Photo Credit – Halifax Mooseheads
Cameron Whynot just finished his rookie QMJHL season with the Halifax Mooseheads. It was a solid campaign for the left-handed defenseman. In 57 games played, Whynot tallied nine points (two goals and seven assists). While the point totals might seem low when you compare his point totals against other QMJHL defensemen, who are 2021 NHL Draft eligible, we need to keep in mind that Whynot is still developing and he is not a natural offensive defenseman.
DOB – May 5, 2003
Height – 6’2″
Weight – 181 lbs
Handedness – Left
Whynot’s Style Of Play
As mentioned above, Whynot is not an offensive defenseman, but that is not a knock against him. The Kentville, Nova Scotia native has strong stay-at-home defensive tendencies, but he is developing an offensive game. Naturally, when you hear “stay-at-home defenseman”, you immediately visualize a defenseman who positions himself close to his goaltender and that is exactly where Whynot likes to position himself. He provides excellent pressure around the crease and behind the net. Whynot will hover along the red line and is constantly keeping the puck in his sights. If an opponent is traveling along the boards behind the Mooseheads net, you can bet on Whynot deploying tight gap control and looking for the exact moment to pounce. He is consistently able to poke-check or body-check his opponents for the puck and push the puck along the boards to get it out of danger.
When Whynot has space after retrieving the puck, he will opt to pass. Yet, passing is an area in his game where he needs to work on accuracy. By my rough estimations, 40% of the time, Whynot struggles to complete his zone exit/breakout pass. Occasionally, Whynot will avoid completing a breakout pass till he skates up to the blue line. When he sees an opponent applying tight pressure, instead of skating against the traffic and potentially giving up the puck, he will complete a button-hook and pass behind him to attempt to get the puck up the ice. If Whynot button-hooks and passes behind him, he is far more accurate then if he were to make a pass in the defensive zone with his opponents applying light pressure.
In the offensive zone, Whynot is still getting his feet wet. Last season, it was evident that Whynot wanted to be more involved in the offensive zone, but if a defenseman were to jump into the cycle, he would let his defensive partner handle those responsibilities. Yet, there were times, especially later on in the season in which Whynot would control the cycle and pinch. In addition, Whynot still has some work to do with his shot from the point. Similar to his passing, his shooting accuracy could use some improvement. While there are areas of improvement in the offensive zone, Whynot is still young and will have plenty of time in the QMJHL to further his offensive skill-set.
Aside from getting involved in the offensive cycle and taking shots from the point, he is efficient at keeping the puck in the offensive zone when he is positioned along the blue line. If his opponent is trying to burst through the seams and create a breakout, Whynot more often than not will challenge the attacker and shut them down.
If Whynot has possession of the puck in the neutral zone, he will often look to skate into the offensive zone along the half-wall. When he is across the blue line, he will often look to dump the puck and let his teammates chase after the loose puck.
When it comes to Whynot’s skating, he constantly deploys a silky smooth stride and is extremely mobile. His edge-work and crossovers are in good shape. Whynot’s speed is quite strong and he will often look to utilize his speed in the defensive zone when he spots a loose puck. In the offensive zone, when pinching, you can expect Whynot to execute a spin move to allow the defenseman to have more space.
Matt Grzelcyk, Boston Bruins, LHD
stats from eliteprospects.com