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With the 25th Overall Pick, the Leafs select… Dominik Bokk?

Who is Dominik Bokk?

A German winger who spent this past season playing in Sweden with the Vaxjo Lakers organization, Bokk is a highly-skilled forward who certainly looks to have top-six NHL potential. He’s creative and likes to dazzle the crowd with the puck on his stick, and he’s a very good skater. He’s got one of the better shots in the draft, so Bokk is potentially a really, really good pick. The knock against him is that he’s not particularly effective away from the puck, but who cares? You can fix that. He’s also not very physical, but you don’t necessarily need to be physical. He’ll need to fill out and become harder to knock off the puck, but that will come as he starts to put on muscle in the coming years.

Where is Bokk Ranked?

There’s a bit of discrepancy between rankings here, and noted prospect analyst Corey Pronman has Bokk as high as 8th overall. I’m inclined to split the difference — I do think that Bokk is an intriguing prospect, and not as risky as some might say.

What do the Numbers Say About Bokk?

After absolutely dominating in his home country in 2016-17, Bokk made the decision to head to Sweden, where he played the majority of the year with the Vaxjo Lakers’ SuperElit team. He put up big numbers there, particularly during the Lakers’ deep postseason run — they eventually lost in the final against HV71. Bokk led his team in points, and subjectively, highlight reel plays.

I’m not versed in Tableau, so I’m going to send you over to our friends at CanucksArmy for a great deal of pretty and colorful visualizations of Bokk’s last season in Sweden.

There isn’t much in the way of advanced tracking to speak of for the SuperElit, unfortunately. Numbers-wise, what we’ve got is that so far in his career, Bokk has been an offensive powerhouse. We’ll see how that pans out.

What Are Scouts Saying About Bokk?

Powerful skater with a deadly shot who is the top German-born draft prospect since Leon Draisaitl went in the Top-10 in 2014. A CHL import pick of the WHL’s Prince Albert Raiders, Bokk is a goal-scoring winger with soft hands and an excellent release. He is a pure goal scorer who can deke or dangle his way into prime shooting areas, and he has the size, puck control and balance to ward off harassment. His plays hard in all three zones and will drop down below his own goal line to lend support, but is smart enough to sniff a possession change and dart into open ice for a counterattack. – The Draft Analyst

His skating, according to one scout, is world class. Above-average acceleration with his quick first steps. And with the puck, he exhibits tremendous poise. His stickhandling is tremendous, as is his vision with the puck. He is a natural passer. Even under pressure, he thread passes to teammates. His shot is strong. In fact, he could stand to use it more instead of first looking to make a passing play to a teammate. – Future Considerations

The Eye Test

Are you looking at what I’m seeing? Holy wow. This kid is really, really fun to watch. It’s a deep draft this year, but Bokk is one of the more exciting forwards in it. Obviously this is a highlight pack, and we’re not going to get to see his shortcomings, but this is a peek of his upside — and there’s plenty of that.

Why Should the Leafs Draft Bokk?

Well, Bokk is a winger. And you know what the Leafs’ situation on wingers is — they’re pretty stacked. HOWEVER. Kyle Dubas has repeatedly said that the Leafs are not taking position into account when drafting, they’re just going to take the best player available. Good on him. And if that holds true and Bokk is available at 25, you know what needs to be done.

In all seriousness, by the time we get to Pick #25, it’s perfectly conceivable that Bokk is the best player on the board. Or at least, the player with the highest ceiling. There will be players out there who are more complete, and players out there who will be a safer bet. But Bokk? Maybe he’ll be a star. He’s got the hands, he’s got the footspeed, he’s got the shot. We’re just waiting to see if he can maintain all of that god-given talent playing at a higher level, and add a dimension to his game that isn’t there presently. (The missing dimension is defense, by the way. Bokk has a reputation for being lackluster off the puck.)

There’s an awful lot of potential here, and with high risk comes high reward. So… what I’m saying is this: Bokk isn’t a must-draft prospect. There’s just enough risk involved here that I’d give the Leafs a pass if they decided to go for someone safer. But if Bokk is around at #25, he’s at least worth a good, hard look.

MLN Draft #Content

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  • Hugh Allan

    When looking at most mock draft projections it would appear there will be a number of really good players available when the Leafs draft at #25.
    If the Leafs trade down I hope it is with Detroit (#33 & #36) or Montreal (#35 & #38).
    Any lower than that (there appears to be a substantial drop off in talent after #40) I hope the Leafs keep their 1st and draft the best player available.