As the college hockey season gets into playoff mode, that signals the end of the season is drawing near. With that, it means that some college hockey players, mainly seniors, that have not been drafted by NHL teams will become free agents as soon as their season ends. An underclassman can choose to leave his college team as well. Teams may be looking to add some depth or sign a standout from this season that was overlooked in drafts from previous years. Two players that could possible be given opportunities are Alex Kile and Justin Selman of the University of Michigan.
Kile, currently a junior at Michigan, as racked up 32 points (15G-17A) in just 34 games this season for the Wolverines. His point total on the season increased from last season all while playing less games; 26 points (13G-13A) in 36 games in 2014-15. A native of Troy, Michigan, Kile attended development camp for the Detroit Red Wings last summer along with former Michigan teammate and current Red Wing Dylan Larkin. In the game he was scouted, Kile skated on the second line with Justin Selman and Cristoval “Boo” Nieves. While only a junior, Kile certainly shows the skills necessary to take it to the next level should he want to pursue that as soon as the season ends, this offseason or when he graduates.
Alex Kile Scouting report:
Position: Right Wing
Birthday: July 9, 1994
Kile is a responsible forward that can cover for the defense when necessary. He will drive to the slot and isn’t afraid to shoot the puck. Multiple times, he gets to the crease to create havoc. While he is responsible in the defensive zone, he can play too deep at time, which can hurt offensively. He possesses good speed and vision. Physical when necessary and will finish a check.
Justin Selman, Alex Kile’s linemate, is a senior, alternate captain for the Michigan Wolverines. Like Kile, Selamn also attended an NHL development camp this past offseason, taking the ice with the St. Louis Blues prospects. In the 2015-16 season, Selman has tallied 29 points (12G-17A) in 34 games for Michigan. Last season, Selman totaled 23 points (11G-12A) in 26 games. Just like Kile, there are bound to be NHL teams interested in Selman upon completion of his season or at least be offered a professional try out (PTO) next season.
Justin Selman Scouting report:
Position: Left Wing
Birthday: October 2, 1993
Justin Selman is a big-bodied winger that can be an asset on special teams. While on the penalty kill, he has an active stick to tie up lanes, but can over-commit. Luckily, his speed helps him recover if he does over-commit in playing the puck. Overall, he’s positionally aware and keeps his head on a swivel, especially while killing penalties. He’s aware of where opposing players are and communicates that well with teammates. Offensively, he reads plays well and finds open space. Not afraid to screen the goaltender. Keeps his feet moving and can fly when entering the zone. Great hand-eye coordination. While unselfish in passing the puck when needed, he needs to make the decision to shoot it more often if a clear passing lane isn’t present.
Both Kile and Selman should continue get some more looks from NHL teams. They play on a very talented Michigan squad that boasts 12 players drafted into the NHL.
Game scouted: March 11, 2016 vs Penn State (7-1 Michigan victory)
Photo credit: University of Michigan Athletics