The Detroit Red Wings readily admit they’re not entirely sure what they’re getting with Alan Quine.
What they do know is that the 5-foot-11, 184-pound Peterborough Petes center has the high-end speed and enough malleable talent in enough different areas to perhaps one day become an NHL player.
“I really don’t know where it’s all going to end up,” admitted Joe McDonnell, the Red Wings’ director of scouting. “I’d classify him as a two-way guy, but he does have some offensive capabilities. It’s a wait-and-see kind of thing.”
The Red Wings took Quine in the third round, 85th overall, in Saturday’s NHL entry draft in St. Paul, Minn.
Quine, once a second overall selection in the OHL draft, impressed the Red Wings as a 16-year-old in 2009-10 when he had 28 points in 64 games. But McDonnell describes Quine’s lack of ice time early in his NHL draft year as “mind-boggling.”
In what McDonnell said was a “mutual decision” between the Frontenacs and Quine’s family, the Ottawa native was dealt to rebuilding Peterborough in November in a blockbuster trade for Boston Bruins prospect Ryan Spooner.
“That was a blessing for him,” McDonnell said. “He started playing lots and playing on the power play. They have a good group of young kids there and he fit in really well.”
Quine finished the season with 26 goals and 27 assists for 53 points in 69 games, then had a terrific showing at the world under-18 championship in April with a goal and six assists in seven games.
“He’s got a good skill-set, he’s a good skater, he competes hard, and he’s in a good situation now,” McDonnell said.
Quine, who was a minus-36 on a team that finished second-to-last in the OHL standings, made a particularly strong impression on the Red Wings with his solid minutes in a penalty-killing role with Canada at the U-18 tourney, where he finished third in faceoffs with a 62.5 percent success rate.
“He did a great job killing penalties there,” McDonnell said. “He’s just well-rounded. He’s very good at everything.”
Although Quine isn’t as fast as Darren Helm, the Red Wings see some similarities between the two players. Like Helm, Quine’s offensive game remains a work in progress. But the Red Wings are hoping there’s some untapped scoring ability that emerges over the next few seasons in Peterborough.
“We’ll see how it all unfolds,” McDonnell said.