Bruins Prospect News and Notes

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Andy Moog! Andy God Damn Moog!
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I believe Vaak is at the top of their young defenseman list. He was a rock for the Fins in the WJC. A lot of recent comparisons to Hjalmarsson (sp?) as well. I suspect if you see them trading Krug or Gryz, he is why. He can't replicate Krug's PP skills, but man is Vaak smooth. He is going to have a long and steady career.

After that, it seems evident Studnicka is probably their best center prospect by far. Hopefully his all around game is strong enough to start really competing for the 3C spot the next few years.

I agree on Shen. Really intriguing for a 7th rounder. Seems like they got great value there.

Outside of that, not much else there at F or D.

As for Goalies, I have to think Keyser has jumped ahead of Swayman at this point on the prospect depth chart. Not sure that means much though.
I’d rather keep Grzelcyk. McAvoy can take Krug’s power play time.
 

TFP

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That would be a significant step down. Which I'm ok with, but Krug's offense is pretty irreplaceable among their current D roster. He's 5th in the NHL in scoring among defensemen over the last 3 years. He's an elite offensive defenseman, especially on the PP. Expecting McAvoy to replace that is unlikely (but not impossible). Expecting Grzelcyk to replace it is like expecting Moore to replace it. The only thing in common between Grz and Krug is their height and which way they hold their stick.

That said, if the argument is that Krug is going to get overpaid after next year and they don't have any desire to spend on him while understanding they can get good value in return, I can understand trading him. But it won't be because they have people who can replace his production, because they don't.
 

veritas

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I believe Vaak is at the top of their young defenseman list. He was a rock for the Fins in the WJC. A lot of recent comparisons to Hjalmarsson (sp?) as well. I suspect if you see them trading Krug or Gryz, he is why. He can't replicate Krug's PP skills, but man is Vaak smooth. He is going to have a long and steady career.

After that, it seems evident Studnicka is probably their best center prospect by far. Hopefully his all around game is strong enough to start really competing for the 3C spot the next few years.

I agree on Shen. Really intriguing for a 7th rounder. Seems like they got great value there.

Outside of that, not much else there at F or D.

As for Goalies, I have to think Keyser has jumped ahead of Swayman at this point on the prospect depth chart. Not sure that means much though.
Agree on Vaakanainen being their best young defenseman (I'm assuming you're ignoring McAvoy because he's already a stud). Not sure he'll ever be the physical defender Hjalmarsson is/was, but it's a pretty good comparison as far a really good player in the defensive and neutral zone. Stylistically, Hampus Lindholm is a good comparable. Or Grzelcyk without his physical limitations. He defends by being smart and fast, and can transition the puck.

That would be a significant step down. Which I'm ok with, but Krug's offense is pretty irreplaceable among their current D roster. He's 5th in the NHL in scoring among defensemen over the last 3 years. He's an elite offensive defenseman, especially on the PP. Expecting McAvoy to replace that is unlikely (but not impossible). Expecting Grzelcyk to replace it is like expecting Moore to replace it. The only thing in common between Grz and Krug is their height and which way they hold their stick.

That said, if the argument is that Krug is going to get overpaid after next year and they don't have any desire to spend on him while understanding they can get good value in return, I can understand trading him. But it won't be because they have people who can replace his production, because they don't.
Yeah I have mixed feelings on trading Krug. His offense is unique and valuable, but any trade hypotheticals assume you're getting offense back at C/W. I also think he is going to age very poorly, and would rather sell a year early than a year late (or never). I think the offense they'd gain from getting another 2C would cancel out what they'd lose from Krug and make them a much more balanced team. But it's a risky move.

Cshea left out the AHL guys. Maybe that was intentional, as there's not much positive to talk about there. Senyshyn has continued to disappoint, Frederic has really struggled. Zboril has been fine, but not pushing for a callup. The goaltending has been bad statistically, although I'm assuming some of that has to do with the defense. Vladar has been meh, and McIntyre has been terrible. Vladar is still pretty young though, and it's a positive sign that he's outplayed McIntyre.

While their high end prospects in Providence have disappointed, it does seem like they have a handful of depth guys that can step into the bottom of the NHL roster. Colby Cave has probably been the best P-Bruin, and he's filled in ok in a bottom 6 role. Cliffton/Lauzon have been pretty good and held their own in the NHL. Bjork/Gemel Smith have been really good in their limited minutes, I'd assume they're the next 2 up in case of emergency. Blidh/Kuhlman could probably eat some 4th line minutes just fine too.
 

Dummy Hoy

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Thirded on Shen. When I saw him at the World juniors, he looked like he’ll be a contributor in the show. Vaakanainan didn’t really stand out to me, but was just solid as fuck. I was a bit surprised to see the mpg numbers for him, but that’s fabulous. Another guy who will almost certainly contribute in Boston.
 

veritas

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Studnicka traded to Niagra today. A marginally better team. Don't know enough about junior hockey to have much analysis. Niagra does seem to have more high-end talent up front looking at their numbers.

 

cshea

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Studnicka joins Bukac on Niagara.

I was going to put Providence players in the Providence thread, but never got around to it. Agreed that there isn’t too much intriguing going on down there. Fitzgerald is their leading scorer, but just got hurt. Cehlarik has been decent, but I feel like they’ve written him off and he’ll be trade fodder. Senyshyn has 11 goals in 32 games, so at least there is a slight up tick in production from a year ago. He is almost 100 games into his AHL career though and a sub .50 points per game average isn’t really what you want out of a top pick. If we want to take a glass half full approach, he’s got 6 goals 1 assist and 29 SOG in his last 10, so maybe he’s figured something out.

It is hard to get a read on the D, the AHL doesn’t provide TOI stats. I think the depth chart is pretty clear though- Vaak, Lauzon, Clifton, Zboril.
 

Eddie Jurak

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That would be a significant step down. Which I'm ok with, but Krug's offense is pretty irreplaceable among their current D roster. He's 5th in the NHL in scoring among defensemen over the last 3 years. He's an elite offensive defenseman, especially on the PP. Expecting McAvoy to replace that is unlikely (but not impossible). Expecting Grzelcyk to replace it is like expecting Moore to replace it. The only thing in common between Grz and Krug is their height and which way they hold their stick.

That said, if the argument is that Krug is going to get overpaid after next year and they don't have any desire to spend on him while understanding they can get good value in return, I can understand trading him. But it won't be because they have people who can replace his production, because they don't.
This is all spot on. For a long time I had hopes that Krug's defensive game would progress, which it really hasn't. But his offensive game, already good, has continured to progress, to a point where he's nearly a point per game guy now.

It's remarkable how different Grzelcyk and Krug are (now and going forward) as players.

My preference would be to keep Krug because he brings something unique to the table, but it's true that money might dictate otherwise.
 

lexrageorge

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I wouldn't rush to trade Krug during this season. The team is on a run, and Krug's ability to drive the offense is a key part of that run. Despite his somewhat misleading +/- stats, he's still a plus possession player. And their defensive depth will be a valuable commodity come the playoffs, especially in a matchup with Tampa.

I can understand trying to move on from him during the offseason. Both McAvoy and Carlo will be RFA's, Chara will be UFA, Grzelcyk will be on the final year of his rookie contract, and both Miller and Krug will be UFA the following offseason. Despite being a rental, his skills are still hard to find among defensemen, and so he should fetch a decent return.
 

veritas

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I like what Sweeny had to say about Vaakanainen:

“I think offensively we’d still like to see him maybe be willing to take some chances. As funny as that sounds, we’re trying to build strong habits into other young players, I think there’s an untapped potential. We don’t know yet. We just see his ability to skate and recover, get up ice, take away ice. And there could be shot improvement, of course,” the GM said. “He hasn’t played a lot of power play, he’s been in that elite league over in Finland. You know that lends to the fact the guy’s going to play safe and simple. Now we want to see him maybe develop a little swagger. You compare him to other players that probably that’s [the offensive game] a little more ready-made, but we’re going to see whether or not we can grow it. But he played very well.”
https://weei.radio.com/blogs/matt-kalman/bruins-gm-don-sweeneys-assessment-all-6-bruins-prospects-2019-wjc
 

cshea

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Vaakanainen scored his first 2 pro goals today in a 2g 1a effort for Providence. Wish they made TOI data public, but he seems to be coming along nicely. 2g 10a in 25 games, a touch under .5 PPG. He had 11 points in 43 Finnish pro league games last year, so he has brought a touch more offense here in North America.

On the other end, JFK left today’s game with an upper body injury. Apparently he took a big hit. Today was his first game back in a month after suffering a concussion when he was first demoted from Boston. Really hope he is OK, this could be his 3rd concussion in 2 seasons in Providence.
 

cshea

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In other news, the surprise in the system this season has to be Oskar Steen, their 6th round pick in 2016. He has had a breakout year in the Swedish Elite League,16-17=33 in 42 games. For reference, last year he had 4-2=6 in 45 games. He has always been a kid that people like in dev camp. If the offensive leap is real we may have an NHL player here.

Divver said he’s hearing that Steen is on the radar of Team Sweden for the World Championships, and that the Bruins will look to sign him.

 

cshea

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2 goals in 3 games this weekend for Vaakanainen. Up to .5 points per game, very nice start to his pro career. 4-10=14 in 28 games.
 

veritas

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After a slow start, Studnicka has been on fire the second half of the season. Now up to 24g/25a/49p in 30 games with Niagra, after 34 points in 30 games with Oshawa.
 

cshea

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2017 7th rounder Victor Berglund has joined Providence on an ATO. 4-9=13 in 50 SEL games. Right shot defenseman.
 

cshea

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Most of the amateur and overseas pro league seasons are over or in the playoffs. Here’s a look at the B’s system:

CHL

Jack Studnicka- 60 games, 36-47=83
Jakub Lauko- 44 games, 21-20=41
Cedric Pare- 68 games, 17-32=49
Daniel Bukac- 54 games 4-11=15
Kyle Keyser- .915, 2 shutouts

EUROPE

Axel Andersson- 41 games 0-5=5
Oskar Steen- 46 games 17-20=37
Victor Berglund- 50 games 4-9=13
Pavel Shen- 38 games 0-4=4
Note on Shen: That is a combined total from playing in 3 leagues with the KHL being the top league he has played in (20 games 1 asssist). He also apparently has 31 games played at the international level, 12 goals 7 assists. The kid has played for 6 teams this year.

NCAA/OTHER

Jack Becker- 36 games 6-9=15
Cameron Clarke- 34 games 0-8=8
Curtis Hall- 24 games 5-6=11
Jeremy Swayman- .919
Dustyn McFaul- 48 games 3-13=16 in the OJHL. He is going to Clarkson next year.

PROVIDENCE

Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson- 20 games 2-7=9
Trent Frederic- 44 games- 11-11=22
Zach Senyshyn- 59 games- 14-10=24
Ryan Fitzgerald- 53 games 8-25=33
Cameron Hughes- 52 games 13-15=28
Gemel Smith- 39 games 13-20=33
Peter Cehlarik- 44 games 12-20=32
Urho Vaakanainen- 28 games 4-10=14
Jakub Zboril- 4-12=16
Jeremy Lauzon- 24 games 1-5=6
McIntyre- .902
Vladar- .901

So that’s it.

Not much to get excited about in Providence outside of Vaakanainen, who has missed the past 2 weeks with injury. JFK has had a rough go of it since the Bruins sent him down. Missed a month with a concussion, then got hurt again in his first game back. 5 points in his last 9 games so hopefully he’s on track. Frederic has 4 points in his last 5 and is doing a lot of fighting. I don’t know if Gemel Smith even qualifies as a prospect, but his production is a surprise. We’ll see if it continues and he has unlocked something. Senyshyn has 3 goals in his last 30 games, which is disappointing. 26 goals in 125 career AHL games. Hard to see him as much more than bottom 6 fodder. I’m not sure what kind of usage he is getting, but between injuries and call-ups, I would think he’s gotten a bit more of an elevated role but he hasn’t been able to gain any traction. Defensively, hard to get a read on guys because of the AHL not publishing TOI. So who knows. Lauzon has only played 2 games since mid-January so he’s obviously dealing with an injury. Reports on Vaak are good, and there’s some production there. Haven’t heard too much about Zboril, but I think he’s clearly fallen behind Clifton and Vaak on the depth chart, and perhaps a healthy Lauzon.

Outside of the organization, Jack Studnicka is the cream of the crop. Him and Vaakanainen are 1-2 in some order if we were to do a prospects ranking. He’ll probably join Providence when his OHL season ends, but that could be a while as his Niagara team is pretty good. Currently 1-1 in their opening round against North Bay (game 3 tonight). Oskar Steen has worked his way into “maybe they have something here” status. His point production in the same league jumped from 6 points to 37 (and 10th overall in the league) with one extra game played. His team is in the playoffs. Divver was saying a while back that he heard Steen is in Sweden’s radar for the World’s, so I’m not sure if he’ll make it to Providence for the stretch run if/when his Europe season ends. I’d think the Bruins would want to get him here for next season if possible.

Not much to be overly excited about in the college ranks. Swayman’s their top collegiate player. I don’t see much room for Swayman until after next season. Vladar is under contract next year, and Keyser loses his junior eligibility so they have to find a place for him to play. McIntyre is a UFA but could re-sign to fulfill expansion draft requirements. So we are probably looking at a McIntyre/Vladar net again next year, or Vladar/Keyser.

Anywho, there’s the system and some cshea ramblings.
 

BigMike

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Everything I hear on Zboril is he has been pretty darn solid the last few months, and just delivers quality play on a nightly basis. It may be he doesn't do it here, but I still think he is going to have a very solid decade long NHL career.
 

LogansDad

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So, I don't know a lot about the CHL, other than the fact that I lit the league up in NHL 17, so I have to ask.... how tantalizing should those numbers from Studnicka be?
 

TheRealness

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Studnicka is an exciting player. His speed is going to play in the NHL. Bruins really needed someone that could be a top 2 center long term and he seems the best fit out of everyone. Frederic has been improving all year, but may just end up being a Coyle like player as a better than average 3rd line center that’s more possession oriented.

Everything else seems very blah. Steen gives them a little more upside depth, but that’s countered by the stagnation of Zboril and Senysyhn. The latter is very disappointing, and his lack of any real improvement this year suggests this may be who he is. Zboril seems to slowly get better, but Vaak is already ahead of him. DeBrusk is nice, but those are two pretty big whiffs.
 

TheRealness

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So, I don't know a lot about the CHL, other than the fact that I lit the league up in NHL 17, so I have to ask.... how tantalizing should those numbers from Studnicka be?
Numbers are nice and all, but it’s his speed and overall game that is impressive.

He’s a real STUDnicka. (I am so sorry).
 

cshea

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Carey’s just depth. The proverbial AAAA guy.
So, I don't know a lot about the CHL, other than the fact that I lit the league up in NHL 17, so I have to ask.... how tantalizing should those numbers from Studnicka be?
I guess for some perspective, he’s 17th in the league in scoring and 11th in points per game. He also just turned 20 and is playing in a league with 17 and 18 year olds. He had 72 points in 66 games last seaso so the jump to 83 in 60 is a good sign (he also got traded midseason to a better team).
 

RoDaddy

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[QUOTE="cshea, post: 3323768, member:I guess for some perspective, he’s 17th in the league in scoring and 11th in points per game. He also just turned 20 and is playing in a league with 17 and 18 year olds. He had 72 points in 66 games last seaso so the jump to 83 in 60 is a good sign (he also got traded midseason to a better team).[/QUOTE]

Maybe a decent comp is Ryan Spooner, as they both are centers who have put up good junior numbers and can motor. That said, Stud has a better overall game as mentioned above, and is bigger. So there's a least some hope for something better than Spooner, who had his moments but ultimately disappointed
 
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cshea

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Studnicka’s season came to an end last night, running into a hot Kyle Keyser. Keyser has a .943 save percentage in 11 playoff games.

Studnicka finished with 11 points in 8 playoff games. He’ll probably join Providence sometime this week as they prepare to play Charlotte in the playoffs which start this weekend.
 

veritas

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Studnicka joining Providence this week for the playoffs.

In other news, Jesse Gabrielle placed on unconditional waivers. What happened to his career?
 

cshea

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Something must’ve gone on behind the scenes with Gabrielle. He was in NHL camp prior to last year, then started in Providence. 20 games in they sent him back to juniors. This year, with half the team in China, they told him not to show up to NHL camp and to just report to Providence. Never played a game for Providence, banished to the ECHL and now his contract is being terminated. Seems pretty clear the Bruins did not want him around.
 

veritas

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Something must’ve gone on behind the scenes with Gabrielle. He was in NHL camp prior to last year, then started in Providence. 20 games in they sent him back to juniors. This year, with half the team in China, they told him not to show up to NHL camp and to just report to Providence. Never played a game for Providence, banished to the ECHL and now his contract is being terminated. Seems pretty clear the Bruins did not want him around.
He wasn't the same player when they sent him back to juniors after his 20 game AHL stint. Someone with his pedigree shouldn't have had a decline in production as an over-ager in the WHL. I'm guessing either injuries or off-ice issues. If it's the latter, I hope the organization offered him help and didn't just send him off to Wichita.
 

TheRealness

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Studnicka with the snipe today:


And him getting absolutely robbed earlier:


EDIT: Look at this pass by the Stud:

 
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TheRealness

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I didn't see this coming:

I don't see him having much of a role moving forward. Coyle is signed for one more year, Studnicka has dashed past him in the prospect ranks, and you still have Krejci and Bergeron. He can't play anywhere other than Center.

Could end up being a decent bottom 6 player if he can ever stay healthy, but I am less surprised by this. I just don't see him having much of a future here.
 

The Napkin

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Sweeney said he intends to come back to the Bruins but for now wants to be in Sweden. But yeah, not sure we'll ever see the guy.
 

cshea

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Thought he got a decent enough look, 28 games this year, but never really looked like he belonged. Pretty underwhelming results at Providence too. Add in his unfortunate concussion problems and he just never seemed to gain any traction.

I guess the best case scenario is a Soderberg situation where in 2-3 years he’s ready to come back. Divver tweeted that JFK “looked like a player with a lot on his mind” and JFK made a midsession trip back to Sweden so hopefully all is well with him and his family.
 

lexrageorge

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JFK showed some flashes of being a promising prospect while he was at BU, and was looking forward to seeing what he would do wearing the spoked B. Example of how the 2nd round is a lot of hit-or-miss type players. None of the players picked after him have done much so far, aside from Cirelli and possibly Malgin, so it's not like they missed out on anyone at that slot.

Maybe some time in Sweden will help him regain his confidence a bit and see where he goes from there.
 

AMcGhie

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Maybe some time in Sweden will help him regain his confidence a bit and see where he goes from there.
Going back to the place you grew up, where you are comfortable and surrounded by social support is definitely a way to get that. From the Sweeney quotes, I really do think that both sides see this as a way for him to develop in a better environment for him, so that he can come back and be confident/comfortable.
 

tonyandpals

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Cassidy said that "the providence guys" will be up for the scrimmage. Said he's excited to get a good look at some of them.
 

cshea

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B’s drop to 29th in Pronman’s annual farm system rankings. He had them at 27 last year. It is behind the Athletic paywall.


He has the prospect rankings as:

1. Jack Studnicka
2. Urho Vaakanainen
3. John Beecher
4. Kyle Keyser
5. Trent Frederic
6. Karson Kuhlman
7. Jakub Lauko
8. Jakub Zboril
9. Pavel Shen
10. Oskar Steen
11. Jeremy Swayman
12. Zach Senyshyn
13. Cam Hughes
14. Peter Cehlarik
15. Curtis Hall
16. Axel Andersson
17. Matias Mantykivi
HM: Jeremy Lauzon, Victor Berglund

Pronman defines a prospect as 27 or younger with less than 25 games of NHL experience in the previous season or 50 games overall experience. Thus Clifton, Bjork and JFK “graduated.” He had Donato as their top prospect last year and he’s obviously moved on.

Pronman has always been pretty low on the Bruins. They have a lot of high floor low ceiling types, and no real blue chippers. The weirdest ranking/discrepancy to me is Lauzon as an afterthought. The Bruins at least have him above Zboril on the depth chart.
 

Dummy Hoy

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Agree on that...I’m okay with prospect peeps preferring high ceiling over high floor, but he is a bit low on what the Bruins are trying to do. The Lauzon ranking stood out to me too.