Mitchell Smith – Saginaw Spirit – Player Profile

Height: 5’ 10”

Weight: 180 Pounds

Date of birth: September 15, 2002

Hometown: Saginaw, MI

Position: Defence

Shoots: Left

OHL Draft: Round 5, 84th overall, 2018 Priority Selection

NHL Central Scouting Rankings

Pre-season November Mid-term Final
N.R. N.R. N.R. N.R.

Saginaw Spirit blueliner Mitchell Smith hasn’t gotten a mention from National Hockey League Central Scouting all season, and it’s not because he met draft eligibility for the 2020 draft on the very last possible day. We do however believe he should be on the list.

Smith played his Midget Hockey with the Oakland Jr. Grizzlies Under-16 squad during the 2017-2018 season where he scored 8 goals and 39 assists in 58 games. Smith had verbally committed to attend the University of Michigan, yet his hometown Saginaw Spirit still drafted him in the 5th round of the 2018 Priority Selection, 84th overall. He was also selected in the 5th round of the 2018 USHL Futures Draft, 72nd overall by the Dubuque Fighting Saints.

Mitchell Smith of the Saginaw Spirit. Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images.
Mitchell Smith of the Saginaw Spirit. Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images

During the 2018-2019 season, Smith returned to the Grizzlies and scored 13 goals while assisting on 30 in 52 games. He decided to forego his NCAA career with Michigan and sign with Saginaw for the 2019-2020 season. In 56 games with the Spirit Smith scored 7 goals and assisted on 9 and was named to the OHL Second All-Rookie squad.

In many ways, Smith fits the description of the new, modern, smaller defenceman. He possesses high end mobility and hockey sense. He retrieves pucks quickly and transitions to offence with a very well-timed pass but he also has the ability to skate with the puck and go end-to-end.

Smith is very good at keeping possession and buying time before dishing off an excellent pass, however, there are times he holds onto the puck too long and an earlier pass may have been the better decision. At 5’10” there are always questions raised about defensive abilities. Smith almost always plays stick-on-stick defensive hockey. His skating ability allows him to keep his gaps close and he can force opponents to the outside and then use his stick effectively to break up the rush. Where he can find himself in trouble is in front of his net where boxing out can be an issue. But he’s still young and transitioning from Midget to Junior isn’t always easy.

Smith’s offensive numbers won’t jump out at you. In fairness, he received almost no powerplay time and didn’t get into many offensive situations. Early in the season, Smith was averaging 10 minutes a night on the ice. As the season progressed and his defensive game wasn’t causing the team many issues, the coaches began trusting him with more ice time, but still no specialty teams play. And for most of the season, he was paired with an offensive defenceman so providing offence wasn’t necessary.

We believe there is some intriguing upside and potential in Smith. He could turn out to be a good find for an NHL team in the middle rounds.

We would take that gamble.

OHL ANNOUNCES 2019-20 ACADEMIC PLAYER OF THE YEAR AWARD WINNERS

Press Release

Toronto, Ont. – The Ontario Hockey League today announced the recipients of the League’s three Academic Player of the Year awards for the 2019-20 season.

Cole Perfetti of the Saginaw Spirit is the winner of the Bobby Smith Trophy as Scholastic Player of the Year presented by CIBC, with Jacob Golden of the Erie Otters earning the Roger Neilson Memorial Award as the Top Post-Secondary School Student and Owen Sound Attack forward Logan LeSage being honoured as the Ivan Tennant Memorial Award recipient as the Top High School Student.

Perfetti will serve as the OHL’s nomination for the CHL Scholastic Player of the Year Award which will be announced in the coming weeks.

Bobby Smith Trophy (CIBC Scholastic Player of the Year) – Cole Perfetti (Saginaw Spirit):

The Ontario Hockey League is proud to announce that draft eligible forward Cole Perfetti of the Saginaw Spirit is the 2019-20 recipient of the Bobby Smith Trophy awarded to the OHL’s Scholastic Player of the Year presented by CIBC.

“CIBC proudly congratulates Saginaw Spirit forward Cole Perfetti on receiving the Bobby Smith Trophy as CIBC Scholastic Player of the Year. Cole’s demonstrated excellence both on the ice in hockey and off the ice in academics has set a positive example for his fellow teammates and those in the community, and we look forward to seeing him continue to flourish back on the ice in the near future.”

Perfetti becomes the first Spirit player to win the award, earning the honour for his academic achievements in the classroom combined with his on-ice excellence this season. He has been enrolled in an impressive seven University level courses between Heritage High School in Saginaw and All Saints Catholic Secondary School in Whitby, carrying an overall average of 93%. His courses of study include Algebra,  World Religions, Organizational Studies in Behaviour and Human Resources, Analyzing Current Economic Issues, Elite Athletics, Healthy & Active Living and Leadership. On the ice, the top NHL Draft prospect finished second in OHL scoring, setting a new Spirit single season record with 111 points including 37 goals, 74 assists and a plus-49 rating over 61 games.

“It is a great honour to be awarded the Bobby Smith Trophy.  Mr. Smith was an amazing OHL player who was named CHL Player of the Year and was selected first overall in the NHL Draft,” said Perfetti. “In addition, he was a very conscientious and successful student.  Combining excellence on and off the ice has been something I have always strived for and the long list of distinguished winners, including Barrett Hayton, Connor McDavid, Matt Duchene and Steven Stamkos makes it extra special. This wouldn’t have been possible without the support of the Saginaw Spirit ownership, management, coaching staff and my teammates.  Thanks to my mom, dad, sister and the Bordeaux’s for their unconditional support.  Thank you also to Mrs. Moretuzzo from Heritage High and Ms. Quinn from All Saints for all of their guidance over the last two years.”

The 18-year-old left-winger from Whitby, Ont. is the fifth-ranked North American skater in NHL Central Scouting’s Final Draft Rankings released on April 8. The Spirit’s fist round (fifth overall) pick in the 2018 OHL Priority Selection increased his output from 74 points including a Spirit rookie record of 37 goals in 2018-19 to 111 points in his sophomore campaign, finishing second in League assists with 74. Perfetti was widely recognized in the 2019-20 Coaches Poll, leading all OHL players with first place finishes in four different categories as he was named the Western Conference’s Smartest Player, Best Playmaker, Best Stickhandler and Best Shootout Shooter. He led all OHL players, receiving three star of the game recognition a total of 22 times including a league-best 14 first star performances. Perfetti has also had past success on the world stage, representing Canada at the 2019 IIHF World Under-18 Hockey Championship in addition to winning silver at the 2019 Hlinka Gretzky Cup.

“As an organization we could not be more proud of Cole for winning this prestigious award,” said Spirit general manager Dave Drinkill. “When Cole came into this season one of his personal goals was to win the Bobby Smith Trophy and it’s great to see him achieve what he set out to do. This is a very tough trophy to win and I think it speaks to Cole’s character and makeup as a person that he is the 2019-20 recipient. It takes incredible discipline, time management, skill, and drive to be the best on the ice and in the classroom to win this award and no one is more deserving than Cole.”

Each year the Bobby Smith Trophy is presented to the OHL Scholastic Player of the Year who best combines high standards of play and academic excellence.  The trophy is in honour of Bobby Smith, a former Ottawa 67’s star who exhibited a standard of excellence in both of these areas.  Past recipients since the award was first presented in 1980 include three-time winner Dustin Brown (Guelph 2001-03), Steven Stamkos (Sarnia 2007), Ryan Ellis (Windsor 2008), Matt Duchene (Brampton 2009), Erik Gudbranson (Kingston 2010), Dougie Hamilton (Niagara 2011), Adam Pelech (Erie 2012), Darnell Nurse (Sault Ste. Marie 2013), back-to-back winner Connor McDavid (Erie 2014-15), Sasha Chmelevski (Ottawa 2017), Barrett Hayton (Sault Ste. Marie 2018) and Thomas Harley (Mississauga 2019).

Next in line for the award were a pair of other draft eligibles in blueliner Jamie Drysdale of the Erie Otters and forward Ethan Cardwell of the Barrie Colts.

Roger Neilson Memorial Award (Top Post-Secondary Student) – Jacob Golden (Erie Otters):

The Ontario Hockey League is pleased to announce that Erie Otters overage defenceman Jacob Golden is the 2019-20 recipient of the Roger Neilson Memorial Award presented annually to the League’s Top Academic Post-Secondary Student.

Golden achieved a 95% average in his studies at Mercyhurst University, excelling in Intro to Psychology, Principles of Management, Intro to Sport Industry and Sport Governance programs. He achieved grades of at least 94% in all four areas of study.

“Excelling academically has always been important to me,” said Golden. “I accelerated the completion of my high school education to graduate a year early and began taking university courses in my rookie OHL season. Attending classes at the Western University when I was in London, and Mercyhurst University when in was in Erie, were memorable parts of my OHL career, and working towards a university degree while playing in the OHL was a great opportunity. I would like to thank the Otters for their support and commitment on the ice as well as in the classroom.  It is an honour to represent the organization with this award.”

A 21-year-old native of Toronto, Ont., Golden recorded 27 points including four goals and 23 assists over 48 games in his fourth OHL season. The 5-foot-11, 180Ib. blueliner split his OHL tenure between the Otters and London Knights, posting 60 points (9-51–60) over 212 regular season contests. Golden was a fifth round (147th overall) pick of the Minnesota Wild in the 2017 NHL Draft and was originally London’s 15th round (295th overall) pick in the 2015 OHL Priority Selection from the Mississauga Rebels Minor Midgets.

“Jacob joins a prestigious group of young men that have won an award named after the great Roger Nielson, an innovator of our great game and someone who placed a great deal of importance on academics,” said Otters general manager Dave Brown. “We are so proud and thankful for Jacob’s accomplishments academically and appreciative of the legacy and standards he has set for the future Otters moving forward.  We wish Jacob the utmost success in his academic endeavors, career aspirations and are thankful to have him as a member of our alumni.”

The Roger Neilson Memorial Award is named in honour of the Hall of Fame Coach who served behind the Peterborough Petes bench in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s.  Neilson, a former high school teacher, was a pioneer in stressing the importance of education to all of his players. The award was first presented to Ottawa 67’s goaltender Danny Battochio in 2004-05. Golden becomes the first Otters player to win the award since Derrick Bagshaw claimed the honour in 2006-07.

Finalists for the Roger Neilson Memorial Award include William Ennis of the Oshawa Generals, Eric Uba of the Guelph Storm and Billy Moskal of the London Knights.

Ivan Tennant Memorial Award (Top Academic High School Student) – Logan LeSage (Owen Sound Attack):

The Ontario Hockey League is pleased to announce that Owen Sound Attack forward Logan LeSage is the 2019-20 recipient of the Ivan Tennant Memorial Award presented annually to the League’s Top Academic High School Student.

WATCH: Logan LeSage Ivan Tennant Memorial Award Video

LeSage put together an impressive 98% average in his Grade 12 studies at Owen Sound District Secondary School with a course load that included University-level English, International Business, Organizational Business Management, Leadership, Social Science, as well as a Business Leadership Co-op program. He received a perfect 100% grade in his International Business studies.

“I feel very privileged to earn the Ivan Tennant Memorial Award this year from the Ontario Hockey League,” said LeSage. “I’m grateful for all the support I received from the Owen Sound Attack organization, ownership, coaching staff, teachers and teammates. A special shout-out to our Educational Advisor, Sarah Rowe. Sarah’s encouragement and support went a long way in helping me reach my academic goals. It takes hard work to balance academics and a busy hockey schedule, and I am appreciative of the OHL for giving me the tools and resources needed to succeed.”

An 18-year-old native of Nepean, Ont., LeSage appeared in 21 games with the Attack during his rookie season, recording a goal and three assists. He scored his first career OHL goal on February 1 against Windsor. He was the club’s second round (29th overall) pick in the 2019 OHL Under-18 Priority Selection from the Carleton Place Canadians U18 program.

“Logan did an incredible job this year from start to finish,” said Attack general manager Dale DeGray. “Between hockey and school, Logan committed fully to the team and his education. To be able to achieve marks that high while putting his work in every day is fantastic. Logan did this himself, but for Attack educational supervisor Sarah Rowe to have her students win this three years in a row is an accomplishment we want recognized as well.”

The Ivan Tennant Memorial Award is given to the Top Academic High School Player and is named in honour of Ivan Tennant, who spent a lifetime combining hockey and education. He was the Kitchener Rangers’ Education Consultant for 20 years and a key figure on the OHL’s Education Consultant’s Committee. LeSage follows back-to-back winner Mack Guzda (2018 & 2019) along with Andrew Shorkey (2007) as the third different player in Attack history to win the award. Other past recipients include Kyle Keyser (Flint 2016), Adam Pelech (Erie 2012), Dougie Hamilton (Niagara 2010) and Freddie Hamilton (Niagara 2009).

Finalists for the award included goaltender Aidan Campbell of the Erie Otters and 2019 co-recipient Zack Terry of the Guelph Storm.

All 20 of the OHL’s member clubs provide nominees for each award with the Bobby Smith Trophy nominees representing the 2019-20 OHL Scholastic Team:

2019-20 OHL Scholastic Team:
Barrie Colts – Ethan Cardwell
Erie Otters – Jamie Drysdale*
Flint Firebirds – Braeden Kressler
Guelph Storm – Owen Bennett
Hamilton Bulldogs – Gavin White
Kingston Frontenacs – Jakob Brahaney
Kitchener Rangers – Michael Vukojevic*
London Knights – Brett Brochu
Mississauga Steelheads – Ethan Del Mastro
Niagara IceDogs – Elijah Roberts
North Bay Battalion – Pacey Schlueting
Oshawa Generals – Lleyton Moore
Ottawa 67’s – Will Cranley
Owen Sound Attack – Ethan Burroughs
Peterborough Petes – Tye Austin*
Saginaw Spirit – Cole Perfetti*
Sarnia Sting – Benjamin Gaudreau
Soo Greyhounds – Rory Kerins
Sudbury Wolves – Jack Thompson
Windsor Spitfires – Jean-Luc Foudy*

*-two-time member of OHL Scholastic Team

2020 OHL Awards announcements continue on Thursday when the OHL recognizes its William Hanley Memorial Trophy recipient as Most Sportsmanlike Player in the morning before unveiling its Emms Family Award recipient as Rookie of the Year in the afternoon.

For full coverage of the 2020 OHL Awards, be sure to visit ontariohockeyleague.com or follow along on TwitterInstagram and Facebook.

About the Ontario Hockey League
The Ontario Hockey League is a proud member of the Canadian Hockey League which is the world’s largest development hockey league with 60 teams in nine Canadian provinces and four American states. In addition to the OHL, the CHL is made up of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League and the Western Hockey League. The CHL supplies more players to the National Hockey League and U SPORTS than any other league. For more information visit http://www.ontariohockeyleague.com/.

OHL Writers’ Draft Eligible Player of the Year

First off, I want to begin by saying I hope you are all safe and healthy in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic. We all have to do our part to keep our families, our friends, our neighbours and ourselves from catching and spreading this terrible virus.

We don’t know when hockey will return, and for this piece here, we don’t know when the National Hockey League Draft will take place and how exactly the NHL will conduct the draft or how the draft order will be set. But here at OHLW, we will continue to bring you the usual content regarding the draft as we will get through this and it will eventually take place.

Our draft eligible player of the year isn’t always a reflection of the player we believe should be the first Ontario Hockey League player selected at the draft, but rather the player that performed the best from the first drop of the puck to the final horn of the season.

This year, for us, that player is Marco Rossi of the Ottawa 67’s.

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

Rossi led the entire OHL in assists (81) and points (120) and finished tenth in goals (39) en route to capturing the Eddie Powers Memorial Trophy for most points on the season. He also led the entire league in plus/minus with a plus-69, and finished second in powerplay assists (31).

Rossi was named in the recent Coaches Poll as the Eastern Conference’s smartest player, best playmaker and best shootout shooter. He finished second in the voting as best on face-offs and defensive forward. He was voted as the third best penalty killer by the coaches.

On three occasions, November, December and February, Rossi was selected our draft eligible player of the month. The quest for perfection was interrupted twice by a player we gave consideration here to: Cole Perfetti of the Saginaw Spirit.

Perfetti finished second only to Rossi in the OHL scoring race with 111 points and assists (74). It’s the first time since the 2014-2015 season when teammates Dylan Strome and Connor McDavid of the Erie Otters that draft eligible players finished one-two in the OHL scoring race. Prior to those two accomplishing the feat, you’d have to go back to 2009-2010 when Taylor Hall and Tyler Seguin both finished with 106 points and went one-two respectively at the NHL Draft.

We also gave some quick consideration to London Knights’ netminder Brett Brochu. In a season where there were more questions then answers coming into the season, Brochu took to the crease and ran with it. He set an OHL record with 32 wins for a first year netminder on lost just 6 games on the year. Not bad for a goaltender not ranked on NHL Central Scouting’s Players to Watch Lists or mid-term rankings!

Kia CHL Top 10 Rankings – Week 25

Toronto, ON – The Canadian Hockey League today announced the week twenty-five edition of the Kia CHL Top-10 Rankings for the 2019-20 season.  The weekly rankings of the CHL’s Top-10 teams are selected by a panel of National Hockey League scouts.

Kia CHL Top 10 Rankings – Week 25

Rank: Team: Last Week Ranked: Total Weeks Ranked:
1 Sherbrooke Phoenix (51-8-3-1) 1 25
2 Ottawa 67’s (50-11-0-1) 2 23
3 Moncton Wildcats (49-13-1-0) 3 19
4 Portland Winterhawks (45-11-3-4) 6 15
5 Everett Silvertips (46-13-3-1) 4 19
6 London Knights (45-15-1-1) 7 11
7 Chicoutimi Sagueneens (44-12-5-1) 8 25
8 Edmonton Oil Kings (42-12-6-4) 5 22
9 Saginaw Spirit (41-16-3-2) 10 4
10 Spokane Chiefs (41-18-4-1) 1
Honourable Mention:
Kitchener Rangers (39-16-5-2) 9 5
Kamloops Blazers (41-18-3-1) 5
Cape Breton Eagles (40-19-2-1) 6

Kia CHL Top 10 Rankings – Week 24

Toronto, ON – The Canadian Hockey League today announced the week twenty-four edition of the Kia CHL Top-10 Rankings for the 2019-20 season.  The weekly rankings of the CHL’s Top-10 teams are selected by a panel of National Hockey League scouts.

Kia CHL Top 10 Rankings – Week 24

Rank: Team: Last Week Ranked: Total Weeks Ranked:
1 Sherbrooke Phoenix (49-8-3-1) 1 24
2 Ottawa 67’s (47-11-0-1) 2 22
3 Moncton Wildcats (47-12-1-0) 3 18
4 Everett Silvertips (44-12-3-1) 6 18
5 Edmonton Oil Kings (41-10-6-4) 5 21
6 Portland Winterhawks (42-11-3-4) 4 14
7 London Knights (42-15-1-1) 8 10
8 Chicoutimi Sagueneens (41-12-5-1) 7 24
9 Kitchener Rangers (38-15-5-2) 9 5
10 Saginaw Spirit (38-16-3-2) 3
Honourable Mention:
Flint Firebirds (39-19-1-1) 10 3
Lethbridge Hurricanes (37-16-2-5) 1
Spokane Chiefs (37-18-4-1) 0

OHL Writers’ Draft Eligible Player of the Month for February

Much like it was for us in the month of January, selecting one performance over another  for our draft eligible player of the month was a difficult task once again in February. And this time, we have a different outcome.

Marco Rossi of the Ottawa 67’s becomes the third time winner as our choice as the top performer among players eligible for the National Hockey League Draft.

Rossi, who leads the Ontario Hockey League in assists (73) and points (108) appeared in 13 games through the month of February and tallied 6 goals to go along with 17 assists. Despite putting up amazing offensive numbers in those 13 games, Rossi was only named a game’s star twice, receiving 1 first star honor and one second star mention.

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

Following close behind Rossi was teammate Jack Quinn who potted 8 goals while assisting on 11 others through February. But unlike Rossi, the powers at be found Quinn to do enough to be named the game’s second star on 4 different occasions.

Also considered was Cole Perfetti of the Saginaw Spirit with 8 goals and 11 assists in 11 games. Honorable mention has to go to James Hardie of the Mississauga Steelheads with 6 goals and 7 assists in 10 games and Kingston Frontenacs’ Zayde Wisdom with 7 goals and 9 assists in 13 games played.

In goal, Brett Brochu continues to shine. Brochu appeared in 8 games with a 7-1-0-0 record while stopping 244 of 264 shots for an impressive .924 save percentage and a 2.38 goals-against-average.

OHL Writers Draft Eligible Players of the Month

February – Marco Rossi – Ottawa 67’s

January – Cole Perfetti – Saginaw Spirit

December – Marco Rossi – Ottawa 67’s

November – Marco Rossi – Ottawa 67’s

October – Cole Perfetti – Saginaw Spirit

Kia CHL Top 10 Rankings – Week 23

Toronto, ON – The Canadian Hockey League today announced the week twenty-three edition of the Kia CHL Top-10 Rankings for the 2019-20 season.  The weekly rankings of the CHL’s Top-10 teams are selected by a panel of National Hockey League scouts.

Kia CHL Top 10 Rankings – Week 23

Rank: Team: Last Week Ranked: Total Weeks Ranked:
1 Sherbrooke Phoenix (46-8-3-1) 2 23
2 Ottawa 67’s (44-11-0-1) 1 21
3 Moncton Wildcats (44-12-1-0) 4 17
4 Portland Winterhawks (40-10-3-4) 3 13
5 Edmonton Oil Kings (40-10-6-3) 5 20
6 Everett Silvertips (40-12-3-1) 7 17
7 Chicoutimi Sagueneens (39-11-5-1) 6 23
8 London Knights (38-15-1-1) 8 9
9 Kitchener Rangers (36-14-5-2) 4
10 Flint Firebirds (37-18-1-1) 10 3
Honourable Mention:
Cape Breton Eagles (37-17-2-1) 6
Lethbridge Hurricanes (35-15-2-5) 1
Saginaw Spirit (36-16-3-2) 2

Vaughn CHL Team of the Week

The Canadian Hockey League today announced the 22nd edition of the Vaughn CHL Team of the Week for the 2019-20 season based on individual performances from February 17-23.

Among the top performers was Pittsburgh Penguins prospect Nathan Legare of the Baie-Comeau Drakkar who wrapped up the week with nine points counting six goals and three assists over a pair of appearances. Facing the Val-d’Or Foreurs on Sunday, captain Legare put up a season-high performance of five points including his second consecutive hat-trick plus two assists en route to 6-3 victory in which he was recognized as the game’s first star. For his efforts, Legare was honoured as the Ultramar QMJHL Player of the Week.

Also up front is overage right-wing Jeremy McKenna of the Moncton Wildcats whose impressive showing counted four goals and five assists for nine points over four contests extending the club’s win-streak to 12 and point-streak to 18. Currently riding a five-game point streak of his own, McKenna’s stretch includes Wednesday’s 4-3 overtime win versus the Rimouski Oceanic in which he received first-star recognition after matching a season high of four points counting two goals and two assists that included a helper on the game-winning goal.

Rounding out the forward ranks is Minnesota Wild prospect Damien Giroux of the Saginaw Spirit who notched five goals and two assists for seven points over three games helping the Spirit clinch a playoff berth. Against the North Bay Battalion on Sunday, the captain and fourth-year forward finished with a season high of four points, putting up two goals plus two assists in a 6-3 road win that saw him recognized as the game’s first star for the second consecutive game.

On the blue line, St. Louis Blues draft pick Tyler Tucker of the Flint Firebirds shined as he collected three goals and eight assists for 11 points over four games as the Firebirds also punched their postseason ticket. A late-season addition to the Firebirds, Tucker has impressed since joining his new club from the Barrie Colts by setting a franchise single-game record for points by a defenceman with two goals and five assists for seven points in a 12-7 victory over the Sarnia Sting last Monday. For his efforts, Tucker was honoured as the OHL ‘On the Run’ Player of the Week.

Also on the back end is Saskatoon Blades defenceman and 2020 NHL Draft hopeful Aidan De La Gorgendiere whose week counted six points including one goal and five assists over a pair of contests.  De La Gorgendiere’s best showing came against the Swift Current Broncos on Saturday as he finished with a season high of four points – all coming as helpers – to guide his squad to an 8-1 victory in which he was recognized as the game’s first star. For his efforts, De La Gorgendiere was honoured as the WHL ‘On the Run’ Player of the Week.

Between the pipes, Calgary Flames prospect Dustin Wolf of the Everett Silvertips put up a dominant showing as he came away with three victories over a trio of appearances in which he combined for a .952 save percentage and a 1.00 goals-against average. Wolf’s busiest night came against the rival Portland Winterhawks on Sunday as he turned aside 35 shots en route to a 6-2 road win and first-star honours. In all, Wolf closed out the week with his league best ninth shutout of the season while stopping 60 of 63 total shots, helping him earn recognition as the WHL Eli Wilson Goaltending Goaltender of the Week.

Kia CHL Top 10 Rankings – Week 22

Toronto, ON – The Canadian Hockey League today announced the week twenty-two edition of the Kia CHL Top-10 Rankings for the 2019-20 season.  The weekly rankings of the CHL’s Top-10 teams are selected by a panel of National Hockey League scouts.

Kia CHL Top 10 Rankings – Week 22

Rank: Team: Last Week Ranked: Total Weeks Ranked:
1 Ottawa 67’s (42-9-0-1) 1 20
2 Sherbrooke Phoenix (43-8-3-1) 2 22
3 Portland Winterhawks (39-8-3-4) 3 12
4 Moncton Wildcats (41-12-1-0) 5 16
5 Edmonton Oil Kings (37-9-6-3) 4 19
6 Chicoutimi Sagueneens (37-11-4-1) 6 22
7 Everett Silvertips (36-12-3-1) 7 16
8 London Knights (37-14-1-1) 9 8
9 Rimouski Oceanic (35-14-3-4) 2
10 Flint Firebirds (35-17-1-1) 2
Honourable Mention:
Kitchener Rangers (34-14-5-2) 8 3
Lethbridge Hurricanes (34-14-2-5) 10 1
Saginaw Spirit (34-16-2-2) 2

Vaughn CHL Team of the Week

The Canadian Hockey League today announced the 21st edition of the Vaughn CHL Team of the Week for the 2019-20 season based on individual performances from Feb. 10-16.

Headlining the group is Rimouski Oceanic captain and 2020 NHL Draft favourite Alexis Lafreniere who amassed 10 points counting two goals and eight assists across a pair of appearances. Against the Quebec Remparts on Sunday, Lafreniere pushed his point streak to five games as he put up a dominant, career-best performance of seven points including one goal and six assists en route to an 11-2 victory and first-star honours. For his efforts, Lafreniere was recognized as the Ultramar QMJHL Player of the Week.

Also up front is fellow 2020 NHL Draft hopeful Cole Perfetti of the Saginaw Spirit who wrapped up the week with 10 points counting four goals and six assists over a trio of contests. Registering at least one point in 10 of his past 11 appearances, Perfetti matched a season high of five points – all coming as helpers – in Wednesday’s 7-5 road win over the Soo Greyhounds, helping him earn recognition as the game’s first star in addition to OHL ‘On the Run’ Player of the Week honours.

Rounding out the forward ranks is another top NHL Draft prospect in Portland Winterhawks centre Seth Jarvis whose week counted three goals and six assists for nine points over three games. A projected early selection come June, Jarvis put his offensive skills on display in Sunday’s 11-2 win over the Moose Jaw Warriors in which he finished with one goal and four assists for five points to match a season high and wrap up the night with second-star recognition. The successful showing also helped Jarvis garner WHL ‘On the Run’ Player of the Week honours.

On the blue line, Spirit veteran rearguard D.J. Busdeker continues to build on an incredible season as he tallied six points counting two goals and four assists through three appearances. Facing the Soo Greyhounds on Wednesday, Busdeker put up a pair of tallies plus an assist to match a season high of three points en route to a 7-5 victory.

Also on the back end is San Jose Sharks first-round pick Ryan Merkley of the London Knights who earns a spot on the Vaughn CHL Team of the Week for the fourth time this season after collecting six assists through three contests. Riding a nine-game point streak, the stretch saw Merkley register a season high of four points in Friday’s 6-3 win over the rival Kitchener Rangers in which he took home first-star honours.

Between the pipes, top-ranked North American netminder Nico Daws of the Guelph Storm continued his dominant play in coming away with a pair of victories in which he combined for 77 saves to finish with a 0.50 goals-against average and .987 save percentage. Versus the Owen Sound Attack on Friday, Daws turned aside 40 shots to help guide his club to a 2-0 win that saw him record his fifth shutout of the season.