Sneaking in at #17.5 is left wing Kieffer Bellows of Team USA’s U18 squad. Er…#17.5? Sooooo yeah, we compiled and averaged our draft ratings, and through the mysteries of modern math we carried a remainder or something and lost Kieffer Bellows.
Bellows is 6’0″, 195 lbs. and after a productive campaign with Team USA he’s committed to Boston University for the 2016-2017 school year season. With Team USA he scored 50 goals and 31 assists in 62 games.
The Draft Analyst has this to say about him:
Bellows is a well-built goal scorer with a low center of gravity who can play a punishing, heavy yet cerebral game. He’s a good skater with tremendous balance and moves well laterally. And while he used play center for Edina’s powerhouse high school program, Bellows is most certainly better suited as a shooter from the flank. He’s built like a Mack truck and plays with fire, using tremendous athleticism and work ethic to maintain his compete level, even during extended shifts. He’s extremely difficult to move off the puck, and he’s proven to be a load to handle for some of the NCAA’s bigger defensemen. Bellows is a hard, accurate passer, but can also feather a pass off the rush or lead his teammates with timing and precision.
Bellows’ approach towards every shift is to keep himself involved at all times in order to acquire the puck, using his physical gifts and wide frame to protect it as he maneuvers towards the net. Take our word for it – if a defender is nervous going back for the puck, Bellows will sniff it out and exploit that fear. He plays an aggressive, sometimes stubborn game, often too much for his own good. Getting whistled for bad penalties is a habit he’s had since high school, and fixing that should be a training objective when he plays for Boston University next season. When he keeps his emotions in check, however, he can be an unstoppable force.
I’d expect the Bruins to take a defenseman like Jake Bean or Dante Fabbro, or perhaps a scorer like Julien Gauthier or Luke Kunin, but perhaps Bellows fits into the B’s plans.