Boston Bruins prospect Curtis Hall long has had an intriguing skill set.
A big kid at 6-foot-4, 216 pounds, he never had to worry about size being an issue. He has good hands, likes to get to the net, and uses his strength to work opponents off the puck. In other words, he’s the type of player the Bruins tend to love.
And just one day into Bruins rookie camp, he’s making an impression.
“The one guy that really stood out to me was Curtis Hall,” Providence head coach Ryan Mougenel said Wednesday over Zoom. “And I think he’s one of those guys, he’s got a year under his belt, he had a great summer of training. When we had him in Providence last year, he was still going to school. And again, young guys, he’s super young. And you forget that sometimes because he went to college, but he looks to me like he’s taken a huge step this summer.”
Mougenel also mentioned Alex-Olivier Voyer and Samuel Asselin that also tend to find ways to impress him.
Hall is a center, playing a role that requires a high hockey IQ. The 2018 fourth-round pick needs some fine-tuning to his game, but seems like with time in the minors he eventually could hack it as a bottom six forward in the NHL, and an effective one at that.
With Yale cancelling their hockey season, the 21-year-old decided last winter to go pro, joining the Providence Bruins. An injury right out of the chute interrupted his season, but he looked comfortable in the AHL in the 13 games he played, scoring one goal.
He’s young, and getting a run in the NHL doesn’t seem imminent for him. That’s OK. What matters now is that he is improving each offseason, and showing up to camp — whether it is rookie camp or the NHL training camp — and making an impression.
So far this year, it seems he’s done that.