NHL Prospect Profile: Dylan Cozens

– Dylan Cozens –

Lethbridge Hurricanes (WHL) | Center | 2019 NHL Draft Eligible

Whitehorse, Yukon | February 9, 2001 | 6-foot-3, 176-pounds

Dylan Cozens represents the top 2019 NHL Draft prospect from Canada heading into the 2018-19 season. Further to the point, he is on a path to play the most NHL games of any Yukon born player, if he can play more than six career games.

Cozens played his way to the top points-per-game rate among 2019 prospects in the WHL during the ’16-17 campaign, racking up 22 goals and 53 points in 57 games, numbers good enough to capture the WHL Rookie of the Year. For comparison, Cozens’ 0.93 points-per-game rate ranks higher than Mathew Barzal’s and Sam Steel’s during their rookie years. Cozens recently played an imperative role towards Team Canada’s Gold Medal performance at the 2018 Hlinka Gretzky Cup.

Strengths:

  • Hockey Sense
  • Skating
  • Two-Way Play

Dylan Cozens is one of few 17-year-olds who understand the true importance of a 200-foot game. Sure, the phrase is often overused, but in Cozens’ case, it is completely warranted. He is regularly utilized on the penalty kill and in defensive zone faceoffs, and can often be found breaking up several scoring chances each game.

Dylan Cozens led all WHL rookies with 57 points in 2017-18, en route to capturing Rookie of the Year honours. Photo credit – Erica Perreaux

As well, despite already being 6-foot-3, Cozens can skate like the wind. He exhibits excellent agility and can handle the puck with grace at top speed. He is effective at driving wide through the offensive zone before cutting in front of the net. Further, Cozens clearly thinks the game with the best of them, with an innate sense of positioning and a tremendous vision of the developing play around him.

Weaknesses:

  • Strength

At just 17 years of age, Cozens naturally has plenty of time to fill out his frame, but he remains somewhat of a lanky kid at this point. While his weight and strength has yet to slow him down at any level, some added muscle would no doubt go a long way to Cozens developing into a true power forward at the NHL level. If he gets become a stronger skater and harder to knock off the puck, Cozens will be an all-around force to be reckoned with, and should have no problems transitioning into the professional level.

Future Potential:

Dylan Cozens has all the tools to become an effective first-line center that can be relied upon in all situations. He consistently generates offence, but is also able to limit the opponent’s ability to produce scoring chances. Comparables include Leon Draisaitl and Brayden Point. Cozens currently projects to be a top-5 pick at the 2019 NHL Draft.

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