Welcome to the TWC Flames prospect update. Each week, we’ll take a dive into how the Flames’ prospects have done in their respective leagues. With the ongoing pandemic, not every league is currently playing. Here is this week’s league status report:
Currently not playing. The most recent return date announced is February 5th, but it is likely tied to the NHL starting.
Currently ongoing, but there are persisting issues with the pandemic. Because of new restrictions, teams in red zones will bubble together and play against each other. Some teams have played numerous games, and others have only played a few. The league will have an extended holiday break of 15 days in December.
Currently not playing, but expecting to start January 8.
Perhaps the most interesting, the ECHL has two start dates. 13 teams, including the Flames’ affiliate Kansas City Mavericks, will start on December 11th and will play a 72 game season. The remaining teams will play a 62 game season beginning January 15th, while the Atlanta Gladiators, the affiliate of the Boston Bruins have elected to voluntarily sit out this season. Standings will be determined by points percentage.
Some training camps will begin this week, including Kansas City.
The NCHC will begin its season in a bubble in Omaha in December before moving on to regular games in January.
The WCHA will start this weekend with nine teams currently going.
The Big-10 is a go
Atlantic Hockey are playing exclusively against teams from their own divisions, but have allowed Long Island University to join their conference.
Hockey East started this past weekend, but numerous teams have pulled out of late
The ECAC is down to four teams with the Ivey League schools not participating as of now.
The league is a go, but cases are still a growing concern.
Full steam ahead in Russia with all three leagues, MHL, VHL, and KHL currently operational. While there have been numerous cases of COVID-19, this has not slowed the league down much, with just the occasional game being cancelled.
Ditto – numerous teams including HV-71 have had to cancel games.
The J-20 Nationell has been postponed due to numerous cases of COVID-19.
Ongoing despite rising case numbers
With the ongoing pandemic, numerous Flames prospects have been loaned overseas to get some playing time in. To learn more about the various leagues where the Flames players are playing, check out our guide on all major hockey leagues outsite of North America.
We have defined a prospect as a skater who has played fewer than 65 NHL games, and is younger than 25 years of age. All data is from QuantHockey and EliteProspects. We also use an NHLe calculator built by Christian Roatis (@Croatis) which is used to estimate a player’s equivalent point total in the NHL based on how they are performing in their respective league. The calculator uses the difficulty of the given league combined with the ease at which a player puts up points to determine the NHLe.
Let’s get into it.
This week’s highlights
Yan Kuznetsov (D) – University of Connecticut
While his stats line does not leap off the page, Kuznetsov played his first two games of his sophmore season this weekend for UConn on the top pairing. Coming off a surprising 11 point season as the youngest player in the entire NCAA, Kuznetsov turned a lot of heads. To see him taking on major responsibility in his second season shows just how much his coaches trust him.
A defensive defenceman, do not expect a huge stat line from him, but hopefully he can keep growing his game in his second college season. He was also invited to Team Russia’s World Junior camp this week. To read more about Kuznetsov, check out our interview with him here.
Connor zary (C) – kamloops blazers
|Team Canada (White)||2||1||3||4|
While not yet playing in the WHL, Zary has turned a lot of heads at Team Canada camp. As we wrote about earlier this week, he has put up four points in his first two games, including a couple beautiful assists.
One of the last cuts at camp last year, Zary will be hoping that his play will allow him to finally make the national team.
Overall totals for all Flames prospects
|Francis, Ryan||C||15||6||15||21||3||1||32.6||Cape Breton Eagles||QMJHL|
|Gawdin, Glenn||C/RW||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||Stockton Heat||AHL|
|1||0||0||0||0||0||0||EHC Visp||National League|
|Kerins, Rory||C||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||Soo Greyhounds||OHL|
|Kirkland, Justin||LW/RW||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||Stockton Heat||AHL|
|Koumontzis, Demetrios||LW||4||0||0||0||0||0||0||Arizona State Sun Devils||NCAA|
|Mattson, Mitchell||C||2||1||0||1||0||0||13.1||Michigan State Spartans||NCAA|
|Nikolayev, Ilya||C||12||6||7||13||1||0||16.0||Loko Yaroslavl||MHL|
|Nodler, Josh||C||2||0||1||1||0||0||13.1||Michigan State Spartans||NCAA|
|Pelletier, Jakob||C/LW||9||3||10||13||1||0||33.6||Val-d’Or Foreurs||QMJHL|
|Pettersen, Emilio||C||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||Stockton Heat||AHL|
|Phillips, Matthew||C||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||Stockton Heat||AHL|
|Philp, Luke||C||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||Stockton Heat||AHL|
|Pospisil, Martin||C/LW||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||Stockton Heat||AHL|
|Ruzicka, Adam||C/RW||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||Stockton Heat||AHL|
|Sveningsson, Filip||LW||13||2||1||3||0||0||6.8||MODO Hockey||Allsvenskan|
|Tuulola, Eetu||RW||11||2||2||4||0||0||10.7||Västerviks IK||Allsvenskan|
|Zary, Connor||C||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||Kamloops Blazers||WHL|
|Zavgorodny, Dmitri||C/RW||5||0||3||3||0||0||39.6||SKA St Petersburg||KHL|
|Boltmann, Jake||RHD||2||0||0||0||0||0||0||Lincoln Stars||USHL|
|Kuznetsov, Yan||LHD||2||0||1||1||0||0||16.1||UConn Huskies||NCAA|
|Lerby, Carl-Johan||LHD||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||Stockton Heat||AHL|
|Mackey, Connor||LHD||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||Stockton Heat||AHL|
|Poirier, Jeremie||LHD||15||5||11||16||3||0||24.8||St. John Sea Dogs||QMJHL|
|Poolman, Colton||LHD||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||Stockton Heat||AHL|
|Solovoyov, Ilya||LHD||20||0||3||3||0||0||9.9||Dynamo Minsk||KHL|
|Yelesin, Alexander||RHD||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||Stockton Heat||AHL|
|Chechelev, Daniil||G||11||2.48||0.919||6||1||1||HK Ryazan||VHL|
|11||2.00||0.938||10||1||0||Russkie Vityazi Chekhov||MHL|
|Parsons, Tyler||G||0||0||0||0||0||0||Stockton Heat||AHL|
|Wolf, Dustin||G||0||0||0||0||0||0||Everett Silvertips||WHL|
|Zagidulin, Artyom||G||0||0||0||0||0||0||Stockton Heat||AHL|
This and that
- Juusso Valimaki is still at a point per game pace for Ilves in the Finnish Liiga. While he has only two goals, his NHLe is very very promising.
- Sticking in Finland, Eetu Tuulola played his first two games for SaiPa. Currently 24 points back of the league leading Ilves, Tuulola has been promoted to the top line. Hopefully he can help turn the tide.
- Johannes Kinnvall has been a phenom in Sweden for HV-71. Back in action this week, he picked up yet another point. While most of his points have been with the man advantage, he could end up being an excellent powerplay quarterback when he makes the journey over to North America as early as next season. Watch to see if his defensive game improves as well.
- Big congratulations to Mitchell Mattson for getting his first NCAA goal this week. Unfortunately it came against ASU and Demetrios Koumontzis, who is still looking for his first point. Currently pointless with six penalty minutes and -4, the season has not started well for Koumontzis.
- Daniil Chechelev’s numbers have improved substantially this week, with another couple of wins in the VHL, Russia’s second division. It feels more and more like he is the real deal
- Finally, Jakob Pelletier took a step away from Val d’Or to join Zary at Team Canada camp. He has been a strong and steady performer in his first few games, with a couple points already. Here’s to hoping they are both wearing the red and white in December.
Which prospects are you most excited about? Let us know below in the comments or on social media.
Photo credits: UConn Huskies