2024 NHL Draft Prospect Profile: Henry Mews

Tim Austen/OHL

The Scouting Report:

Henry Mews is a right defenseman from Ottawa, Ontario. Born March 9, 2006, Mews made the transition from center to defense and played with the Toronto Jr. Canadians at the U16 AAA level for the 2021-2022 season. He participated in the OHL Cup that season and totaled five points in six games. He was drafted seventh overall by the Ottawa 67’s in the 2022 OHL draft. In the 2023-2024 season, he participated in the Hlinka Gretzky Cup as a member of the gold medal-winning Team Canada and tallied seven points in five games. He’s recently recaptured attention for his play in the U-18 World Championship, having a pivotal role on Team Canada’s gold-winning roster.

At 6’ and 185 pounds, Mews is not a large and imposing defenseman. Taking inspiration from NHLer Adam Fox, Mews bases his game on his ability to generate offense from the blue line. Defensive prospects can be difficult to accurately project, hence why Mews’ draft rankings have varied. Numerous outlets have ranked him in the 30’s, with TSN and NHL Central Scouting predicting him to go at 37, Daily Faceoff placing him at 39, and FloHockey placing him at 31.

Ranked #39 by Daily Faceoff
Ranked #37 by NHL Central Scouting
Ranked #32 by Sportsnet/Jason Bukala
Ranked #18 by Draft Prospects Hockey

Mews possesses several skills that make him a potential contributor at the NHL level.

Diving Deeper:

Skating Ability

Mews has honed his skating ability and demonstrates a fluid stride that helps him maintain possession of the puck. He’s mobile and crafty with his edgework, able to get into tight spots and shift directions quickly to move the puck to new lanes for his teammates. He’s used his skating ability to help him set up the first pass out of the defensive zone. As Mews continues to develop his strength and body build, he has the mechanics to continue to grow as a powerful skater.

Offensive Skill

Mews is a converted forward, and as such, is an offensive-minded defenseman. When he’s controlling the puck, his focus is often on getting it to the net or creating a passing play for his teammates. Some have likened his game to Erik Karlsson in his ability to generate offense from the defensive position. He’s developed a deceptiveness to his game that allows him to catch opponents off guard and create play options for his team.

Power Play Smarts

Because of his offensive skills, Mews has positioned himself as an important piece of the power play unit. He’s contributed to the power play for the Ottawa 67’s and the tournament teams he has participated with. Having the ability to quarterback the power play is a valuable skill that could put Mews ahead of other defensemen in the eyes of NHL organizations. He’s been able to generate chances for his team while protecting from shorthanded goals and has made this a central feature of his game.

Hockey IQ:

As a defenseman, Mews’ intelligence with the puck can help his team get and maintain possession and lead to offensive opportunities. He’s shown that he has skills in creating offensive opportunities and as he grows into his role as a defenseman he can become a major two-way contributor.

“When he’s on he makes smart plays with and without the puck that helps his team dictate play.”

Logan Horn, The Hockey Writers, April 5, 2024

Areas for Improvement:

Mews is continuing to grow, and as he fills out, the added strength will help make him a stronger skater, shooter, and passer. As a converted forward, Mews is still developing his defensive game. This sometimes presents itself in mishandling the puck or misreading plays. As he continues to learn the position, his defensive instincts will mature. His play in the neutral zone is another area of perceived weakness, as he’s been known to struggle with backchecking. He has, at times, lacked follow-through on plays and given up possession of the puck. Utilizing video reviews and getting feedback from coaching can help him navigate how to stick with plays and strengthen his game in the neutral and defensive zones.

Prospect Potential:

As Mews strengthens his defensive smarts, his offensive and play-making abilities will make him a valuable asset to an NHL team. He can play the unique role of defensive power play specialist and has room to grow into a skilled defenseman. In addition to his hockey skills, Mews has been committed to working with the communities he’s played with, recently pledging a donation for every assist he tallied with the Ottawa 67’s. He’s known for his positivity and sense of humor by his teammates. Mews has a unique skill set that could be beneficial to numerous clubs.  

Best Potential Fit:

There are several teams in search of defensive prospects in this year’s draft. Two clubs who could benefit from Mews’ abilities are the San Jose Sharks and Chicago Blackhawks. Both teams are in rebuilding mode and looking to fill out their rosters. Having a defenseman who can also provide offensive depth would be a huge positive. Should top defensive prospects Sam Dickinson and Zayne Parekh be selected before the New Jersey Devils get their chance at pick number ten, a two-way player like Mews may be appealing, as a lack of defensive depth was a struggle for the club this year.

Final Thoughts:

Mews offers the ability to develop defensive skills in an offensively talented player. His intelligence and experience with special teams units can make him a valuable asset for whichever team selects him. He offers a variety of skills and the potential to play various roles for any team that needs defensive depth.

We Got The Jack Inside The Rink

In episode 8 of the Inside The Rink podcast, Matty and Smitty are joined by new co-host Conrad Jack. After the long hiatus, we get back to hockey with a PACKED episode!Matt Rempe & the Devils vs. Rangers Line BrawlCould the Vancouver Canucks squander a playoff opportunity? Have the Winnipeg Jets finally figured out their lines?Flyers Head Coach John Tortorella is a sound byte MACHINEOvechkin is on his way to 895, Who is next?McDavid joins elite company with 100 Assists in a seasonRyan Hartman was suspended 3 Games, was it worth 3 games??Can Auston Matthews hit 70 Goals this season?The Eastern Conference Wild Card race is heating up, who lands the two playoff berths?For all of your hockey news and more from the show, visit us at insidetherink.com and watch us on YouTube! How to support us and our sponsors:TicketmasterColumbia Sports ApparelESPN+ SubscriptionFanaticsDraft Kings – CODE ITR
  1. We Got The Jack
  2. Episode 7. Player Safety First!
  3. Episode 6. Early Trade Season
  4. Episode 5. Longing For The Chiarelli Years
  5. Episode 4. Ottawa’s On Fire

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