Sitting at the 13th spot heading into the draft, the Sabres traded that pick and a third rounder in 2009 to move up one spot to select D Tyler Myers of Kelowna in the WHL. With Sabres Western scout Kim Gellert embedded with the Rockets the past two seasons, the team has had close eyes on the developing talent. The tallest ranked player by CSS (#4 North American), the 6'7 Myers is an awesome skater for a player of his height. (Gellert coaching expertise lays in stickhandling and skating.) He has Zdeno Chara's reach and offensive vision, but doesn't possess the edginess that has made the Bruins defender one of the toughest competitors in the league. He reacted positively after getting in his first fight this season, saying that he wanted to do it more often. Still, Myers is considered somewhat of a project with his #12 position built more on potential than anything else. Myers was born in Houston, TX, but moved to Alberta at age 10. He has excellent hands, and plays a simple game in his own end. Myers netted six goals and 19 total points to go along with 97 PIMs for the Rockets last season. From the NHL Draft site:
NHL Director of Central Scouting, E.J. McGuire Strengths: "His height differentiates him from the rest of the draft-eligible defensemen – he towers above all the other players. He is not often burned by the small, quick players and because of the emphasis in today's NHL on a lack of restraining type of play, I think Tyler has adjusted well to that and is more ready to play in the new NHL than a lot of the other smaller players." Areas to improve: "Improvements can be made with his continued maturity. I don't know that he needs to work on anything other than continuing to work on foot speed, continuing to work on coordination. He's got a rocket shot from the point on the power-play and that is never going to leave him." Outlook: "Tyler is the tallest player among the top-rated players. As a defenseman, that height translates into a great poke-check and great stick work. At 6'7", he still has a little bit of growing into his body to do. Obviously comparisons are made to Zdeno Chara, who, it has been said, actually as a junior stumbled when he played for St. George. There may be a night when the large feet of Myers get in his way a little bit, but to hear scouts talk, they won't get in his way for very many more years." Kelowna Rockets head coach Ryan Huska "The one thing with Tyler is that his size is something that you can't teach. He's very big and for a guy his size, he skates very well. He's very fluid on the ice. For a younger guy, he's got a lot of composure with the puck. I think that's one of the reasons why a lot of NHL scouts are fairly high on him right now ... he's starting to understand that he can use his size to his advantage in our own zone. He's becoming a really good player defensively. His stick is so good and he makes it very difficult for opponents to get around him in the defensive zone."