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Is Bogosian a Franchise Defenseman?

Why am I so excited about the career potential of Zach Bogosian? One reason is that he has demonstrated a real flair for scoring at an early age. In juniors many guys have big point totals at age 19 or 20 but the star quality prospects do it when they are just 17 or 18 years old.

To put Bogosian in perspective I went thought the top 50 point scoring defenseman in NHL history. Many of them didn't play in the major junior hockey--but for those that did I looked up their points-per-game during their age 18 season to compare to the Thrashers draft pick.

Bogosian ranks about bottom third of this list. It is worth keeping in mind that just as the NHL was more high scoring in the 1980s the same was true in junior hockey back then. Today it is MUCH harder to score a goal in the NHL than it was 20 years ago and the same thing is true of juniors--so if we were to "adjust" for scoring environment that would bump up Bogosian a couple of spots on this comparable list.

2.00Bobby Orr
1.64 Dave Babych
1.58 Doug Wilson
1.48 Ray Bourque
1.42 Darryl Sydor
1.40 Doug Bodger
1.36 Paul Coffey
1.32 Randy Carlyle
1.27 Mathieu Schneider
1.31 Larry Murphy
1.18 Paul Reinhart
1.13 Jeff Brown
1.12 Rob Ramage
1.09 Kevin Hatcher
1.02 Chris Pronger
1.02 Bogosian
0.98 Glen Wesley
0.83 Al MacInnis
0.74 Denis Potvin
0.74 Brad Park
0.62 Scott Stevens
0.56 Eric Desjardins

I hate to put too much pressure on a young 18 year old guy, but the stats suggest that Bogosian is a career trajectory to be a very good NHL defenseman--maybe even a great NHL player. This list of comparables is pretty exciting. Some of these guys were just solid offensive defensemen, but others went on to have Hall of Fame caliber careers and were great two way players such as Scott Stevens, Denis Potvin and Chris Pronger.