In another move with Vegas, this time with the Wings sliding down the draft board, they acquired this pick late in the 5th round. With the pick Detroit selected Oscar Plandowski. Here’s what we could find on this player:
Date of Birth: May 18, 2003
Weight: 190 lbs
Place of Birth: Halifax, NS
Team: Charlottetown Islanders (QMJHL)
In Bob McKenzie’s annual draft rankings Plandowski was listed at #94, just before the end of the list. He was #140 on The Athletic’s Cory Pronman’s list settling in closer to where he was selected. Overall it looks like Detroit plucked Plandowski at a good value in this slot.
Breaking from the mold of giant defenseman Detroit has been keen on selecting, Plandowski is a smallish defenseman at 6’0” praised for his skating. Here’s what reports around the league have on him:
Plandowski is a solid two-way defenseman. His skating drives a lot of his game in terms of how he can transition pucks up ice and close gaps. He’s not an overly productive scorer, but does have some skill and playmaking in his game. This pops on occasion, but not consistently. I could see him play in the NHL due to the skating and know some scouts who think that will be the case. But I have my reservations due to the lack of offense and given he doesn’t have great size or physicality to project as a top defender. In a sentence, Plandowski’s skating gives him a chance, but a lack of any real puck game likely keeps him out of the NHL. - Corey Pronman, The Athletic
Hockey is in his blood. His mother, Jill Plandowski, is a renowned power skating coach in the Halifax area. She has worked with many local QMJHL and NCAA prospects as well as NHL prospects including Luke Henman (Seattle), Egor Sokolov (Ottawa), Drake Batherson (Ottawa), Jared McIssac (Detroit) and Ethan Phillips (Detroit). His father, Darryl Plandowski, now the director of amateur scouting for the Arizona Coyotes, had been a long-time head amateur scout and was director of amateur scouting for the Tampa Bay Lightning. He has a technically well-formed stride along with excellent edge work. He builds speed using crossovers which lets him keep pace with even the speediest of QMJHL forwards. Offensively, he loves to quickly push the play up the ice. His ability to read a play in transition allows him to be very efficient at this aspect, making him very skilled at generating controlled zone exits. His defensive game is still raw, as he is only into his third season playing the position, however, his play in the neutral zone is strong. He uses his mobility and speed to effectively close gaps and take away time and space for attacking forwards to build speed or hold possession between the blue lines, playing a very effective trap. Any team selecting the young defenceman, though, will be choosing what will be a long-term project as there are some areas of his game that will require some time to build upon. If Plansowski can polish his defensive game, working on his gap control and defensive positioning he could become a good fourth or fifth defenceman on an NHL roster. - Blain Potvin, The Hockey Writers
Plandowski is a smooth-skating, two-way defenseman who relies on his outstanding anticipation and incredible mobility to impact the game in all areas of the ice. He shows excellent instincts on breakouts to proactively jump ahead. He looks for paths to the net and relishes crashing into high-danger areas as a secondary or tertiary wave. He enjoys leaping to open ice. His willingness and enthusiasm to create offense off the puck, by staying volatile and active in his positioning, is extremely intriguing. He doesn’t need to have possession to make an impact though. His aggressive play can backfire at times, as he can get caught behind the play when the opposition creates quick counterattacks. However, his risk-taking is of-ten calculated and he’s quick to realize when he needs to draw back. - Future Considerations
From the team’s social media account:
Detroit is hoping with this player that they’ve nabbed a late round gem with the offensive defenseman, time will tell. Day 2 of the draft has certainly dragged along, but the finish line is in sight now.