InGoal Magazine is one of the world’s premier locations for goaltender information. While The Hockey News recently produced their own future goaltenders list, InGoal is one trusted most when it comes to the cutting edge of goaltender scouting, development, and analysis.
Greg Balloch released his top 50 goaltender prospect lists for the magazine, with all three of the Jets eligible prospects making the cut.
We highly recommend you check out the article for yourself, but here are some of our own thoughts.
After an electric rookie season, Connor Hellebuyck gets placed as the NHL’s best goaltending prospect.
Hellebuyck has dominated every level he’s ever played in since his draft eligible season, and has not looked back.
He posted superb numbers in the NAHL. His two seasons combine to the best NCAA career save percentage in history. He posted a 0.921 save percentage as a rookie under heavy usage in a league with a 0.912 average. Hellebuyck also started for Team USA in the World Championships, where he arguably was robbed of the Best Goaltender award due to Pekka Rinne’s reputation.
Balloch praises Hellebuyck for his size, but also not being weak in the areas large goaltenders tend to be, all while being able to take advantage of said size.
Eric Comrie falls not far behind at number four.
Comrie graduates from the WHL with a career 0.916 save percentage. He took the backup role for the gold winning Team Canada at the World Juniors, where he posted a 0.933 save percentage. Comrie also garnered his first pro-level wins with three AHL games this past season and a 0.920 save percentage.
Balloch notes how Comrie is in many ways different than Hellebuyck. While both are excellent positionally, Comrie has less of a physical advantage but is more athletic.
Jets Nations’ 20th ranked prospect, Jamie Phillips, just scratches in on another list with Balloch ranking him 49th in the NCAA.
After struggling as a back up in his freshman and sophomore seasons, Phillips exploded onto the scene with a 0.933 save percentage and going 28-9-2 as Michigan Tech’s starter.
Balloch mentions that Phillips will need to prove last season was not a fluke and repeat his success next year — similar to we did in our prospect profile. Balloch also notes Phillips needs to work on balance and becoming physically stronger.
With 50 prospects being included, and five honourable mentions, most teams should expect two prospects being included. Still, some will have three and some will have only one.
The Jets though do exceptionally well with not just having three ranking in the top 50, but having two in the top 5 and also with Hellebuyck ranking above all.