It's been over two months since our last look at the Winnipeg Jets prospects. Let's see how they have progressed since.
2012 2nd Round: C Lukas Sutter; 42GP, 10G, 13A, 23PTS, -4, 72PIM
After a difficult November where his point pace dipped, Sutter has returned to his usual -around a 0.6 points per game pace-. Interestingly enough, five of Sutter's 10 goals have been scored on the power-play, so he is getting some offensive minutes.
There is not much more to be said when it comes to Sutter, other than to guess whether or not he will be offered an entry level contract for next season. Many would suggest no; however, Kevin Cheveldayoff did sign Austen Brassard to an ELC last season when Brassard posted similar numbers, also placed 6th on his team in points, and is known for playing a similar "edgy" game.
2012 3rd Round: RW Scott Kosmachuk; 58GP, 38G, 38A, 76PTS, +35, 66PIM
Let's take a moment and reflect on that September-October section... Wow. Kosmachuk leads his team in both goals and points. He is also 4th in the OHL for goals. Guelph has been quite the offensive powerhouse team, stacking up in the hopes of a deep playoff run. While Kosmachuk is the points leader for the Guelph, he is actually 4th in points per game and the team has nine players pacing over a point per game.
Kossyboy was very consistent in December, scoring at least a point in every game. January saw Kosmachuk play a fairly disciplined game, netting only one minor penalty, and also scored a goal in 8/12 games. While February has barely just begun, Kosmachuk already has 10 points, including one 4 goal (plus an assist) game.
2012 6th Round: C Ryan Olsen; 56GP, 26G, 27A, 53PTS, +25, 59PIM
Olsen's point pace has wavered from below to above a point per game the past two seasons. While his overall point progression has not been significant over last season, his production has relied less on the power play than last season
Even though he is not an offensive powerhouse, Olsen has played a major role in the Kelowna Rockets' success this season. He is used predominately as a defensive centre, taking the tough minutes on the second line. Yet, he is 3rd in the team for points and has the highest plus/minus of all the Rockets' forwards. While plus/minus is a heavily flawed statistic, the higher number of goal scoring events in junior does make it slightly better than in the NHL.
2013 1st Round: LD Joshua Morrissey; 43GP, 20G, 34A, 54PTS, +6, 45PIM
Morrissey has had a pretty great individual season. So far he is second in his team in points and points per game, third in WHL defensive points, one point shy from highest point per game for WHL defensemen, and has a huge lead in defensive goal scoring race. Morrissey is second in franchise defensive goal scoring for Prince Albert and is only two goals away from the single season franchise record. He played for Team Canada as an 18 year old at the widely considered for 19 years old tourney that is the World Juniors; over there Morrissey was second for Canadian defensemen in scoring and plus/minus and also was third in shots on goal.
The Raiders have struggled as of late, and with it Morrissey's production slowed down significantly in December; however, this month Morrissey has already picked up the pace with 3 goals and 6 assists in his last 5 games. The very intelligent defenseman has already exceeded his point production from the previous season and is on track for the best Draft+1 point pace for Jets CHL prospects not named Mark Scheifele or Nic Petan.
2013 2nd Round: C Nicolas Petan; 48GP, 30G, 65A, 95PTS, +49, 51PIM
Petan's point production has been near ridiculous. You could remove all of his goals and he'd still be one of the top producing Jets prospects. He just recently moved back into first place for WHL points although he is at a huge games played disadvantage with playing at the WJC. He has also been over two points per game for more months than he's been under. Very few have won the WHL scoring title back-to-back and Petan could have the chance at winning it three times if he repeats next year.
Although about year younger than many players, Petan was leaned on offensively at the World Juniors this year. Only Anthony Mantha scored more goals and only Jonathan Drouin, Curtis Lazar and Anthony Mantha scored more points than Petan for Team Canada.
2013 2nd Round: G Eric Comrie; 49 GP, 1602 SA, SV% 0.927
It would not be unreasonable to say that the Jets would likely own the WHL's best forward, defensemen and goaltender next season... because currently they have the best pt/gp forward, second best pt/gp defensemen (just one point shy from first) and second best goaltender in save percentage.
While second in this season for save percentage, Comrie currently has the highest active WHL career save percentage. Comrie performed amazingly in January, earning him multiple nods from third-party scouting companies, including Hockey's Future's prospect of the month. His outstanding performance is just putting salt in the wound for Hockey Canada who erroneously selected Zach Fucale and Jake Paterson over the far superior Eric Comrie.
2013 3rd Round: RW Jimmy Lodge; 46GP, 15G, 25A, 40PTS, +10, 47PIM
It has been a very up-and-down season for Lodge, scoring for two months around a 0.6 pace and a 1.3 pace for the other two. Lodge struggled from the start of the season with injuries and went on a warpath once he recovered. Unfortunately he has slowed down as of late and I have not been able to watch lately to assess the reasoning. As a smart playmaker, Lodge heavily relies on his linemates being able to bury their chances. With Eric Locke's return, much of these prime offensive minutes and linemates have moved from Lodge to Locke. He is however still the third highest scorer for a struggling Saginaw Spirit.
While Lodge has struggled this season with consistency, he is still outpacing players like Adam Lowry, Ryan Olsen and JC Lipon for their Draft +1 NHLE production. It will be interesting to see how Lodge develops. There are obviously bust risks to the player but he still has top 6 NHL upside.
2013 4th Round: RD Jan Kostalek; 25GP, 1G, 17A, 18PTS, +3, 22PIM, 1.4 Sh%
After a heck of a start to the season with 18 points in 26 games, Kostalek went pointless for his next 11 games. Much of this was due to power play time, with Samuel Morin and Jimmy Oligny manning the main unit. Oligny -as an overager this season- will not be returning to the QMJHL next year, leaving a larger offensive role available for Kostalek. Kostalek played a major shutdown defensive role for the Czech's in the world juniors. For the games that I tracked, Kostalek was deployed almost exclusively in the defensive zone, but the Czech's Corsi was usually better with him on the ice than him off the ice.
While Kostalek plays a more defensive defensemen's game, he can move the puck well and has great vision. This is necessary for Kostalek in point production as he is well known for having a less than average shot. Still, a poor shot could not be the reasoning for Kostalek's shooting percentage collapse. Kostalek last season scored on 6.1% of his shots, while this season he is shooting at 1.9%. He has been creating more chances, averaging about 2.5 shots per game this season rather than last season's 1.7, so if his shooting percentage were more consistent, we'd see a much larger jump in point production this season.
2013 UFA: RW Axel Blomqvist; 52GP, 20G, 25A, 45PTS, +9, 16PIM
Blomqvist had heck of a December and is likely quite happy with being traded to the Victoria Royals. His point production has faired nicely for an UFA pickup, which is nice for the Jets as he didn't cost a draft pick.
Bonus Section: NHL Equivalent Points per Game
Click image for larger view
NHLE allow us to compare players of different leagues to look at their production. I usually use this to look at player development.
1) Due to birthdate, Sutter and Melchiori are overage players in their Draft +2 year
2) Yuen is no longer Jets property, but I like to keep him on the graph to have more comparables
Let us know below who has impressed you the most!
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