Bruins Prospect News and Notes

PedroSpecialK

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He doesn't have the game-breaking speed that most top-end forward prospects do these days, but man he sees the game well.

I’m fine with adding him as Acciari / Czarnik insurance, maybe even supplanting Nash and pushing him down to line 4 with Kuraly and Schaller
 

cshea

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This was the first time I’ve gotten much of a look at Donato. Skating does seem to be his weakness, but he knows his way around the offensive end and has an NHL ready release. He’s good at finding soft spots where he can sit in open ice, get the puck and fire it quickly.

I don’t see much harm in getting him signed now and bringing him aboard. At the very least they can have him get his feet wet in Providence, and maybe get a few games in Boston down the stretch when the Bruins are hopefully resting guys.
 

The Napkin

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I wonder how much of the skating issue will be solved/hidden/diminished on smaller NHL ice as opposed to the international Olympic sized?
What size is Harvard?
 

RedOctober3829

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It's Donato's world, we're just living in it.

I'm becoming increasingly convinced he becomes their "deadline pickup" on forward. I didn't think that a week ago.
As much as I like what he's done in the Olympics, I'm afraid of him becoming the next JFK. I don't necessarily think that he's ready to compete in the NHL so I would rather not stunt his growth. Give him a year in Providence before he comes up. If he wants to get a cup of coffee in Boston before the year is over and he wants to burn a year of the ELC, then do it. But I don't think he's an upgrade on anybody in Boston.
 

gryoung

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As much as I like what he's done in the Olympics, I'm afraid of him becoming the next JFK. I don't necessarily think that he's ready to compete in the NHL so I would rather not stunt his growth. Give him a year in Providence before he comes up. If he wants to get a cup of coffee in Boston before the year is over and he wants to burn a year of the ELC, then do it. But I don't think he's an upgrade on anybody in Boston.

Hasn’t JFK only been with the Bruins since last summer? That doesn’t seem like much time before throwing the kid onto the trash heap. From all I’ve read, JFK is projected to be a top nine player. He’s what ......21/22?
 

RedOctober3829

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Hasn’t JFK only been with the Bruins since last summer? That doesn’t seem like much time before throwing the kid onto the trash heap. From all I’ve read, JFK is projected to be a top nine player. He’s what ......21/22?
If you remember he signed out of BU, played in the last game of the season, and spent the playoffs sitting in the 9th floor. He should've been in Providence playing in all of the playoff games there continuing to develop. Donato should go to Providence and continue to develop.
 

veritas

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JFK is also still younger than Donato, as are 5 current Bruins. At his age, Donato better be dominating the NCAA like he did to be considered a good prospect. I think it's a little premature to consider him a sure fire NHLer.

Projecting how quickly guys adjust to a large increase in competition level is something real scouts have a hard time with so I don't want to speculate too much whether he can play now. He has some skills that are more than NHL ready and some that are not.

Long term I think he's probably a 3rd liner who adds value on the power play. Sort of what Spooner is is year, but with a much different style of offensive game.
 

timlinin8th

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He doesn't have the game-breaking speed that most top-end forward prospects do these days, but man he sees the game well.

I’m fine with adding him as Acciari / Czarnik insurance, maybe even supplanting Nash and pushing him down to line 4 with Kuraly and Schaller
I don’t see him supplanting Nash, who has been playing great and is unlikely to lose his spot to someone who is an unknown at the NHL level. Also, I assume if Donato did make the Bruins’ roster it would be at the wing and not center so as to not be asking for him to immediately be an NHL level two way player. He’s not playing ahead of Marchand, Debrusk, or Heinen (another assumption: that they wouldn’t push him to his offwing) so maybe he could slot into the fourth line where Schaller is, though I’d rather see what he can do in Providence first. There is no pressing need to try and push him into service.
 

TheRealness

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I would disagree on him projecting as a third liner. He’s got clear top 6 potential. As for his skating, I think it’s being underrated here. He has a lot of quickness, but his straight ahead speed is a bit lacking. His size and strength showed he could play with adults, but I worry if he’s just a bigger Vatrano.

I do agree he should finish his last NCAA season and then go to Providence though. I don’t see him making the jump this year, but then again I didn’t expect him to drop 5 goals in the Olympics.
 

lexrageorge

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JFK is currently 4th in scoring for the P-Bruins, and the guys he trails are all AHL veterans with some NHL experience (Czarnik, Agostino, and Szwarz). He's probably still a year away, but he just turned 21. I don't think his growth was stunted at all.
 

veritas

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I would disagree on him projecting as a third liner. He’s got clear top 6 potential. As for his skating, I think it’s being underrated here. He has a lot of quickness, but his straight ahead speed is a bit lacking. His size and strength showed he could play with adults, but I worry if he’s just a bigger Vatrano.

I do agree he should finish his last NCAA season and then go to Providence though. I don’t see him making the jump this year, but then again I didn’t expect him to drop 5 goals in the Olympics.
Yeah I agree he definitely has top 6 potential, but I think the median projection is a good 3rd liner, for me at least. Decent chance he's better or worse than that. It's tough to be a top 6 player when you're not big or a very good skater. And I've seen flashes of that make me optimistic but also a lot of lackadaisical and/or sloppy skating to concern me. But his shot and handle and hockey sense is good enough that if he can improve his weaknesses, I wouldn't be shocked seeing him become a 1st liner.

And when I'm referring to lines it's more in the literal sense, not what line he'll play on. A top 30 center or top 60 winger is a 1st liner. Plenty of 1st liners play on second lines, 3rd liners on 1st lines, etc. Really, there are very very few players that project to be 1st liners before playing an NHL game

I'm curious what people project Bjork to be. I have him above Donato overall but his upside a little lower
 

TheRealness

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I was really high on Bjork coming into the season and low on DeBrusk, and the results have been the opposite. Heinen is carrying over what he did in Providence and is ahead of all of them. I still think Bjork has top 6 potential, but he's probably still ahead of Donato as I would put them Heinen/DeBrusk/Bjork/Donato.

Good problem to have.
 

Dummy Hoy

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I would disagree on him projecting as a third liner. He’s got clear top 6 potential. As for his skating, I think it’s being underrated here. He has a lot of quickness, but his straight ahead speed is a bit lacking. His size and strength showed he could play with adults, but I worry if he’s just a bigger Vatrano.

I do agree he should finish his last NCAA season and then go to Providence though. I don’t see him making the jump this year, but then again I didn’t expect him to drop 5 goals in the Olympics.
This is the comparison I’ve been thinking about and that worries me a bit; I like Vatrano, but he’s not a top 6 guy at the NHL level. Donato is a slightly better skater and seems to have a higher hockey IQ (probably a regular IQ too, no offense to my alma mater). I hope it translates, and I can see the outcome where it does (even as early as this year), but it’s not a pressing need. As people have said- nice problem to have.
 

jsinger121

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I think its insane to compare Donato to Vatrano an undrafted free agent who had 1 good season in college. Donato has had 2 really good college seasons (this year and last) along with a very good freshman season and dominated in the Olympics and was very good 2 years ago in the World Juniors. He also dominated NE Prep hockey for 3 straight years. Vatrano to me is what he is. A 4th line/healthy scratch guy that will be up and down and between the NHL and AHL over his career.
 

Eddie Jurak

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I think its insane to compare Donato to Vatrano an undrafted free agent who had 1 good season in college. Donato has had 2 really good college seasons (this year and last) along with a very good freshman season and dominated in the Olympics and was very good 2 years ago in the World Juniors. He also dominated NE Prep hockey for 3 straight years. Vatrano to me is what he is. A 4th line/healthy scratch guy that will be up and down and between the NHL and AHL over his career.
Not a reasonable comparison. Vatrano is a guy who spent a lot of his formative hockey years being injured. As a result, he’s got one elite skill, his shot, but an overall game that is sub-NHL level.

He needs to go to Europe or a less competitive NHL team that can afford to let him learn on the job.

Given the Bruins’ rapid progression from old mediocre team to youth-drove contender, there just isn’t a realistic shot for him here anymore.
 

jk333

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Vatrano and Donato can be reasonably compared. Vatrano’s 15-16’ AHL season is more impressive than any Donato season yet. Donato’s age 21 season at the NCAA level has been much better than Vatrano’s age 21 season. Vatrano played in an arguably more difficult league on a poor team.

Donato has better pedigree but Vatrano is a decent comparison. As is Jimmy Vesey; Vesey put up similar stats to Donato including 32 goals and 58 points in 37 games as a junior for the same Harvard team.

Donato is a great prospect with 1st line upside but it’s definitely reasonable to compare his production with players in a similar developmental path like Vesey and Vatrano. Overall, he’s improved his value since draft day and that’s great for the Bruins.
 

cshea

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The Vatrano trade and Bjork season ending injury would seem to have opened a door for Donato to get an opportunity this year if/when he signs. 2 wingers out.
 

cshea

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Post-deadline check-in.

CHL

Jack Studnicka- 58 games, 16-44=60
Cedric Pare- 51 games, 11-21=32
Daniel Bukac- 31gamss, 0-7=7
Kyle Keyser- .909 save pefcentage

Europe

Urho Vaakanainen- 38 games, 3-5=8
Joona Koppanen- 40 games, 0-11=11
Oskar Steen- 39 games, 3-2=5
Alex Khokhlachev- 50 games, 19-29=48
Victor Berglund- 33 games 1-6=7

NCAA

Ryan Donato- 25 games, 22-11= 33
Wiley Sherman- 29 games, 3-4=7
Trent Frederic- 34 games, 15-13=28
Cam Hughes- 35 games, 7-13=20
Jack Becker- 27 games 7-4=11
Jeremy Swayman- .920 save %

Providence

Austin Czarnik- 44 games, 14-33=47
Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson- 55 games 13-16=29
Ryan Fitzgerald- 45 games, 12-12=24
Zach Senyshyn- 47 games 7-11=18
Peter Cehlarik- 28 games 7-9=16
Jakub Zboril- 51 games 1-10=11
Emil Johansson- 37 games 2-6=8
Jeremy Lauzon- 31 games 0-3=3
Zane McIntyre- .913 save %

JFK and Zboril suffered injuries recently and are “week to week.” Senyshyn’s been out for a bit too. On the NCAA side, Cam Hughes and Wiley Sherman are in their last year of Bruins control and can become UFA’s in August if they don’t sign.
 

PedroSpecialK

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Keyser's .909 sv% in the O isn't particularly poor either for a guy they gave up nothing to sign - he's 6th in the league among goalies with 40+ GP and has a 24-11-2 record despite the elevated 3.00 GAA.

League average there is closer .905 than the ~.910-.915 we see in the NHL
 

FL4WL3SS

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That does raise the question about how much stock you can put into goalie statistics in those non-pro leagues. Evaluation of goalies is definitely complex, so maybe a more accurate evaluation would be on technique?
 

TheRealness

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Guess I don't know enough about him, but my preliminary research made him seem like more of the same (McIntyre).

Interested to hear more.
What preliminary research says he's like McIntyre other than they are both NCAA goalies? Swayman has height (6'3"), and skills. He's been outperforming more well known goalies like Oettinger (BU), and Wohl (BC) all year.
 

FL4WL3SS

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I believe they are the same height, McIntyre weighs about 20 lbs more, which isn't necessarily a good thing for a goalie. I took a quick look at GAA in the NCAA and draft position. Was probably being unfair to Swayman.

I'd love to learn more about him if you've seen him play.
 

cshea

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I think McIntyre still qualifies. He had a .930 save percentage a year ago in the A. Bumpy start this year, but he’s raised his save percentage from .893 to .912 in 6 weeks.

It is really hard to judge goalies and their readiness. They take forever to develop sometimes the play in front of them can impact the traditional stats that are used. Subban looked lost, but has turned into a serviceable backup. Who knows. They are a crap shoot.
 

veritas

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Guess I don't know enough about him, but my preliminary research made him seem like more of the same (McIntyre).

Interested to hear more.
Yeah, is that bad or good? McIntyre was a Hobey Baker Finalist and best college goalie in the NCAA in his junior year. Before this year he was definitely a legit goalie prospect
 

RIFan

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JFK got rocked at a PBruins game over the weekend. My son was at the game and said he was basically out on the ice and was attended to by doctors before getting helped off. It's been listed as an "upper body" injury. As with all injuries, info will be tight but this one might be concerning at least for depth for the rest of the season.
 

FL4WL3SS

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Yeah, is that bad or good? McIntyre was a Hobey Baker Finalist and best college goalie in the NCAA in his junior year. Before this year he was definitely a legit goalie prospect
Fair enough. He was also in some pretty good ND teams.

Was definitely making judgements with the limited information I had on the other 2 goalies.
 

cshea

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Wisconsin’s season ended yesterday.

Frederic- 36 games 17-15=32
Hughes- 37 games 8-14=22

We’ll see if either sign. Hughes could go to UFA if he chooses. I don’t see much of a need to rush with Frederic, but you never know.
 

cshea

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Harvard beat Dartmouth 2 games to 1 this weekend to advance to the ECAC semi’s. They get Clarkson next weekend.

Donato was a monster....4-4=8 in the 3 games. Hat trick yesterday in the deciding game 3.
 

burstnbloom

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Hughes signed an ATO over the weekend. I'm curious to see what he is at the AHL level. Strikes me as bottom 6 depth with a chance to make the show. I think they sign Frederic, if they can. There is a spot for him on next years team if they don't resign Nash and JFK doesn't make the leap. An audition in providence would really help his cause.

Donato continues to impress. 7 points in the 2 elimination games against Dartmouth.
 

cshea

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Yes, Frederic, Hughes and any other college signees will be playoff eligible if they sign ATO’s.

The JFK rule I believe is if the player signs an ELC for this season and burn the year. In that scenario they aren’t eligible for the AHL postseason.
 

Eddie Jurak

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Yes, Frederic, Hughes and any other college signees will be playoff eligible if they sign ATO’s.

The JFK rule I believe is if the player signs an ELC for this season and burn the year. In that scenario they aren’t eligible for the AHL postseason.
Moronic rule, BTW.
 

cshea

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Urho Vaakanainen’s season ended yesterday. Curious to see if the Bruins try to bring him over now to finish the year in Providence.

43 regular season games 4-7=11. 1 assist in 9 playoff games. Apparently playing ~30 minutes a night.