Spencer Sova – Erie Otters – Player Profile

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6’1851-10-2004DLeft8th – 2020B – NovemberCANADA
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2020-21Under-16Honeybaked Under-163000
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Spencer Sova of the Erie Otters. Photo by Natalie Shaver/OHL Images

When it comes to Erie Otters defenceman Spencer Sova, there are varying mentions when it comes to his size. While some have him at 6-feet there are plenty that list him at 6-foot two-inches. If you go by NHL Central Scouting and the Ontario Hockey League, he is listed at 6-feet and 185 pounds and that is what we will go by here, even if my untrained eye says differently. Now that we got that out of the way…

While there are no future NHL franchise blueliners in the draft class, there are a handful that are very intriguing and Sova is one of them.

What stands out first with Sova is his skating. He is a smooth skating defenceman who has speed to burn. Offensively, he can make you pay with that speed by jumping up into the play and winning the race. Defensively, he uses that speed to close gaps and break up plays at his blueline, the neutral zone and surprisingly at the oppositions blueline to keep plays in the O-zone. And his edgework should not be overlooked and could be the best in the draft class. There are no flaws in his technique or mechanics.

In his own zone, Sova has all the tools to be a one-man breakout. He can make the stretch pass or he has all the tools necessary to skate it out on his own. However, and this may be a coaching decision when it comes to system, Sova along with his fellow blueliners are a safer bunch of chips it out and get to work type. To me, it doesn’t appear that he has the green light.

Whatever the case may be, Sova has some work to do in his own zone and again, you can say that about any blueliner at this stage. While the skating is that good that it can mask some of the issues it will just come to making better decisions with and without the puck in his zone. He’s shown improvement and I think his hockey sense is high enough that it all comes down to gaining experience.

Offensively, his production probably isn’t where it was expected to be at this point, but again the tools are there. His vision is very good, he can make a pass, he can create lanes with his skating and can delay the play with the puck on his stick to allow plays to develop. He is creating opportunities for his teammates but puck just isn’t finding the back of the net. He has a howitzer of a shot but he misses the target to many times. If he can get his accuracy to a better spot and not always shoot to blow it past netminders a.k.a shooting with a purpose, it will be just another tool in the chest for him.  

Fairly or unfairly, Sova is compared to former Otter Jamie Drysdale. But in fairness, Drysdale possesses tools that Sova is lacking and vice versa.

A strong second half could see Sova climb up some rankings.  

HOCKEY CANADA RECOGNIZES 13 OHL PLAYERS INVITED TO 2021 NATIONAL SUMMER UNDER-18 TEAM DEVELOPMENT CAMP

CALGARY, Alta. – Hockey Canada has recognized 13 Ontario Hockey League players as part of a group of 45 players invited to attend Canada’s National Men’s Summer Under-18 Team Development Camp at Seven Chiefs Sportsplex on the Tsuut’ina Nation near Calgary from July 25th to Aug 4th. Sarnia Sting head coach Alan Letang, Ottawa 67’s goaltending coach Charles McTavish and Kingston Frontenacs equipment manager Chris Cook have also been recognized, along with Owen Sound Attack therapist Andy Brown, North Bay Battalion therapist Andrew Sachkiw and Guelph Storm mental performance consultant Dr. Ashwin Patel.

One OHL goaltender, four defencemen and eight forwards were recognized as invitees to the 11-day camp. Players will be split into two teams, Red and White, and participate in practices and intrasquad games, including combined practices and intrasquad games with Canada’s National Junior Team on Aug. 2nd and 3rd.

“This stage of our Summer Showcase is about bringing together the top under-18 players in Canada to work and learn from an elite-level coaching staff, giving them the necessary skills for their hockey development to grow and succeed,” said Alan Millar, director of player personnel for Hockey Canada. “We have an opportunity to connect with the players through on- and off-ice sessions to give them the tools that will only enhance their skill set as they advance through our program and prepare for the upcoming season.”

Letang, who was appointed head coach of the Sting late last month after serving behind the Attack bench, will return to Canada’s coaching staff. Letang won a gold medal as an assistant coach with Canada’s National Junior Team at the 2020 IIHF World Junior Championship and, as a player, helped Canada’s National Men’s Team to a 1998 Spengler Cup championship and won a bronze medal at the 2006 Deutschland Cup.

The camp is typically a stepping stone in evaluating and selecting Canada’s roster for the Hlinka Gretzky Cup, but Canada will not participate this year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The focus will now turn to the 2022 IIHF U18 World Championship next spring, where Canada will look to defend their gold medal after claiming the top prize at this year’s tournament in Texas.

OHL Players Invited to Canada’s National Summer Under-18 Team Development Camp

Goaltenders:
Domenic DiVincentiis (North Bay Battalion)

Defencemen:
Jorian Donovan (Hamilton Bulldogs)
Donovan McCoy (Sudbury Wolves)
Ty Nelson (North Bay Battalion)
Spencer Sova (Erie Otters)

Forwards:
Sam Alfano (Peterborough Petes)
Pano Fimis (Niagara IceDogs)
David Goyette (Sudbury Wolves)
Cedrick Guindon (Owen Sound Attack)
Hunter Haight (Barrie Colts)
Paul Ludwinski (Kingston Frontenacs)
Bryce McConnell-Barker (Soo Greyhounds)
Matthew Poitras (Guelph Storm)

Coaches:
Assistant Coach – Alan Letang (Sarnia Sting)
Goaltending Coach – Charles McTavish (Ottawa 67’s)
Equipment Manager – Chris Cook (Kingston Frontenacs)
Therapist – Andy Brown (Owen Sound Attack)
Therapist – Andrew Sachkiw (North Bay Battalion)
Mental Performance Consultant – Dr. Ashwin Patel (Guelph Storm)

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.