WHL Quarter Poll Rankings: #1-10

TSR Features | 27 Nov 2011

Ryan Murray is tops on the list despite a less than perfect start to the season.

1. D Ryan Murray - Everett

I’m giving Murray the benefit of the doubt here, because his play has slipped a bit while some other have either been stable or ramped up their play. Murray still has high hockey sense and strong work ethic, but his Everett team has struggled this year. They were not very good with him and terrible without him. Murray is currently out with a high ankle sprain that should keep him out until December. Top pairing capabilities. Last Rank: #1

2. D Matt Dumba - Red Deer

Dumba has stayed on course through the first quarter of the season. A d-man with a penchant for a big play, either through making a rush up the ice, shooting cannons from the point or delivering open ice hits. His hockey sense is still somewhat in question with me and ultimately could hold him back as being a top pairing defenseman at the pro level but he is undeniably a highlight reel waiting to happen. Last Rank: #3

3. D Morgan Rielly - Moose Jaw

Rielly answered the questioned of whether or not he could bring Moose Jaw out of the doldrums and bring them to the next level. He has been the offensive catalyst for this team from the backend and has really become a tempo setter for the Warriors. Moose Jaw currently sits 3rd in their division and are well within the playoff threshold. Rielly, unfortunately, had his season ended by a torn ACL, he likely won’t get the opportunity to be higher than this spot. Last Rank: #4

4. D Griffin Reinhart - Edmonton

Reinhart is a player that doesn’t have a lot of “wow” factor in his game, but he is solid and steady, someone you want on the ice a lot of the time. As I mentioned in the previous poll, Reinhart was going to have to take one of his skills and make it elite. Reinhart has yet to do that. He started off slowly, got suspended for a knee on knee hit, but now has his game back up to stride. Someone looking for a big minute eating Dman that can contribute at both ends of the ice will look the way of Reinhart. Reinhart slipped only because Dumba and Rielly really upped their games. Last rank: #2

5. D Derrick Pouliot - Portland

Pouliot’s season thus far has run hot and cold, much like his Portland team. Pouliot got off to a real hot start, but has tapered off a bit as Joe Morrow came back from the Penguins camp to take back his #1 spot on the team. Pouliot has some offensive ability, his real value comes as being a point man on the power play. Pouliot’s game at times seems to succumb to indifference at times. He played better when he was the #1 option than being the 2nd fiddle. Pouliot will have to be better to crack the top 4. Last Rank: #5

6. D Damon Severson - Kelowna

Severson has had a strong year so far with the Rockets, already within a point of eclipsing his point totals from last year. Severson’s points have come in bunches and then will go long stretches without getting anything. Severson’s positional play is top notch. He has already established himself as a very dependable defender. Severson is on the cusp of breaking into the top 5. Last Rank: #6

7. RW Colten Sissons - Kelowna

Sissons had a feather put in his cap to start the year by naming him captain of the Rockets. Sissons, at the very will least will be an up and down winger that finishes checks and goes to the rough areas. At most, he could become a scoring power forward. Sissons just has that look to his game that scouts love. He’s a strapping player that keeps the game simple. He definitely has that Nathan Horton thing going on for him. It will be interesting to see where he ends up. Last Rank: #11

8. D Dalton Thrower - Saskatoon

Thrower is no stranger to making things happen on the ice. He embraces the physicality of the game, plays tough, blocks shots, contributes some offense. I don’t question his toughness but I question his hockey sense to a degree. He is coming along nicely in Saskatoon and Saskatoon is able to put him roles where he can succeed. If you’re a team looking for a high energy Dman, Thrower is that player. Last Rank: #10

9. LW Tim Bozon - Kamloops

Kamloops is off to a really strong start this year and Tim Bozon is one of the reasons why. Bozon is a player that has some offense to his game, but brings a real reliable game to both ends of the ice. He is 2nd on his team in plus/minus, 4th on his team in points and has shown himself to be a fine complementary player on the Blazers this season. He’s put himself on the radar with a strong start to the year. Last Rank: NR

10. RW Coda Gordon - Swift Current

Gordon is having a season much like Bozon is. The difference is the teams they play on. Kamloops is one of the best teams in the Dub, while Swift Current is a team trying to keep its head above water. Gordon is being featured on the top line with Taylor Vause and Adam Lowry. He is managaing to stay on the even side of the ledger while the rest of his team is heavy into the minuses. A strong start from Gordon gets him on the board. Last Rank: NR

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One Comment

  • N/A

    Thrower is a tough player to play against, I have watched him play for many years and all he has done is show that he is capable of being a First Round Pick in this year’s upcoming NHL Draft. I feel that he hasn’t gotten the exposure he has needed but I don’t doubt that he will surpass Severson. There should be no more talk about the 5 WHL defence man, it should be the 6 or even 7. They are all highly ranked Prospects

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