NHL draft tracker: Timo Meier, Halifax Mooseheads

Meier (left) is in his second season with Halifax (Aaron Bell, OHL Images)
Meier (left) is in his second season with Halifax (Aaron Bell, OHL Images)

It took a full season and then some for Timo Meier to show the full range of his skills.

One phenomena with many European players who choose to play major junior is that their breakout comes in the second season. Meier, whom NHL Central Scouting ranked 12th among domestic skaters in its midterm ranking, has emerged this season as a strong-skating wing with size and skill, counting 28 goals and 60 points over 40 games with the Halifax Mooseheads, where he works in tandem with Winnipeg Jets top pick Nikolaj Ehlers.

"At the end of last year our coach [Dominique Ducharme] told me, 'you have to get faster, stronger,' those sort of things," says Meier, a native of Herisau, Switzerland. "The first season, everything was a little bit of adjustment. He told me to prepare to play a lot more.

""When I went back at the end of last year, I knew what was going to come, I really worked hard this summer. I've seen with Nikolaj Ehlers, how he moved up in the rankings [before going No. 9 overall to Winnipeg]. I knew how the game was here and knew how to adjust for the second year going in."

Meier, who turned 18 in October, offers good size at 6-foot-1 and 208 pounds and is considered closer to being mature enough for the NHL than many of his peers in the draft class of 2015. Meier has also displayed that he can stretch, hockey smarts-wise, to play with the cream of the crop. Along with being Ehlers' running mate with the Mooseheads, he played for Switzerland in the world junior and shone at last week's CHL Top Prospects Game, where he was on a line with top prospect Connor McDavid and Ottawa 67's star Travis Konecny.

"I want to be smart, defensively responsible, play on the PK [penalty kill] sometimes and be a player you can put on the ice in the final two minutes when you're up by one goal," Meier says.

"Being ranked high just motivates me to keep working hard," he adds. "If I take care of the process, the result will be there at the draft."

1. What is your best asset on the ice?

"I'm improving in scoring goals, just finishing plays. And I think I've improved at using my size, using it and my speed to take pucks to the net."

2. What have you learned from playing with two NHL first-round picks recently, Kevin Fiala in the world junior and Ehlers in Halifax?

"Those are two great players. They both have really good skill and are both really fast. Playing with those guys, you just learn how professional and prepared you have to be. It's a lot of fun."

3. Which NHL players do you study closely?

"There's a lot of good players that I look up to, especially Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin. But I think I play the game a little like Max Pacioretty."

4. Not including your team, who has the nicest jersey in your league?

"I think Sherbrooke, the Phoenix, has a nice jersey."

5. What is your favourite movie or TV show?

"Favourite movie is The Wolf of Wall Street."

Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Canada Sports. Follow him on Twitter @neatebuzzthenet.