4. Zachary L’Heureux, Halifax Mooseheads, QMJHL
Is there a current prospect who fits the current identity of this Nashville Predators team than Zachary L’Heureux does? He’s a relentless forechecker, he’s extremely physical and plays with an attitiude that many of your current Predators players play with.
L’Heureux does have to learn to keep his emotions in check, and that can also be said about some current Predators players as well. That can all come in the development process, but you can’t teach the fiery passion that L’Heureux plays with, and it will serve him well once he does get that NHL opportunity.
If the Predators were struggling and in the midst of a rebuild type of season like many predicted, than perhaps he would’ve already gotten his NHL call-up. But with the Predators hanging around near the top of the Western Conference, their starting lineup is pretty set.
L’Heureux is having a very productive season with Halifax, posting 38 points in just 23 games. He’s also got 32 penalty minutes, which is a high rate for those 23 games played.
I’m not worried too much about L’Heureux’s knack for landing in the penalty box. He’ll learn to better channel that energy and avoid the bad penalties, and suspensions, as he grows.
L’Heureux comes in at No.4 on my list as a likely call-up at some point next season, or even out of traning camp if the lineup goes through a decent amount of turnover over the offseason. I’m thinking about Nick Cousins’ possible vacated spot if he’s not re-signed.