Tyler Bozak Scouting Report by Gus Katsaros and Ryan Dadoun
Tyler Bozak is a solid two-way forward, a skilled passer, and he can shoot the puck quickly while still hitting his target. What he is not is a first-line center, but thatâ€™s the role he keeps ending up in due to circumstances in Toronto. The Maple Leafs pivot ended up in that role from the very beginning as Tim Connolly started the season on the sidelines. Phil Kessel and Joffrey Lupul got off to an explosive start and Bozak benefited substantially from playing between them. Going into the month of December, Kessel or Lupul had either gotten a goal or an assist in 12 of Bozakâ€™s 15 even-strength points. Significant top line minutes is part of the reason he set a new career-high with 47 points, but itâ€™s worth noting that he was also a very streaky goal scorer. He had an outburst where he scored six goals in eight games in November and then another one that went from late January to early February. Those hot streaks correlate with an increased willingness to fire the puck, as he recorded 44 of his 109 shots on goal during those 16 games. The undrafted Regina native is a good skater who can surprise with his top speed. Heâ€™s creative with his footwork, useful especially when trying to create offensively. The 26-year-old added mass, allowing him to be effective along the boards. Heâ€™s a nice asset that comes with a very reasonable cap hit, only miscast as a true first-line forward.
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