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Preds prospect Taylor Beck earns Player of the Week honors…

Nashville Predators third round pick in 2009 Taylor Beck is on the cusp of having a career year with the Guelph Storm of the Ontario Hockey League.

Last week’s production only helped.

Beck was named the OHL Player of the Week yesterday. But, then again, when your week consists of a six point night, nine assists and 13 points all in only four games, you tend to be in the running for such honors.

Heading into Thursday’s game against the Barrie Colts, the 19-year old St. Catherines, Ontario native is just one goal and eight points from tying his career high of 39 and 93, respectively. Both marks were set last season.

Beck is currently fifth on the Storm’s all-time scoring list with 257 career points. Notable names above Beck on the list are Detroit Red Wings forward Todd Bertuzzi (third all-time, 280) and former Hartford Whalers, Carolina Hurricanes and Toronto Maple Leafs forward Jeff O’Neill (first all-time, 329).

There are just eight games left on the slate for Guelph but, considering his recent 13 point week, Beck should have no problem setting new career highs for the second straight season.

While Beck’s 85 points does lead the Storm in scoring, fellow Predators prospect Michael Latta is close behind with 81. Latta, also a third round pick in 2009, leads the team in assists (50) and penalty minutes (147). Latta was taken just two picks after Beck.

The official press release from the Ontario HockeyLeague is below:

Toronto, ON – The Ontario Hockey League today announced that forward Taylor Beck of the Guelph Storm is the OHL Player of the Week for the week ending February 27.  Beck led the league with 13 points in four games scoring four goals and nine assists with a plus-minus rating of plus-4.
Beck celebrated Family Day last Monday with the best game of his OHL career producing six points as part of a 10-4 win over the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds.  He scored twice including the game-winner and added four assists as first star of the game.  He was almost just as productive on Friday scoring five points with two goals and three assists receiving first star honours for the second straight game in a 7-4 win over the Barrie Colts.  After a scoreless Saturday night in a 4-3 loss to the Owen Sound Attack, the Storm captain finished his week with two assists in a 4-2 win over the Kingston Frontenacs on Sunday. 
Beck, a 19-year-old from Niagara Falls, ON, is playing in his fourth OHL season with the Storm.  A third round pick of the Nashville Predators in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, Beck is currently sixth in OHL scoring with 85 points in 55 games. 
Also considered for the award this week was Eric O’Dell of the Sudbury Wolves after scoring five goals and four assists for nine points in three games.  Top rookie scorer Nail Yakupov of the Sarnia Sting had nine points in four games with four goals and five assists and set a new franchise record for goals by a rookie with 43 surpassing the mark set by current NHL top scorer Steven Stamkos of the Tampa Bay Lightning who scored 42 goals for the Sting in the 2006-07 season.  In goal, Peter Di Salvo of the Oshawa Generals is nominated for the second straight week with a 2-0-0-1 record including one shutout with a goals-against-average of 1.91 and save percentage of .949.

PHOTO CREDIT: Surette Photography // courtesy of the Guelph Storm (used with permission)