The Calgary Flames hopeful is small but potent. Learn about his hot streak and other prospects making news right now in our weekly wrap
We’re heading into the stretch run, folks. Some CHL teams have already clinched playoff berths, while NCAA teams are jockeying for seeds in their upcoming conference tournaments. The Olympics have produced some nice performances from the kids and no doubt we’ll see some high-end prospects change NHL affiliations at the trade deadline. A big-time Five Nations tourney in Michigan is in the books, so scouts got an eyeful of many top-end 2018 prospects, so let’s take a look at some of the kids attracting the right kind of attention this week.
Matthew Phillips, RW, Victoria Royals (WHL) – Amazingly, Phillips’ current 21-game point streak isn’t the longest in the WHL this season (Aleksi Heponiemi went 28 games), but the diminutive Calgary Flames pick is still going, so who knows? Phillips has 40 points in that span, using his great hands and vision to cause havoc for the Royals. NHL arrival: 2020-21
Eeli Tolvanen, RW, Jokerit (KHL) – Tolvanen is straight clowning the Olympics. The Nashville Predators first-rounder has been the engine for Finland and even if he’s playing lesser lights such as Korea, he’s still dominating, with nine points in four games and counting. Based on his offensive skill set, he’s definitely gunning for a spot with the Preds next year but if Jokerit bows out of the KHL playoffs early (very possible since they’re in the same conference as SKA and Red Army), do we see him even sooner? NHL arrival: 2018-19
Jake Kupsky, G, Union Dutchmen (ECAC) – Boy, did Kupsky pick the right time to get hot. As his Dutchmen approach the stretch run of the college season, the San Jose Sharks pick has five straight wins, giving up only six goals against during that span. A big netminder with great athleticism, he’s looking like a steal as a seventh-rounder. NHL arrival: 2020-21
Liam Foudy, C, London Knights (OHL) – It’s amazing what an opportunity can do sometimes. The Knights traded away big offensive names such as Robert Thomas, Max Jones and Cliff Pu before the deadline and that opened a lane for Foudy, who is charging up the 2018 draft board. A speedster with skill, he has 12 points in his past seven games for London. NHL arrival: 2020-21
Ostap Safin, RW, Saint John Sea Dogs (QMJHL) – The Sea Dogs are having a championship hangover, but that hasn’t stopped Safin from turning in a fantastic rookie season in the ‘Q.’ The Edmonton Oilers pick has 11 points in his past five games, using his skill and his brawn to make things happen. He’s the Sea Dogs’ leading scorer by a mile right now. NHL arrival: 2020-21
Matej Blumel, LW, Waterloo Black Hawks (USHL) – Blumel had himself a statement Five Nations tournament in Michigan, highlighted by a four-goal effort against Team USA. The 2018 draft prospect and University of Connecticut commit is strong on his skates and obviously has a nice dose of offensive skill to his game. Overall, he put up seven points in four games for the Czechs. NHL arrival: 2020-21
Joel Farabee, LW, U.S. NTDP (USHL) – The whole top line of Farabee, Jack Hughes and Oliver Wahlstrom is awesome, but let’s show some love for Farabee, the Boston U. commit this week. Smart, competitive and skilled, the 2018 draft prospect also has great leadership characteristics. His mission for the next couple years will be to bulk up his slight frame. NHL arrival: 2020-21.
Ivan Morozov, C, Mamonty Yugry (Rus.) – Playing as Russia’s second-line center behind the super-line of Andrei Svechnikov, Alexander Khovanov and Grigori Denisenko, Morozov acquitted himself quite nicely at the Five Nations. The 2018 draft prospect has a dangerous shot and tallied for Russia in all four games in Michigan. Back home, he has already made his KHL debut, but has mostly played in the junior league. NHL arrival: 2021-22.
Mitchell Stephens, C, Syracuse Crunch (AHL) – A two-way forward with character and skill, Stephens worked through a tough stretch early in his first pro season and is now putting up nice numbers for the Crunch in the second half. The Tampa Bay prospect has 19 points in 20 games since the calendar flipped over to 2018 and he’s one of the top rookie scorers in the AHL. NHL arrival: 2019-20
Mikey Eyssimont, LW, St. Cloud State Huskies (NCHC) – The Huskies are the new No. 1 team in the NCAA and they’ve been doing it with depth. A big part of that depth is Eyssimont, a Los Angeles Kings pick with a lot of offensive tools at his disposal. The gifted scorer has 32 points in 29 games this season, putting him among the conference leaders. NHL arrival: 2019-20