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New Jersey Devils Prospect Update: 11/20/18

Week 7 of the 2018-19 prospect update saw two Devils prospects represent the QMJHL against Russia, Nikita Popugaev score his first KHL goal of the season, and Jesper Boqvist stay productive in the SHL.

2017 NHL Draft - Portraits
Nikita Popugaev scored his first KHL goal of the season for Amur Khabarovsk on Monday.
Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

The 7th week of the 2018-19 prospect update is here. It’s highlighted by Joctkan Chainey and Xavier Bernard representing the QMJHL in the Canada Russia Series, Ty Smith continuing to dominate in the WHL, while the Jeremy Davies, Reilly Walsh, and Aarne Talvitie also continue to put up points in the NCAA. Nikita Popugaev scored his first KHL goal of the season while Jesper Boqvist kept being a bright spot in the SHL.


Jocktan Chainey was a -1 in Team QMJHL’s 5-1 loss to Russia last Tuesday in the Canada Russia Series. He didn’t play at all for Halifax last week as the team had just one game on their schedule and it ended up being postponed due to a snowstorm.

Xavier Bernard had an even rating, 2 PIM, and shot for Team QMJHL in their 3-2 overtime loss to Russia in the Canada Russia Series on Thursday. He then played in 2 games for Drummondville last weekend with an even rating and a shot.

Jeremy Groleau had a tough weekend for Chicoutimi with a -5 and a shot across 2 games.


Mitchell Hoelscher had 2 assists, +1, 4 shots, and won 66.67% of his faceoffs across 3 games for Ottawa last week.


Ty Smith, as expected, had another strong week for Spokane. Over 4 games he put up a goal, 5 assists, +1, and 13 shots. He was held without a point for just the second time this season last Saturday against Calgary. That makes it 18 games with at least a point out of the 20 he has played so far this season. According to the WHL website, he leads defensemen in assists (28) and points (31). Those 28 assists rank 3rd among all WHL players.


Jeremy Davies helped Northeastern to a 1-0 victory over Vermont on Friday with an even rating and 3 shots. His 3.30 shots per game rate currently ranks 5th among defensemen in the NCAA.

Reilly Walsh continued his productive start to his sophomore season with 2 assists, an even rating, 2 PIM, and 8 shots in 2 games against Arizona State last weekend. Walsh has put up at least a point in 6 out of 7 games he’s played in this season. He currently leads NCAA defensemen in shots per game with an average of 4.00. In other categories among NCAA defensemen he ranks tied-2nd in goals per game (0.57) and is tied for the lead in PPG with 4.

Matt Hellickson was a -1 with 4 shots in 2 games against Michigan State last weekend.

Aarne Talvitie had a goal, even rating, and 7 shots in 2 games against Michigan last weekend. Among NCAA freshman, Talvitie currently ranks tied-2nd in assists (9) and 4th in points (12).


Akira Schmid continued to play for Omaha in the USHL, losing his only game of the week to USNTDP 7-1. Overall, he made just 22 saves on 29 shots in 58:50. Hopefully he can rebound this upcoming week.





In one VHL appearance last week Mikhail Maltsev had a goal, +1, 2 PIM, 6 shots, and won 12/20 faceoffs in 17:14. His 66.5 FO% is currently the best in the VHL among full time centers.

Yegor Zaitsev returned to KHL action with 2 games last week. He finished a -1 with 2 PIM, a shot, and average time of 8:18.

Nikita Popugaev scored his first KHL goal of the season against Dinamo Minsk on Monday. He finished a +1 with 2 shots in 9:31.

Sweden & Finland

Jesper Boqvist had a goal, assist, even rating, and 9 shots while averaging 21:10 per game across 3 games last week. He leads Brynas IF in scoring with 13 points in 18 games. That’s also good enough for 2nd in points for all U21 players in the SHL.

Fabian Zetterlund continues to be out as he rehabs a right knee injury.

Eetu Pakkila had 2 goals, an assist, +2, and 16 shots while averaging 17:46 across 2 games last week.


Gilles Senn didn’t make any appearances for HC Davos last week. His last appearance came on 10/27 against HC Lugano. Swiss Hockey News reported on 11/11 that several teams, including HC Davos are interested in ZSC Lions goaltender Niklas Schlegel. I’d have to imagine that if they were to acquire Schlegel, then Senn would be on the move perhaps on loan to a second division NLB team. Regardless, he needs to find playing time somewhere and it doesn’t seem like it’s going to happen at his current club.

Your Take

Which prospects stood out to you this week? Which prospects are you excited about at this moment in time? Are you concerned about the goaltenders in Akira Schmid or Gilles Senn? Leave your comments below and thank you for reading!