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2013 NHL TOP PROSPECT PROFILE: CURTIS LAZAR

Calgary, AB –Leading up to the 2013 NHL Draft at the Prudential Centre in Newark, New Jersey, on June 30, WHL.ca and WHL Web TV, will highlight WHL players who are highly ranked by NHL Central Scouting leading up to draft day.  This week’s featured WHL player is Edmonton Oil Kings’ heart & soul forward Curtis Lazar.

Curtis Lazar – Edmonton Oil Kings
Forward

Hometown
:  Vernon, B.C.
D.O.B:  February 2, 1995
Ht: 6′ 0  
Wt: 198  
Shoots: R 
NHL C.S.S. Final Ranking: 20th among North American skaters

Curtis Lazar just finished his second season in the Western Hockey League with the Edmonton Oil Kings.  The Vernon, B.C., native scored 38 goals and 61 points to go with a +25 rating in 72 games to help lead the Oil Kings to their second consecutive Central Division and Eastern Conference regular-season titles.  He added another nine goals and 11 points in 22 playoff games as the Oil Kings advanced to their second straight appearance in the WHL Championship series.

A strong two-way center with a tremendous compete level, Lazar is a player who can do a lot of good things on the ice.  The 6’0’, 198-lb forward can play up and down the lineup, whether in a checking role or as a top-six offensive player.  Boasting an NHL quality shot, Lazar is a threat to score from the outside, but also gets a lot of goals from battling in close for rebounds.  His strong skating ability, defensive awareness and willingness battle in all areas of the ice make him a tremendous defensive player, and his positive attitude, character and lead-by-example work ethic have molded him into an excellent leader and team mate.

“First of all, he’s a great kid, and a highly talented player,” said Edmonton Oil Kings’ general manager Bob Green.  “He plays the game the right way all over the ice, he’s very responsible away from the puck, he plays a physical game and likes to finish his checks, and he’s got the ability to finish.”

As good as Lazar’s obvious skill set is, Green says the 18-year-old’s intangibles and character are what sets him apart from many others.

“He’ll do anything to win, he’s a highly competitive kid who’ll do whatever it takes, he’s not selfish, and he’ll change his game and role to whatever he needs to do to help the team win,” said Green.  “He has the ability to play up and down the lineup, and his ability to play with anyone on the team and his willingness to adapt his game, work hard every shift and just bring whatever he needs to the table makes him a special player.”

The Oil Kings’ first-round pick, 2nd overall, in the 2010 WHL Bantam Draft, Lazar has played on the national and international stages on several occasions.  He captained Team BC to the Gold medal at the 2011 Canada Winter Games, and played for Team Pacific in the 2012 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge.  Lazar helped Canada’s Under-18 team win Gold at the 2012 Memorial for Ivan Hlinka tournament in August 2012.  In addition to national and international duty, Lazar played for Team WHL in the 2012 SUBWAY Super Series, suited up for Team Orr at the 2013 Home Hardware CHL / NHL Top Prospects game, and played in the 2012 MasterCard Memorial Cup tournament with the Oil Kings in Shawinigan, QC.

Did you know…Lazar scored a whopping 12 goals and 17 points in only six games at the 2011 Canada Winter Games, breaking Steve Stamkos’ goal-scoring record and Sidney Crosby’s record for points in the tournament…Lazar’s hockey role model growing up was Hockey Hall-of-Famer and former Swift Current Bronco Joe Sakic…At No. 2 overall in the 2010 Bantam Draft, Lazar is the highest drafted player in Oil Kings’ modern-day franchise history.

WHL STATISTICS

Season

Team

GP

G

A

PTS

+/-

PIM

2012-13

Edmonton Oil Kings

72

38

23

61

25

47

2011-12

Edmonton Oil Kings

63

20

11

31

15

56

2010-11

Edmonton Oil Kings

6

0

1

1

2

0

               

Playoffs

Team

GP

G

A

PTS

+/-

PIM

2013

Edmonton Oil Kings

22

9

2

11

-2

20

2012

Edmonton Oil Kings

20

8

11

19

9

4

2011

Edmonton Oil Kings

4

1

0

1

-1

0

 

2013 NHL TOP PROSPECT PROFILE ARCHIVE:

SHEA THEODORE, SEATTLE THUNDERBIRDS

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