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Tracking the Storm

Draft Profile: Jacob Trouba

Thursday, 06.21.2012 / 3:00 PM ET / 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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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 MTL 74 46 20 8 195 162 100
2 NYR 72 46 19 7 219 167 99
3 TBL 74 46 21 7 242 191 99
4 NYI 74 44 25 5 226 205 93
5 PIT 73 40 22 11 202 181 91
6 DET 72 39 21 12 208 195 90
7 WSH 73 39 24 10 212 180 88
8 OTT 72 37 24 11 212 190 85
9 BOS 73 36 25 12 193 190 84
10 FLA 73 33 26 14 180 201 80
11 PHI 75 30 29 16 196 216 76
12 NJD 73 31 31 11 164 186 73
13 CBJ 73 34 35 4 198 228 72
14 CAR 72 26 36 10 165 199 62
15 TOR 74 27 41 6 193 237 60
16 BUF 73 20 46 7 138 245 47

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Faulk 72 14 31 -20 45
E. Staal 67 19 25 -14 44
E. Lindholm 71 16 19 -21 35
J. Skinner 67 18 12 -21 30
V. Rask 70 11 18 -13 29
R. Nash 66 8 16 -11 24
N. Gerbe 68 7 17 -13 24
J. McClement 72 6 13 -4 19
A. Nestrasil 44 6 13 4 19
J. Staal 36 4 14 -9 18
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 18 21 5 .910 2.44
A. Khudobin 8 15 5 .903 2.62