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Tracking the Storm

Draft Profile: Jacob Trouba

Thursday, 06.21.2012 / 3:00 PM / Tracking the Storm
By Michael Smith
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Draft Profile: Jacob Trouba
Each weekday leading up to the 2012 NHL Draft on June 22, CarolinaHurricanes.com will profile one player we believe might be available for Carolina’s eighth pick. Previous Profiles: Cody Ceci | Mathew Dumba | Radek Faksa | Filip Forsberg | Alex Galchenyuk | Mikhail Grigorenko | Olli Maatta | Griffin Reinhart | Morgan Rielly | Teuvo Teravainen | Related Links: 2012 NHL Draft Preview | Hurricanes Draft History





USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program has found recent success grooming young defensemen to be National Hockey League-ready shortly after their draft date.

Michael Smith
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Justin Faulk is a good testament to that.

Jacob Trouba wants to be the next.

Committed to the University of Michigan for the 2012-13 season, Trouba is a product of the U.S. Under-18 National Team Development Program of the United States Hockey League.

“He falls right into that group, and that program has done a great job of training defensemen and forwards but more defensemen in the past few years,” said Tony MacDonald, the head of amateur scouting for the Carolina Hurricanes. “That’s the case this year. They’ve got two or three solid kids back there on the blue line.”

Trouba’s two-way defensive game is highly regarded among scouts, and the NHL’s Central Scouting Service ranked the 6-foot-2, 193-pound blueliner ninth among North American skaters. Many speak in favor of his physical game, noting that his athleticism, size and skating ability (exceptional considering his size) make him a rugged force to contain not only in the defensive zone, but all over the ice. He can also easily separate an attacking player from the puck, especially along the boards.

JACOB TROUBA
DEFENSEMAN
HOMETOWN: ROCHESTER, MI
HEIGHT: 6-2
WEIGHT: 193
BIRTHDAY: FEB. 26, 1994 (AGE 18)

“He’s a big guy. He skates real well, and he has cannon for a shot,” MacDonald said. “He competes hard and competes with an edge.”

That hard-nosed edge helped Trouba be an anchor on the United States’ blueline in both the Under-18 World Junior Championship and the World Juniors. Trouba and Team USA captured their second straight gold medal in the Under-18 tournament with a commanding 7-0 win over Sweden. The Rochester, Michigan native recorded a goal, 3 points and a plus-five rating in six games. Just a few months earlier, Trouba was the youngest player named to Team USA’s 2012 World Junior squad. He notched just 2 assists in the tournament, but was noted as one of the team's best players.

In turn, being pitted against older, stronger opponents helped Trouba polish his defensive game. He isn’t a flashy defender, but it’s hard not to notice his reliable play in his own zone. This is part of what makes him a projected top-two defenseman and such an attractive top-10 option on draft day.

As if the Hurricanes would need another reason to take a good look at Trouba, here’s one: familiarity. He already has somewhat of a tie to the organization, as he grew up playing youth hockey in the Compuware program in Michigan. Playing locally, he idolized the recently-retired Detroit defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom.

Now 18 years old, Trouba first skated when he was four. He hated the experience, but his dad was persistent and kept him on skates. Safe to say it paid off. Tomorrow, he will fulfill a dream and have his name called in the first round.



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EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 MTL 61 40 16 5 167 135 85
2 NYR 60 38 16 6 190 148 82
3 NYI 62 40 20 2 200 173 82
4 TBL 62 37 19 6 203 167 80
5 DET 60 34 15 11 176 156 79
6 PIT 61 35 17 9 176 152 79
7 WSH 62 33 19 10 184 156 76
8 BOS 60 29 22 9 158 158 67
9 FLA 61 26 22 13 145 172 65
10 PHI 62 26 25 11 164 181 63
11 OTT 59 26 23 10 167 161 62
12 NJD 61 25 27 9 137 161 59
13 CBJ 60 26 30 4 157 189 56
14 TOR 61 25 31 5 170 185 55
15 CAR 59 22 30 7 134 159 51
16 BUF 62 19 38 5 120 207 43

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Faulk 59 11 27 -16 38
E. Staal 54 18 18 -9 36
E. Lindholm 58 11 15 -16 26
J. Skinner 54 15 9 -16 24
R. Nash 56 7 14 -9 21
N. Gerbe 55 6 14 -13 20
A. Sekera 57 2 17 -7 19
V. Rask 57 8 10 -18 18
J. McClement 59 4 12 1 16
J. Staal 23 4 11 -1 15
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 16 19 4 .914 2.35
A. Khudobin 6 11 3 .901 2.73