After only playing 10 games in the 2015-2016 season in the Q (during his NHL Draft year) Drake Batherson was an unknown in the QMJHLAt the start of the 2016-2017 season. He played most of the year in the MHL with the Valley Wildcats. As as the year progressed, so did he, as he continued to establish himself with the Screaming Eagles. By year’s end, he was one of their key players, and he had a great postseason, which really helped his draft stock. A couple of months later, he was drafted in the 4th round (122nd overall) by the Ottawa Senators. The quick rise of Batherson didn’t stop there; on October 3rd, the Senators signed him to an ELC deal.
So far this season with the Screaming Eagles, he’s off to a great start, playing on the team’s top line with two 2018 NHL Draft-eligible prospects (Sokolov and Laferriere). In our viewings this season, he’s been tremendous, and arguably the most impressive player in the league. If he continues to play like this, it wouldn’t surprise us if he not only gets an invitation to Team Canada’s World Juniors’ camp in December, but makes the team for the tournament. It would be a great accomplishment when you consider where he was just one year ago.
Batherson is playing center full time, and with his two linemates he really takes care of the defensive zone responsibilities; he’s good at retrieving pucks in his zone and providing good support to his defensemen. So far this season, he’s been Mr. ‘Do-it-All’ for the Screaming Eagles; we’ve been really impressed by him and every time we see him he seems to get better. He has great offensive tools; he showed great puck skills, a great shot and some dynamic qualities one-on-one. He’s currently leading the leading in scoring and has registered a point in every game this season.
Batherson is the classic late-bloomer type of player who was undersized but had a late growth spurt. He’s showing early on this season that he’s going to have a dominant year in the QMJHL.