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January Prospect Check-in

Derek Grant, destroyer of worlds

Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

We're back with another prospect update, offering some positive glimpses of the future and some points of debate. Let's dive right in!

December's check-in is right here.

Stockton Heat

As much as I will hate typing this next pun, it's nothing but the truth.  The Heat have been the hottest team in the AHL, rising out of dead last in the Pacific division to fourth place. They've gone 7-2-0-1 in their past ten, and are looking unstoppable. Most of this is thanks to offseason acquisition Derek Grant, who has been tearing up the stat sheet. He also won the fastest skater in the AHL All Star game, so you know, he's not all that bad.

As always, make sure to check out Ed's constantly great coverage of the team here.

Brief read-up on NHLe is available here. Rob Vollman's translation factors are here. For the AHL, the factor is 0.48.

AHL GP G A P NHLe Month-to-Month
Kenny Agostino 36 12 15 27 29.52 4.74
Bill Arnold 29 6 10 16 21.72 -2.5
Austin Carroll 31 4 3 7 8.89 -0.95
Turner Elson 35 5 14 19 21.37 -1.34
Derek Grant 28 21 15 36 50.61 11.25
Freddie Hamilton 37 10 13 23 24.47 0.58
Garnet Hathaway 26 5 6 11 16.65 -3.03
Morgan Klimchuk 28 3 4 7 9.84 3.71
Brett Kulak 32 2 7 9 11.07 0.8
Oliver Kylington 33 4 5 9 10.73 -4.03
Kenney Morrison 16 0 3 3 7.38 1.7
Jakub Nakladal 35 2 12 14 15.74 -5.45
Emile Poirier 34 7 12 19 22 3.11
Drew Shore 31 4 15 19 24.12 -2.72
Patrick Sieloff 26 1 3 4 6.06 -1.81
Hunter Smith 31 1 3 4 5.08 -0.05
Bryce Van Brabant 33 7 5 12 14.31 2.09
Tyler Wotherspoon 34 0 3 3 3.47 1.07

Promising:
  • Well I already mentioned him, but Derek Grant is certainly due for a call-up sometime soon. With the way the season is going, it can't hurt.
  • After having early difficulties, Morgan Klimchuk and Emile Poirier have started to find twine with more and more frequency.
Concerning
  • Jakub Nakladal is also receiving cries for a call-up along with Grant, though his might be a bit undeserved. While defensive play can't be gauged by a point-centric statistic, his contribution at the NHL level may not be any more different than any of those in the bottom three. Then again, couldn't hurt. (He was recalled before this was published. Oops)

CHL

OHL translation factor is 0.33, while QMJHL and WHL factors are both 0.27

CHL GP G A P NHLe Month-to-Month
Rasmus Andersson 45 7 38 45 27.06 2.54
Riley Bruce 37 1 9 10 7.31 -4.27
Pavel Karnaukhov 32 8 16 24 16.61 0
Keegan Kanzig 31 10 4 14 10 2.3
Andrew Mangiapane 39 30 31 61 42.32 -0.2

Promising:
  • Rasmus Andersson is now the highest scoring defenceman in the OHL. This is very good.
  • Pavel Karnaukhov is a model of consistiency
  • And hey, even Keegan Kanzig is starting to find the net. He was sent down from the AHL, but if he's ever going to be an NHL player, he needs ice time and development. Playing in the Dub, regardless if he's nearly 21, helps.
  • Andrew Mangiapane slightly dropped in month-to-month NHLe, but very slightly, and he's still scoring like crazy.
Concerning:
  • Riley Bruce is currently serving a ten game suspension for boarding. Less surprising than Mangiapane's suspension, but still very bad.

NCAA

NCAA translation factors are here. DeBlouw plays in the Big Ten, Harrison in the ECAC, and Jankowski, Gilmour, and Hickey in the Hockey East

NCAA GP G A P NHLe Month-to-Month
Matt DeBlouw 18 3 5 8 12.76 -1.63
Tim Harrison 26 6 3 9 6.53 1.29
Mark Jankowski 26 12 15 27 31.51 1.17
John Gilmour 25 6 12 18 21.84 0.42
Brandon Hickey 24 5 2 7 8.85 -4.42

  • We've more or less found out what kind of player Mark Jankowski is, and it certainly isn't "best player in ten years" or maybe even "first round pick." There's not a whole lot to like about a player who, as a senior, has yet to be the dominant force we wanted/expected him to be. He certainly looks like he can be useful, but as I've said in previous editions of the Prospect Check-in, he may be more valuable away from the team.
  • If you want more in-depth scouting, check out Ryan Lambert's article at Flamesnation about his play.
  • From the same article, Hickey is looking excellent as a sophomore, but hasn't yet found that scoring edge.

Europe:

Europe League GP G A P NHLe Month-to-Month
Adam Ollas Mattsson SHL 22 1 3 4 8.5 0
Rushan Rafikov KHL 32 0 2 2 4.25 -1.19
VHL 4 0 1 1 N/A N/A
MHL 3 0 0 0 0 0

  • Ollas Mattsson is still sidelined with the lower-body injury he suffered in the WJC. No timetable for his return, but it might be until the end of the season.
  • Rushan Rafikov is still Rushan Rafikov.

Goaltenders:

Goalies League Record GP SV% GAA
Jon Gilles AHL 2-3-1 7 0.92 2.31
Joni Ortio AHL 9-8-0 28 0.896 3.29
Kevin Poulin AHL 6-1-2 10 0.925 2.24
Mason McDonald QMJHL 12-12-3 27 0.897 3.4
Nick Schneider WHL 12-19-1 33 0.893 3.6

  • Mason McDonald picked up the QMJHL's First Star of the Week for the previous week. His stats don't look like it, but it's the Q, so those numbers are pretty normal.
  • I'm still curious about Kevin Poulin. Looking at the Flames' desperate goaltending situation, especially with regards to next year, they do need all the help they can get. Poulin has arrived out of nowhere to claim the starting spot for the Heat. Could he do the same for the Flames?

Question of the month:

The Flames have looked flat in recent games, mostly due to a lack of scoring. Recall Markus Granlund has simmered down to pure ineffectiveness, almost unnoticeable on the ice. For a team that is so reliant on depth scoring, why not bring in some depth that can score? How about that Derek Grant kid?

Prospect of the Month:

I don't like giving this to the same prospect in consecutive months, but Derek Grant has more than earned it. This guy was free?