Previous Rank: 17th
Despite the added depth in the Winnipeg Jets system, Andrew Copp keeps climbing the prospect ranks. After three strong years of college hockey at the University of Michigan, Andrew Copp has turned pro. He saw his first piece of NHL action too, picking up an assist in the Winnipeg Jets regular season finale.
A smooth skater with some strong faceoff ability and solid defensive acumen, Copp is often presumed the heir apparent for Jim Slater's 4th line center slot. Will it happen?
Andrew Copp posted another strong statistical season. He was no longer asked to carry the offensive load as the team's top line centre. Detroit Red Wings prospect Dylan Larkin jumped into the NCAA and took over that role, still Andrew Copp remained a consistent offensive performer. He finished the year tied for 3rd in team scoring.
AIH Authors' Thoughts:
Called a future captain by The Hockey News, Andrew Copp will likely see time as the 4th line center, providing Nic Petan doesn't beat him to it. A +6 on a Big Ten club, scoring 31 points in 36 games. May need to play in the AHL for a transition season as it were, but I expect he will be recalled and reassigned all year.
Andrew Copp seems to have been handed the Jets fourth line center position on a silver platter, considering the lack of any signings. He looked good in the final game of the season against Calgary. I think he'll step up his game and staple himself in that spot this season.
Andrew Copp had his coming out party during last year's World Junior's, playing for Team USA. May already be slotted into the fourth line role, making it his spot to lose. Actually had an assist in his first game at the end of the year.
Could he be any worse than Jim Slater as 4th-line centre? I think we're about to find out, as from all accounts it's Andrew's job to lose. Oh well. It's not like the Jets aren't used to sheltering their 4th-line anyways.
It will be interesting to see what Kevin Cheveldayoff and Paul Maurice decide to do with Andrew Copp. Many assume he will jump into the NHL this year and play on the Winnipeg Jets fourth line, while other prospects like Nic Petan are likely to start in the AHL and play big minutes.
Will this be the case, or will Chevy and company look to add some AHL seasoning to Copp's game? Where is his ultimate upside? One way or another, it looks like the Jets have a player who can play at the next level.