Top 25 Under 25, no. 10: Curtis Lazar

Bruce Bennett

The only 2013 draft pick to make our list is first-rounder Curtis Lazar, and his debut has him pretty high up--the organization is optimistic about Lazar's future, and so are the authors here at Silver Seven.

Curtis Lazar has been advertised as a smart hockey player with great speed and an ability to drive plays, which brings to mind comparisons with Colin Greening, Mike Fisher, and Mika Zibanejad. He's not as big as any of those three, but he's still young and has time to grow.

When "Laze" was drafted by the Senators at 17 overall this past June, he was seen as a player who was likely a few years away from the NHL but he should be a great fit under Paul MacLean's system when he does arrive. He's been a goal scorer in the WHL, with 38G in 72GP with the Edmonton Oil Kings last season, and he's also got "great character," according to virtually everyone who talks about him, as well as a strong two-way game.

Although he'll head back to the WHL this season, Lazar is in the thick of things competing for a spot on Canada's 2014 World Juniors team. That would be great for Sens fans because it would be a sign that he's among the top players of his age group, but also because we'll be able to get a glimpse of what kind of player Lazar is today, and might be when he does get a chance to compete for an NHL spot.

Comparisons to Milan Lucic (ahem) are probably a little bit overstated, but Lazar is expected to become an NHL player when the time comes. He's already a very well-rounded player whose obviously got a good head on his shoulders, so he simply needs to continue progressing--there's no one part of his game that needs specific attention. He may have a hard time making the NHL as a first- or second-line centreman, but a move to the wing isn't out of the question.

There is a lot that remains to be seen about Lazar, and this season will offer a lot of information about his future as a professional hockey player. Sens fans will definitely be paying close attention.

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