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NHL DRAFT: Harrison Blaisdell could be fan favorite at UND, a scout says

Harrison Blaisdell vs Caps
Harrison Blaisdell of the Chilliwack Chiefs signed his National Letter of Intent to play college hockey at UND. Darren Francis / Chilliwack Chiefs.
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VANCOUVER -- One NHL scout went to watch Harrison Blaisdell this winter.

There was one thing that stood out about his game other than the fact that he was a pretty good goal-scorer for the Chilliwack Chiefs in the British Columbia Hockey League.

"He plays with a lot of emotion and fire," the NHL scout said. "I have a pretty good idea of what types of players North Dakota fans like watching, and he's one of those who could be a fan favorite because of the way he competes."

Blaisdell, a 5-foot-11, 182-pound forward from suburban Vancouver figures to be drafted in the third or fourth round this weekend in the NHL Draft.

Blaisdell is ranked No. 80 among North American-based skaters by the NHL's Central Scouting Bureau.

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This season, he showed an ability to score goals and to be effective as a forward who is under 6 feet tall. He had 33 goals and 58 points in 51 games for Chilliwack. He also led Canada West in both goals (four) and points (five) at the World Junior A Challenge.

"He's a young man who has a motor," UND coach Brad Berry said. "He reminds me a lot of Drake Caggiula as far as how he approaches every day on the ice, in the weight room and in the classroom. He's a young man that plays with fire and passion, and has very good skill and ability. He was counted on heavily in Chilliwack last year. He played center and wing and he played in all situations. He was a spark for their team.

"He's a young man who never wasted a shift. That's North Dakota hockey and that's what we recruited him as: a guy with a high skill level and a lot of compete."

Blaisdell will be a guy UND looks to inject a little bit of offense for a team that struggled to finish off scoring chances last season.

He figures to start the season as a winger and could work himself into a top-six and power-play role.

"He can really score, because he's got a good shot and he does a good job getting to scoring areas," an NHL scout said. "He's very competitive. I think he's a smart player. His skating has got to improve for a guy his size. But he can shoot and score."

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HARRISON BLAISDELL

Position: Left wing.

Size: 5-11, 182.

Shoots: Left.

Hometown: Abbotsford, B.C.

2018-19 team: Chilliwack Chiefs (BCHL).

2018-19 stats: 51 games, 33 goals, 25 assists, 58 points.

2019-20 team: UND.

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Herald draft projection: 3rd-4th round.

Central Scouting rank: 80 (North American skaters).

UND coach Brad Berry says: "He's a young man who has a motor. He reminds me a lot of Drake Caggiula as far as how he approaches every day on the ice, in the weight room and in the classroom. He's a young man that plays with fire and passion, and has very good skill and ability. He was counted on heavily in Chilliwack last year. He played center and wing and he played in all situations. He was a spark for their team. He's a young man who never wasted a shift. That's North Dakota hockey and that's what we recruited him as: a guy with a high skill level and a lot of compete."

An NHL scout says: "He can really score, because he's got a good shot and he does a good job getting to scoring areas. He's very competitive. I think he's a smart player. His skating has got to improve for a guy his size. But he can shoot and score. He plays with a lot of emotion and fire. I have a pretty good idea of what types of players North Dakota fans like watching, and he's one of those who could be a fan favorite because of the way he competes."

Schlossman has covered college hockey for the Grand Forks Herald since 2005. He has been recognized by the Associated Press Sports Editors as the top beat writer for the Herald's circulation division four times and the North Dakota sportswriter of the year once. He resides in Grand Forks. Reach him at bschlossman@gfherald.com.
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