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New Jersey Devils Prospect Update: 4/2/19

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Week 25 of the 2018-19 prospect update saw 2 Devils prospects advance in the CHL playoffs, 2 more see their CHL seasons end, a trio of Devils prospects get eliminated in the NCAA Tournament, and Eetu Pakkila help his team to advance to the Jr. A SM-liiga final.

Chicoutimi Sagueneens v Quebec Remparts
Jeremy Groleau saw his QMJHL season come to an end but he is set to join the Binghamton Devils to get some pro experience over the final 2 weeks of the season.
Photo by Mathieu Belanger/Getty Images

The 25th week of the 2018-19 prospect update is here. It’s highlighted by Mitchell Hoelscher and Ty Smith each advancing in the CHL playoffs, the NCAA Tournament come to a quick end for a trio of Devils prospects, Akira Schmid continue to play well in the USHL, and Eetu Pakkila and Mikhail Maltsev continue to play meaningful hockey in Europe.

QMJHL

Jocktan Chainey had an assist, +2, 2 PIM, and 5 shots in 4 games last week. #1 Halifax is tied 3-3 with #8 Quebec in their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal. Game 7 is tonight.

Playoff Stats: 6 GP 0-1-1, +3, 4 PIM, 7 Shots

Xavier Bernard’s season has ended as #4 Charlottetown lost to #5 Cape Breton 4-2 in their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal. In the final 4 games of the series this past week, Bernard had an assist, -2, 6 PIM, and 4 shots.

Playoff Stats: 6 GP 0-1-1, -3, 8 PIM, 6 Shots

Jeremy Groleau saw his junior season come to an end as #6 Chicoutimi was swept in their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal by #3 Rimouski. In the final 2 games of the series this past week, Groleau had an assist, even rating, 4 PIM, and 4 shots. Yesterday, the New Jersey Devils reassigned Groleau to the Binghamton Devils.

Playoff Stats: 4 GP 0-1-1, E, 4 PIM, 7 Shots

OHL

Mitchell Hoelscher helped #1 Ottawa sweep #8 Hamilton in their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal this past week. In 2 games he had 2 goals, +3, 4 shots, and won 14/27 faceoffs. He earned praise from the TV announcers for being an underrated player on a deep Ottawa team and for playing a “pro style game”. Ottawa will take on #4 Sudbury in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.

Playoff Stats: 4 GP 3-1-4, +4, 0 PIM, 7 Shots, 54.69 FO%

WHL

Ty Smith aided #U2 Spokane to a 4-1 series victory over #U3 Portland in the Western Conference Quarterfinals. In 3 games last week, Smith had a goal, +2, and 13 shots. Spokane will take on #U1 Everett in the Western Conference Semifinals.

Playoff Stats: 5 GP 1-2-3, +2, 0 PIM, 17 Shots

NCAA

Jeremy Davies had a PP assist, -2, and 3 shots as #2 Northeastern fell 5-1 to #3 Cornell in the East Regional Semifinals of the NCAA Tournament on Saturday. Davies has now completed his junior season with Northeastern and it proved to be a successful follow up to his impressive sophomore campaign. Hopefully the Devils can get him under contract soon and he can compete for a spot on next year’s Devils team. Perhaps they’ll get him signed between the writing of this post and when it goes up. Last Friday, Samuel Kim of The Huntington News had this article about how Davies has grown at Northeastern. Head Coach Jim Madigan had this to say about Davies:

“He’s grown in his sense of his play away from the puck, defensive awareness and defensive skills,” Madigan said. “He’s a thorough, reliable defenseman, so we can play him in all situations.”

Reilly Walsh was a -1 with a shot as #4 Harvard lost 4-0 to #1 UMass in the Northeast Regional Semifinals on Friday. Walsh won’t turn 20 until April 21 and is coming off of a productive sophomore season. While I certainly understand why a lot of fans are hoping to see Walsh signed right now due to his offensive skill and playmaking ability, I really think another season at Harvard to further develop his defensive game would be best for his development.

Matt Hellickson was a -2 with a shot as #3 Notre Dame defeated #2 Clarkson in the Northeast Regional Semifinals on Friday. Hellickson was then a -1 as #3 Notre Dame lost 4-0 to #1 UMass in the Northeast Regional Final on Saturday. Hellickson has put in a solid, dependable 2 seasons at Notre Dame.

Penn State missed the tournament without the injured Aarne Talvitie but Dylan Jacobs of Penn State’s Daily Collegian argued that Talvitie’s absence hurt them more than they would like to admit in the end. He has this quote from Head Coach Guy Gadowsky that shows how highly the program views Talvitie:

“That being said, he’s a special athlete and a special team player. I’m really looking forward to have him all year next year and I feel he will get better and better. I thought he was really coming on and obviously the tournament he had, everyone could see how effective he is. The whole team is giddy to have him for a whole year… But I can’t attribute our lack of going to the tournament to one player.”

USHL/NAHL

Akira Schmid made 30 saves on 33 shots in a loss to Green Bay on Friday. The following night he made 16 saves on 19 shots in a victory over Green Bay. He was called upon early in Omaha’s game against Madison on Sunday after Jon Mor went down with an injury. Schmid would go on to make 27 saves on 30 shots in 62:41 to earn the victory in overtime. Schmid continues to lead USHL goaltenders with a .928 SV%.

Russia

KHL

VHL

MHL

Mikhail Maltsev was a -3 with 5 shots, 53.85 FO%, and played between 9:48 and 15:53 across 3 games last week. #2 SKA trails 2-1 in their Western Conference Final series against #1 CSKA.

Playoff Stats: 13 GP 1-2-3, -4, 6 PIM, 3.4 SH%, 2.2 SH/GP, 58.5 FO%, 11:13 ATOI

Sweden & Finland

Jesper Boqvist is still training with the Swedish national team ahead of the World Championship.

Fabian Zetterlund is out for the season due to knee surgery.

Eetu Pakkila helped Karpat U20 advance to the Championship with a series victory in the Semifinals over Pelicans U20. In the final 3 games of the series this past week, Pakkila had a PP goal, PP assist, -2, 27 shots, and average ice time of 20:14. Karpat U20 began their best of 5 Championship series against Blues U20 last night with a 3-0 win. Pakkila had an even rating and 7 shots in 17:37 of ice time in the opening game of the final.

Playoff Stats: 9 GP 3-2-5, -1, 2 PIM, 5.17 SH%, 6.44 SH/GP, 18:57 ATOI

Switzerland

Gilles Senn hasn’t played in the Relegation Playout Final yet. HC Davos is up 2-1 in the series over SC Rapperswil-Jona Lakers.

Your Take

Which prospects stood out to you this week? Do you expect Davies to sign with the Devils soon? Do you want the Devils to sign Walsh or would you like to see him back at Harvard for another season? Leave your comments below and thank you for reading!