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2020 NHL Draft Countdown No. 60-56: Veeti Miettinen, Michael Benning, Carter Savoie, Luke Tuch, Connor McClennon

Welcome to OilersNation’s 2020 Draft Countdown. Over the next few weeks leading up to the draft (or, well, when it seems the draft might be), we’ll be rounding up scouting reports, quotes, and videos about our Top-100 prospects available. Here are aggregated profiles on Veeti Miettinen, Michael Benning, Carter Savoie, Luke Tuch, and Connor McClennon.

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No. 60: Veeti Miettinen

Date of Birth: September 20th, 2001

Nation: Finland

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Position: Right Wing

Shoots: Left

Height: 175 cm / 5’9″

Weight: 72 kg / 159 lbs

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Profile: A small but incredibly skilled winger, Miettinen was the leading scorer in Finland’s top junior league this season, posting 73 points in 52 games. He has a full package offensively, with good hands, a quick, accurate shot, good wheels, and strong instincts. He’s committed to play for St. Cloud State University next season. 

Miettinen is obviously a very talented offensive player. He has great hands which allow him to dangle in tight spaces very well. He is also a very smart player who can make creative plays for himself and for others as well. Even though he is a good playmaker, he’s more of a goal-scorer at heart. He has an excellent wrist shot which he can release quickly and accurately. He can also change the angle of the shot to make it even more difficult for the goalie. Miettinen is also a very good skater who gets high marks in both speed and quickness. What often gets overlooked is his play without the puck. Miettinen is a puck-hound who is always trying to steal the puck and cause turnovers. Although not a true two-way player, he is a reliable player defensively and more than capable of killing penalties. His strengths are definitely more in an offensive role but he has shown he can do a decent job playing a defensive role as well. –  Jokke Nevalainen, Dobber Prospects

No. 59: Michael Benning

Date of Birth: January 5th, 2002

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Nation: Canada

Position: Defence

Shoots: Right

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Height: 178 cm / 5’10”

Weight: 79 kg / 174 lbs

Profile: The younger brother of Oilers defenceman Matt Benning, Michael Benning put up a dominant season on a historically good Sherwood Park Crusaders team this year. He scored 75 points in 54 games, most in the league by a defenceman by a wide margin. He’ll join his teammate, Carter Savoie, at the University of Denver next season. 

Michael Benning is a very intriguing prospect because he is such an offensively minded defender and has an excellent family pedigree, with brother Matt, father Brian, and uncle Jim all NHL veterans. He is a very good playmaker from the blue line in and he pushes the pace of play with how quickly he processes the game and moves the puck appropriately. – Vince Gibbons, McKeen’s Hockey

No. 58: Carter Savoie

Date of Birth: January 23rd, 2002

Nation: Canada

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Position: Left Wing

Shoots: Left

Height: 178 cm / 5’10”

Weight: 82 kg / 181 lbs

Profile: A key cog on the Sherwood Park Crusaders’ dominant team this season, Savoie led the AJHL in goals by a wide margin, potting 53 in 54 games. He and teammate Michael Benning will play for the University of Denver next season. 

Savoie has elite skating ability, his lateral movement and edgework is some of the best in the draft class. He uses quick, hopping strides to generate speed through the neutral zone, then transitions to smooth, wide strides on entries. His top speed is high tier, which leads to him being a constant breakaway threat. When he gets them, he’s shown great finishing ability, with both skill and grit. – Alexander Taxman, Future Scope Hockey

No. 57: Luke Tuch

Date of Birth: March 7th, 2002

Nation: United States

Position: Left Wing

Shoots: Left

Height: 187 cm / 6’2″

Weight: 92 kg / 203 lbs

Profile: The younger brother of Vegas Golden Knights forward Alex Tuch, Luke Tuch is also a product of the United States National Development Program planning to take the NCAA route to the NHL. He’s a big, strong-skating winger with all of the tools to become a strong two-way forward in the NHL. 

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Luke Tuch, the younger brother of Vegas Golden Knights forward Alex Tuch, has been steadily showing improvements since last season. He has shown a bit more skill this season with some better puck handling and agile skating. The stalky winger has a hard shot that can beat any goaltender but doesn’t have the accuracy quite yet to make him a difference-maker on a regular basis. Tuch shows good awareness on the ice, finding teammates with the puck in transition and finding areas where he can be a dangerous scoring option. He has been inconsistent this season but his tools are very intriguing. A heavy shot, a good skater, and a solid net-front presence can make for a good asset for an NHL team looking for very good secondary scoring. – Tony Ferrari, Dobber Prospects

No. 56: Connor McClennon

Date of Birth: June 25th, 2002

Nation: Canada

Position: Right Wing

Shoots: Right

Height: 173 cm / 5’8″

Weight: 71 kg / 157 lbs

Profile: A small, skilled winger, McClennon had a strong season in the WHL this year for the Winnipeg Ice, forming chemistry with 2019 first-round pick Peyton Krebs. McClennon doesn’t have elite skating, but he’s strong on the puck for a small player and boasts elite vision in the offensive zone. 

I see a player with a high level of hockey sense who can make plays and score goals. McClennon is a small forward without elite speed, but I still think he skates very well and often is the zone entry guy for his club team. He competes well and kills penalties in the WHL. I like his tools, I like his track record the last few years and I think he’s going to be a very good pro. – Corey Pronman, The Athletic