Sarnia Defenseman Mark Katic

growingupwiththeisles's picture

Next in my continuing series of introducing the Islanders prospects is Sarnia Sting defenseman Mark Katic.

A third round draft pick in 2007, Katic is your prototypical offensive-defenseman. The draft ranking services all noted his excellent skating ability, on-ice vision and hockey sense. One service even went as far to say, "Katic simply possesses the best skating stride in the entire draft." Amassing 105 points in 164 games with Sarnia, Katic is an offensive threat every time he steps onto the ice. However, one weakness in his game is that he sometimes tries to do too much offensively and can get caught in a bad position. His skating ability helps out here, but still leaves him vulnerable to advancing forwards in transition.

After watching Katic through two summer camp seasons, I agree with the draft reports that were written in 2007. Katic's skating rivals no other defensive prospect the Islanders have currently. His ability to transition his stride is smooth and effective; this allows him to change directions without losing much speed. During scrimmages, he is often leading the attack and did get caught on occasion, but his skating almost always enabled him to get back into position. The question still remains, will the faster, more agile players in the NHL limit Katic's offensive chances due to the fact that he will have to play more positionally, or will his speed and skating be good enough to allow him to use his full range of abilities?

Below you'll find a brief interview I did with Katic at last month's rookie camp.