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Tracking the Storm

Guy Behind the Guy: Media High on Skinner

Saturday, 06.26.2010 / 12:01 PM / Tracking the Storm
By Mike Sundheim
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Guy Behind the Guy: Media High on Skinner
A lot has been made of how Cam Fowler slipped in the first round last night, with opinions on both sides. But one thing I've heard pretty convincingly from everyone I've talked to (most of whom went out of their way to tell me) is that we got a real player at seventh overall.

Mike Sundheim
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TSN's Bob McKenzie, for one, had good things to say in a tweet last night:

@TSNBobMcKenzie: Skinner to Canes. What's not to like about 70 goals incl 20 in 20 in playoffs? Steve Spott gives him Mike Richards seal of approval. I like.

Hockey Night in Canada's Jeff Marek, who said he has been watching Skinner since minor hockey, had plenty to to tell me about the newest Canes property:

"From a skill set point of view, Skinner is elite. He probably has the best hands in the draft. He competes hard every shift, and has a strong desire to win. When the puck is on his stick, it goes in. Period."

Skinner had a monster playoffs for his junior team, the Kitchener Rangers, as the Rangers gave the eventual Memorial Cup champion Windsor Spitfires their toughest series.

"He was amazing for the Rangers this year," said Marek. "They almost knocked off the powerhouse Spitfires in the OHL semis mainly due to his play. He was intense. Thirty-three points in 20 playoff games. Twenty goals. Unreal."

Marek, who is a self-professed draft geek, believes Skinner could have actually gone higher in the first round.

"You could have made an argument for him going third. He played his minor hockey on a line with Tyler Seguin, and they were dominating as a pair. Skinner will bring Canes fans out of their seats for years. They will love this kid."

Having never seen Skinner play in person myself yet (we'll at least get to see him in practice gear in a few weeks at the rookie conditioning camp in Raleigh), all I can say for sure is that he seems like a great kid. He was over-the-moon happy of course, and handled all of his media duties in stride, especially the consistent ribbing about his figure skating past. His family is solid too: both of his parents are attorneys, and all I seemed to hear when meeting his siblings was a list of Ivy League schools.

I did explain to him what North Carolina barbecue was after he was posed a question about it on the media conference call (how is a kid from Canada supposed to know what NC barbecue is, anyway?), but nothing was wiping the smile off of Skinner's face. And if McKenzie and Marek are right, he'll be providing plenty of smiles of Caniacs too.

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EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 TBL 48 30 14 4 156 127 64
2 NYI 46 31 14 1 151 129 63
3 DET 47 27 11 9 139 119 63
4 MTL 45 29 13 3 123 106 61
5 PIT 46 26 12 8 138 117 60
6 NYR 44 27 13 4 134 106 58
7 WSH 46 24 13 9 137 120 57
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10 OTT 46 19 18 9 126 128 47
11 TOR 48 22 23 3 142 150 47
12 PHI 48 19 22 7 130 146 45
13 CBJ 45 20 22 3 113 142 43
14 NJD 47 17 22 8 107 134 42
15 CAR 46 16 25 5 98 120 37
16 BUF 47 14 30 3 89 167 31

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
E. Staal 41 15 13 -8 28
J. Faulk 46 8 18 -14 26
J. Skinner 41 10 9 -7 19
E. Lindholm 46 9 10 -10 19
R. Nash 46 7 12 -4 19
J. Tlusty 39 11 7 -12 18
N. Gerbe 42 4 13 -2 17
V. Rask 46 6 9 -9 15
A. Sekera 44 1 14 -8 15
C. Terry 33 6 3 -3 9
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
A. Khudobin 5 8 2 .916 2.32
C. Ward 11 17 3 .911 2.45