The 2008 Entry draft in Ottawa is coming up quicker than you think and all the buzz is about Steve Stamkos.
But there's a kid who plays for the Everett Silvertips in the WHL who should challenge Stamkos for that top spot. And it's not just for his scoring.
Going by the opinions of people who follow the WHL, Kyle Beach might be the next Sean Avery, Steve Downie and Esa Tikkanen all rolled into one with great hands on top of that.
Off the ice, he's polite; on it, he's probably the most hated player in the WHL.
"He's like Eddie Haskell," said one WHL observer.
"He's got a big mouth. He chirps. He plays on the edge and crosses the line, for sure ... his reputation for doing stuff goes back to bantam," said another WHL executive, who likes his talent, and his big shot, but admits he's got baggage.
"I saw Beach play awhile back and he scored a goal, killed penalties and speared a poor guy in the head," said an NHL front-office guy.
The Tri-City Herald out of Washington State broke down the best of the best in the WHL and Beach got some strong mentions:
Most irritating player: Kyle Beach. Does this one really need an explanation?
Best pro prospect: Beach. Size, strength, scoring ability and agitation. What more do you need?
Beach has 27 goals and 32 assists in 56 games so far this season and is a modest 6"3, 203 pounds.