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Ottawa Senators Prospect Update: Kastelic takes charge with five-point night

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Shane Pinto and Mads Søgaard also have strong weeks while the BSens take a step back.

NHL: Dallas Stars at Ottawa Senators Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports

I guess you can blame me for breaking the Belleville Senators’ winning streak. While they appeared to tear down any opponent while Colin was on coverage, they had an up and down week this past week that Spencer will speak to in more detail.

As always with the Ottawa Senators prospect pool, when someone has a poor week, other prospects have stepped up. Let’s get to this week’s biggest standouts.

Biggest Standouts

Mark Kastelic

Named CHL Player of the Night for February 13th, Mark Kastelic had a game to remember with a four-goal, five-point effort that saw him enter the top-10 in Calgary Hitmen franchise scoring.

While Kastelic isn’t having the dominant year I’d expect from a 20-year-old overager that scored 47 goals last season, he sits 23rd in points-per-game and has been rediscovering the scoring groove he had in November and December. He’s 61.1% on the faceoff dot, and plays a strong, power game that may make him an intriguing pro in Belleville should the team decide to use one of their 50 standard player contract slots on him.

Shane Pinto

Pinto’s a year younger than Kastelic, and is having a season to remember for #1 ranked UND. He’s tied for fourth among first-year players in scoring with 24 points in 27 games — with Philadelphia’s Bobby Brink, who was taken just after — just behind top prospects Alex Newhook (COL), Trevor Zegras (ANA), and Cole Caufield (MTL).

Impressively, Pinto can do it all. He takes key faceoffs in all areas of the ice; has received ice-time on both special teams’ units; and is adept at getting to the area around the net for high-danger opportunities. While his shot was what was showcased in the World Juniors, Pinto also has decent vision, and can generate assists by putting the puck into dangerous areas of the ice.

It’ll be really interesting to see what the Sens decide to do with Pinto and Jacob Bernard-Docker — who had three points this past week — in the offseason. Belleville is thin on defence from a prospect perspective, but the team is overloaded with forwards and Pinto is only 19. Next year’s UND squad will likely have a tougher season, so Pinto may have to respond to adversity in a different way than he’s had to this year.

Mads Søgaard

The goalie prospect that’s been having the most questionable season so far, Søgaard has season his save percentage drop from 0.921% in his rookie season with Medicine Hat, to 0.902% currently.

The third goaltender taken in last year’s draft, it’s been hard to not criticize Søgaard and the Sens because a) he plays for a top scoring team in Medicine Hat, and b) seventh rounder Dustin Wolf leads the WHL in save percentage. However, just because a team is good at offence doesn’t mean they’re good at defending, and while the goaltenders surely have been a part of the problem for the Tigers this season, they don’t have notable names playing rearguard and appear loose in coverage.

To his credit, all Søgaard can control is making his next game better than his last, and so far in February, he’s done a good job of putting together a decent streak. Case in point? Recording his third shutout of the season (and second this month!) on February 11th:

It’s this kind of athleticism for a 6-foot-7 netminder that made Søgaard a second round pick, and what the Sens are banking on to develop as the rest of his game settles down. He’s very much a boom or bust prospect:

While it’ll be weird for an import goaltender to play a full three seasons in the WHL, the Sens don’t have to sign him yet, and I wonder if he heads back overseas to develop against pros.

Silver Linings

  • While we won’t count Christian Wolanin as a “prospect” anymore, he played in two of the BSens’ three games this week and had a fight (!!!) in his return from a shoulder injury. Barring trades, it sounds like the plan is to have him to finish the year in the AHL and contribute to a deep playoff run.
  • A player who’s also been injured to start 2020, and then went on a massive cold streak, Vitaly Abramov is heating up again. He had three points and 13 shots in three games this past week.
  • Like Colin mentioned last week, Logan Brown has been battling a wrist injury that’s impeded his puck handling and his shot. This big hit, courtesy of Mason Marchment, didn’t help; Brown didn’t return to the game and per Troy Mann, is out for at least two weeks.
  • Max Lajoie missed the team’s third game, but it was because he was a healthy scratch. Troy Mann spoke about how some of this is having to manage 11 defenders, while some of it is about Lajoie improving his game. He’s not as offensively talented as Brännström, Wolanin, or Murray, nor does the team see him as a more effective penalty killer than some of the others in the lineup. He burst onto the scene last year, but is young and has a history of playing a smart, effective game. I hope he uses this to rebound.
  • By this time next week, the NHL and AHL trade deadlines would’ve passed. While that’s likely going to mean new faces added to our prospects list, there’s also the possibility that the Sens may move some players from a position of strength. In his latest 31 Thoughts column, Elliotte Friedman mentioned that Max Veronneau may be on the move. Last year’s big collegiate free agent, Veronneau has been in and out of the lineup, and has 10 points in 33 games this season with Belleville. He suited up for four NHL games, but has gone pointless. He had four points (2G, 2A) in 12 NHL games to end last season.
  • Lassi Thomson’s Ilves squad will see their regular season end on March 14th, but look set to make the Liiga playoffs. Will be interesting to follow the timing of his year, because he’s got a shot at joining Belleville for their playoff run.
  • With four goals in four games this week, Johnny Gruden continues to have a strong year with the London Knights.
  • Angus Crookshank and Jakov Novak have been used to putting up the points, but this past week, they put up the PIMs. Crookshank had 15 and Novak had 19 over two games.
  • Other than Søgaard, it was a rough week for the goaltenders. While Marcus Hogberg was pulled against the Leafs, he still managed to increase his save percentage this week, and is now up to a respectable 0.911% for the season.

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 1 0 0 0 0 3 0% | 61 27 26 53 65 158 17%
Drake Batherson RW 21 AHL 1 0 0 0 0 1 0% | 44 16 38 54 24 134 12%
NHL - - - - - - - | 23 3 7 10 13 32 9%
Filip Chlapik C 22 AHL 1 0 0 0 0 0 0% | 37 10 12 22 49 81 12%
NHL - - - - - - - | 31 3 3 6 10 27 11%
Jonathan Davidsson RW 23 AHL - - - - - - - | 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 3 0% | 56 31 30 61 21 160 19%
NHL - - - - - - - | 3 0 0 0 0 9 0%
Logan Brown C 22 AHL - - - - - - - | 25 7 21 28 43 58 12%
NHL - - - - - - - | 23 1 7 8 4 23 4%
Michael Carcone LW 23 AHL 1 0 0 0 0 2 0% | 59 13 14 27 64 142 9%
Morgan Klimchuk LW 25 AHL - - - - - - - | 49 12 14 26 14 61 20%
Parker Kelly C/RW 20 AHL 1 0 0 0 0 0 0% | 57 10 6 16 18 55 18%
Rudolfs Balcers LW 22 AHL - - - - - - - | 33 16 20 36 14 78 21%
NHL 2 0 0 0 0 5 0% | 15 1 2 3 0 23 4%
Vitaly Abramov RW/LW 21 AHL 1 0 0 0 0 0 0% | 51 18 23 41 30 126 14%
NHL - - - - - - - | 2 1 0 1 2 3 33%
Christian Jaros RD 23 AHL - - - - - - - | 34 2 13 15 14 37 5%
NHL - - - - - - - | 13 0 3 3 6 5 0%
Maxime Lajoie LD 22 AHL 1 0 0 0 0 1 0% | 48 4 13 17 24 66 6%
NHL - - - - - - - | 6 0 0 0 0 3 0%
Jean-Christophe Beaudin C/RW 22 NHL - - - - - - - | 22 0 1 1 7 18 0%
AHL - - - - - - - | 13 4 2 6 2 19 21%
Andreas Englund LD 24 NHL 2 0 1 1 0 0 0% | 24 0 3 3 12 10 0%
AHL - - - - - - - | 22 0 0 0 32 19 0%
Erik Brännström LD 20 NHL - - - - - - - | 31 0 4 4 16 38 0%
AHL - - - - - - - | 27 3 20 23 22 48 6%

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 - - - - - - - | 59 30 36 66 23 152 20%
Maxence Guénette RD 18 Val-d'Or Foreurs QMJHL 1 0 2 2 0 5 0% | 62 11 29 40 22 130 8%
Mark Kastelic C 21 Calgary Hitmen WHL - - - - - - - | 58 38 30 68 83 227 17%

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 - - - - - - - | 34 16 6 22 39 137 12%
Chris Wilkie RW 23 Colorado College - - - - - - - | 34 23 8 31 36 175 13%
Jakov Novak LW/C 21 Bentley Univ. - - - - - - - | 35 16 14 30 84 100 16%
Luke Loheit RW 19 Univ. of Minnesota-Duluth - - - - - - - | 33 5 1 6 8 27 19%
Shane Pinto C 19 Univ. of North Dakota - - - - - - - | 33 16 12 28 46 91 18%
Todd Burgess C/RW 23 RPI - - - - - - - | 32 14 6 20 20 79 18%
Jacob Bernard-Docker RD 19 Univ. of North Dakota - - - - - - - | 32 7 18 25 12 55 13%
Jonny Tychonick LD 20 Univ. of North Dakota - - - - - - - | 24 4 7 11 14 12 33%

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 - - - - - - - | 57 14 14 28 28 132 11%
Lassi Thomson RD 19 Ilves Liiga - - - - - - - | 39 7 6 13 12 131 5%
Viktor Lodin C/LW 20 Örebro HK SHL - - - - - - - | 22 0 4 4 2 20 0%
HC Vita Hästen Allsvenskan - - - - - - - | 18 3 5 8 4 27 11%
Olle Alsing LD 23 Djurgårdens IF SHL - - - - - - - | 36 4 16 20 20 55 7%

Goalies

- - - - - 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 0 1 0 0 37 2 94.6% | 24 15 6 3 0 673 75 88.9%
Joey Daccord 23 Belleville Senators AHL - - - - - - - - | 24 15 6 2 1 721 61 91.5%
Brampton Beast ECHL - - - - - - - - | 12 7 5 0 0 342 34 90.1%
Marcus Högberg 25 Ottawa Senators NHL 1 0 1 0 0 15 5 66.7% | 24 5 8 6 2 728 70 90.4%
Belleville Senators AHL - - - - - - - - | 15 7 6 0 0 408 42 89.7%
Kevin Mandolese 19 Cape Breton Eagles QMJHL 1 0 1 0 0 47 3 93.6% | 37 26 8 1 0 1090 82 92.5%
Mads Søgaard 19 Medicine Hat Tigers WHL - - - - - - - - | 37 21 13 1 1 967 89 90.8%