Three Players The Capitals Should Target At Pick 17

Mock draft madness with the big event less than 48 hours away
NHL Draft
NHL Draft / John Russell/GettyImages
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NHL Draft
Michael Hage / Michael Miller/ISI Photos/GettyImages

Michael Hage - C

Hage is a really interesting player to read about. This is a kid who has really had a difficult draft year off the ice and still performed well enough to be a consensus first round pick.

Michael's father passed away last summer. I personally cannot imagine going through the most important year of your life after having suddenly and tragically lost a parent. Yet he did, and he did well.

Hage also had to deal with injury recovery. He tore his labrum in September of 2022. This was his first full season back from that injury.

Through injury and tragedy he was still able to put up 75 points, 33 goals in 54 games for the Chicago Steel of the USHL. A weaker Chicago Steel team some have said. A weaker team potentially being important to mention. Some of the questions some have had about his game may be due to the fact that he is playing on a team with not as much talent.

The questions I have heard is his decision making. Is he possibly trying to do too much? Is he making plays that his team cannot keep up with? Does he make plays or not make plays because his teammates are not there? Things like that.

According to those who know much better, Hage has terrific skating ability, great speed and acceleration, a very good skater. On top of that he has great hockey IQ and plays well in all three zones. He apparently has an unpredictable shot which makes it very hard for goalies to stop.

That could or should be improved though with adding more strength which will likely come in the net few years anyways. He could still improve on the details of his game accorinding to some as well. However, he is committed to joined Michigan, a school that does very well helping players get better at the little things.

Tough to say where a guy like Hage might go. It's very possible that he could be there at 17 for the Capitals. If he is it might be tough to pass on him.