May 30, 2010 1 Comment
As a 15-year-old player, Tyler Toffoli was a much sought-after player in the Greater Toronto Hockey League. Having scored over 100 points in just 52 games, and being named the OHL Cup MVP, he was taken seventh overall by the Ottawa 67’s at the 2008 OHL Priority Selection.
In his rookie season, Toffoli came out strong, scoring 17 goals and putting up 46 points in 54 games with the club. Then his point totals multiplied, as he scored 79 points in 65 games in his sophomore season in the Canadian League. He also played well in the playoffs, scoring 11 points in 10 Ontario League playoff games.
“We were very pleased to have selected Tyler Toffoli,” a member of the 67’s said to NHL.com. “He was one of the most explosive goal scorers our scouts have seen.”
“I think it’s just a matter of making an adjustment,” Sports Illustrated says. “He’s being thrust into the role of offensive leadership on a team that’s not very good. There’s still a lot to like about his game. He has a great release and competes really hard. Give him some time and let’s see what he does with it.”
The 6-foot, 181-pound Scarborough, Ontario native is ranked 16th in NHL Central Scouting’s final draft rankings for the 2010 NHL Entry Draft in Los Angeles.
There were questions regarding his defensive play in his rookie year, as he barely broke even on the plus/minus scale. However, in his second year, he was much more responsible in his own end, as he wound up with a plus-25 rating at the end of the regular season.
“Toffoli is a dynamic offensive player,” TheScoutingReport.org says. “He shows great poise with the puck and is very patient around the net, which makes him a scary player over the opposition’s blue line. If defense give him the room to skate and get comfortable with the puck, he has the hands to move around defensemen with ease.”
“With Toffoli, you’re getting a player who doesn’t really have any elite talents but is extremely well rounded,” the site continues. “His real strength is his hockey sense which he uses to his advantage on the ice. Toffoli does a good job of positioning himself and finding places where the puck seems to find him afterwards. He competes hard and won’t back down in the corners and isn’t afraid to take a hit to make a play either.”
After being tagged as a first round pick after his rookie season, Toffoli must continue to work hard and show NHL scouts that he is indeed worthy of hearing his name called out on day one of the draft.
Alan Bass is a writer for The Hockey News and THN.com. In addition to writing for Inside Hockey and Pro Hockey News, he has also worked for the Philadelphia Flyers. He is the General Manager of the Muhlenberg College hockey team as well. You can contact him at BergHockey24@gmail.com.