Prospectus Prospecting – AHL reports (Goldobin, Theodore, plus 3)

Scouting Report – Kevin Gravel

Team: Ontario Reign Draft Status: 148th overall, 2010 (Los Angeles)
Position: D
To Date Stats: 42GP, 5G, 11A, 16 pts, 28 PIMs
Shoots: L
Height/Weight: 6’4” 185lbs

    Characteristics

Skating (Speed/edges/technique/etc)

Gravel’s mobility has been a major factor in his all-around development since college. He is a big kid, noticeably trim, and can use his long legs to get up to speed quite well. He does not have the most visually pleasing or clean of strides, but overall it is a good asset of his game. Explosiveness and agility are both good, especially when it comes to closing gaps quickly on opponents. Does not get beat easily in the skating part of the game. Backwards technique is sound, and developing straight away speed is opening up better offensive potential. Grade: 50

Shooting (Slap/wrist/backhand, General strength, proclivities, etc)

He has a rarely used wrist shot from the point, but a really hard, strong slap shot. Plenty of power in it, good looking technique, and when he gets a hold of it can really get the MPH up. Has trouble avoiding traffic though, much to the dismay of his teammates at times. Pretty heads up decision making on shots as well. Most of his assists on the season have come from point shot deflections. Rarely passes up chances to put a puck on net. Heavy shot, stays low. Grade: 50

Puck Skills

Low flash. He just gets the job done in his own end. Rarely does he make the extra stick handle or carry. It does not mean he cannot do it, he just opts not to. Passes are incredibly sharp and tape to tape. Will carry it up ice, but do not expect a dangle or skillful zone entry. He is a take no risk defenseman, which overall lowers the individual puck skill display. Grade: 45

Smarts (vision, defensive play, ability to stick in system, etc.)

Exceptional. The single best asset of his game. Everything Gravel does at the AHL level so far is instant. Outlet passes, transitioning, getting the puck out of tight situations. He is one of the quickest thinking defenseman I have seen in the AHL. Always seems to find an open man, and if he can’t it is low-risk board-and-out play. Defensively rock solid. Gap control is strong, uses his reach very well, uses the body and positioning very well. Starting to take more risks offensively which is also a good sign. Simple and efficient with a very high panic threshold. Grade: 65

Physicality

Big, but not intimidating by any stretch. Can stand up to physical play from opposing forwards, and can dish it out as well. Nevertheless he is a rather thin defenseman for 6’4” and might want to mass up a bit to deal with the bigger players in the NHL. No struggles in physicality to speak of, but nothing outstanding given his naturally gifted size. Grade: 45

    General Assessment

Gravel is essentially an NHL ready bottom pairing defenseman right now. He plays an efficient defense-first game with very few mistakes. The developing offensive game and transition game have helped solidify him as a potential 4-6 backend option moving forward. He is never going to be a top end offensive producer, but his defensive game, own zone cognitive ability and incredibly sharp decision making alone should give him plenty of NHL utility. If he continues to develop a better transition game he could become a viable three-zone defenseman in the future.

Overall Future Projection: 53.0

Scouting Report – Nikolay Goldobin

Team: San Jose Barracuda Draft Status: 27th overall, 2014 (San Jose)
Position: LW/RW
To Date Stats: 38 GP, 11G, 13A, 24 pts, 8 PIMs
Shoots: L
Height/Weight: 6’0”, 185lbs

    Characteristics

Skating (Speed/edges/technique/etc)

Goldobin is elusive and agile. He can be easy to lose in the defensive zone given his good first step and edging. Coupled with his high-skill puck handling, you have a recipe for some real offensive firepower. Creates space very well with straight away speed and exceptional side to side movement. Can stop and turn on a dime with or without the puck. Grade: 65

Shooting (Slap/wrist/backhand, General strength, proclivities, etc)

Wrist, slap, or snap, he can fire them. Has a sneaky good wrist shot with exceptional power to it. Do not sleep on his snap or slap shot either if you give him the time or space. Can really crank on it and get good power even though he is just 6’0” and maybe 190. Very natural and fluid looking shot which can be deceptive for opposing goalies. It’s all fluid and in one motion, puck flies off his stick with authority. Grade: 60

Puck Skills

High skill level with the puck. Very smooth, very talented, and a naturally good possessor of the puck. Just looks extremely comfortable when carrying and stick handling in traffic. Rarely looks like he is trying to do too much with it. It all flows very naturally for him when he crosses center red. Finds open men with good passes and good decision making. Grade: 65

Smarts (vision, defensive play, ability to stick in system, etc.)

It looks like Goldobin has done a lot of work in being a better defensive player. He was often the last forward out of his own zone when transitioning, which means he is staying low for his defensemen and giving them options. While he can still look lost on coverage at times, and potentially leave his zone too early, there are good signs that he is taking more care of his own end. Has good overall vision of the game offensively. Sees opportunity in the neutral zone as well as O-zone. Really sharp thinker in the o-zone on and off the puck. Developing defensive zone habits will go a long way for him. It isn’t that Goldobin isn’t a smart player, it is just where he selectively applies those smarts that holds him back. Grade: 40

Physicality

He probably will struggle in one on one battles against big NHL players. Board battles are not his forte. That is not to say he is a perimeter player, he just gets outmuscled at times. He is small, and elusive, and if he plays to that strength instead of engaging in those battles he could be just fine. But there is not much to speak of from a physical standpoint. Grade: 35

    General Assessment

Goldobin has really elite level offensive qualities. He has the smarts to see plays and the overall skill and speed to execute them at ease. He plays 50-percent of the ice at a really high level. The defensive portion of the game is going to hold him back. The habits he has started to develop are very good and very promising, but this has to continue to grow. Applying his intelligence to the defensive game could make him a dynamic, dangerous, and altogether complete player. With good coaching and a willingness to adapt, he has everything you want in a winger. He feels very boom or bust given his style, but the boom is something pretty special.

Overall Future Projection – 57.0

Scouting Report – Shea Theodore

Team: San Diego Gulls Draft Status: 26th overall, 2013 (Anaheim)
Position: D
To Date Stats: 33 GP, 5G, 16A, 21 pts, 18 PIMs
Shoots: L
Height/Weight: 6’2”, 194lbs

    Characteristics

Skating (Speed/edges/technique/etc)

Very very smooth and mobile. Strong straight away speed, backwards skating, and really smooth edging and balance. Walks the blue line with incredible skill and edging. The risks he takes offensively are lessened given his great straight away recovery speed. Has a compact stride that allows him to get good bursts of speed when moving up ice and around opposing neutral zone players. Deceptive speed. Grade: 60

Shooting (Slap/wrist/backhand, General strength, proclivities, etc)

Has a really low action wrist shot which is great to see from a point man. Can be hard to pick up for opposing goalies. One of few defensemen I have seen who actually prefers wrist shots to slapshots. Has a good slapper, but really seems to prefer the accuracy and controllability of a wrist shot. For that reason he is incredibly dangerous and deceptive when stepping into the high slot. Shots can look like passes, passes can look like shots. It is very tricky and very skillful. There is pinpoint accuracy, and pretty decent power too. He is going to fool a lot of NHL goalies with his shot. Grade: 65

Puck Skills

Great puck-mover. Whether it is by passing out or carrying out, Theodore gets the job done. He has the ability to do both and sees the ice well enough to execute it. Confident on the puck and makes the difficult plays of breaking in the zone or beating neutral zone traffic look easy. Jumps in and does a great job of holding the zone, and can command a powerplay with great movement and distribution. Grade: 65

Smarts (vision, defensive play, ability to stick in system, etc.)

He is an intelligent player with tremendous vision. The balance is going to be the key in his game moving forward. He can be a bit risky at times when it comes to moving the puck up ice. Picking and choosing his spots is going to be a developing quality that has the highest chance of going one way or the other. The good thing is he shows the intelligence to adapt to a system that calls for more or less of that through reading the game. His defensive play his probably on par with NHL average while his transition game is excellent. Grade: 60

Physicality

There is nothing special in the way of physicality for Theodore. It is not something he struggles with, but it is not something he excels at. He is, simply average in this aspect of the game. He is not dominating, but does not struggle. Positions himself well, tends to not get beat due to one on one physicality. More so contains players in halfwall battles than beats them, which is not a bad thing. Grade: 50

    General Assessment

Pretty much everything with Shea Theodore is at the least NHL average, with several skills being potentially dominant. It can’t be stressed enough how sneaky, yet explosive an offensive player he can be. Whether it is commanding a powerplay or carrying a play into the offensive zone from his own end, Theodore can make a lot of plays run through him. A balance will have to be crafted moving forward as to how much he can get away with, and how much space and NHL level size and strength he can deal with, but overall he looks incredibly promising.

Overall Future Projection – 60

Scouting Report – Nic Dowd

Team: Ontario Reign Draft Status: 198th overall, 2009
(Los Angeles)
Position: C
To Date Stats: 45 GP, 10G, 25A, 35 pts, 39 PIMs
Shoots: R
Height/Weight: 6’2”, 196lbs

    Characteristics

Skating (Speed/edges/technique/etc)

Dowd is more of a shifty deceptive skater than a straight away blazer. Think about centers like Toews, Bergeron, or Tavares. You never see them on an end to end rushes, but they get up and down the ice well enough. That seems to be the direction Dowd drifts towards with skating. Fine skater, good stride, gets the job done, but average in a lot of different ways. Really good balance and puck protection ability. Hard to knock off stride at times when he has the puck. Grade: 50

Shooting (Slap/wrist/backhand, General strength, proclivities, etc)

Has a plus wrist shot, but rarely chooses to shoot over pass. Plays the role of facilitator more than anything else. That being said, when he does decide to shoot he can score with regularity. His proclivity for passing over shooting has evolved over the 2015-16 season and goal totals have slowly risen. Generally a good down-low shooter, with plenty of elevation and power to his wrister. Hovers in high scoring areas. Grade: 45

Puck Skills

Not the most flashy of players, but there is some really good stick work and puck skills. Holds the puck well and can generally maneuver well under physical or spatial pressure. Really exceptional distributor of the puck. Commands the play, wants the puck, and facilitates in the offensive zone. Has been a catalyst for the Reign offense for a good majority of the season. Really sharp passes as well, usually tape to tape stuff. Lacks an explosive high end skill, but has very good overall fundamentals. Overall: 50

Smarts (vision, defensive play, ability to stick in system, etc.)

An exceptionally heady two-way player. The defensive game is superb, and he is almost always down low in support of his defenders and wingers on transition. Heck of a back checker, takes very little risk when moving up ice. Overall, he is a responsible, vocal, and intelligent player. Great vision with the puck, can find teammates well in the o-zone and in transition. Smart enough to be able to adapt to a lot of different scenarios and systems, be it powerplay, shorthanded, 4v4 etc. Can sometimes force plays when his team is behind though. Grade: 65

Physicality

Dowd will have to get bigger and have to get stronger. This is without question. He is small and admittedly trim but seems to like it that way. His game does not revolve around being overly physical, but in games where physicality is high he can sometimes get tied up in difficult corner or front net battles. That being said there is a willingness and an edge to his game. He holds the puck well and can endure at the AHL level, but needs to pack on some muscle to better withstand the NHL game. Grade: 40

    General Assessment

The overall question with Dowd is can he produce at the next level? Can he elevate his game to be as effective an NHLer as an AHLer? He will not be a top six player with the Kings, and may suffer a similar fate to that of Nick Shore, who was also very good and productive at the AHL level. At worst, he is an intelligent enough player to be an NHL average bottom six center with some utility on a penalty kill and potential offensive upside. The way he reads the game gives him a very good chance of being in the NHL someday, even if the skills don’t translate up. He is a vocal leader in the Reign locker room also, which always sounds good on the intangibles side of a scouting report.

Overall Future Projection – 51.75

Scouting Report – Laurent Brossoit

Bio
Team: Bakersfield Condors Draft Status: 164th overall, 2011
(Edmonton)
Position: G
To Date Stats: 26GP (7-8-0), 3.41 GAA, .892 Sv%
Catches: L
Height/Weight: 6’3”, 203lbs

    Characteristics

Athleticism

Being a bigger goalie there is less reliance on athleticism. It does not mean he cannot move side to side and make the occasional sprawling save, however Brossoit relies more on angles and positioning. Fewer displays of raw athleticism are probably good all things considered. Economical in movement. Grade: 45

Quickness/Speed

Bit slow on side to side movement from time to time. Gets across well but in situations where a one timer comes in with accuracy he may find himself a split second behind. Pretty mobile outside of the net though, and definitely likes to come out and play the puck. Grade: 45

Vision/Play Reading

His reads were altogether excellent in viewings. Even when tip plays and cross-ice plays game up he always found himself in position to make a save. Saw the puck well in traffic and relied on his positioning and calm demeanor in coming up with the save. Grade: 60

Compete/Temperament

Showed exceptional compete and temperament in viewings. Dealt with traffic in a composed manner. Never seemed rattled. Focus was razor sharp throughout the game even when dealing with net front scrambles or bumps and traffic in front. Could stand to be maybe a touch more aggressive to better use his size to cut angles, but overall a very mentally sound looking goaltender. Consistency is starting to come around. Grade: 60

Technique/Style

Plays a big butterfly style. Perfect for his size, temperament, and ability. Doesn’t seem to go down too early, which is often a death knell to butterfly goalies. Positioning is sound, which also helps deal with a lot of chances. Does not sink too far into his net like other butterfly goalies either. Overall he looks technically sound with very few holes in his game from that standpoint. Grade: 60

Rebound Control

Excellent displays of rebound control. Swallows up shots, so they deflect to low danger areas, or fall where they can be covered. Coupled with his size, it can be hard to have second and third chances against him. Grade: 60

Puck Handling

As stated earlier, he is quick to jump out and act as a third defenseman. Good reads when doing so, rarely punished for it, often helps out his defenseman. Calm puck handler, can even look off forwards at times. Grade: 60

    General Assessment

It is really difficult to know how goalies will be game to game and system to system. Technically and mentally though, Brossoit looks to have all the tools to be a potential tandem starter or even lone starter on a fringe NHL team in the future. Obviously this could change drastically with the volatile nature of goaltending, but little fundamental things with Brossoit look good. He deals with traffic, plays a strong positional game, stays calm, and has good rebound control. The next level will press his fundamentals, but if he sticks with what has worked in the AHL, Edmonton might finally have a find in goal for them.

Overall Future Projection – 54.75

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