2020 NHL Draft

Jake Neighbours

Edmonton (WHL)

Steve Kournianos  |  10/5/2020 |  Nashville  |  [hupso]


Position: Left Wing
Shoots: Left
Height / Weight: 6’0, 195 lbs
Born: March 29, 2002 | Calgary, AB
Nation: Canada

Regular Season

2019-2020 Edmonton WHL 64 23 47 70 39
2019-2020 Canada U18 Hlinka 5 0 0 0 4
2018-2019 Edmonton WHL 47 11 13 24 25
2017-2018 Edmonton WHL 11 0 4 4 6

Scouting Report

An energetic winger with an impressive combination of skill and physicality, Neighbours was a top-line player for a contending Oil Kings squad. He ranked second on the team in assists (47) and points (70), and his team-best 228 shots were 43 more than his closest teammate. Neighbours, who was the fourth overall pick in the 2017 WHL Bantam Draft, was used on both the power play (3 goals, 16 assists) and the penalty kill (1 shorthanded goal) and was chosen for the majority of critical late/close situations. He played for Team Canada-White at the 2018 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge (3 goals and 3 assists in 5 games) and did not register a point in five contests for the Canadians at the 2019 U18 Ivan Hlinka.

Neighbours is a good skater with a hunched skating style and average speed and agility, but both his strength while moving on the puck and balance through traffic are excellent. He plays a tough north-south game predicated on anticipation and physicality, and his ability to win a fair amount of 50-50 battles is at the forefront of his game off the puck. Playing alongside a playmaker like 2021 draft prospect Dylan Guenther allowed Neighbours to focus more on creating havoc on the forecheck and outmuscling opponents off the puck. He also showed smart positioning and the ability to slip away from a lengthy struggle and remain undetected until the puck was already off his blade.

Neighbours is an excellent passer and can thread the needle through stick traffic, especially as he mans the point or half- wall on the power play. He picked up his goal-scoring in the second half (14 of his 23 goals came in his final 28 games) thanks to an increase in shot attempts and capitalizing more on his excellent shot-release combination. He has a high hockey IQ and is poised under intense pressure, using bank or soft chip passes to trap aggressive opponents.

A difficult opponent to match up against, Neighbours has been known to drop the gloves when necessary. He brings a lot of energy, physicality, and enthusiasm into every shift, and seems to always make his presence felt whether he’s scoring or not. Neighbours can create momentum-changing plays on his own, to include big hits in open ice or a sequence of shot blocks.

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