OHL Writers’ Draft Eligible Player of the Month for January

In the years that I have been doing this, I don’t ever recall a month like January where so many players could have been chosen our Draft Eligible Player of the Month. Tyson Foerster, Luke Evangelista, Brett Brochu, James Hardie, Ty Tullio, Jack Quinn, Marco Rossi, Cole Perfetti and Quinton Byfield were all, for different reasons, deserving.

Cole Perfetti of the Saginaw Spirit. Photo by Luke Durda/OHL Images
Cole Perfetti of the Saginaw Spirit. Photo by Luke Durda/OHL Images

We settled on Mr Consistency, Cole Perfetti of the Saginaw Spirit for the second time this season.

Through 13 games in the month of January, Perfetti found the back of the net 8 times while assisting on 21 others and finishing a plus-16. He was held off the score sheet just once, a January 15th matchup against the Soo Greyhounds. In the 12 remaining contests, 9 were multi point games.

Perfetti was named the game’s first star 3 times and the game’s third star twice. But let’s not get into the Ontario Hockey League’s three-star selection process.

Serious consideration was given to London Knights netminder Brendan Brochu. The rookie keeper appeared in 9 games in January winning all of them while posting a sparkling 1.89 goals-against-average and a .940 save-percentage.

Foerster appeared in 11 games scoring 8 goals and assisting on 9 others. Evangelista scored 6 goals and 11 assists in 11 games, Hardie 12 goals and 8 assists in 11 games, Tullio 7 goals and 9 assists in 13 games, Quinn 17 goals and 7 assists in 12 games, Rossi 6 goals and 16 assists in 12 games and Byfield 7 goals and 6 assists in 7 games.

OHL Writers Draft Eligible Players of the Month

January – Cole Perfetti – Saginaw Spirit

December – Marco Rossi – Ottawa 67’s

November – Marco Rossi – Ottawa 67’s

October – Cole Perfetti – Saginaw Spirit

OHL’ers finish 1 through 5 at the Top Prospects Sport Testing Combine

Top Prospects Skills
Top Prospects compete at the Sports Testing Combine prior to the Top Prospects Game. Photo by Brandon Taylor / CHL Images

On-Ice Tests:

30M Forward Skate:
1 – Jacob Perreault (Sarnia Sting)
2 – Jean-Luc Foudy (Windsor Spitfires)
3 – Thimo Nickl (Drummondville Voltigeurs)

30M Forward Skate with Puck:
1 – Jacob Perreault (Sarnia Sting)
2 – Jean-Luc Foudy (Windsor Spitfires)
3 – Jamie Drysdale (Erie Otters)

30M Backward Skate:
1 – Jamie Drysdale (Erie Otters)
2 – Seth Jarvis (Portland Winterhawks)
3 – Dawson Mercer (Chicoutimi Sagueneens)

30M Backward Skate with Puck:
1 – Jamie Drysdale (Erie Otters)
2 – Dawson Mercer (Chicoutimi Sagueneens)
3 – Ridly Greig (Brandon Wheat Kings)

Reaction:
1 – Jacob Perreault (Sarnia Sting)
2 – Vasily Ponomarev (Shawinigan Cataractes)
3 – Seth Jarvis (Portland Winterhawks)

Reaction with Puck:
1 – Jean-Luc Foudy (Windsor Spitfires)
2 – Jaromir Pytlik (Soo Greyhounds)
3 – Quinton Byfield (Sudbury Wolves)

Weave Agility:
1 – Dawson Mercer (Chicoutimi Sagueneens)
2 – Jacob Perreault (Sarnia Sting)
3 – Jean-Luc Foudy (Windsor Spitfires)

Weave Agility with Puck:
1 – Jacob Perreault (Sarnia Sting)
2 – Quinton Byfield (Sudbury Wolves)
3 – Jean-Luc Foudy (Windsor Spitfires)

Transition Agility:
1 – Jean-Luc Foudy (Windsor Spitfires)
2 – Quinton Byfield (Sudbury Wolves)
3 – Kaiden Guhle (Prince Albert Raiders)

Transition Agility with Puck:
1 – Jean-Luc Foudy (Windsor Spitfires)
2 – Dawson Mercer (Chicoutimi Sagueneens)
3 – Jacob Perreault (Sarnia Sting)

Off-Ice Tests:

Vertical Jump:
1 – Jamie Drysdale (Erie Otters)
2 – Jack Quinn (Ottawa 67’s)
3 – Jean-Luc Foudy (Windsor Spitfires)

Broad Jump:
1 – Thimo Nickl (Drummondville Voltigeurs)
2 –Quinton Byfield (Sudbury Wolves)
3 – Jack Quinn (Ottawa 67’s)

Medicine Ball Toss:
1 – Quinton Byfield (Sudbury Wolves)
1 – Jack Finley (Spokane Chiefs)
3 – Vasily Ponomarev (Shawinigan Cataractes)

Grip Left:
1 – Samuel Hlavaj (Sherbrooke Phoenix)
2 – Thimo Nickl (Drummondville Voltigeurs)
3 – Brock Gould (Moose Jaw Warriors)

Grip Right:
1 – Jack Finley (Spokane Chiefs)
2 – Will Cuylle (Windsor Spitfires)
3 – Jacob Perreault (Sarnia Sting)

Pro-Agility Left:
1 – Antonio Stranges (London Knights)
2 – Dylan Garand (Kamloops Blazers)
3 – Ridly Greig (Brandon Wheat Kings)

Pro-Agility Right:
1 – Antonio Stranges (London Knights)
2 – Jack Finley (Spokane Chiefs)
3 – Dylan Garand (Kamloops Blazers)

Sport Testing scores provide valuable performance benchmarks to coaches and players at all levels of hockey with data collected at the Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game shared with NHL Central Scouting and distributed to all 31 NHL teams.

Read full article here

OHL THIS WEEK: JANUARY 16 TO 19, 2020

OHL This Week

THURSDAY, JANUARY 16, 2020

Toronto, Ont. – It’s a special Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game edition of the OHL This Week. Here’s the scoop on what’s happening Thursday in Hamilton into a full weekend of OHL action with nine games on both Friday and Saturday.

KUBOTA CHL/NHL TOP PROSPECTS GAME SET FOR THURSDAY IN HAMILTON:
The 2020 Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game returns to Ontario on Thursday January 16th in Hamilton as 40 of the Canadian Hockey League’s top draft eligible players bring fans and scouts out to see a best-on-best competition.
READ MORE / PHOTO GALLERY – TOP PROSPECTS ARRIVE IN HAMILTON

THE BOOK ON THE OHL’S TOP PROSPECTS WITH NHL CENTRAL SCOUTING DIRECTOR DAN MARR:
NHL Central Scouting Director Dan Marr provides his insights on four of the OHL’s top prospects ahead of the Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game. He takes a closer look at Sudbury’s Quinton Byfield, Erie’s Jamie Drysdale, Saginaw’s Cole Perfetti and Ottawa’s Marco Rossi.
WATCH

RISING STARS BYFIELD AND DRYSDALE ENJOYING THE RIDE TOGETHER:
NHL Central Scouting’s second and third ranked North American skaters Quinton Byfield and Jamie Drysdale are enjoying the journey to the 2020 NHL Draft together. The two Canadian National Junior Team gold medalists are competing in the Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game.
READ MORE

STING’S PERREAULT DRAWING FROM PRO INFLUENCES:
It’s amazing what kind of wisdom can be drawn from a combined 43 years of National Hockey League experience, just ask Sarnia Sting forward Jacob Perreault, who continues to benefit from a well-travelled trifecta of hockey influencers.
READ MORE

PERFETTI DOING BIG THINGS IN SAGINAW:
Coming off a tremendous rookie campaign, Saginaw Spirit sophomore Cole Perfetti has an opportunity to be the first player in club history to go top-10 at the NHL Draft.
READ MORE

57 OHL PLAYERS INCLUDED ON NHL CENTRAL SCOUTING’S MIDTERM DRAFT RANKINGS:
Sudbury’s Quinton Byfield, Erie’s Jamie Drysdale, Saginaw’s Cole Perfetti and Ottawa’s Marco Rossi account for four of the top five ranked North American skaters on the NHL Central Scouting Midterms.All 20 of the OHL’s member teams feature at least one player included on the list, with the Soo Greyhounds (7), Windsor Spitfires (6), Erie Otters (5) and Guelph Storm (5) leading the way.
FULL RANKINGS

67’s, SPITFIRES AND PETES IN KIA CHL TOP 10 RANKINGS:
The Ottawa 67’s remain the top-ranked team in the CHL this week while the Windsor Spitfires and Peterborough Petes round out the Kia CHL Top 10 Rankings. The Kitchener Rangers and Saginaw Spirit remain honourable mentions for a second straight week.
FULL RANKINGS

COSKEY, TOMASINO AND MERKLEY NAMED TO VAUGHN CHL TEAM OF THE WEEK:
Saginaw’s Cole Coskey, Oshawa’s Philip Tomasino and London’s Ryan Merkley have been named to the Vaughn CHL Team of the Week.
READ MORE

GENERALS’ TOMASINO NAMED OHL ‘ON THE RUN’ PLAYER OF THE WEEK:
Nashville Predators prospect Philip Tomasino of the Oshawa Generals is the OHL ‘On the Run’ Player of the Week for the week ending January 12th. Tomasino earns the award for the second time this season after making his mark in his first weekend as a General. He put up three consecutive two-goal performances in wins over Windsor, Sarnia and Peterborough.
READ MORE

WAWANESA OHL PLAYS OF THE WEEK – JANUARY 15, 2020:
Without further ado, we present a red hot edition of Wawanesa OHL Plays of the Week, featuring some of the nicest goals scored across the League this season. The newest Oshawa General Philip Tomasino gets things started shorthanded on the back hand before Sudbury Wolves addition Matej Pekar shows off the eyes in the back of his head. Erie’s Jamie Drysdale puts his best moves on display with a nifty centering feed for Austen Swankler and London Knights star Connor McMichael wows us with a between the legs beauty. Flint’s Ty Dellandrea finishes things off with an unassisted, shorthanded overtime game winner.
WATCH

VAUGHN SAVES OF THE WEEK – JANUARY 14, 2020:
It’s that time again. Let’s roll back the tape for Vaughn Saves, featuring the best saves across the Ontario Hockey League. Press play and check out the fine work of Owen Sound’s Mack Guzda, Windsor’s Kari Piiroinen, Ottawa’s Cedrick Andree, Soo’s Bailey Brkin, Hamilton’s Zachary Roy, Oshawa’s Jordan Kooy, Sudbury’s Mitchell Weeks, Mississauga’s Kai Edmonds, Windsor’s Xavier Medina and Niagara’s Andrew MacLean.
WATCH

CHL SHOWDOWN – WEEK ENDING JANUARY 12, 2020:
Flint Firebirds forward Ty Dellandrea is the OHL’s representative in this week’s CHL Showdown featuring one great play from all three leagues.
WATCH & VOTE AT CHLSHOWDOWN.CA

FOUR PLAYERS SCORE FIRST OHL GOALS:
Sudbury’s Adam Samuelsson, Hamilton’s Gavin White, Niagara’s A.J. Cook and Mississauga’s Rylan Bowers all scored first career OHL goals this past week.
WATCH

OHL WEEKEND NOTEBOOK – JANUARY 13, 2020:
The OHL Weekend Notebook recaps the weekend that was with news, information and interesting facts from both on and off the ice. Here are 10 of the leading stories from this past weekend.
READ MORE

OHL CUP POWERED BY UNDER ARMOUR MINOR MIDGET TOP 10 RANKINGS:
The Quinte Red Devils are on top of the rankings for a sixth consecutive week while the Toronto Jr. Canadiens, Toronto Titans, Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs and Toronto Nationals continue to trail in spots two through five. The Southern Tier Admirals are up one slot to sixth  while the Vaughan Kings continue to trend in the right direction, rising to ninth ahead of the Toronto Marlboros who round out the Top 10.
FULL RANKINGS

#PLAYERSFIRST – OHL SUPPORT AND PLAYER WELFARE:
The OHL takes extreme pride in the player environment and fostering a safe place for young men to develop both as hockey players and as people. Saginaw Spirit graduate Kris Bennett, who now plays U SPORTS Men’s Hockey at the University of New Brunswick, shares how the OHL #TalkToday program positively impacted his time in the League.
FACT OF THE WEEK / ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT

5 QUESTIONS WITH OTTAWA 67’s FORWARD MARCO ROSSI:
Ever since joining the Canadian Hockey League last season as the 18th overall pick in the 2018 Import Draft, Austrian forward Marco Rossi has been one to watch for the Ottawa 67’s. He quickly developed into one of the league’s elite offensive playmakers and not only leads the Ontario Hockey League in scoring but has solidified himself as a top prospect for the 2020 NHL Draft.
READ MORE

PETES HONOUR COLIN CAMPBELL WITH BANNER RAISING CEREMONY:
The Peterborough Petes paid tribute to former defenceman, long-time NHL player and executive Colin Campbell on Saturday night prior to a 4-0 shutout win over the Ottawa 67’s. A native of Tillsonburg, Ont., Campbell was a part of Peterborough’s 1972 Robertson Cup championship squad alongside familiar names in Bob Gainey, Stan Jonathan and Doug Jarvis.
WATCH

TOP 2020 NHL DRAFT PROSPECT JAN MYSAK COMMITS TO BULLDOGS:
The Hamilton Bulldogs have received a commitment from top 2020 NHL Draft prospect Jan Mysak, who comes off representing his native Czech Republic at the 2020 World Juniors. The 17-year-old had registered nine points (5-4–9) through 26 games with the HC Litvinov Czech Extraliga squad this season and was the ninth-ranked skater on NHL Central Scouting’s International Midterm Rankings.
READ MORE

NHL DRAFT PROSPECT NICK MALIK COMMITS TO GREYHOUNDS:
The Soo Greyhounds have received a commitment from 17-year-old Czech netminder Nick Malik who they selected in the first round of the 2019 CHL Import Draft. Malik represented the Czech Republic this past Christmas at the 2020 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship along with fellow Greyhound Jaromir Pytlik. One year ago he was a member of his home country’s entry at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge.
READ MORE

RYLAN BOWERS COMMITS TO STEELHEADS:
The Mississauga Steelheads have received a commitment from 2018 12th round OHL Priority Selection choice Rylan Bowers. The 17-year-old has appeared in 33 games with the Listowel Cyclones (GOJHL) this season and registered 30 points (14 goals, 16 assists). The Komoka, Ontario native was selected to represent his minor hockey association at the OHL Gold Cup in 2018, where he recorded 1 point (1 goal) over 4 games.
READ MORE

WOLVES ADD BYFIELD TO LEADERSHIP GROUP:
The Sudbury Wolves announced prior to Sunday’s game against Mississauga that Quinton Byfield will serve as an alternate captain with the club. Byfield recently returned from the World Junior Championship where he won gold with Team Canada. The 17-year-old Newmarket, Ont. native leads the Wolves in scoring with 63 points in 32 games this season including 25 goals. The highly ranked NHL prospect has already surpassed his point totals from his rookie season in half the number of games.
READ MORE

SPITFIRES GRAD SLATER DOGGETT NAMED U SPORTS TOP 8 ACADEMIC ALL-CANADIAN:
U SPORTS announced Thursday the student-athletes selected as Top 8 Academic All-Canadians for the 2018-19 season. Among them, Queen’s Gaels men’s hockey star Slater Doggett was recognized with the honour. Doggett played three OHL seasons between the Kingston Frontenacs and Windsor Spitfires from 2012-15.
READ MORE

RANGERS CHIEF OPERATION OFFICER STEVE BIENKOWSKI TO RETIRE IN JUNE 2020:
After 18 years as the Kitchener Rangers Chief Operating Officer & Governor, Steve Bienkowski has announced his plan to retire in June 2020. Bienkowski became the Rangers first Chief Operating Officer in addition to its permanent OHL Governor in 2002 after serving six years on the Rangers Executive Committee. Synonymous with professionalism on and off the ice, he has been essential to the Rangers success for nearly 40 years.
READ MORE

DATES UNVEILED FOR 13TH ANNUAL OHF/OHL U15 PROGRAM OF EXCELLENCE CAMPS:
The dates are set for the 13th annual OHF/OHL U15 Program of Excellence Camps. Held in April and May of this year across Ontario, the camps will focus on a variety of on and off-ice sessions, helping to ensure players are provided with the most up-to-date development strategies.  
READ MORE

ROGERS HOMETOWN HOCKEY TOUR COMES TO HAMILTON:
The Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game is in Hamilton on Thursday, followed by the Rogers Hometown Hockey Tour as hosts Ron MacLean and Tara Slone share Steeltown’s best hockey stories. OHL grads Shayne Corson and Steve Thomas will be on hand for the weekend.
FULL SCHEDULE AT HOMETOWNHOCKEY.COM

COMMUNITY CORNER:

Quinton Byfield launches Q’s Kids: Top NHL Draft prospect Quinton Byfield has partnered with NEO Kids Foundation for his new Q’s Kids initiative. Ahead of his gold medal performance with the Canada’s National Junior Team, Quinton invited three NEO kids and their families to a Sudbury Wolves game as his special guests, and has plans to host many more families over the course of the second half of the season. As part of the program, Byfield will continue to invite families to games, providing tickets, popcorn, and special shirts for the kids. Byfield will meet with the families, sign autographs, and join them on a tour of the dressing room following the game.
READ MORE AT SUDBURYWOLVES.COM

Firebirds tour Ottawa Senators facility: During their day off on Thursday ahead of Friday’s tilt with the Ottawa 67’s, the Firebirds were welcomed to the Canadian Tire Centre for a behind-the-scenes look at the Ottawa Senators’ digs as former OHL Coach of the Year D.J. Smith provided a tour.
PHOTO GALLERY AT FLINTFIREBIRDS.COM

Knights to honour Patrick Kane with jersey retirement on Friday: The London Knights will retire Patrick Kane’s number 88 prior to puck drop on Friday when they play host to the Sudbury Wolves. Kane, who was named CHL Rookie of the Year following a 145-point season in 2006-07, has gone on to put up nearly 1,000 points over 951 career NHL contests over 13 seasons, hoisting the Stanley Cup three different times.
READ MORE

Toonie Hot Dog Day in Ottawa: Fans coming out to Saturday afternoon’s tilt with the visiting Hamilton Bulldogs at TD Place will be able to purchase hot dogs for a toonie. The 67’s examined five reasons to attend Saturday’s game.
FULL INFO AT OTTAWA67s.COM

Bell Let’s Talk Night, SickKids Night in Peterborough: Saturday’s clash with the Flint Firebirds will be the Peterborough Petes’ Bell Let’s Talk Game, aimed at recognizing the initiative’s tenth anniversary and continuing to encourage meaningful conversation around mental health. The first 2,000 fans will receive toques courtesy of Bell Let’s Talk, and clappers will be available at their booth during the game. The Niagara IceDogs will be visiting the Petes this Sunday in a makeup game for the previously scheduled Dec. 14. matchup. SickKids night will see a pre-game ceremony featuring Oliver, a local boy who has been treated at SickKids for Osteogenesis Imperfecta, or brittle bone disease. There will also be a chuck-a-puck during the second intermission where proceeds from all pucks purchased will support SickKids. Fans will also be able to attend a post-game skate where Petes players will be signing autographs and have availability for photos.
MORE DETAILS AT GOPETESGO.COM

IceDogs host Blood Drive in honour of Tucker Tynan: On Jan. 28, the Niagara IceDogs will be hosting a Blood Drive at the St. Catharines Blood Donor Clinic with goaltender Tucker Tynan in mind. People are welcome to attend between 3-7 pm, and attendees will receive a $2 voucher to any upcoming IceDogs home game.
READ MORE AT NIAGARAICEDOGS.NET

Rangers join goaltender Jacob Ingham for ’68’ Blood Drive: Join Kitchener Rangers goaltender #68, Jacob Ingham, and support Hockey Gives Blood and Canadian Blood Services by making a donation during the Rangers’ 68 Blood Drive. Starting January 24th and running until March 31st, fans can sign up under the Kitchener Rangers team ID to make a donation on behalf of Ingham.
FULL INFORMATION AT KITCHENERRANGERS.COM

ALUMNI NOTES:

DeBoer takes over as head coach in Vegas: The Vegas Golden Knights hired former two-time OHL Coach of the Year Peter DeBoer as their new head coach on Wednesday, replacing Gerard Gallant behind the bench. DeBoer, who began the season as head coach of the San Jose Sharks, takes over at the helm in Vegas with a Golden Knights club that is currently 24-19-6 for fifth in the Pacific Division. The 51-year-old native of Dunnville, Ont. coached in the OHL from 1993-2008, winning three OHL Championships and a Memorial Cup along the way. He’s worked in the NHL since 2008-09, holding down jobs with Florida, New Jersey, San Jose and now Vegas.

Spezza plays in 1100th NHL contest: OHL graduate Jason Spezza suited up in his 1,100th career NHL game on Tuesday, recording an assist as the Toronto Maple Leafs defeated the New Jersey Devils 7-4. The 36-year-old Spezza has played parts of 17 NHL seasons since he was the second overall pick by the Ottawa Senators in the 2001 NHL Draft. Spezza, who played in the OHL as an underage player, played five seasons between Brampton, Mississauga, Windsor and Belleville from 1998-2002. He’s accumulated 933 points (338-595–933) over his 1,100 game NHL regular season career.

Wilson becomes youngest forward in Caps franchise history to play 500 games: OHL graduate Tom Wilson suited up in his 500th career NHL contest on Monday, becoming the youngest forward in Capitals franchise history to do so. The 25-year-old Toronto, Ont. native had an assist as the Caps defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 2-0. Wilson was Washington’s first round pick in the 2012 NHL Draft. The big power winger played three OHL seasons with the Plymouth Whalers from 2010-13, recording 91 points (35-56–91) over 125 regular season games. Wilson has 31 points (13-18–31) over 46 games in Washington this season.

Bunnaman scores first NHL goal: Former Kitchener Rangers captain Connor Bunnaman scored his first career NHL goal with the Philadelphia Flyers on Monday. The 21-year-old from Guelph, Ont. has appeared in six games with the Flyers this season after registering five points (4-1–5) through 21 games with the AHL’s Lehigh Valley Phantoms. Bunnaman, who was Philadelphia’s fourth round pick in 2016, played four seasons in Kitchener from 2014-18.

Smith scores first NHL goal: Kitchener Rangers graduate Givani Smith scored his first career NHL goal on Tuesday. The Detroit Red Wings forward found the back of the net in a loss to the New York Islanders. Smith has played in 11 games and recorded a pair of points in the process. The former second round pick in the 2016 NHL Draft spent last season and the beginning of this season with the AHL’s Grand Rapids Griffins. He played four OHL seasons between the Barrie Colts, Guelph Storm and Kitchener Rangers from 2014-18.

Griffith taking his best shots in AHL: London Knights graduate Seth Griffith got some good advice from his dad Brian over the offseason, getting to work on improving his shot. The 27-year-old Wallaceburg, Ont. native has racked up 32 points, including 18 goals over 39 games with the AHL’s Manitoba Moose this season, affiliate of the Winnipeg Jets. Griffith, who won back-to-back OHL Championships in London in 2012 and 2013, has now spent seven seasons in the pro ranks, appearing in 79 NHL contests along the way. He was originally a fifth round pick of the Boston Bruins in 2012 in the midst of a four-year career in London. The Winnipeg Free Press’ Mike Sawatzky has more.
READ MORE AT WINNIPEGFREEPRESS.COM

 

KEY MATCHUPS:

Sudbury Wolves at London Knights
Friday, January 17th

The Central Division leaders are heading to London on Friday, with Sudbury hungry for what could be their first win over the London Knights in five years.

Newest member of the Wolves, Matej Pekar, has proven to be a strong addition. His welcome party last weekend included seven points in three games, notably five assists in Friday’s 8-2 blowout of the North Bay Battalion.

Since rejoining the lineup following his gold medal performance at the World Juniors, newly appointed alternate captain Quinton Byfield put up six points of his own last weekend, and also put forth a five-point showing in front of the Troops that saw two goals and three assists, earning him OHL first star honours on the night.

With regards to the guys in green, Connor McMichael will look to follow up on last weekend’s flashy performance. His seven point total over the course of a three-in-three included a hat trick in Saturday’s tilt against Saginaw, as well as a flashy between-the-legs display in one of two goals he put past the Soo Greyhounds as part of a 7-1 victory. Columbus Blue Jackets draftee Liam Foudy and San Jose Sharks first rounder Ryan Merkley both put up six points.

The Knights, who tie the Kitchener Rangers at 54 points and just one point back of the Western Conference leading Windsor Spitfires, hold a 9-0-0-0 record over the course of the last five seasons against the Wolves. This will be the second and final meetup of the two clubs this season.

Saginaw Spirit at Windsor Spitfires
Sunday, January 19th

It’s a tilt we’re familiar with. The battle of the top of the West Division will see the visiting Saginaw Spirit face off against the conference-leading Windsor Spitfires Sunday afternoon.

The Spits took lead of the conference once again following their overtime win over the Kitchener Rangers, who trail just one point back of first in the Midwest. Columbus Blue Jackets prospect Tyler Angle continues to lead all Windsor skaters with 46 points (21-25-46) to his name, and Nashville Predators pick Egor Afanasyev, last Sunday’s overtime hero, sits directly behind with 45 points (18-27-45).

Over on Saginaw’s side, New York Islanders prospect Cole Coskey will be skating in off a five-goal weekend, and top NHL Draft prospect Cole Perfetti will look to see his point streak reach a 12th game.

The sixth of eight matchups on the season, both clubs are no stranger to the depth on either side. The Spits will, however, see a new opponent in Carolina Hurricanes prospect Ryan Suzuki, who joined the Spirit last week and registered three assists in two games.

The Spirit currently hold a 3-2-0-0 tally against the Spits. Last season’s eight-game regular season series between the two proved to be an even one, with a 4-4-0-0 record on Windsor’s side and a 4-3-1-0 record in favour of Saginaw.

UPCOMING SCHEDULE:

Thursday January 16th:
Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game, Hamilton, Ont. – 7:00pm on Sportsnet and NHL Network

Friday January 17th:
Hamilton at Kingston – 7:00pm
Barrie at Niagara – 7:00pm
Flint at Ottawa – 7:00pm
Erie at Sarnia – 7:05pm
Saginaw at Soo – 7:07pm
Owen Sound at Guelph – 7:30pm
North Bay at Kitchener – 7:30pm
Sudbury at London – 7:30pm
Mississauga at Oshawa – 7:35pm

Saturday January 18th:
Hamilton at Ottawa – 2:00pm
Sudbury at Sarnia – 4:05pm
Kitchener at Guelph – 7:00pm
North Bay at Niagara – 7:00pm
Flint at Peterborough – 7:05pm
Soo at Saginaw – 7:05pm
Erie at Windsor – 7:05pm
Mississauga at Barrie – 7:30pm
Oshawa at Owen Sound – 7:30pm

Sunday January 19th:
Flint at Kingston – 2:00pm
Guelph at Kitchener – 2:00pm
Erie at London – 2:00pm
Saginaw at Windsor – 2:05pm
Niagara at Peterborough – 2:05pm
Ottawa at Oshawa – 6:05pm

OHL’s Draft Eligible Statistical Leaders as of December

Rossi, Marco
Marco Rossi of the Ottawa 67’s. Photo by OHL Images

Everyone saw it coming, or at least should have. At least we here at OHL Writers were paying attention in October. There’s a new king at the top of the pack among the Ontario Hockey League’s players eligible for the 2020 National Hockey League Draft.

That player: Marco Rossi of the Ottawa 67’s.

Rossi leads in just about every offensive category. First in goals, assists, points, tops in faceoff winning percentage and a whopping plus/minus of +41, well ahead of his counterparts. Rossi also possesses the longest goal scoring streak, assist streak and point streak of the season.

Someone is sure to mention this: Quinton Byfield of the Sudbury Wolves, who has been at the top of the lists and projected as the second overall pick at the NHL Draft has missed time while at Team Canada’s Camp and the 2020 World Junior Championships.

Sure, that is a fact. But Rossi has missed time himself, albeit for a suspension and has played in 4 fewer games then Byfield.

This is not an attempt to make a case for Rossi to be ranked ahead of Byfield. Central Scouting has him ranked in the first round as does many others. Where in the first round is anyone’s guess right now.

One thing we do know for sure is the NHL GM’s shy away from pick a 5’9” forward such as Rossi too early. Over the years, they haven’t learned that these smaller guys can excel at the NHL level. Maybe, just maybe, they’ve learned from watching Alex DeBrincat and Rossi gets selected where he deserves to be.

Let’s not hold our breaths though.

Here are the statistical leaders at the end of December. While we take great care in compiling stats, always refer to the OHL Website for official stats.

Points Leaders
Player Team GP G A Pts
Marco Rossi Ottawa 67’s 26 23 39 62
Quinton Byfield Sudbury Wolves 30 22 35 57
Cole Perfetti Saginaw Spirit 34 20 35 55
Jacob Perreault Sarnia Sting 33 22 22 44
Tyson Foerster Barrie Colts 33 19 23 42
Jack Quinn Ottawa 67’s 32 21 15 36
Ty Tullio Oshawa Generals 33 14 21 35
Rory Kerins Soo Greyhounds 37 18 16 34
Luke Evangelista London Knights 35 14 19 33
Jaromir Pytlik Soo Greyhounds 31 14 18 32
Goal Scoring Leaders
Player Team GP G GPG
Marco Rossi Ottawa 67’s 26 23 0.88
Quinton Byfield Sudbury Wolves 30 22 0.73
Jacob Perreault Sarnia Sting 33 22 0.67
Jack Quinn Ottawa 67’s 32 21 0.66
Cole Perfetti Saginaw Spirit 34 20 0.59
Tyson Foerster Barrie Colts 33 19 0.58
Zayde Wisdom Kingston Frontenacs 34 19 0.56
Rory Kerins Soo Greyhounds 37 18 0.49
Antonio Stranges London Knights 34 15 0.44
Ty Tullio Oshawa Generals 33 14 0.42
Assist Leaders
Player Team GP A APG
Marco Rossi Ottawa 67’s 26 39 1.50
Quinton Byfield Sudbury Wolves 30 35 1.17
Cole Perfetti Saginaw Spirit 34 35 1.03
Jamie Drysdale Erie Otters 29 25 0.86
Tyson Foerster Barrie Colts 33 23 0.70
Jacob Perreault Sarnia Sting 33 22 0.67
Ty Tullio Oshawa Generals 33 21 0.64
Tanner Dickinson Soo Greyhounds 37 21 0.57
Brandon Coe North Bay Battalion 33 19 0.58
Luke Evangelista London Knights 35 19 0.54
Defencemen Point Leaders
Player Team GP G A Pts
Jamie Drysdale Erie Otters 29 6 25 31
Jack Thompson Sudbury Wolves 36 9 11 20
Ryan O’Rourke Soo Greyhounds 27 6 14 20
Alec Belanger Ottawa 67’s 32 4 16 20
Ruben Rafkin Windsor Spitfires 31 1 16 17
Donovan Sebrango Kitchener Rangers 29 3 13 16
Isaak Phillips Sudbury Wolves 36 4 9 13
Ole Bjorgvik-Hol Mississauga Steelheads 37 1 12 13
Plus/Minus Leaders
Player Team GP +/-
Marco Rossi Ottawa 67’s 26 +41
Ryan O’Rourke Soo Greyhounds 27 +23
Jack Quinn Ottawa 67’s 32 +23
Cole Perfetti Saginaw Spirit 34 +18
Quinton Byfield Sudbury Wolves 30 +17
Jaromir Pytlik Soo Greyhounds 31 +13
Anthony Costantini Ottawa 67’s 30 +11
Shawn Spearing Peterborough Petes 31 +11
Dylan Robinson Windsor Spitfires 32 +11
Alec Belanger Ottawa 67’s 32 +9
Penalty Minutes Leaders
Player Team GP PIM M/G
Hayden Fowler Erie Otters 33 48 1.45
Ryan O’Rourke Soo Greyhounds 27 44 1.63
Gerard Keane London Knights 32 44 1.38
Reid Valade Kitchener Rangers 30 40 1.33
Michael Renwick Hamilton Bulldogs 35 38 1.09
Faceoff Leaders (minimum 140 faceoffs)
Player Team GP FOA FOW %
Marco Rossi Ottawa 67’s 26 548 320 58.4
Isaac Langdon Kitchener Rangers 30 301 175 58.1
Nick Wong Kingston Frontenacs 34 171 96 56.1
Hayden Fowler Erie Otters 33 204 114 55.9
Will Cuylle Windsor Spitfires 33 141 75 53.2
Aiden Prueter Mississauga Steelheads 37 356 188 52.8
Quinton Byfield Sudbury Wolves 30 416 214 51.4
Rory Kerins Soo Greyhounds 37 657 337 51.3
Cole Perfetti Saginaw Spirit 34 198 101 51.0
Longest Goal Scoring Streak
Player Team From To Gms Goals
Marco Rossi Ottawa 67’s 11/17 12/1 6 10
Longest Assist Streak
Player Team From To Gms Assts
Marco Rossi Ottawa 67’s 11/16 12/28 11 17
Longest Point Streak
Player Team From To Gms Pts
Marco Rossi Ottawa 67’s 11/10 12/29 14 36
Shots On Goal Leaders
Player Team GP SOG
Cole Perfetti Saginaw Spirit 34 139
Tyson Foerster Barrie Colts 33 121
Jacob Perreault Sarnia Sting 33 113
Jaromir Pytlik Soo Greyhounds 31 112
Ty Tullio Oshawa Generals 33 108
Goaltenders Leaders – Goals Against Average
Player Team GP Min GA Avg
Nick Chenard Owen Sound Attack 7 371 15 2.43
Brett Brochu London Knights 21 1007 48 2.86
Zachary Paputsakis Oshawa Generals 20 986 51 3.10
Will Cranley Ottawa 67’s 9 497 27 3.26
Owen Bennett Guelph Storm 14 805 47 3.50
Goaltending Leaders – Save Percentage
Player Team GP SH SVS SV%
Nick Chenard Owen Sound Attack 7 841 772 0.918
Tucker Tynan Niagara IceDogs 23 916 834 0.910
Brett Brochu London Knights 21 485 437 0.901
Zachary Paputsakis Oshawa Generals 20 496 445 0.897
Owen Bennett Guelph Storm 14 451 404 0.896
Goaltending Leaders – Wins
Player Team GP W L OL
Brett Brochu London Knights 21 12 5 0
Tucker Tynan Niagara IceDogs 23 11 8 4
Xavier Medina Windsor Spitfires 16 9 4 2
Owen Bennett Guelph Storm 14 8 5 1
Marco Costantini Hamilton Bulldogs 21 8 9 2
Goaltending Leaders – Shutouts
Player Team GP SO
Brett Brochu London Knights 21 2
Will Cranley Ottawa 67’s 9 1
Zachary Paputsakis Oshawa Generals 20 1

40 Players Selected for 2020 Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game

2020 Top Prospects Game

Toronto, ON – The Canadian Hockey League in association with National Hockey League Central Scouting announce the 40 players invited to compete in the 2020 Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game.


The 25th annual showcase of top CHL players eligible for the NHL Draft takes place on Thursday January 16, 2020, and is hosted by the Hamilton Bulldogs.  The 40 players selected were chosen by NHL clubs and feature talent from across the Ontario Hockey League, Western Hockey League, and Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.


“All 31 NHL clubs have a say in the player selection process and take great interest in this best-on-best showcase,” said Dan Marr, Director of NHL Central Scouting. “The Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game is a great opportunity for scouts and general managers to evaluate talent and we look forward to seeing which players will make their mark in Hamilton.”

Among the players named to the preliminary roster are Canadian National Junior Team members such as CHL top scorer and reigning Player of the Year Alexis Lafreniere of the Rimouski Oceanic, fellow forwards Quinton Byfield of the Sudbury Wolves and Dawson Mercer of the Drummondville Voltigeurs, defenceman Jamie Drysdale of the Erie Otters, and goaltender Nico Daws of the Guelph Storm.  Three more players including Cole Perfetti of the Saginaw Spirit, Connor Zary of the Kamloops Blazers, and defenceman Braden Schneider of the Brandon Wheat Kings will also compete after attending Canada’s Selection Camp.

31 of the CHL’s 60 member clubs are represented with a total of 17 OHL players from 13 different teams, 13 WHL players from 10 different teams, and 10 QMJHL players from eight different teams. Nine different teams have two players listed including Brandon, Drummondville, Kamloops, the Ottawa 67’s, Prince Albert Raiders, Shawinigan Cataractes, Soo Greyhounds, Sudbury, and the Windsor Spitfires.


19 of the players selected received ‘A’ ratings as first round candidates determined by NHL Central Scouting in their November Players to Watch list including 13 forwards and six defencemen.  17 players were given ‘B’ ratings including 11 forwards and six defencemen, while all four goaltenders were listed as ‘C’ rated prospects.


2020 Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game Roster:

*denotes ‘A’ rated first round candidates


Goaltenders:
Nico Daws (Guelph Storm)
Dylan Garand (Kamloops Blazers)
Brock Gould (Victoria Royals)
Samuel Hlavaj (Sherbrooke Phoenix)

Defencemen:
Justin Barron (Halifax Mooseheads)*
Lukas Cormier (Charlottetown Islanders)
Jamie Drysdale (Erie Otters)*
Kaiden Guhle (Prince Albert Raiders)*
Daemon Hunt (Moose Jaw Warriors)*
Thimo Nickl (Drummondville Voltigeurs)
Ryan O’Rourke (Soo Greyhounds)
Jeremie Poirier (Saint John Sea Dogs)*
Braden Schneider (Brandon Wheat Kings)*
Donovan Sebrango (Kitchener Rangers)
Christoffer Sedoff (Red Deer Rebels)
Jack Thompson (Sudbury Wolves)

Forwards:
Mavrik Bourque (Shawinigan Cataractes)
Quinton Byfield (Sudbury Wolves)*
Brandon Coe (North Bay Battalion)
Will Cuylle (Windsor Spitfires)*
Jack Finley (Spokane Chiefs)
Tyson Foerster (Barrie Colts)
Jean-Luc Foudy (Windsor Spitfires)*
Ridly Greig (Brandon Wheat Kings)
Seth Jarvis (Portland Winterhawks)
Alexis Lafreniere (Rimouski Oceanic)*
Hendrix Lapierre (Chicoutimi Sagueneens)*
Dawson Mercer (Drummondville Voltigeurs)*
Jake Neighbours (Edmonton Oil Kings)
Cole Perfetti (Saginaw Spirit)*
Jacob Perreault (Sarnia Sting)*
Vasiliy Ponomarev (Shawinigan Cataractes)
Jaromir Pytlik (Soo Greyhounds)
Jack Quinn (Ottawa 67’s)*
Marco Rossi (Ottawa 67’s)*
Justin Sourdif (Vancouver Giants)*
Antonio Stranges (London Knights)*
Oliver Suni (Oshawa Generals)
Ozzy Wiesblatt (Prince Albert Raiders)
Connor Zary (Kamloops Blazers)*

The 40 players will be divided into teams by NHL Central Scouting and announced along with coaching staffs in January.

12 CHL players from last year’s game in Red Deer were chosen in the first round of the 2019 NHL Draft led by Saskatoon Blades forward Kirby Dach picked third overall and currently competing as a member of the Chicago Blackhawks. In 24 years, a total of 329 CHL players from this event have been chosen by NHL clubs in the first round of the NHL Draft representing close to 45% of all players selected. Since the event was first introduced in 1996 the game has featured 14 players selected with the first overall pick in the NHL Draft including Nico Hischier (2017), Connor McDavid (2015), Aaron Ekblad (2014), Nathan MacKinnon (2013), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (2011), Taylor Hall (2010), John Tavares (2009), Steven Stamkos (2008), Patrick Kane (2007), Marc-Andre Fleury (2003), Rick Nash (2002), Vincent Lecavalier (1998), Joe Thornton (1997), and Chris Phillips (1996).


The 2020 Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game is proudly supported by new title partner Kubota Canada, and CHL associate partners CIBC, Kia Canada, and Cooper Tires.  The game will be broadcast live across Canada on Sportsnet and TVA Sports, and in the United States on NHL Network.


Tickets are on sale for the 2020 Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game at ticketmaster.ca or call 855-985-4357.  For group and promotional inquiries, please contact the Hamilton Bulldogs at 905-529-8500.

For more information please visit http://kubotatopprospects.ca.

About Kubota Canada
Kubota Canada Ltd. (KCL) is a subsidiary of Kubota Corporation, a tractor and heavy equipment manufacturer based in Osaka, Japan. KCL markets and distributes Kubota-engineered and manufactured equipment, which includes a complete line of tractors (up to 210-horsepower), performance-matched implements, compact and utility tractors, compact construction, landscaping and public work equipment, residential lawn and garden equipment, commercial turf products and utility vehicles. For product literature or dealer locations, visit: kubota.ca

STORM’S CAM HILLIS NAMED OHL ‘ON THE RUN’ PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Cam Hillis

Toronto, Ont. – The Ontario Hockey League today announced that Montreal Canadiens prospect Cam Hillis of the Guelph Storm is the OHL ‘On the Run’ Player of the Week with seven points including two goals and five assists over two weekend contests.

Hillis becomes the second Storm player to win the award in the past three weeks after goaltender Nico Daws recently received the honours. The third-year centreman helped the Storm win back-to-back games, extending their current winning streak to six. Hillis scored twice and added two assists while going 15-for-24 in the faceoff circle on Friday in Kitchener as the Storm doubled-up the rival Rangers 6-3. After a first star performance to start the weekend, Hillis earned second star honours on Saturday, picking up three assists as the Storm defeated the visiting Kingston Frontenacs 4-2. He helped set up teammate Cedric Ralph for the third period game winner as the Storm overcame a 2-0 deficit.

A 19-year-old native of Enniskillen, Ont., Hillis has rebounded strong from an injury riddled 2018-19 campaign that saw him hoist the Robertson Cup as an OHL champion with the Storm. Hillis sits second in club scoring with 27 points (7-20–27), 24 of which he has gathered over the course of the last 10 games. The 5-foot-11, 174Ib. forward was a third round (66th overall) pick of the Canadiens in the 2018 NHL Draft and was originally obtained by the Storm in the second round (29th overall) of the 2016 OHL Priority Selection. The York-Simcoe Express Minor Midget grad was an OHL Cup champion in 2016.

Also considered for the award this week was Washington Capitals prospect Connor McMichael of the London Knights who recorded seven points (2-5–7) over a pair of Knights victories, holding down the OHL scoring lead with 41 points (19-22–41). Draft eligible Sudbury Wolves forward Quinton Byfield was also considered after recording five points (2-3–5) in a pair of multi-point performances that each led to Wolves victories.

OTR_2017_Logo

2019-20 OHL ‘On the Run’ Players of the Week – Regular Season:
Nov. 5 – Nov. 10: Cam Hillis (Guelph Storm)
Oct. 30 – Nov. 3: Connor McMichael (London Knights)
Oct. 23 – Oct. 27: Nico Daws (Guelph Storm)
Oct. 14 – Oct. 20: Hunter Jones (Peterborough Petes)
Oct. 9 – Oct. 13: Mack Guzda (Owen Sound Attack)
Oct. 3 – Oct. 6: Philip Tomasino (Niagara IceDogs)
Sept. 26 – Sept. 29: Connor McMichael (London Knights)
Sept. 19 – Sept. 22: Semyon Der-Arguchintsev (Peterborough Petes)

OHL’s Draft Eligible Statistical Leaders for October

The Ontario Hockey League took last night off as fans and players alike braved the weather (depending on where you are) to attend costume parties, head to work dressed up and yes, even go trick or treating. Thus, the OHL completed its first full month of the season a day early and we here at OHL Writers can update you on the statistical leaders among players eligible for the 2020 National Hockey League Draft.

Rossi, Marco
Marco Rossi of the Ottawa 67’s. Photo by OHL Images

If you look at the point leaders, you’ll see projected top 5 pick Quinton Byfield of the Sudbury Wolves leading the way with 31 points in 16 games. And for the better part of the season, Byfield has led the entire league in the scoring race.

But, focus your attention three spots lower to Marco Rossi of the Ottawa 67’s. Rossi has 19 points in just 8 games played. He missed five games due to suspension but is averaging 2.38 points per game while Byfield is averaging 1.94 points per game. That’s almost half a point per game better then Byfield.

It doesn’t end there. Cole Perfetti leads the list in assists with 22 in 16 games, or 1.38 assists per game. Rossi is just two spots below with Byfield sandwiched in between with 15 helpers in 8 games or 1.88 assists per game, exactly .50 assists per game better then the leader.

But with 4 goals in eight games, Rossi doesn’t make our top ten, yet. He is averaging .50 goals per game and based on that, would be seventh on the list. Barrie Colts’ Tyson Foerster tops the list with 13 goals in 14 games, or .93 goals per game.

Wait. We’re not finished just yet. Despite playing in only eight games, Rossi has taken more faceoffs then anyone in the top 10 in faceoff percentage and has won a whopping 62.6 per cent of his draws. Not only is that good enough to top draft eligible players, but tops in the entire league among players with 60 or more faceoff attempts.

Had enough Marco Rossi talk?

Among goaltenders, no OHL goaltender has faced as much rubber as Niagara IceDogs’ puck stopper Tucker Tynan. And we’re not talking just draft eligible goaltenders. Tynan has faced 70 more shots then the next closest goaltender, Jacob Ingham of the Mississauga Steelheads who has faced 419. To put that into context, Tynan has played in just one more game then Ingham.

Yet Tynan is fourth among draft eligible goaltenders with a 3.60 goals-against-average and tops in save percentage at .920. Let’s put that into perspective as well: That’s second among all goalies who have played in 3 or more games, tied with Hunter Jones of the Peterborough Petes, the top OHL goaltender drafted in 2019.

Here’s a look at the leader board. While we take great care in compiling stats, always refer to the OHL website for official stats.

Points Leaders
Player Team GP G A Pts
Quinton Byfield Sudbury Wolves 16 11 20 31
Cole Perfetti Saginaw Spirit 16 5 22 27
Tyson Foerster Barrie Colts 14 13 10 23
Marco Rossi Ottawa 67’s 8 4 15 19
Jaromir Pytlik Soo Greyhounds 15 6 13 19
Jamie Drysdale Erie Otters 14 5 14 19
Rory Kerins Soo Greyhounds 15 10 7 17
Luke Evangelista London Knights 12 5 11 16
Ty Tullio Oshawa Generals 14 8 8 16
Oliver Suni Oshawa Generals 14 5 10 15
Goal Scoring Leaders
Player Team GP G GPG
Tyson Foerster Barrie Colts 14 13 0.93
Quinton Byfield Sudbury Wolves 16 11 0.69
Rory Kerins Soo Greyhounds 15 10 0.67
Ty Tullio Oshawa Generals 14 8 0.57
Antonio Stranges London Knights 12 7 0.58
Jack Quinn Ottawa 67’s 13 7 0.54
Zayde Wisdom Kingston Frontenacs 14 7 0.50
Hayden Fowler Erie Otters 12 6 0.50
Logan Morrison Hamilton Bulldogs 13 6 0.46
Jaromir Pytlik Soo Greyhounds 15 6 0.40
Assist Leaders
Player Team GP A APG
Cole Perfetti Saginaw Spirit 16 22 1.38
Quinton Byfield Sudbury Wolves 16 20 1.25
Marco Rossi Ottawa 67’s 8 15 1.88
Jamie Drysdale Erie Otters 14 14 1.00
Jaromir Pytlik Soo Greyhounds 15 13 0.87
Tanner Dickinson Soo Greyhounds 15 12 0.80
Luke Evangelista London Knights 12 11 0.92
Ruben Rafkin Windsor Spitfires 13 11 0.85
Jacob Perrault Sarnia Sting 10 10 1.00
Tyson Foerster Barrie Colts 14 10 0.71
Defencemen Point Leaders
Player Team GP G A Pts
Jamie Drysdale Erie Otters 14 5 14 19
Jack Thompson Sudbury Wolves 16 6 7 13
Ruben Rafkin Windsor Spitfires 13 1 11 12
Ryan O’Rourke Soo Greyhounds 13 5 6 11
Ville Ottavainen Kitchener Rangers 13 3 5 8
Donavan Sebrango Kitchener Rangers 10 1 7 8
Ole Bjorgvik-Holm Mississauga Steelheads 13 0 6 6
Dylan Robinson Windsor Spitfires 13 1 4 5
Plus/Minus Leaders
Player Team GP +/-
Ryan O’Rourke Soo Greyhounds 13 +13
Quinton Byfield Sudbury Wolves 16 +12
Marco Rossi Ottawa 67’s 8 +11
Igor Chibrikov Owen Sound Attack 13 +8
Ville Ottavainen Kitchener Rangers 13 +8
Mark Woolley Owen Sound Attack 9 +7
Luke Evangelista London Knights 12 +7
Jamie Drysdale Erie Otters 14 +7
Tyson Foerster Barrie Colts 14 +7
Kirill Steklov London Knights 12 +6
Penalty Minutes Leaders
Player Team GP PIM M/G
Ryan O’Rourke Soo Greyhounds 13 21 1.62
Reid Valade Kitchener Rangers 8 19 2.38
Ruben Rafkin Windsor Spitfires 13 18 1.38
Mark Woolley Owen Sound Attack 9 17 1.89
Quinton Byfield Sudbury Wolves 16 16 1.00
Faceoff Leaders (Minimum 30 faceoffs)
Player Team GP FOA FOW %
Marco Rossi Ottawa 67’s 8 179 112 62.6
Isaac Langdon Kitchener Rangers 10 78 48 61.5
Nick Wong Kingston Frontenacs 14 39 23 59.0
Jacob Perrault Sarnia Sting 10 33 19 57.6
Luke Drewitt Kingston Frontenacs 12 110 63 57.3
Hayden Fowler Erie Otters 12 35 20 57.1
Ethan Cardwell Saginaw Spirit 16 76 43 56.6
Longest Goal Scoring Streak
Player Team From To Gms Goals
Rory Kerins Soo Greyhounds 10/19 10/24 3 4
Longest Assist Streak
Player Team From To Gms Assts
Jabob Perreault Sarnia Sting 9/20 10/18 9 10
Longest Point Streak
Player Team From To Gms Pts
Jacob Perrault Sarnia Sting 9/20 10/20 10 14
Shots On Goal Leaders
Player Team GP SOG
Cole Perfetti Saginaw Spirit 16 61
Jaromir Pytlik Soo Greyhounds 15 60
Quinton Byfield Sudbury Wolves 16 52
Ty Tullio Oshawa Generals 14 48
Tyson Foerster Barrie Colts 14 47
Goaltenders Leaders – Goals Against Average (Min 300 minutes)
Player Team GP Min GA Avg
Brett Brochu London Knights 8 427 19 2.67
Aiden Campbell Erie Otters 7 370 19 3.08
Marco Costantini Hamilton Bulldogs 8 486 27 3.33
Tucker Tynan Niagara IceDogs 12 650 39 3.60
Goaltending Leaders – Save Percentage (Min 300 minutes)
Player Team GP SH SVS SV%
Tucker Tynan Niagara IceDogs 12 489 450 0.920
Marco Costantini Hamilton Bulldogs 8 276 249 0.902
Brett Brochu London Knights 8 187 168 0.898
Aiden Campbell Erie Otters 7 162 143 0.883
Xavier Medina Windsor Spitfires 5 135 118 0.874
Goaltending Leaders – Wins
Player Team GP W L OL
Brett Brochu London Knights 8 6 1 0
Aiden Campbell Erie Otters 7 5 1 0
Tucker Tynan Niagara IceDogs 12 5 4 3
Xavier Medina Windsor Spitfires 5 3 1 1
Marco Costantini Hamilton Bulldogs 8 3 4 2
Goaltending Leaders – Shutouts
Player Team GP SO
Brett Brochu London Knights 8 1

OHL’s Draft Eligible Statistical Leaders: September

Sure, most teams have yet to play a handful of games, but the calendar has switched from September to October (are you getting ready for winter yet?) so it’s time to look at the first time draft eligible player statistical leaders as we begin the journey towards the 2020 National Hockey League Draft.

Three things we know for sure: 1) the list of names today will not be the same in March. 2) Barring a catastrophe or major injury, expect to see Quinton Byfield to stay at or near the top of the lists. 3) Same goes for Jamie Drysdale among blueliners.

Byfield, Quinton (1)
Quinton Byfield of the Sudbury Wolves. Photo by OHL Images

Byfield leads the way in goals, points and tied for top spot in assists. Not only does he lead the league’s draft eligible players in points, but he leads the entire OHL. A sure fire top 5 pick in Montreal on June 26, 2020 but there are those (yours truly included) that believe that he could challenge for the number one spot at season’s end.

Here’s a look at the statistical leaders. As always, we take great care in compiling stats, but always refer to the OHL Website for official stats.

Points Leaders
Player Team GP G A Pts
Quinton Byfield Sudbury Wolves 5 6 6 12
Tyson Foerster Barrie Colts 4 4 4 8
Jamie Drysdale Erie Otters 5 2 6 8
Antonio Stranges London Knights 4 5 2 7
Jaromir Pytlik Soo Greyhounds 4 2 5 7
Oliver Suni Oshawa Generals 4 2 5 7
Cole Perfetti Saginaw Spirit 5 1 6 7
Jack Thompson Sudbury Wolves 5 3 3 6
Evan Vierling Flint Firebirds 4 1 5 6
Ty Tullio Oshawa Generals 4 2 3 5
Goal Scoring Leaders
Player Team GP G GPG
Quinton Byfield Sudbury Wolves 5 6 1.20
Antonio Stranges London Knights 4 5 1.25
Tyson Foerster Barrie Colts 4 4 1.00
Jack Thompson Sudbury Wolves 5 3 0.60
Hayden Fowler Erie Otters 3 3 1.00
Jamie Drysdale Erie Otters 5 2 0.40
Jaromir Pytlik Soo Greyhounds 4 2 0.50
Oliver Suni Oshawa Generals 4 2 0.50
Ty Tullio Oshawa Generals 4 2 0.50
Marco Rossi Ottawa 67’s 2 2 1.00
Assist Leaders
Player Team GP A APG
Quinton Byfield Sudbury Wolves 5 6 1.20
Jamie Drysdale Erie Otters 5 6 1.20
Cole Perfetti Saginaw Spirit 5 6 1.20
Luke Evangelista London Knights 4 5 1.25
Jaromir Pytlik Soo Greyhounds 4 5 1.25
Oliver Suni Oshawa Generals 4 5 1.25
Evan Vierling Flint Firebirds 4 5 1.25
Tanner Dickinson Soo Greyhounds 4 4 1.00
Tyson Foerster Barrie Colts 4 4 1.00
Ruben Rafkin Windsor Spitfires 4 4 1.00
Defencemen Point Leaders
Player Team GP G A Pts
Jamie Drysdale Erie Otters 5 2 6 8
Jack Thompson Sudbury Wolves 5 3 3 6
Ruben Rafkin Windsor Spitfires 4 0 4 4
Ole Bjorgvik-Holm Mississauga Steelheads 4 0 3 3
Colton Kammerer Sarnia Sting 3 1 1 2
Plus/Minus Leaders
Player Team GP +/-
Quinton Byfield Sudbury Wolves 5 +8
Tyson Foerster Barrie Colts 4 +7
Tanner Dickinson Soo Greyhounds 4 +5
David Jesus Oshawa Generals 4 +5
Jaromir Pytlik Soo Greyhounds 4 +5
Oliver Suni Oshawa Generals 4 +5
Igor Chibrikov Owen Sound Attack 4 +4
Marcus Gretz Flint Firebirds 2 +3
Goaltenders Leaders – Goals Against Average
Player Team GP Min GA Avg
Xavier Medina Windsor Spitfires 1 60 1 1.00
Will Cranley Ottawa 67’s 1 60 2 2.00
Nick Chenard Owen Sound Attack 1 60 2 2.00
Marco Costantini Hamilton Bulldogs 1 60 2 2.00
Tucker Tynan Niagara Ice Dogs 5 225 9 2.40
Goaltending Leaders – Save Percentage
Player Team GP SH SVS SV%
Nick Chenard Owen Sound Attack 1 39 37 0.949
Xavier Medina Windsor Spitfires 1 19 18 0.947
Marco Costantini Hamilton Bulldogs 1 35 33 0.943
Owen Bennett Guelph Storm 1 42 39 0.929
Will Cranley Ottawa 67’s 1 24 22 0.917

Wolves off to fast start at training camp

Quinton Byfield is entering a pivotal season in his hockey career, but the Sudbury Wolves star centreman is taking things in stride.

And what a long, powerful stride it is.

The skilled 6-foot-5, 215-pound Newmarket, Ont. native, a top-rated prospect for the 2020 NHL Entry Draft, credits his parents, Clinton Byfield and Nicole Kasper, as well as his agent, Jeff Jackson, for keeping him grounded.

“They have been talking to me all summer about it,” said Byfield, who only turned 17 on Aug. 19. “They said I haven’t thought about my draft any other season, so why should this one be so different? They told me there’s going to be a lot of ups and downs, so just keep a level head and keep going.”

Story by Ben Leeson of the Sudbury Star. Continue reading

CHL Announces 2018-19 Award Winners

Halifax, NS – The Canadian Hockey League today announced the 10 national award winners for the 2018-19 season including 2020 NHL Draft eligible prospect Alexis Lafreniere of the Rimouski Oceanic who earned Sportsnet Player of the Year honours. 

The awards were presented as part of the 2019 Memorial Cup presented by Kia festivities in Halifax.

2018-19 CHL Award Winners:

Sherwin-Williams Top Prospect Award: Bowen Byram, Vancouver Giants
Vancouver Giants defenceman Bowen Byram sits second in NHL Central Scouting’s Final North American Rankings ahead of the 2019 NHL Draft in Vancouver. The 17-year-old product of Cranbrook, B.C., wrapped up the 2018-19 campaign with 71 points in 67 appearances, including 26 goals to lead all WHL rearguards. He then finished first in league playoff scoring with 26 points, counting eight goals and 18 assists. Byram is the first WHL player to claim the Top Prospect Award since Nolan Patrick (Brandon Wheat Kings) in 2017. Finalists for the award this year also included Arthur Kaliyev of the Hamilton Bulldogs, who ranks seventh among North American skaters, and Raphael Lavoie of the Halifax Mooseheads, who is listed 20th overall.

Emera Top Scorer Award: Jason Robertson, Niagara IceDogs
Niagara IceDogs left-wing Jason Robertson led the CHL with 117 points in 62 games, counting 48 goals and 69 assists to help guide the IceDogs to a second-place regular-season finish in the OHL’s Eastern Conference. Following a midseason trade from the Kingston Frontenacs, the Dallas Stars prospect pushed the pace with his new club, tallying 79 points in 38 games. The 19-year-old native of Northville, Mich., is the first OHL skater to claim the Top Scorer Award since Dylan Strome (Erie Otters) did so in 2015. Finalists for the award this year also included San Jose Sharks prospect Joachim Blichfeld of the Portland Winterhawks, who scored 114 points, as well as Peter Abbandonato of the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies, who finished with 111 points.

Bumper to Bumper Sportsman of the Year Award: Justin Almeida, Moose Jaw Warriors
Moose Jaw Warriors centre Justin Almeida wrapped up the 2018-19 campaign with 111 points, including 33 goals and 78 assists, to finish just three points shy of the league scoring lead and help the Warriors secure third place in the WHL’s East Division. The 20-year-old from Kitimat, B.C., was also whistled for just 14 minutes in penalties as the Pittsburgh Penguins prospect took home the Brad Hornung Trophy as the WHL’s Most Sportsmanlike Player. He is the second consecutive WHL skater to win the award after Aleksi Heponiemi (Swift Current Broncos) did so a year ago. Finalists for the Sportsman of the Year Award this year included Montreal Canadiens prospect Nick Suzuki of the Guelph Storm as well as Rouyn-Noranda Huskies centre Peter Abbandonato.

Kia Humanitarian of the Year Award: Charle-Edouard D’Astous, Rimouski Oceanic
Rimouski Oceanic defenceman Charle-Edouard D’Astous excelled on the ice while also serving as an ambassador in his hometown community of Rimouski, Que., in helping to raise $3,500 for the Rimouski Regional Hospital Foundation, for which he also served as a spokesperson. The 21-year-old signee of the AHL’s Grand Rapids Griffins was also involved with several other local charitable causes. On the ice, the fourth-year player led all QMJHL defenceman with 66 points, including a league-leading 25 assists on the power play. D’Astous is the first QMJHL player to win the award since Danick Martel (Blainville-Boisbriand Armada) in 2015, and the second from his team to win following Philippe Sauve in 1999. Finalists for the Humanitarian of the Year Award this year included Will Warm of the Edmonton Oil Kings and Nicholas Canade of the Mississauga Steelheads.

CIBC Scholastic Player of the Year Award: Dustin Wolf, Everett Silvertips
Everett Silvertips goaltender Dustin Wolf excelled both on the ice and in the classroom, where he maintained a 100% average across a Grade 12 workload covering four courses. Between the pipes, the 18-year-old Californian led the WHL with 41 wins, while also topping the charts with a 1.69 goals-against average and .936 save percentage. The budding netminder, who is eligible for the 2019 NHL Draft, is the first WHL player to claim the award since Josh Morrissey (Prince Albert Raiders) in 2013. Finalists for the Scholastic Player of the Year Award this year included Thomas Harley of the Mississauga Steelheads as well as Matthew Welsh of the Charlottetown Islanders.

Sofina Brian Kilrea Coach of the Year Award: Mario Pouliot, Rouyn-Noranda Huskies
Rouyn-Noranda Huskies head coach Mario Pouliot led his club to a franchise-record 59-win season in his first year behind the bench with his new team. He also guided the Huskies to a 25-win streak to tie a CHL record originally set in 1974. In all, Rouyn-Noranda finished the season in first place with a 59-8-0-1 record, good for 119 points. In the playoffs, the Huskies then captured the President’s Cup for the second time in four seasons. Pouliot is the first QMJHL head coach to win the Brian Kilrea Coach of the Year Award since Gillies Bouchard (Rouyn-Noranda Huskies) in 2016. Finalists this year included Marc Habscheid of the Prince Albert Raiders and Andre Tourigny of the Ottawa 67’s.

Wawanesa Rookie of the Year Award: Quinton Byfield, Sudbury Wolves
2020 NHL Draft prospect Quinton Byfield of the Sudbury Wolves put together an incredible freshman campaign that saw him produce at nearly a point-per-game pace as he notched 29 goals and 32 assists across 64 appearances. The 16-year-old native of Newmarket, Ont., who was originally drafted first overall by the Wolves in the 2018 OHL Priority Selection, follows in the footsteps of Alexander Nylander (Mississauga Steelheads), who was the last OHL skater to win the Rookie of the Year Award in 2016.  He’s also just the second member of the Wolves to win following Benoit Pouliot in 2005. Finalists this year included Brayden Tracey of the Moose Jaw Warriors and Jordan Spence of the Moncton Wildcats.

Vaughn Goaltender of the Year Award: Ian Scott, Prince Albert Raiders
Prince Albert Raiders goaltender Ian Scott had a banner year, winning 38 of his 49 appearances to help guide the Raiders to first place in the WHL and an eventual 16-7 playoff record that saw the club win its first Ed Chynoweth Cup since 1985. The regular season saw the 20-year-old Calgary native top the charts with eight shutouts, while the Toronto Maple Leafs draft pick also finished second league-wide in goals-against average (1.83) and save percentage (.932). For two years running, a WHL netminder has captured the Goaltender of the Year Award, with Scott’s win coming on the heels of Carter Hart (Everett Silvertips) in 2018. Finalists this year included Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen of the Sudbury Wolves as well as Samuel Harvey of the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies.

Superstore Defenceman of the Year Award: Ty Smith, Spokane Chiefs
Spokane Chiefs defenceman Ty Smith claims the Defenceman of the Year Award after finishing second in Chiefs team scoring and fourth among all WHL blue-liners as he tallied seven goals and 62 assists for 69 points in only 57 appearances, helping him take home the Bill Hunter Memorial Trophy as the WHL Defenceman of the Year. The New Jersey Devils prospect and 19-year-old native of Lloydminster, Sask., is the first WHL rearguard to capture the Defenceman of the Year Award since Ivan Provorov (Brandon Wheat Kings) in 2016. Finalists this year included Evan Bouchard of the London Knights as well as Charle-Edouard D’Astous of the Rimouski Oceanic.

Sportsnet Player of the Year Award: Alexis Lafreniere, Rimouski Oceanic
Rimouski Oceanic left-wing Alexis Lafreniere is the Sportsnet Player of the Year, just one season after he was recognized as the CHL’s Rookie of the Year. The 17-year-old product of St-Eustache, Que., who is a projected early selection in the 2020 NHL Draft, wrapped up the 2018-19 campaign with 37 goals and 68 assists for 105 points in only 61 appearances as he led his team in scoring and finished just six points shy of top spot in the QMJHL scoring race. Lafreniere is the second consecutive skater from the QMJHL to take home the award as he follows in the footsteps of Alex Barre-Boulet (Blainville-Boisbriand Armada) who won the Player of the Year Award in 2018. This marks the fourth time a member of the Oceanic has won following Brad Richards in 2000, and Sidney Crosby who won back-to-back in 2004-05. Finalists this year included Joachim Blichfeld of the Portland Winterhawks as well as Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen of the Sudbury Wolves.

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All photos courtesy of Vincent Ethier