The Buffalo Sabres have selected winger Jack Quinn, who scored 52 goals with the Ottawa 67’s last season, eighth overall at the NHL tonight.
The 6-foot, 167-pound Quinn is the first pick under new Sabres general manager Kevyn Adams.
Quinn, who often draws comparisons to Boston Bruins sniper David Pastrnak, ranked seventh among draft-eligible North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting.
Quinn, 19, is a bit of a late bloomer. He scored only 12 goals in 61 outings as a rookie in 2018-19 before morphing into the Ontario Hockey League’s second-highest goal scorer last season.
“Goal scorers have to have confidence, and he’s got that confidence you don’t want to misconstrue with cockiness,” said Dan Marr, the director of Central Scouting. “When he has the puck, he’s the guy you want to be shooting.”
Overall, Quinn compiled 89 points in 62 games for Ottawa, which compiled a gaudy 50-11-1 record last season.
“Everyone’s game matures,” Marr said. “The fact of the matter is basically he was in a great organization.”
The Sabres, of course, need help up front, especially at wing. At center, they have star Jack Eichel and the recently acquired Eric Staal. They also expect Dylan Cozens, the seventh overall pick last year, to compete for a roster spot.
Quinn formed a dynamic combination last season with Marco Rossi, often finishing the center’s feeds.
“In order to do that, he still needed to have the hockey sense and the speed to be there on time to get open to see the play developing and to have yourself in a position where you can finish on the plays,” Marr said of Quinn. “He’s shown that.”
He added: “These weren’t garbage goals.”
The Minnesota Wild drafted Rossi, who compiled 89 assists and 120 points last season, one spot after Quinn.