This is part 3 of my Prospect File series where I update you guys’ on Hockey’s Future’s Top 20 Anaheim Ducks prospects. This will be a daily series that will hopefully end before the 2013 NHL Entry Draft. I will also be doing a series on possible players the Ducks will take with their first round pick. Part 2 was on goaltender Igor Bobkov. So, next up in part 3 is #18 on HF’s Top 20, winger Chris Wagner.
The Ducks selected Chris Wagner in the fifth round of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft. The 6’0″-200 lb winger from Wellesley, Massachusetts cut his college career short in order to move on to professional hockey. In his two seasons at Colgate University, he totaled 26 goals and 44 assists for 70 points in 79 games played, much of that came in his breakout sophomore season where he registered 17 goals and 34 assists for 51 points in 38 games played. To add to his scoring ability, he has become a good two-way player that can handle himself well in his own zone. In that sophomore season, he was also a +20 and in his this past season with a bad Norfolk Admirals team, he was +5. His first season of professional hockey did not see him carry over his offensive production with only 8 goals and 13 assists in 70 games with the Admirals. However, don’t shoot him down just yet. He’s poised for a breakout season with a year of pro hockey under his belt. At this point, with more prospects filling in ahead of him, his future is starting to dim. But, if he can really settle down as a good bottom line guy who can play well defensively, on the penalty kill and contribute offense when needed, there’s no reason he shouldn’t get a shot at the NHL. However, right now, that seems to be the only way he can break out into the NHL.
Position: Right Wing
Weight: 200 lbs
“After a good solid season at Colgate University, Chris Wagner jumped into the AHL for the first time this season. While Wagner was not a standout by any means, he was a decent addition to the Admirals. With 21 points in 69 games, Wagner was a useful bottom line forward and proved to be responsible in his own end. His stock is quickly falling though as prospects with more potential are starting to pile up in front of him. Wagner is going to have to find a niche and really start to excel at it if he wants to stay relevant. Still, it was his rookie season and Wagner could take off in the coming years as a new wave of talent comes in to support the Admirals.
Wagner has quietly emerged as a nice little late-round sleeper take 122nd overall on the cusp of this breakout season. That sort of timely, linear development is always an encouraging sign. Wagner may develop into a scorer but his multi-dimensional game may give him an opportunity to make his mark with another specialty at the next level.”
Next up in the series will be center Charles Sarault.