Gilmour: Lawson Crouse will be ‘a great leader’

Some of the best potential 2015 NHL Draft picks join Ron and Don, and Jack Eichel has a present for Grapes.

Doug Gilmour says top 2015 NHL Draft prospect Lawson Crouse is poised for big things.

The former Toronto Maple Leafs captain and current general manager of the Kingston Frontenacs spoke highly of the young forward from Mt. Bridges, Ont. — especially when it comes to his leadership skills.

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“He’s a great kid in the dressing room, he’s going to be a great leader,” Gilmour told Dean Blundell & Co. at the Joe Carter Classic in Maple, Ont. Wednesday. “We wish him all the best because he’s done a lot for our hockey club in Kingston.”

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By “a lot,” Gilmour doesn’t just mean Crouse’s 51 points in 56 games in 2014-15 to lead the team in scoring. Often called “The Sherriff,” Crouse has been known for his leadership role with the Frontenacs — even giving rookies rides to and from school.

Crouse is slotted to be a top-10 — maybe even top five — pick, has a skill set comparable to Cam Neely, Milan Lucic and Rick Nash.

At six-foot-four and 215 pounds, those big-man comparisons are not surprising for this high-risk, high-reward prospect.

“He’s a big body. He can skate, he’s got a pro shot — his release is phenomenal,” Gilmour added. “He’s going to compete.”

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