NHL Draft: Josh Williams

Name: Josh Williams

Team: Edmonton Oil Kings (WHL)

Position: Right Wing

Height/Weight: 6’1 185lbs

Hand: Right

NHL Draft Ranking: N/A 

Western Prospects Ranking: 46th

Estimated Draft Position: Fifth Round to Sixth Round


Areas of Strength

  • Natural Goal Scorer
  • Offensive Instincts
  • Shooting Accuracy

Areas of Weakness

  • Soft Physically
  • Lacks Puck Dominance
  • Skating Abilities

Report: We have Josh Williams ranked slightly lower than most other services do, that may stem from the fact that we have seen him play many times and haven’t seen his game progress to the level we expected, always wanting more out of Josh Williams. Williams came into the Medicine Hat Tigers line up at the age of 16, with high expectations given that he was a top draft pick he struggled to find his offence in his rookie season and injured himself as well. This past season has been quite similar for Williams, after showcasing what he can do at the Ivan Hlinka tournament in August, Williams has stalemated for much of the season and found himself in a one for one trade to the Edmonton Oil Kings. There he managed to produced 12 points in 25 regular season games and helped the Oil Kings make a long play off run in a depth role. Williams will be a bigger piece to the Oil Kings line up in the 2019-2020 season, where once again the expectations will be high on him.

The upside for Josh Williams is that he is as natural of a goal scorer as you will find, everything from his superb shooting qualities down to his instinctive positioning in the offence end, William’s is just one of those players who always have the puck find them and always knows what to do with it. Keeping it simple offensively, William’s timely in getting the puck off his stick, releasing prior to receiving contact and whilst it’s a soft play it also drags defenders out of position and opens up space for his line mate. A compact skater Williams feet need a lot of work, he doesn’t extend out his stride or drive much horse power out of his push offs, he keeps his feet close together and relies on quick short choppy four-way strides in order to get around the ice. When Josh Williams entered the league, all the talk was about his efficiency and his snake bite like release on his shot, those are still the general make up of his game. Williams is not a player defensemen want to lose sight of in the offensive zone, he doesn’t need a lot of space to shoot and he rarely misses his target when firing from inside the dots, capable of one-time releases and has the ability to adjust the angle of his shot. It just so natural with Josh, I don’t know if he thinks the game a step ahead but he’s always rolling to where the puck is going to be and if he’s engaged enough to whip it off his stick quickly theres no missing. Sort of a pick-n-roll type of player who will cycle the puck down low or distribute in the neutral zone before getting behind defensive coverage into a scoring area, doesnt hold the puck for long before making a pass and working without the puck to get into position. There should be more goals for Williams but there isn’t… yet, its all driven from his lack of consistency and almost lack of intensity. The issues with Williams arise when it comes to things outside of putting the puck in the back of the net. He hasn’t proven he can develop chances on his own yet and doesn’t play a powerful game nor does he impress defensively. Williams got the skilled stick and mental processor to read and react to developing chances, you could see his game lack some confidence down the stretch and I hope once he finds that again his intensity and drive will reach the level it needs to be at in order for him to make a bigger impact on the game. He has the potential to be a top scorer in the WHL one day, still incredibly raw at this age and if a team feels like they can work with him and develop his game to where it needs to be, Williams could be a home-run fifth to seventh round selection.