University of Vermont recruit Michael Lee was a significant contributor on Chris Baudo's The Gunnery squad this past winter. So much so that the New Haven, Conn. native was the anchor on the blue line for one of the best team's in program history.
"He is a special player," said Baudo, a former player at Division III Hamilton who just finished his fourth season behind the bench at the Connecticut prep school.
Lee is a hard-nosed blue liner that plays an intense game despite his lack of size. He impacts the game in all three zones and has strong puck skills, but his hockey savvy is perhaps his most important attribute.
"Michael controls the game with a combination of his skating, skill set, hockey IQ and grit factor. He impacts the game positively in all three zones, whether running a power play, initiating a transitional opportunity offensively or blocking a shot in the defensive end," explained Baudo.
Lee has extremely good vision and let's the game come to him. He exhibits good composure with and without the puck.
"His on-ice vision and ability to think the game, when combined with his natural skill set and high compete level, will allow him to thrive at every level moving forward," added Baudo.
Lee, a former standout for the CT Wolfpack midget program, will take his game to the BCHL where he will play for the Penticton Vees before matriculating to UVM for the 2015-16 season. He will likely be a sixth or seventh round selection in the 2014 NHL Draft.
Central Scouting Final Ranking: 156
Hometown: New Haven, Conn.
2013-14 Team: The Gunnery (New England Prep)
2014-15 Team: Penticton Vees (BCHL)
Strengths: Has a very high hockey IQ and has the ability to control the puck in all three zones as a breakout threat and a quarterback on the power play.
Weakness: Lacks the size of an NHL prototypical defenseman
Jeff Cox covers college, junior and high school hockey, NCAA recruiting and NHL Draft prospects. Follow him on twitter @JeffCoxSports.