Mason Primeau – North Bay Battalion – Player Profile

Height: 6’5”

Weight: 205 pounds

Date of birth: July 28, 2001

Hometown: Toronto, Ontario

Position: Center

Shoots: Left

OHL Draft: Round 2, 22nd overall, 2017 Priority Selection (Guelph Storm)

NHL Central Scouting Rankings

Pre-season November Mid-term Final
C Prospect C Prospect 142 113

 

Mason Primeau certainly comes with some bloodlines. He’s the son of former NHL’er Wayne Primeau and the nephew of Keith Primeau. And his sister, Madison, played in the PWHL this season. His cousins Cayden will be playing in the American Hockey League next season while Chayse just finished his first season playing in the NCAA. To say hockey runs in the family is an understatement.

Primeau played his minor midget AAA hockey with the Toronto Nationals during the 2016-2017 season where he compiled 13 goals and 16 assists in 33 contests. The Guelph Storm selected Primeau with the 22nd overall pick at the 2017 Ontario Hockey League Priority Selection.

Here’s what OHL Central Scouting had to say about Primeau:

Mason comes from a very good hockey family and he looks to be following in his dad’s footsteps. He is a big two-way centre who has a very good understanding for the game. He is a good skater and has good top-end speed. Mason scored some really nice goals and shows flashes of having top-end skills. He is very reliable in all three zones and is very strong on face-offs. He competes each and every shift. Every coach is looking for a big two-way centre that is reliable and will chip in offensively.

Last season, Primeau made the Storm roster out of camp and appeared in 60 games, scoring 7 goals and assisting on 6 others.

Mason Primeau of the North Bay Battalion. Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images.
Mason Primeau of the North Bay Battalion. Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images

There are two stories to tell this season. Primeau began the year with the Storm. In 20 games, he scored 3 goals and added 4 assists and the writing was virtually on the wall: There wasn’t going to be much ice time for Primeau on a club with Championship aspirations, one that the Storm would eventually achieve.

On November 15, 2018, the Battalion sent two second round picks (2020 and 2022) to the Storm for Primeau. Interestingly enough, Battalion Coach Stan Butler coached Wayne Primeau with the Oshawa Generals during the 1995-1996 season.

Once with the Battalion, Primeau’s ice time and opportunities increased, as did his intensity and his competitiveness. He would finish the season with 49 games in a Battalion uniform, scoring 10 goals and 16 assists. He would add a goal and 2 helpers in 5 playoff games.

Primeau comes with tremendous size at 6’5” and despite weighing in at 205 pounds, could stand to use a bit more muscle. Although OHL Central Scouting liked his skating, I think it’s just average. He lacks a good first few strides that prevents him from getting to top speed, which is okay for his size, at the pace that would be required.

I also don’t agree with Central Scouting’s assessment of “showing flashes of top-end skills.” That may have been the case in Minor Midget, but those skills weren’t visible in the OHL. Primeau’s offense is going to have to come from hard work, winning puck battles and getting to the front of the net, something he is capable of and will only get better at when he adds strength.

In the end, I don’t think Primeau’s vision, hockey IQ and skill set, which are all average in my opinion, are going to make him an offensive threat at the next level. Instead, he could carve out a career as a solid defensive center who is good on the draw, provide energy and physicality and eventually kill penalties, if he can improve on his footwork.

The question now is: where do you draft that type of player?

Stat page from Elite Prospects

Bloodlines Trickle Through the Ontario Hockey League

 

Family Tree

It’s happening more and more when the National Hockey League Draft takes place in late June. Grandsons, sons, brothers and cousins of former NHL’ers and other professional leagues from around the world look to carve their own niche and it all begins with hearing their names called on the draft floor, which takes place in Vancouver, British Columbia on June 21-22, 2019.

There is no shortage of Ontario Hockey League players that will be in that position. A total of 17 players eligible for the draft for the first time have had a relative play in the NHL, drafted by an NHL squad, or played some form of professional hockey.

Today, we take a look at those players beginning with the Barrie Colts. The Colts have 3 players with bloodlines. Defenceman Victor Hadfield is the grandson on former NHL’er Vic Hadfield who appeared in 1002 NHL games with the New York Rangers and Pittsburgh Penguins.

Center Ryan Suzuki is the younger brother of Nick Suzuki, a first round pick of the Vegas Golden Knights, selected thirteenth overall in 2017 and later traded to the Montreal Canadiens. Finally, goaltender Luke Cavallin is the son of Mark who played professional hockey in Germany and represented Canada internationally in 25 contests. He also has a younger brother Adam playing Bantam Hockey.

The Guelph Storm also have a trio with hockey in their blood and hockey fans will certainly recognize two of the names. Centreman Mason Primeau is the son of Wayne Primeau and nephew of Keith Primeau. Wayne played in 774 NHL games with the Buffalo Sabres, Tampa Bay Lightning, Pittsburgh Penguins, San Jose Sharks, Boston Bruins, Calgary Flames and Toronto Maple Leafs. Keith appeared in 909 games with the Detroit Red Wings, Hartford Whalers/Carolina Hurricanes and Philadelphia Flyers.

Left Winger Tag Bertuzzi is the son of former NHL’er Todd Bertuzzi. His NHL career consisted of 1159 games with the New York Islanders, Vancouver Canucks, Florida Panthers, Anaheim Ducks, Calgary Flames and Detroit Red Wings. He is also the cousin of Tyler Bertuzzi who has thus far played in 58 NHL games with the Detroit Red Wings.

German born Hamilton Bulldogs’ forward Tim Fleischer has a brother Marc, who is just three years older and trying to make Germany’s top league.

Kitchener Rangers’ blueliner Jack York is the son of former NHL’er Jason York, who played a total of 757 games for Detroit, Anaheim Ducks, Ottawa Senators, Nashville Predators and Boston. The elder York also spent the lockout year in the Swiss League. Jack also has a younger brother Matthew playing in the CCHL.

For the London Knights, defenceman Andrew Perrott is the son of Nathan Perrott, a forward with 89 NHL games experience, who also played 266 American Hockey League games and 168 International Hockey League games.

Also from the Knights, is centreman Matvey Guskov. His father Alexander never played in the NHL but competed in 294 Kontinental Hockey League games and 468 games in the top Russian League (prior to the formation of the KHL). He also appeared in 54 international contests for the Russians.

Oshawa Generals right wing Danil Antropov is the son of former NHL’er Nik Antropov, a veteran of 788 NHL games with the Toronto Maple Leafs, New York Rangers, Atlanta Thrashers and Winnipeg Jets.  Nik also played in 168 KHL games over his career.

Mack Guzda is a goaltender with the Owen Sound Attack and the son of a former goaltender Brad Guzda. The elder puck stopper never did play in the NHL but spent his career bouncing around the AHL, ECHL and IHL. He is also the cousin of Jeff Woywitka who played in 278 NHL games as well as 355 AHL games and a couple of seasons in Germany.

Peterborough Petes centreman Nick Robertson is the younger brother of Kingston Frontenacs scoring star and the 37th overall pick at the 2017 NHL draft Jason Robertson. They also have an older brother Michael currently playing at the University of Southern California.

That brings us to Nathan Staios, a defenceman with the Windsor Spitfires and the son of the current General Manager of the Hamilton Bulldogs, Steve Staios. Steve had a long career, appearing in 1001 NHL games with the Boston Bruins, Vancouver Canucks, Atlanta Thrashers, Edmonton Oilers, Calgary Flames and New York Islanders. He also appeared in 64 AHL games and 104 IHL games.