This week’s prospects include Stuart Skinner (Lethbridge Hurricanes), MacKenzie Entwistle (Hamilton Bulldogs) & Pierre-Olivier Joseph (Charlottetown Islanders).
Stuart Skinner - Lethbridge Hurricanes (WHL)
Born: November 1, 1998 – Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Weight: 195 lbs.
Drafted: 2013 WHL Draft – Round #1 (17th overall) by the Lethbridge Hurricanes
Big goalie plays a big game and uses his height to his advantage to see through crowds with traffic in front. Covers the top of the net well and keeps his glove up and gives shooters nothing to shoot at up high. A real calm goalie in his net, he doesn’t have to come too far out to cut down angles and seems comfortable playing further back in his crease. Uses his long reach to poke check cross-ice passes. Has spent a lot of time working on his quickness in his crease using his long legs to get across the crease in one motion. Hugs the posts well and cuts off any chances from in close. Will use huge wingspan to cover most the net. Plays with tons of confidence and gives his team a chance to win every night he is between the pipes.
DID YOU KNOW? A veteran of over 100 games already played in the WHL, Skinner became
the first Hurricanes goalie and just the seventh in the history of the
WHL to score a goal when he scored into an empty net in a 9-3 win over
Medicine Hat in Lethbridge on March 18, 2016.
MacKenzie Entwistle - Hamilton Bulldogs (OHL)
Born: July 14, 1999 – Georgetown, Ontario, Canada
Weight: 181 lbs.
Drafted: 2015 OHL Draft – Round #2 (40th Overall) by the Hamilton Bulldogs
A free shooting, high flying winger who is very quick to see opportunities in all three zones and shows creativity setting up his line mates and taking advantage of holes in the defence. Plays a responsible 200-foot game and is an elite level penalty killer. Entwistle needs to grow the confidence to skate the puck to the danger areas where he currently would rather skate out of trouble than cause trouble. He has the height but needs to add some weight to give him a stronger lower body to help improve his skating and acceleration. He has seen time as the first line centre because he distributes the puck so well but can also play the wing. While he is struggling to find consistency as a top line centre and with the addition of Will Bitten (in a trade with Flint), his creativity and offensive ability are still evident every shift he plays, proving he is a versatile player.
DID YOU KNOW? Entwistle played his minor hockey in the Toronto Marlboros program where his minor midget year culminated in an OHL Cup championship in 2015. MacKenzie was an assistant captain on the team that featured fellow 2017 draft eligible teammate Matthew Strome. Entwistle has played with Strome on the Marlies since they were in minor atom.
Pierre-Olivier Joseph - Charlottetown Islanders (QMJHL)
Born: July 1, 1999 – Chambly, Quebec, Canada
Weight: 160 lbs.
Drafted: 2015 QMJHL Draft – Round #5 (78th overall) by the Charlottetown Islanders
Real athletic defenceman who can move the puck well out of his zone with a good first pass. Can read the play well and follow up his passes getting into good position in the offensive zone. Knows where to go and has developed good hockey sense in that aspect. An undersized defenceman, he has a lot of filling out to do. His tall, thin frame shows he is physically incapable of going into the corners and digging the puck loose. However, he is very mobile and does a good job of keeping his head up. Hesitant to go deep into the offensive zone and is more comfortable staying back on the blue line. Because of his small stature and his development process, he is looked at as a long-term project for any team that may select him in the draft but the talent and hockey IQ are there to be patient with.
DID YOU KNOW? Joseph’s brother, Mathieu, is a 19-year-old playing for the Saint John Sea Dogs and is a 2015 fourth round draft pick of the Tampa Bay Lightning. Similar in size, Mathieu has posted over 100 points as a Right Wing in four seasons with Saint John.
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5) Meet the 2018 World Junior Team Canada