When the 2017 World Juniors rolled around in January, numerous prospects for the Ottawa Senators shone, filling the fan base’s hope for the future. Now with the Memorial Cup starting soon, that hope will continue, featuring two of Ottawa’s top prospects: Thomas Chabot and Logan Brown.
The tournament includes four teams: the winners of the OHL, WHL and QMJHL playoffs, as well as the team in the host city. With the tournament being hosted in Windsor this year, Brown, the Sens’ 11th overall pick from 2016, will get his chance to shine on junior hockey’s biggest stage with the Windsor Spitfires. Eliminated by the London Knights in a seven game series in round one, the Spitfires will look to redeem themselves as the team that was expected to be a powerhouse. Their lineup also features the likes of Mikhail Sergachev (MTL), Jeremy Bracco (TOR) and Logan Stanley (WPG), as well as top draft eligibles Gabriel Vilardi and goalie Michael DiPietro.
As for Thomas Chabot, last night was a huge night for him, with his Saint John Sea Dogs sweeping the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada to seal the QMJHL title. Chabot was named MVP of the playoffs, finishing with 23 points in 18 games. And if 18 games doesn’t sound like a lot for four rounds, that would be because the Sea Dogs swept three of their four series, dropping only two games in round three to Chicoutimi. Chabot’s teammates include Jakub Zboril (BOS), Mathieu Joseph (TBL), Julien Gauthier (CAR), and top draft eligible Joe Veleno.
Recent years have seen many Sens prospects play in the Memorial Cup, with some finding success. Francis Perron came close last year, captaining the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies to an overtime loss in the final game. The year prior saw Tobias Lindberg (now with the Leafs) lead the Oshawa Generals in scoring and winning the championship. And before that, in 2014, was the year Curtis Lazar (now with the Flames) won as captain with the Edmonton Oil Kings. Let’s hope the fortune continues for Brown and Chabot.
The two remaining Memorial Cup teams are still being decided, with the Erie Otters leading the Mississauga Steelheads 3-1, and the Seattle Thunderbirds tied with the Regina Pats 2-2. The Pats are Filip Ahl’s team (4th round pick in 2015), meaning there could potentially be three prospects representing the Sens! Even if the Pats don’t win this year, they’ll be the host team next season.
The full tournament schedule can be found here. Go prospects!