Player Name: Tomos Walker
Hometown: Mold, Wales
Jersey Number: 16
"Wales isn't in England", is what this young prodigy faces every time he straps up a conversation with a fellow teen from North America, a tiny 3 million populated area populated with more sheep than people, some hope arises for British Hockey... Tomos Walker is a hockey prospect currently living in Mold in North Wales. He hasn't had much experience in the field of hockey as he is still completing his GCSEs in High School. Currently studying very hard in an attempt to pass his exams, he hasn't had much time to get down to his local ice rink, therefore is a little inexperienced. He was introduced to ice hockey through a few friends in school who support different teams. He started following the Edmonton Oilers in 2012 and had high hopes for the 2017/18 season, but alas his celebrations were cut short early on in the campaign. As Hockey in Britain is atrocious, he stays up late every night to catch a glimpse of talent from across the Atlantic Ocean, this of course excludes Calgary , where he wakes up the following morning full of hockey stats and facts waiting to be unleashed like a tsunami on his 2 friends who like ice hockey in a school of 500. Hockey isn't a priority in Wales, unfortunately... Like every hockey player, he has his good games and his bad, but the main things that stand out in his daily performance are:
Tomos Walker is very vocal, tries to get people to take his opinions into account, makes sure no one is left out in the locker room and attempts to liven up his local team, Deeside Dragons, who he joined at the age of 9. On the ice, he is normally on the second line, helping out the defense in a tight situation, trying to help his team get up the ice as quickly as possible. He can communicate with a vast number of people as he is fluent in 3 languages, which are English, Welsh and French, so in any team he is able to communicate without a language barrier. He is very musical, so he can liven up any post - game locker room after a strong performance ending in a win.
2. Hockey IQ
Ranging from knowing how many points Connor McDavid has after 81 games, 106, to what division HC Morzine, Avoriaz, Les Gets are in, French 3rd, currently in the play- offs, Tomos Walker has outstanding hockey knowledge, he is smart on the puck, chooses the correct pass every time, makes sure to track back when the opposition have possession. It has come to many people's attention that this young lad from North Wales is unique, his talented mind is second to none, he knows things no one would ever dream of looking up, for example how many call ups and send downs there have been between the Edmonton Oilers and the Bakersfield Condors. Tomos Walker is a terrific young adult to have on your team, he understands the game, and most importantly, he plays smart hockey.
3. Youth and aptitude to learn
Tomos Walker is forever trying to improve his game, learning new tricks and improving his accuracy. He won't stay young forever mind, he is currently 16, but by the time he's say 22/23, his learning abilities will decrease, and his reflex will loosen. I would suggest snapping this guy up before his talent goes astray and the chance to win some silverware will disappear. A fair few hours of training a week could see Walker grow to become a high top 6 forward, if not classed as an elite. He is known around the town as "Y Dewin Doeth" which literally means "Wise Wizard". He brings his hockey knowledge to the rink where he attempts to replicate wonder goals, and use them to his advantage to get his profile known around Europe and North America, where he longs to play, his preference would be Canada, but the chance to play in the VHL would make his life a whole lot more exciting and adventurous.
With every positive comes a negative, so therefore:
As he is only 16 years of age, he is considerably inexperienced, we see that he is currently training with his local team Deeside Dragons, he is learning a lot in North Wales. As far as his career goes, he has achieved less than 10 professional games, but a lot of training and ice time could improve his confidence and get his name on the team sheet more often. He is definitely a more offensive player, he is normally the final player to come back onside and into the defensive zone. He doesn't normally beat the icing call, as his acceleration is still developing.
He is only 160lbs, possibly one of the lightest players in the game, not only does this effect his game, it could lead to injuries, the amount of hits he has had to take in the minimum of games he has played, his team-mates are racking their brains trying to figure out how he just gets back up again after being literally thrown to the ice. His height also impairs on his on-ice performance.
3. Poor Stats
If we take a look at his profile, his stats are in the developing faze, currently 40s and 50s show his inexperience, and in a nutshell he wouldn't do very well in the VHL at the moment, he is yet to be called up to the minors, where hopefully he will mature, gain confidence, train, and develop his stats. As this is his first season, we will have to see how he does to see what he is capable of. The first few games will show what he needs to do to improve, his accuracy. In his first season we won't expect a lot of points, possibly the odd assist here and there. We will wait until his 2nd and 3rd season to see a development.