2015 NHL Draft profile: Timo Meier

BY foxsports • June 20, 2015

A versatile forward with the ability to line up at center or right wing, Timo Meier is out to prove that his success isn't simply a result of the company he keeps.

After posting 34 points in 66 games during his inaugural season in North America, Meier had a breakout season in 2014-15 while playing alongside former ninth-overall pick Nikolaj Ehlers for the Halifax Moosheads of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. He recorded a team-high 44 goals during the regular season and ranked in the top 10 in goals (10) and points (21) in 14 games in the QMJHL playoffs.

What's more impressive, however, is how consistent the 18-year-old forward was on offense. Over the course of last season, Meier matched No. 1 North American prospect Connor McDavid by registering at least one point in 27 consecutive games and was bested only by Ehlers, who found the scoresheet in a franchise-record 33 consecutive games.

A native of Herisau, Switzerland, Meier also made a splash on the international stage this past season while playing for his home country at the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship. In six games, he notched two goals and four assists while playing alongside former 11th-overall pick Kevin Fiala.

As you can see, exceptional talent always seems to find and surround Meier. That doesn't mean, however, that his success should necessarily be considered a product of his linemates. In fact, it might even be fair to say that he elevated their play as much as they bolstered his.

Pros

Armed with a powerful left-handed shot, Meier is most effective when he's on the power play. He racked up a franchise-record 23 power-play goals in just 61 games for the Mooseheads last season. It's also worth noting that he's still transitioning away from a European style of play and should only get better as he grows more comfortable competing on smaller North American rinks.

Cons

While Meier is already being labeled as a two-way forward, he still has some work to do on the defensive side of his game before he can fully live up to that billing. That being said, he has shown an eagerness to learn as well as a willingness to not only play defense, but also take pride in it. As he continues to gain experience, his decision-making skills in his own zone should become more polished.

What the scouts say

"The 6-1, 209-pound left-shot forward can play center or right wing and is strong with and without the puck. He has high-end hockey sense, competes hard and is effective in 1-on-1 situations. Led Halifax in the regular season with 44 goals, and with 23 power-play goals. He had 90 points in 61 regular-season games and he's in the top five in goals and points in Quebec Major Junior Hockey League playoffs." -- Mike Morreale of NHL.com.

"What do Nikolai Ehlers, Kevin Fiala and Connor McDavid all have in common? All were beneficiaries of playing alongside the 6-1, 209-pound forward at some point this season. Meier skates well and doesn't hesitate to use a strong shot that helped him score 44 goals in 61 games, but also knows how to set up his linemates; he was second on Halifax with 46 assists." -- Adam Kimelman of NHL.com. 

"A physically dominant winger with the ability to play in a skill or character role. In the offensive end, Meier is very aware and gets himself into spaces where he can easily make seeing eye passes or snap hard, accurate shots. Can impact the game in a number of different ways, and is very consistent in his efforts. All-in-all, the kind of versatile player that you can put on a skill line, and trust to create dangerous chances, or on a shutdown line, and trust to help stop pucks from going into your net." -- Curtis Joe of EliteProspects.com.

Final thought

Meier is the 10th ranked North American skater, according to NHL Central Scouting, and the No. 1 ranked player coming out of the QMJHL. At this point, it seems more than likely that he will still be on the board when the Florida Panthers pick at No. 11 in the upcoming draft, but it wouldn't come as a surprise if he goes sooner. At 6-foot-1 and 209 pounds, he has the size that Panthers general manager Dale Tallon covets and plays at one of the team's greatest position of need. In the end, the Panthers and Meier could prove to be a perfect match.

You can follow Jameson Olive on Twitter @JamesonCoop or email him at JamesonOlive@gmail.com.



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