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Edmonton Oilers Prospect Countdown #16: Shane Lachance

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Bruce Curlock
7 months ago
Shane Lachance, son of former NHLer Scott Lachance, comes in at #16 in the Edmonton Oilers Prospect Countdown.
Position: Left Wing
Shoots: Left
Nationality: United States
Date of Birth: August 30, 2003
Drafted: 6th Round, 2021
Height: 6’4″ / 194 cm
Weight: 218lbs / 99 kg
Ranking last year: Not ranked
Often when scouts look at draft-eligible players, they want to see at least one NHL translatable skill. It can be anything from skating to hockey sense to toughness — anything that can be built around to make the player an NHLer. In the case of Shane Lachance, it’s his shot. Goalies in the USHL have been finding this out the hard way for the last two seasons.
As can be seen above with 44 goals in 117 games in the USHL, Shane Lachance knows how to score. 36-24-60 in 71 games in his 2022/23 season was enough to get Lachance to Boston University for the 2023/24 campaign. The interesting part is that Lachance is not just a one-trick pony scoring-wise. But no question, he has a tremendous release.

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The puck comes off his stick without any body movement and does so with great accuracy and pace. Here is another look from ice level. Watch how quickly the puck moves from his stick to the net and watch his body movement. It’s very impressive.

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However, as you may have noticed above, Shane Lachance is a big man. Lachance uses his size to affect offensively very well. He has very soft hands and his ability to plant himself net front makes him hard to stop.

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So Lachance definitely has that one translatable skill scouts try to find in prospects. His unique ability to score from distance and from net front really makes him a compelling prospect.
Another element that Oilers management has definitely valued over the years is toughness. Well, Shane Lachance has that as well.

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Without further review, there is no question that Shane Lachance is an NHL prospect. However, as with late-round picks, there are areas where improvement will be required.
For Lachance, the most fundamental is his skating. In terms of body position, his lower half is a good set-up. Maybe a little wide, but ok. His skates however take time to return back to center after striding causing a slower speed. The length of the stride is also a little short. Lengthening the stride would be a great help. The other issue is his upper body is quite hunched, which hurts his ability to push with maximum force. It also causes balance issues on transition skating for him.
Here is a clip that highlights all of the above here.

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This should be the primary focus for Lachance over the coming years. The ability to improve even modestly in a few areas of skating will make a big difference in Lachance’s NHL prospects.
The other area which is not a weakness, but more of an area where he could be even more dangerous offensively is his puck skills. The more that he can pass off the puck to teammates, the more he will create ice for himself. As he becomes known to NCAA coaches, they will try to attach to him quickly to defend against his shot. If he can identify opportunities to get the puck to teammates, he will create more chances, not just for them, but for him. Defenders will have to think twice about attacking him quickly. This should lead to more goals against tougher and tougher competition.
As mentioned, Lachance has committed to Boston University. This is great news for Oilers’ management because he now is their property until the end of the of 2026/27 season. This gives them lots of time to work with the player on improvements and more time to sign the player to a professional contract. As always, U.S.-born players signing with Canadian NHL teams is a risky venture. If LaChance continues to develop while scoring goals at his historical rates, the Oilers will need to make his signing a priority.

Previous names in the countdown

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