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Get to Know Jordan Greenway:
Date of Birth: 2/16/1997
Place of Birth: Potsdam, NY, USA
Ht: 6’5″ Wt: 223 lbs
Position: Left Wing
Team: United States National U-18 Team (USHL)
Jordan Greenway is a player people know simply for being big and at 6’5″ and 223 pounds it’s justifiable that he’s been given that cross to bear. Despite that, he’s also been a very productive player in his career as he attended the renowned hockey powerhouse Shattuck St. Mary’s during his Bantam and Midget days, tearing apart the score sheets in the process.
His elite production, 184 points in 121 Bantam games and 62 points in 46 Midget games, led the Plymouth Whalers to select him in the first round (13th overall) of the 2013 OHL Priority Selection Draft. Greenway chose to bypass playing in the OHL in order to join the US National Team Develop Program and play in the USHL.
While his production took a dip playing in the defense-oriented league, Greenway still impressed talent evaluators enough with his blend of size and skill to warrant being a top 100 draft selection this summer.
What Scouts See
A big power winger who can put the puck in the net…moves well for a big guy, with good feet and decent speed…very hard to handle when he has the puck, as he protects the puck with his strength and reach… makes quick feeds to generate scoring chances…possesses a heavy shot and is lethal when he sets up in shooting position off the face-off dot…
…has the ability to score in many different ways…strong around the net and quick to put home feeds in front…has a very good physical game and is tough to compete with along the boards and down low…helps out defensively by getting back quickly…takes away lanes and pokes pucks loose…battles bouts of inconsistent play.
Greenway is a decent skater for his size. He is especially strong on his skates and shows excellent balance. Greenway creates offence by winning battles in the corners, forechecking hard, and creating havoc in front of the net. He has a very hard and accurate wrist shot. His release is decent, but could be improved. He does have soft hands and can make tips in the crease, or good passes to set up teammates. The combination of size and skill makes Greenway an intriguing prospect.
What BSN Avalanche sees
Size! How often does a 17-year-old kid enter the draft with a frame like 6’5″, 220 pounds with some actual hockey skills to boot? Not often. Beyond a true #1 defenseman and a stud goaltender, the next most sought after player archetype is the power forward. Everyone wants in on the next Milan Lucic and he serves as a very good comparable for Greenway. Neither player was very productive in their draft years but size and strength plus flashes of ability will lead them to being second round picks.
Greenway is a bowling ball but he also uses his size effectively. He isn’t a big guy who plays small because he likes inflicting punishment on those who dare enter the board battles with him. He uses his good hands effectively in tight spaces, frequently making good moves to clear battles with the puck and creating space for himself. He’s a pure winger who excels at the low-high cycle game and is a nightmare to pull off the puck. Very strong on his skates with a heavy shot.
There are plenty of intriguing skills present but I’m not sure how much more they stand to be developed. I got the impression that for the most part, this is who he is going to be. I think with time and hard work, Greenway could develop into a strong physical presence but his skills don’t jump off the ice, size be damned. A good shot and good hands aren’t enough to make up for a slow release, average hockey sense, and below-average skating.
He’s not a very good skater, even given the usual caveat for a player his size, and that aspect of his game needs a lot of work. If he can get his skating cleaned up and work to improve his shooting mechanics a bit, I think Greenway could see a leap in production but I’m not sure he’ll ever justify his inevitable high draft selection.
Greenway has committed to Boston University and will begin playing for them this fall.
Greenway is an intriguing prospect because his skill level suggests he could be a legitimate power forward and play top 6 minutes. Personally, I’m not so sold on him reaching that potential and see him as more of a grinder type who can chip in points occasionally. A 3rd line guy with 30 point potential is a safe baseline.
Expected Draft Position
Greenway is ranked in the 70’s by both ESPN’s Corey Pronman and former NHL GM Craig Button but is 47th on the North America skaters list by CSS. I think the combine will help solidify his measurables but his actual on-ice skills will pull him out of the first round conversation. A player with his size and skill is a rarity, though, so I expect a team with multiple second round picks to roll the dice on him.
How Prospect Fits in Avalanche Organization
As Colorado has made a noted effort to shift to acquiring bigger players, Greenway obviously fits that bill. As a pure winger, he also addresses a position of need for the organization. Simply put, though, the Avalanche would be better served taking a more polished and skilled player at 40th overall than Greenway.
If he were to fall to the third round and the 71st overall pick, Greenway would be an excellent value addition for the Avalanche. Anytime before that and I feel the team would be leaving too much established talent on the board and a team with a barren wasteland of a prospect pipeline needs to make the most of their early round draft picks, not take unnecessary risks.