Skip to main content

Prospect Need to Know: Big-time playoff performers

Halifax's Raphael Lavoie is making a statement in the QMJHL post-season and he's not the only future NHLer making noise right now. Check out our weekly roundup of who's hot at the junior levels.

The Mooseheads are alive. Recent Memorial Cup hosts have run into some problems in their own league playoffs, but Halifax made a valiant comeback to beat back Quebec in the first round and now the Mooseheads are rolling in the QMJHL, winning the first two games against Moncton in the second round. Meanwhile, we’ve got some hot teams in Ontario and out West, while a couple Swedish squads had major weeks. The Frozen Four begins Thursday and we’ll have coverage live from Buffalo, while the world under-18s are just around the corner. Look for a special tournament-focused Prospect NTK next week. In the meantime, let’s get to the meat.

Raphael Lavoie, RW, Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL): With a big body, skating ability and a great shot, Lavoie just needed to show scouts some consistency. Well, the playoffs have been perfect for that, as the 2019 draft prospect leads the ‘Q’ with 18 points in 11 games. Perhaps even more importantly, he has tallied points in every single one of those games. NHL arrival: 2020-21

Evan Bouchard, D, London Knights (OHL): The OHL playoffs have not been very close so far and Bouchard is doing his best to deep-six the competition quickly. The two-way defenseman and Edmonton Oilers prospect has eight points in three games against Guelph in the second round and leads the OHL in scoring with 18 points in seven games overall. NHL arrival: 2019-20

Bobby Brink, C, Sioux City Musketeers (USHL): With his third straight Forward of the Week honor in the USHL, Brink is making a definitive statement. The 2019 draft prospect and University of Denver commit is averaging 1.60 points per game for the Musketeers, using his incredible hockey sense and determination to cash in. He's the kind of kid that makes players around him better. NHL arrival: 2021-22

Brett Leason, RW, Prince Albert Raiders (WHL): One of the great stories in the 2019 draft class, late bloomer Leason has been on a rampage this season and the playoffs have been no different. Big, strong and talented, Leason has seven points in five games, including a four-point night against Saskatoon. NHL arrival: 2020-21

Trent Miner, G, Vancouver Giants (WHL): So far, the post-season has treated Miner well, as he leads the WHL with a 1.51 goals-against average and .938 save percentage while splitting the crease with Arizona pick David Tendeck. Miner, a 2019 draft prospect, has great anticipation and reads the play well. NHL arrival: 2023-24

Owen Tippett, RW, Saginaw Spirit (OHL): This is the year the Spirit loaded up and one of the big prizes was Florida Panthers prospect Owen Tippett, who came over from Mississauga. Tippett, a powerful player who can really skate and really score, has six points in two games versus Sault Ste. Marie in the second round, both Saginaw wins. NHL arrival: 2019-20

Jackson Lacombe, D, Shattuck-St. Mary’s Sabres (Minn. HS): USA Hockey’s nationals just ended and though Shattucks came up short in the under-18 division, the prep school powerhouse did have another good showing. Lacombe, a slick-skating 2019 draft prospect committed to the University of Minnesota, had seven points in four games. NHL arrival: 2022-23

Filip Sveningsson, LW, Oskarshamn (Swe.): It was an historic week for Oskarshamn, as the second-tier club won promotion to play in the SHL next season. Sveningsson, the talented Calgary Flames prospect, contributed three points in seven games as the squad upset Timra in a tense series. NHL arrival: 2021-22

Filip Johansson, D, Leksand (Swe.): The other team punching its ticket to the SHL was Leksand, who has been there before. But that didn’t make it any less sweet this time and Johansson, the Minnesota Wild pick, played on the top pairing. Johansson’s reliability and defensive play are his calling cards. NHL arrival: 2021-22

Dylan Gambrell, C, San Jose Barracuda (AHL): It’s been a useful rookie pro campaign for Gambrell, the hard-shooting Sharks prospect. He saw some more NHL time (after making his debut at the end of last season), and has put up nearly a point per game with the Barracuda, who just clinched a playoff spot in the West. Gambrell is on the precipice of hitting 20 goals, as well. NHL arrival: 2019-20

TOP HEADLINES

Nazem Kadri

NHL Free Agency: Top 10 UFAs Midway Through August

With much of the NHL sitting tight against the salary cap, the free agent market has been rather quiet in recent weeks. Here are the top 10 UFAs still available.

Simon Edvinsson and Luke Hughes
Play

World Junior Roundup: USA Wins Group, Finland Still Perfect, Latvia Nabs Historic Victory

USA has clinched top spot in Group B, Finland will battle for the top spot in Group A against Canada and Latvia managed to record its first preliminary round game ever during the penultimate day of round-robin action at the World Junior Championship.

Screenshot_3

Latvia is the Little Team that Could at World Juniors

Latvia pulled off a major upset at the World Junior Championship, beating Czechia to advance to the quarterfinal for the first time ever. And they weren't even supposed to be in the tournament, either, creating the ultimate feel-good story.