Photo Credit: Maurice Parrée
D.O.B – April 22, 2000
Nationality – Austria
Draft Eligibility – 2020
Height – 5’9
Weight – 165 lbs
Position – Left Wing/Center
Handedness – Left
Baumgartner’s Style Of Play
This is the third time that the Austrian forward has been draft eligible, and it has been somewhat of a surprise no team has taken a flyer on him before. Baumgartner and Marco Rossi have been a great one-two punch for the Austrian junior international teams for years now. The culmination of that (without Rossi) was that this year Baumgartner was the top scorer in the WJC D1A with 11 points in 5 games to garner his nation promotion.
At the pro level for Davos this year, Baumgartner was comfortably the top u-20 scorer in the NLA. His 0.73 P/GP was almost triple what any other NLA regular his age or younger could achieve. It is also worth noting that those numbers were suppressed due to his role. He started the year in the bottom six and hardly got any power-play time on a good team.
In terms of skill set Baumgartner is a plus skater with great edge-work and a nice burst that means he can pull away from opponents once he gets separation. He also possesses soft hands that, combined with good vision, mean he can feather beautiful passes to danger areas and anticipate openings that not many players see. He is a play-maker first and foremost, though he has a decent shot when he uses it. Additionally, he is by no means scared to go to danger areas, even though he is a bit undersized. While diligent defensively, he does not possess instinctively high defensive zone awareness, and there is no doubt that going forward he will be a winger both in Europe and if he can reach the NHL. He could play in the AHL right now and more than hold his own.
However, the big question with Baumgartner is whether he may fall into the “tweener” category. Not quite good enough offensively for a top six NHL role, but not good enough defensively for a bottom six role. If a team drafts him though they are getting a player who may well be an NHL third line level player in the next 18 months.
Tyler Ennis, Left Wing, Edmonton Oilers
The Oilers winger and the young Austrian have a myriad of similarities in their games. Like the undersized Ennis, Baumgartner is a terrific skater, especially in tight when he uses his agility. Both have high-end hands, brilliant vision and can find lanes with seeing eye passes. Additionally, despite both being diminutive they have some fire in them, and drive to the net hard and relish physical battles, even if they are not favorite to win. They also both have a solid defensive game.
Prospect report written by Alexander Appleyard. If you would like to follow Alexander on Twitter, his handle is @Avappleyard.
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