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Ottawa Senators Prospect Update: Gruden and Kastelic show off, Daccord steals the show

Your AHL All-Star update, a European prospect re-signed in Europe, and more in this week’s column

NHL: Ottawa Senators at Buffalo Sabres Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

While Marcus Hogberg got a well-deserved rest during the NHL All-Star Break, most of the team’s prospects were back in action in the AHL, or continuing their seasons in the CHL, NCAA, and overseas.

Let’s get started with who stood out during the last week of action.

Biggest Standouts

Johnny Gruden

With four goals in two games this week, Gruden is up to 21 goals on the year for the London Knights and has upped his shot total dramatically in 2020. He’s got a slightly higher point-per-game total than Kastelic, despite being a year younger, and appears to be gaining more trust from Dale Hunter in defensive minutes as the year has gone on.

Mark Kastelic

Kastelic suited up for his 300th WHL game over the weekend, and continues to have a solid overage season with Calgary. It’s not to the calibre that I expect if he’s going to make the NHL, especially as he’s 20-years-old already, but he appears to have the toolkit to be a solid depth power centre at the AHL level, with a strong shot and faceoff ability that will garner the praise of coaches. He had five points in two games, and I expect him to try and ramp up his level of play to his pre-injury levels to try and make a strong case to be signed this offseason.

Joey Daccord

Fun fact: Joey Daccord’s save-percentage this year through 15 games is the same as Marcus Hogberg’s AHL performance last year — 0.917%. It has him ranked ninth in the league, and second among rookies after Tuscon’s (AZ) Ivan Prosvetov. Daccord increased his save percentage in the two starts he had this week, and wasn’t the reason why the team lost to the high-flying Milwaukee Admirals, as you can see from the highlight reel saves below:

Marcus Hogberg’s hot play in the NHL, D.J. Smith’s willingness to trust a rookie goaltender with games, and Troy Mann’s tandem format has served all of the team’s pro goalie prospects really well this year. If the playoffs started today, Joey Daccord would get the start in game one. That’s exciting.

Silver Linings

  • If you haven’t followed UND beat writer Brad Schlossman yet, do it now! He had a great article on UND’s revamped powerplay (they finished last in the NCHC last season at 14.2%), with Shane Pinto at the middle of it all. Pinto’s only got four powerplay points, but the threat of his right-handed one-timer from the left circle is enough of a threat that it opens up space for Jordan Kawaguchi, the team’s leading scorer, on the right side. Pinto was also featured in an article on the Sens official website. He’s fifth in shots-per-game among first-year players — just behind Philadelphia’s Bobby Brink.
  • Also in NCAA action: Jonny Tychonick scored a goal, Jakov Novak continued at his point-per-game pace with three assists, and Chris Wilkie had 19 shots in two games. Read that again.
  • Coming off of a disappointing year last season, Markus Nurmi has rebounded over in TPS, with his two points this week bringing his season totals up to a respectable 20 points in 43 games. As a European player drafted in 2017, Ottawa has until June 2020 to sign up or else forfeit his rights. This week, Nurmi was re-signed to a two-year contract with TPS, and while that doesn’t automatically mean that he’s going unsigned — many European pro contracts have NHL out-clauses; the Sens could sign and loan him to TPS — it doesn’t look likely that he’ll be given a contract at this point. From Google Translate (h/t to @sensprospects):

“The moods are insanely good. I wanted to continue at TPS because I believe in this thing. I also want to play a big role in putting TPS back on the road to success”

  • Also in need of signing this June? Cape Breton’s Kevin Mandolese, owner of the second-best save percentage in the QMJHL (0.921%).
  • Sportsnet’s Sam Cosentino is one of the most connected in the business when it comes to CHL hockey. He sat down for a brief interview with Max Guénette, who’s having a strong year with Val D’Or and is targeting a World Juniors camp invite next season.
  • Davis Payne should look to copy this set-up if he’s still around to run the powerplay next year...
  • Your AHL All-Star update: with Josh Norris ill and Drake Batherson in the NHL, Rudolfs Balcers and Alex Formenton represented the North Division-leading BSens. Formenton put up the third-fastest time in league history as he won the fastest skater event, and Balcers had a nifty breakaway goal in the on-ice competition.

Weekly Stats

Pro (NHL, AHL, ECHL)

- - - - - Since the last prospect update - | - T O T A L -
- - - - - Since the last prospect update - | - T O T A L -
PLAYER POS AGE LEAGUE GP G A P PIM SOG SH% | GP G A P PIM SOG SH%
Alex Formenton LW 20 AHL 3 0 1 1 4 6 0% | 43 21 13 34 42 108 19%
Drake Batherson RW 21 AHL 3 1 3 4 0 8 13% | 37 14 32 46 24 119 12%
NHL 1 0 1 1 0 2 0% | 10 1 2 3 6 13 8%
Jonathan Davidsson RW 22 AHL - - - - - - 0% | 18 2 3 5 6 19 11%
NHL - - - - - - - | 6 0 1 1 0 3 0%
Josh Norris C 20 AHL 1 0 0 0 0 0 0% | 42 22 18 40 12 121 18%
Max Veronneau RW 24 AHL - - - - - - - | 33 5 5 10 2 30 17%
NHL - - - - - - - | 4 0 0 0 0 3 0%
Michael Carcone LW 23 AHL 3 1 0 1 2 4 25% | 41 10 9 19 37 92 11%
Morgan Klimchuk LW 24 AHL 3 2 1 3 0 4 50% | 34 10 7 17 8 50 20%
Parker Kelly C/RW 20 AHL 3 1 0 1 2 4 25% | 39 7 4 11 10 43 16%
Rudolfs Balcers LW 22 AHL 3 2 0 2 2 6 33% | 23 10 17 27 10 50 20%
NHL - - - - - - - | 7 0 1 1 0 8 0%
Vitaly Abramov RW/LW 21 AHL 3 0 0 0 0 4 0% | 33 15 13 28 18 86 17%
NHL - - - - - - - | 2 1 0 1 2 3 33%
Andreas Englund LD 24 AHL 3 0 0 0 5 1 0% | 17 0 0 0 24 16 0%
NHL - - - - - - - | 12 0 2 2 12 5 0%
Christian Jaros RD 23 AHL 3 0 1 1 0 3 0% | 27 1 11 12 4 33 3%
NHL - - - - - - - | 6 0 2 2 4 2 0%
Maxime Lajoie LD 22 AHL 2 0 1 1 0 3 0% | 32 2 1 9 22 50 4%
NHL - - - - - - - | 6 0 0 0 0 3 0%
Filip Chlapik C 22 NHL 1 0 0 0 0 1 0% | 24 2 3 5 10 22 9%
AHL 3 1 1 2 7 9 11% | 24 5 9 14 29 52 10%
Jean-Christophe Beaudin C/RW 22 NHL - - - - - - - | 22 0 1 1 7 18 0%
AHL - - - - - - - | 11 2 2 4 0 16 13%
Logan Brown C 21 NHL - - - - - - - | 23 1 7 8 4 23 4%
AHL 3 1 3 4 2 8 13% | 19 5 20 25 24 44 11%
Erik Brännström LD 20 NHL - - - - - - - | 31 0 4 4 16 38 0%
AHL 3 0 2 2 2 5 0% | 16 1 13 14 18 23 4%

Canadian Hockey League

- - - - - - Since the last prospect update - | - T O T A L -
- - - - - - Since the last prospect update - | - T O T A L -
PLAYER POS AGE TEAM LEAGUE GP G A P PIM SOG SH% | GP G A P PIM SOG SH%
Johnny Gruden LW 19 London Knights OHL 3 4 1 5 0 14 29% | 44 21 28 49 21 112 19%
Maxence Guénette RD 18 Val-d'Or Foreurs QMJHL 3 0 2 2 4 2 0% | 45 8 22 30 20 100 8%
Mark Kastelic C 20 Calgary Hitmen WHL 2 2 3 5 2 8 25% | 39 23 22 45 59 143 16%

NCAA

- - - - - Since the last prospect update - | - T O T A L -
- - - - - Since the last prospect update - | - T O T A L -
PLAYER POS AGE TEAM GP G A P PIM SOG SH% | GP G A P PIM SOG SH%
Angus Crookshank LW 20 Univ. of New Hampshire 2 0 0 0 2 6 0% | 24 12 4 16 12 93 13%
Chris Wilkie RW 23 Colorado College 2 0 0 0 0 19 0% | 22 17 8 25 13 122 14%
Jakov Novak LW/C 21 Bentley Univ. 2 0 3 3 2 5 0% | 26 14 12 26 39 75 19%
Luke Loheit RW 19 Univ. of Minnesota-Duluth 2 1 0 1 0 3 0% | 23 3 1 4 6 18 17%
Shane Pinto C 19 Univ. of North Dakota 2 0 2 2 2 1 0% | 23 11 9 20 27 61 18%
Todd Burgess C/RW 23 RPI 1 0 0 0 2 1 0% | 22 4 2 6 14 48 8%
Jacob Bernard-Docker RD 19 Univ. of North Dakota 2 0 0 0 0 4 0% | 22 3 13 16 8 39 8%
Jonny Tychonick LD 19 Univ. of North Dakota 1 1 0 1 0 2 0% | 18 4 6 10 6 10 40%

European Leagues

- - - - - - Since the last prospect update - | - T O T A L -
- - - - - - Since the last prospect update - | - T O T A L -
PLAYER POS AGE TEAM LEAGUE GP G A P PIM SOG SH% | GP G A P PIM SOG SH%
Markus Nurmi RW/LW 21 TPS Liiga 3 1 1 2 2 5 20% | 43 9 11 20 22 91 10%
Lassi Thomson RD 19 Ilves Liiga 2 0 0 0 0 6 0% | 27 6 4 10 8 90 7%
Viktor Lodin C/LW 20 Örebro HK SHL - - - - - - - | 22 0 4 4 2 20 0%
HC Vita Hästen Allsvenskan - - - - - - - | 10 3 2 5 2 26 12%
Olle Alsing LD 23 Djurgårdens IF SHL 2 0 0 0 0 1 0% | 36 4 16 20 20 55 7%

Goaltenders

- - - - - Since the last prospect update - - | - T O T A L - -
- - - - - Since the last prospect update - - | - T O T A L - -
PLAYER AGE TEAM LEAGUE GP W L OTL SOL SA GA SV% | GP W L OTL SOL SA GA SV%
Filip Gustavsson 21 Belleville Senators AHL 1 1 28 2 92.9% | 18 11 5 2 0 519 55 89.4%
Joey Daccord 23 Belleville Senators AHL 2 1 1 61 4 93.4% | 13 9 3 2 1 434 36 91.7%
Brampton Beast ECHL - - - - - - - - | 12 7 5 0 0 342 34 90.1%
Marcus Högberg 25 Belleville Senators AHL - - - - - - - - | 15 7 6 0 0 408 42 89.7%
Ottawa Senators NHL 1 1 53 3 94.3% | 12 2 2 5 2 377 33 91.2%
Kevin Mandolese 19 Cape Breton Eagles QMJHL - - - - - - - #VALUE! | 26 17 6 1 0 726 57 92.1%
Mads Søgaard 19 Medicine Hat Tigers WHL 2 1 1 27 4 85.2% | 28 15 10 1 1 744 75 89.9%