Over the past season, not many CHL players saw their draft stock fall more than Allen McShane of the Oshawa Generals. Going into the season, some saw McShane as a potential lottery pick in the 2018 NHL Entry draft. Now, there’s a good chance he falls out of the top-50 on draft day.
Coming over to Oshawa as the key piece in the trade that saw Anthony Cirelli moved to Erie last season, McShane finished second on the Generals in scoring this year. On a young Oshawa team, McShane played center on the team’s top powerplay unit most of the season and was able to fill a much needed hole as a true two-way center.
A smaller, but highly skilled forward McShane is seen as “undersized” by many scouts. That said, at 190lbs, he has a solid frame that allows him to protect the puck well. He’s got a lot of strength for his size, something that allows him to drive to the net and battle along the boards with bigger opponents.
Outside of consensus No. 2 pick Andrei Svechnikov, Allen McShane might be the best pure playmaker coming out of the OHL. He likes to have the puck on his stick. McShane has excellent possession skills and tremendous patience which allows time for the play to develop. He is a very smart player with the bulk of his playmaking skills coming from elite on-ice awareness.
Despite being a tremendous playmaker, McShane isn’t afraid to shoot the puck. He’s got a good release and a tremendous amount of confidence in his own shot - sometimes too much.
McShane is a very good two-way player. As a center, he understands his role in the defensive zone better than most players his age. He provides support for his defenders and despite lacking the high-end speed, will always be around for support on the backcheck.
That’s the biggest issue in McShane’s game - speed. If there’s one thing that will prevent McShane from being a top-9 center in the NHL, it’s the fact that he doesn’t necessarily play with the speed you’d like to see from a player with his skill. McShane has average - maybe even a little more - top-end speed, the issue is that his acceleration needs a lot of wotrk. It takes him a few extra steps to get going which means he lacks the explosiveness that would make him an elite offensive player. Moving with the puck, McShane can be pretty shifty. He is really quick laterally and and works well east-west, but he needs a lot of work when it comes to north-south skating.
If he can work on his first step and get his acceleration a little above average, McShane could turn into a legitimate offensive threat at the next level. If not, he could end up being one of those guys that lights up the AHL, but just isn’t quick enough to make the jump to the highest level.
Two more years in the OHL will give McShane a lot of time to develop and grow. He’s a hard worker, so if he is able to identify his deficiencies, it’s not hard to imagine McShane improving the aspects of his game that need it.
As a second round pick teams could do a lot worse than McShane. He has a lot of the tools to make an impact in the NHL.
McShane led all draft eligible OHL forwards with 32 primary points.
What the Scouts Are Saying
“Strong playmaker with excellent vision that can extend possessions down low thanks his strong balance and puck protection. McShane is a threat in open ice because he always seems to find the open man with the best opportunity to score, but he frequently turns seemingly harmless puck battles in the corner into quality chances for his mates.” –Steve Kournianos/The Draft Analyst
McShane is a slightly undersized, playmaking forward. Allan is at his best in possession were he is able to utilize his vision and passing skills to generate offensively. He’s player who is able to find space and anticipate well. McShane possesses a versatility in the offensive zone with the ability to create with his playmaking and shooting abilities. Allan would however benefit from becoming more assertive with his shot, as he displays a quick release and good accuracy. Defensively his anticipation and quick stick help elevate his abilities, however his lack of size and strength can limit him when defending against bigger bodied opponents. Offensively McShane shows good skill to his game, a confident puck handler with the ability to create space with his creativity and puck skills. However he can be limited at times due to the combination of limited size and a short skating stride. While he moves his feet quickly and has good edges, McShane can struggle to generate speed and attack with pace. He shows a good skill set, but Allan needs to play with more urgency to his game and find a consistent compete level that will elevate his game. - HockeyProspects.com
Where He’ll Be Drafted
Many see McShane in the back half of the second round - potentially even falling to round three. I think he should go higher than that. He has the potential to be one of the best playmaking centers in the OHL next season. He fits naturally down the middle of the ice and can provide the dependability coaches want in a middle-6 pivot. Watching the Generals play every night, personally I would put McShane in the same tier as Serron Noel. That said, he’s likely to get drafted nearly a full round behind Noel.
Projection: 58th overall