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NHL Draft profile -- Gabriel Vilardi

Gabriel Vilardi Getty

Dennis Pajot

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Like we’ve done in the past, we’re profiling top prospects who may hear their names called in the first round of the 2017 NHL Entry Draft.

And, for the second year in a row, we’re featuring special guest analysis from Ryan Kennedy, associate senior writer and prospect expert at The Hockey News.

Gabe Vilardi (C)

Height: 6-foot-3 Weight: 203 pounds Shoots: Right

Team: Windsor Spitfires (OHL)

Country: Canada

NHL Central Scouting ranking: No. 4 North American skater

Kennedy says:

“On a Windsor Spitfires team that won the Memorial Cup, Vilardi was a key driver. His ability to hold onto the puck thanks to a combination of size and skill makes him so tantalizing as an NHL prospect. He goes into traffic and has a lethal shot, so there’s obviously a lot to get excited about here.

“Vilardi is not a complete player just yet, but that simply means that he likely needs another year or two in the OHL. Nothing wrong with that. The main concern right now involves his skating, though it’s not horrible. One scout noted that Vilardi’s feet are better than Mark Stone’s were at the same age and Stone eventually turned into a steal for the Ottawa Senators.

“Vilardi also needs to get more reps at center, as he also played wing this year.”

Related: Gabe Vilardi deserves your attention

For the rest of the 2017 NHL Draft profiles, click here