There will never be another Stratford Streak to rival Howie Morenz  -- known in his heyday as the Babe Ruth of hockey.

But there’s this kid from Stratford -- Joey Hishon -- whose playing style makes you want to call him the Stratford Streak, even though his talent does not rival that of Morenz.


A comparable NHL player talent-wise to Hishon might be the Strathroy Streak – Andy McDonald – because they are both about the same size and have the same skill set. For the record, McDonald is listed as 5-10, 190 pounds while Hishon is listed at just under 5-10 and 170 pounds. By the time Hishon bulks up for the pro game, he should be about the same size as McDonald.

Hishon is in his fourth year in the OHL with the Owen Sound Attack, so don’t focus too much on his gaudy stats so far this season. The stats are not so much an indication of his ability, but they do show that he’s back on track after an injury-plagued and inconsistent draft year. Many thought the nifty centre would be a top-10 pick in the 2010 draft, but he fell to the Colorado Avalanche at 17. Some thought he should have fallen even further than that. ISS had him ranked No. 46 on their final rankings and our own Matt Bugg had him at No. 52 in his mock draft. Both of those low rankings are a testament to how much Hishon struggled last year.

Hishon adjusted quickly to the OHL and put up excellent numbers in his first two years, but last year was hobbled by a pelvis injury in the preseason and broken foot early in the season that limited him to just 36 games.

When he’s healthy, he’s an offensive dynamo. He has amazing puck skills and hockey sense, skating and offensive instincts are all very good. His passing skills are better than his shot, but he has a good, accurate snap shot and is a good finisher in tight thanks to his soft hands.

A rinkrat who used to spend time in the Stratford rink where his dad worked, Hishon has a creativity born from lots of unstructured time on the ice. He makes great passes and has excellent vision and can make plays at top speed. It’s always nice when a speedy prospect’s hands and head can keep up with his feet.

He has a great compete level and his work ethic will make sure that he adds the necessary bulk and defensive skills as he moves up to the pro ranks. Despite his size, he doesn’t shy away from high traffic areas and when he goes into a scrum, he comes out with the puck more often than not.

Hishon is a student of the game and even in minor hockey watched a lot of videos to improve and learn about other players. Despite not playing against AAA players until he was a teenager, Hishon’s dedication to honing his skills in his backyard rink or elsewhere make him a good old-fashioned rink rat.

Upside: 30-45-75


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Ryan Van Horne said:

James I don't think Hishon will bump either Stastny or Duchene out of a centre spot in Colorado. Given his hockey sense, offensive creativity, and I think Hishon could move to the wing, much like Andy McDonald has been able to do. That said, he's good enough to be a centre in the NHL I think.

In his minor hockey days, Hishon had a cool nickname that I don't think has stuck -- at least I haven't heard it. It was Hishon The Magician -- because of his puck skills. I think he could very easily shift to the wing -- and if he's going to play on a scoring line with Colorado in the NHL, it looks like that's what will have to happen.
October 31, 2010
Votes: +0

Ryan Van Horne said:

HPG Yeah, Hishon is a late birthday and was only 15 when he started playing in the OHL. He turned 16 on October 20 of his rookie season.

That's why I was so impressed with his sophomore season. He would have been one of the youngest 91s in the OHL that season and put up amazing numbers.

I'm always careful of comparing the numbers of a third-year player in his draft year to a second-year player in his draft year. I think that extra year can give the late birthdates an edge in public opinion that talent does not merit.

In Hishon's case, though, he scuffled a bit because of injuries and inconsistency so he was drafted this summer based largely on what scouts saw in his second year.
October 31, 2010
Votes: +0

James said:

maya has the knife
... Where do you see Hishon fitting in with Stastny and Duchene entrenched as the top two centers in Colorado? Will he emerge as a winger in the NHL? If so, how do you like his chances compared to those should he remain at center?
October 31, 2010
Votes: +0

HPG said:

4th season, but still only 19 Great article, Ryan! I'd just point out that while Hishon is in his 4th OHL season, he's a late '91 birthday, so his draft was essentially "pushed back" a year. I always keep an eye out for prospects with late birthdates that produce well... it's hard to produce when you're younger than most of your peers! In this case, Hishon played his first full year in the OHL at the age of 16, and didn't turn 17 until his 2nd year (where he produced fantastic numbers - 1.28 P/GP, inc playoffs). He wasn't drafted until after his 3rd (18-year-old) year.

So while he's in his 4th season, he's 19, not 20 as most 4th year CHL players are.
October 31, 2010
Votes: +0
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