Ottawa Senators Prospect Update - March 15th
A brand-new captain is off to a good start in his brand-new leadership role.
No matter how dreadful things are going with the big club, we can always count on the Ottawa Senators prospect pool for at least a couple of bright spots in a pinch. And this week, there were many.
Ostapchuk has been on the upswing ever since he stepped into the role as captain of the WHL’s Vancouver Giants. In three games this week, the 2021 second-rounder contributed 2 goals and 2 assists, and now has 34 points in 48 games. He’ll have to continue on his recent pace and continue to improve on his season total in order to make the selection worth it, but a significant moment in his career could be just what the doctor ordered.
🚨Zack Ostapchuk had a goal and an assist in a 6-5 win on Saturday night— Sens Prospects (@SensProspects) March 13, 2022
Ostapchuk has 6 points (4G, 2A) in his last 6GP #GoSensGo pic.twitter.com/TrCGG1TQTU
Among a strong week for Kastelic was a 2-point night in a 4-1 victory on Wednesday against the Providence Bruins, which included a goal created by his willingness to crash the net and find a loose puck.
19 points in 45 games with Belleville doesn’t indicate a high offensive ceiling, but the 2019 fifth-round pick could be very close to panning out as a successful and cost-effective fourth-liner in the NHL, perhaps as early as next season. Though it’s hard to say whether or not he’ll get another stint with Ottawa this season, I’m of the opinion they could use him right now for the sake of winning games, especially for his 64.62% success rate in the faceoff dot through 9 NHL contests so far.
Sokolov enjoyed a fair bit of success as a playmaker this week, with 3 assists in 3 games, but all of that plays second-fiddle to this marker in a shootout against Manitoba on Friday:
THIS 😂 pic.twitter.com/OpAEUrgOWJ— Ashley Ryan (@ashleyellenryan) March 12, 2022
In his second professional season, Sokolov has tallied 34 points in 42 AHL games, which is an improvement over last season, but considering what guys like Drake Batherson and Alex Formenton have done in the past, it might be an indicator that Sokolov’s long-term projection will top out as a third-line forward at the NHL level, and the team might need him to be more than that at some point, depending on the development of their other young players. The best the team can do right now is to continue to give him as much AHL seasoning as they can, and give him an opportunity to surprise next season, without banking on that possibility.
I suppose Sanderson’s return has been passable — 2 points in 2 games isn’t too bad for a defensive prospect whose biggest strength above all else is his creativity in the offensive zone. Hang on...I might not be remembering that correctly. Wasn’t he actually known for being a thoroughly efficient two-way player with a limited offensive toolkit as his only flaw? So what’s the deal here?
🚨Jake Sanderson is back!#GoSensGopic.twitter.com/eSMTbfB6Bq— Sens Prospects (@SensProspects) March 12, 2022
It looks like we’ve got a complete player on our hands here. It should be no surprise given he was a projected Top-10 pick in one of the most hyped-up NHL drafts in recent history. And the Senators won’t need to rely on him to be “the guy” right away, either. Just a competent NHL defenseman will make a huge difference.
After going pointless in 7 consecutive games, Ottawa’s first-rounder from 2019 is up and running again, with 3 points in 2 games, and is up to 19 points in 29 AHL games.
Lassi Thomson with his 7th goal in the AHL this afternoon. Nice rip from the kid. #ForTheB #GoSensGo pic.twitter.com/uLsXREtMm1— Lalime's Martian (@LalimesMartian) March 9, 2022
Thomson was widely considered to be yet another one of Ottawa’s trademark selections, in which they took a player too high. However, he was the best right-handed blueliner available, and that level of production in his third season after the draft gives us a glimpse of a potential second-pairing defenseman. Either him or Jacob Bernard-Docker should take part in each of Ottawa’s games after the trade deadline, if not sooner. I understand the necessity to keep them in the AHL, but at some point, the exorbitant amount of losing going on in the nation’s capital will turn them into the new Buffalo Sabres. Let the best players play.
Kingston’s starting goalie continues to be just good enough to help the team continue their winning ways. Be it a .929 save percentage or a 0.895, he’s more often than not making the stops the team needs from him. It’s hard to say whether he’ll be ready for a backup role in the AHL next season, as his overall .889 save percentage doesn’t scream “future NHL goalie”. The good news is that he’s playing on a team that’s giving him plenty of support, which should hopefully allow them to go deep in the playoffs, and give Meriläinen ample opportunity to fine-tune his game.
- In three games, forward Ridly Greig had a goal, two assists, 8 penalty minutes, and 8 shots on goal. In other words, he was fine.
- After a strong stretch of games last week, forward Viktor Lodin added three points in four games this week, bringing the 2019 fourth-rounder up to 26 points in 42 SHL games.
- 2021 seventh-rounder Chandler Romeo had his first career two-point night, with a pair of assists against London on Wednesday. The left-handed defenseman now has 15 points in 50 games between the Sarnia Sting and the Hamilton Bulldogs.
- A couple of 2018 draftees had good performances in their respective college teams — seventh-rounder Jakov Novak had a two-assist game for Northeastern University in a 3-2 victory against Boston College, while second-rounder Jonny Tychonick had a goal and assist in Omaha’s 5-4 loss to Western Michigan on Saturday. /
Pro (NHL, AHL)
|Tyler Boucher||RW||19||Boston University||0||0||0||0||0||0||0%|||||17||2||1||3||34||21||10%|
|Tyler Kleven||LD||20||Univ. of North Dakota||2||1||0||1||17||4||25%|||||37||7||3||10||93||80||9%|
|Luke Loheit||RW||21||Univ. of Minnesota-Duluth||2||0||0||0||0||2||0%|||||30||2||4||6||34||44||5%|
|Jakov Novak||LW/C||23||Northeastern Univ.||1||0||2||2||4||3||0%|||||37||8||9||17||28||64||13%|
|Jake Sanderson||LD||19||Univ. of North Dakota||2||1||1||2||0||5||20%|||||23||8||18||26||6||66||12%|
|Jonny Tychonick||LD||22||Univ. of Omaha||2||1||1||2||2||2||50%|||||24||2||6||8||19||33||6%|
|Carson Latimer||RW||19||Edmonton/Prince Albert||WHL||3||0||1||1||2||8||0%|||||49||13||20||33||20||116||11%|
|Philippe Daoust||C||20||Saint John||QMJHL||3||1||1||2||0||5||20%|||||17||11||11||22||2||38||29%|
|Vitaly Abramov||LW/RW||23||Moscow||KHL (playoffs)||0||0||0||0||0||0||0%|||||4||1||1||2||0||2||50%|
|Olle Alsing||LD||25||Nur-Sultan||KHL (playoffs)||1||0||1||1||0||2||0%|||||5||0||1||1||0||9||0%|
|Eric Engstrand||LW||21||Troja/Ljungby IF||Allsvenskan||0||0||0||0||0||0||0%|||||14||1||3||4||27||26||4%|
|Oliver Johansson||C/LW||18||Timrå IK||J20 Nationell||1||1||0||1||2||-||33%|||||31||16||21||37||12||78||21%|
|Oliver Johansson||C/LW||18||Timrå IK||SHL||0||0||0||0||0||0||0%|||||14||0||0||0||0||16||0%|
|Viktor Lodin||C/LW||22||Timrå IK||SHL||4||1||2||3||2||16||6%|||||42||11||15||26||45||104||11%|