Before the NHL draft on June 28-29, Detroit Hockey Now will review nine different players who have a chance to be selected ninth overall by the Detroit Red Wings. Today’s ninth installment looks at Canadian forward Colby Barlow.
Position: Left Wing; Hgt/Wgt: 6-1, 187
Playing style: Strong offensive player with a high motor on defense and strong leadership qualities.
NHL Central Scouting Ranking: 10th among North American skaters
League: Ontario Hockey League
Barlow is one of the best pure scorers in the 2023 draft class. He netted 46 goals this season and owns a cannon for a shot, but also isn’t afraid to battle in front of the net. He has a high hockey IQ and a big frame that allows him to get to rebounds and tips. He’s a decent skater who doesn’t have that extra gear to get past defenders yet, but his mechanics are such that he should easily improve in that area. He’s not a flashy playmaker, but has the knack of consistently making smart passes.
Why the Red Wings Will Draft Him
Barlow is a gifted offensive player who drives hard to the net. He has a knack for anticipating and stealing passes, then starting the offense from the defensive end. He should be a solid threat to score, in the 40-50 point range, and could exceed that if paired with a star player. He should be a top-six NHL forward. He wins plenty of puck battles Most pundits have Barlow slotted around No. 9 in pre-draft scenarios.
Why the Red Wings Will Not Draft Him
The Red Wings need more young offensive prospects. The consensus seems to be that Barlow will land in the top 10 picks. Some teams have him ranked just outside the top 10. Depending upon who is available, Barlow seems like a quality option.