use his size to his advantage. Attackers need to keep their head up as they come down his side of the ice as he’s always looking to throw a big hit. He is also willing to play physical along the boards and keep the front of the net clear. This can sometimes be a problem as Yakemchuk can sometimes be a bit too aggressive. This can put him in penalty trouble. It can also take him out of position and lead to scoring chances against. Yakemchuk will also need to learn to pick his spots better offensively as this can also leave him out of position.

When he is ꦏin the right spot, he makes smart plays. Yakemchuk keeps his man to the outside. He uses his long stick to cut down passing lanes. He is also willing to use his body to block shots. Yakemchuk anticipates offensive plays and gets in the right spot to create a turnover. When a loose puck is available, he is also good at transitionin🌸g from defence to offence.

Projection and Comparison

Yakemchuk likely has another year of junior hockey ahead of him. His September birthday is also an advantage as he will be AHL eligible for the 2🌳025-26 season. He could be NHL ready pretty quickly, though he will need to add mass to his frame and improve his defensive discipline. Yakemchuk has the potential to lead a powerplay. He could b🍒ecome a number one defenceman but will need work on his skating as well. More likely is that he settles in as a number two or three on a strong team. His game is reminiscent of . However, this is a stylistic comparison only and not one based on skill and ability.

Highlights

The ﷽following is a compilation of some of the highlight packages an𓆏d features of Carter Yakemchuk that are available on YouTube and Twitter.

Check back later for ou👍♔r latest 2024 NHL Draft Article.

Main photo by: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

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