The Prince Albert Raiders added some potential scoring help with the addition of 16-year-old German forward Leon Draisaitl on Wednesday in the Canadian Hockey League Import Draft.
The team selected Draisaitl second overall.
“All of our research and scouting on him has him as a top-end player with real good size, great offensive talent with real good hockey sense,” Raiders GM Bruno Campese said.
Draisaitl won’t be eligible for the National Hockey League draft until 2014.
The 6’2”, 198-pound forward native of Cologne, Germany, scored 21 goals and added 35 assists for 56 points in 35 games last season for Jungadler Mannheim Under-18.
“He’d be a 17-year-old player coming over,” Campese said. “The nice thing is, if you can get him over here, he could be here for a couple or three years, which would be really good.”
In 2010-2011, the left-shooting Draisaitl scored 97 goals and 95 assists for 192 points in 29 games for his Mannheimer Under-16 team.
He also has international experience, scoring seven points in six games as an underage player at the 2012 World Under-18 Championships this spring. At the 2012 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, he scored five points in five games.
But in the European draft, picking a player is only half the battle; getting him to report can actually be the more daunting challenge. Campese says initial contact has already been made.
“We’ve had some initial contact (with his agent) and we’ve had some correspondence with his dad,” Campese said. “The kid is potentially exploring playing in the CHL. That’s where we’re at right now. They’re exploring the possibility and we’re hoping like hell that it happens.”
The team now has a full import contingent, with forward Jonas Knutsen returning. The Norwegian forward had six goals and six assists for the team in 49 games last season.
As a result, the Raiders traded their second round selection to the Kelowna Rockets for a seventh round Western Hockey League Bantam Draft pick.