We're back! It has been a few weeks since we've taken a look at your favorite Winnipeg Jets prospects. The break was par partially due to me being busy writing World Juniors posts and partially due to many of the Junior leagues taking breaks. Anyways, let's get back at er.
The IceCaps took part in seven games since our last update and they won three of them. Connor Hellebuyck started five of the seven games, but did play in relief of Budaj. Hellebuyck's record over this stretch was 3-2-0 with a .921 save percentage and a shutout. Budaj currently carries an incredible (incredibly bad) record of 0-7-4 on the season.
Scott Kosmachuk 3G 1A
Eric O`Dell 2A (now injured, played 3 games)
Will O'Neill 5A (now injured, played 5 games)
John Albert 1G 1A
Carl Klingberg 1G
J.C. Lipon 1A
Austen Brassard 1G
Nikolaj Ehlers returned from the World Junior Championships and picked up right where he left off. In his first game back he scored himself a hat trick and added an assist for good measure. He followed it up with a one goal, one assist outing. Ehlers continues to rack up points like few in the CHL can; it is also important and interesting to note that Nikolaj Ehlers spent these two games playing centre on a healthy Halifax team. It remains to be seen how long he will stay at centre, but adding another tool to an already loaded toolbelt is never a bad thing.
Ehlers' fellow Q prospect Jan Kostalek has yet to return to action since the World Juniors.
Jimmy Lodge played in seven game since our last update. He tallied four goals and five assists over this stretch. He is playing well.
The Jets' WHL prospects are all over the map, playing for new teams and in some cases not at all. Nic Petan and Eric Comrie have yet to return to action. Josh Morrissey played his first game for his new team, the Kelowna Rockets. He picked up one assist in the outing. Axel Blomqvist is also getting acclimated to a new team. He has played two games with the Moose Jaw Warriors - he picked up 1G, 1A in those two outings.
Nelson Nogier has also been traded and he is seeing a big boost in his counting stats. Nogier has recorded a goal and three assists in nine games as member of the Red Deer Rebels. Nogier had tallied one goal and seven assists in his 32 games with Saskatoon.
Chase De Leo has returned to WHL action and he continues to tally points with great consistency. In the five games since the new year, De Leo picked up six assists with at least one point in each game. De Leo is currently riding a 17 game point streak.
A hat trick!
Another hat trick!
Another nother hat trick!
The NCAA returned to action just before the new year and the goalies remained busy. Kasdorf returned to health, lacing up his skates five time. Jamie Phillips started six times. Neither goalie posted the kind of elite numbers we've become accustomed to though.
Andrew Copp and C.J. Franklin led the forwards with Copp scoring two goals and adding two assists in four games played. Franklin also played four games - he scored two goals and added three assists. Matt Ustaski also scored a goal.
Among the defenders, Brennan Serville 1A, Aaron Harstad 1A, Peter Stoykewych 1G. Tucker Poolman and Jack Glover were blanked. Glover did play in three of the team's four games. He appears to be close to becoming a regular in their lineup.
1) Nikolaj Ehlers has only taken part in two games since returning from the world juniors, but the things he is doing are incredible. Ehlers picked up six points on a team that scored a total of nine goals. He continues to factor in to more than 60% of his team's offense. That is unreal production. Ehlers is dominating the QMJHL. He currently ranks 13th in QMJHL scoring despite taking part in just 25 games. Most of the players above and below him have played 42 or 43 games. Ehlers is incredible.
2) CJ Franklin has been quietly chugging along with some nice offensive numbers. Franklin has totaled 17 points in his first 20 college hockey games including 10 points in his last 11 outings and 6 points in his last 5. It is important to note that CJ plays for a high powered offensive team. He currently ranks 5th in Minnesota State team scoring, but these are solid numbers for a freshman - even a 20 year old freshie.
3) Scott Kosmachuk's 1st half of his first pro season was somewhat of a disappointment to Jets fans. In junior, Kossy established a reputation of a natural goal scorer, but he'd tallied just three goals prior to the holiday break and including just two goals in his first 24 games. Kossy has scored three goals in six games since the new year, doubling his season total. Jets and IceCaps fans alike have to hope this continues and that Kossy shows the scoring touch that had many excited at the end of last year.
Chase De Leo really deserved mention here, but I wanted to give Kossy and CJ some props.
Exciting times in Jets prospect land, who are you most excited about?