Two of the more intriguing forward prospects in the Penguins system, J.S. Dea (TIOPS No. 10 prospect) and Anton Zlobin (TIOPS No. 9 prospect) were among the standouts in the Penguins 4-3 win over the Ottawa Senators prospects on Saturday.
Dea scored the game winning goal with 18 seconds left and had a three point game with a goal, two assists.
Dea who has scored 94 goals over his last two junior seasons, led the Penguins in scoring last year at the September Rookie Tournament with four points.
A fast rising prospect in the Penguins system, Dea is arguably the second most skilled forward in the Penguins system behind Kasperi Kapanen. There are quite a few doubters out there in the scouting world of his game translating at the pro level, but all Dea has done since signing with the Penguins last year as an UDFA is impress.
Dea possesses strong offensive instincts and has excellent hands to distribute the puck and in around the prime scoring areas. Dea moves the puck quickly which should translate well to the AHL level this season, the major question mark is his lack of size. Dea showed improved wall play at the Penguins development camp in July and that reportedly showed in Saturday’s win vs Ottawa.
“I knew I had to be bigger, I worked on that a lot,” Dea said via the Penguins official website. “I can see on the ice I’m more strong and it’s harder to be pushed on the boards and everything.”
Zlobin scored 1:20 into the game and after a very strong performance in the AHL playoffs, he’s a prospect whose made a significant jump on the Penguins prospect board. Zlobin is a skilled winger who doesn’t possess elite type of skills but has rounded out his game very well over the two years from the time he was drafted in the 6th round of the 2012 draft.
The Penguins face the Chicago Blackhawks prospects at 2:00 p.m. today in London, Ont.