Houde is yet another centre who is known for his great hockey sense and vision. He was the eighth overall pick in the 2016 QMJHL draft and had immense potential, which teams still feel he may have.
From a young age, Houde played the point on the power play and continued to do that in the QMJHL with Chicoutimi. He has good vision but also has a shot he is not afraid to use.
He strikes me to have a similar style to Jonathan Drouin. He obviously doesn’t have that kind of high-end skill or he would have been taken a lot earlier, but as a forward with great vision on the point with the man advantage who isn’t afraid to shoot, there are a lot of similarities.
He dropped in the draft because of his point production in the QMJHL which is not great for a guy who you think can put points up. There are also some questions about his skating. Hockey Prospect, who didn’t have him ranked, said he may have been rushed to the QMJHL last year when he put up nine points in 41 games.
He was not ranked among the best skaters in North America by NHL Central Scouting but he was ranked 158 in their mid-season rankings. He was in Team Canada’s camp for the Ivan Hlinka tournament but was cut from the final roster.
Hockey Prospect Black Book
He was a great playmaker, with great puck poise and excellent vision. He was also a player who had slight frame; a lot of projection with him was once he would mature physically, he would even more dangerous on the ice. Now almost two years later, Houde has grown a bit, but he is still undersized and still has a slight frame, weighing around 160 pounds.
Future Considerations: 290
International Scouting Service: 197
EOTP Consensus Ranking: 263
Houde is another example of a player the Canadiens should be taking a chance on. It seems like we’ve been saying this a lot, but it’s true. He has offensive skill, and at this point of the draft, he’s a good risk to take.
Of course, another fifth round pick from Chicoutimi that Montreal has is Charles Hudon, and if Houde can even come close to that type of success, it’s a home run for the Canadiens. Houde hasn’t had the production of Hudon in the QMJHL but it will be interesting to keep an eye on this one.
We’ve seen the Canadiens take long looks at undrafted players from the Quebec league and Houde is a guy they can take a closer look at while holding his rights.