Alright lets face the facts here, besides World Junior performances that steal the show (see John Gibson or John Gilles) to winning Frozen Four or finally winning a Memorial Cup, we rarely hear about up and coming goaltenders. It seems as if a guy doesn’t win it all or have a hundred save performance the media doesn’t report on it.
Today, we’re going to take a look at some up and coming young goalies you need to know about. Not in any order by the way. Being that this is the first post, there will be five goalies listed. In the future, I will try to shine a monthly spotlight on one to two goalies in the upcoming editions.
5) Vladislav Sukhachyov
Team: Belye Medvedi Chelyabinsk
Draft Status: Undrafted
When Tim Thomas left the NHL it was sort of like the last of the samurai. The “do anything to stop a puck” style had given way to the streamlined butterfly. In comes Vladislav Sukhachyov, measuring only 5’10 (5’9 according to some sources) he plays an extremely aggressive style and can flail with the best of them. Who says a real hybrid can’t survive in today’s game. Last two years between the MHL and VHL (Russia’s junior league and their league comparable to the AHL) he’s posted over a .913 save percentage and is currently holding a .943. While he my not turn many heads for NHL scouts due to his size, with the emergence of Juuse Saros and other average height goalies there may be a future in the show if someone gives him a chance. Keep an eye out at World Juniors and the Canada-Russia series for him.
4) Tyler Wall
Draft Status: 2016 #174 NYR
The recent drafts have set a precedent that teams are moving away from picking goalies in the early due to uncertainty and with some high profile early picks not panning out (see Tom McCollum or Zach Fucale). This has opened the door to some late round steals and Tyler Wall could be one of them. As an 18-year-old rookie in the NCAA it is rare to see a goalie dominate quite like Wall has done so far. He has a stats line of 8-2-1 with a .921 save percentage, by all accounts Tyler has been living up to his last name. Being 6’3 also is a big plus , watch out for him as the season continues to see if he keeps it up. He also has been named NCAA’S Hockey East Defensive hockey player of the week twice in November.
3) Michael Garteig
Team: Alaska Aces
Draft Status: Free Agent signed by VAN
When you think of Canucks goalie prospects everyone says Demko. While Demko is the future of the Canucks who would of thought they would pick up his NCAA rival as well in Garteig who actually knocked Demko out of the Frozen Four. While not a spring chicken by any extent at 25. He played amazing for Quinnipiac in his final two years posting a .917 and .924. respectively. Currently playing for the Canucks ECHL team in Alaska with Markstrom and Miller both looking like stopgaps for the team Garteig could make a push in the coming years if he continues to develop.
2) Igor Shersterkin
Team: St. Petersburg SKA
Draft Status: 2014 #118 NYR
Rangers have a couple of goaltending studs it seems. Igor Shesterkin has entered legend status In the KHL for his current season. First he out battled KHL All Star and Starter of SKA in Mikko Koskinen and then he goes on to have 8 shutouts in 26 games and a .942 save percentage. While some may argue about the depth of SKA when watching the games it’s easy to see Shersterkin plays a big part in team success. With Lundqvist now 34 the Goalies like Shersterkin and Wall are going to battle it out very soon to start in the bright lights of Broadway. With the KHL season concluding before the NHL keep your eyes out for playoffs to see if Igor can keep it up.
Team: Linkoping HC
Draft Status: 2013 #78 OTT
It’s undeniable that the Senators enjoy picking Swedes. Buffalo starter Robin Lehner is a product of the Senators goaltending factory, large and athletic what’s not to like about Lehner, expect maybe those crazy eyes. Minus the eyes Marcus Hogberg is much of the same standing at 6’5 this tender has been representing Sweden internationally since U16. The last two seasons in the SHL he’s managed a .917, and .911 save percentage as well as winning two World Junior silver Medals in U18 and U20 respectively. With Matt O’Connor’s well-documented struggles on a poor Binghamton team and Anderson only able to bail the Sens out so long questions in the future of the Senator’s goaltending is in the air. Given Hogberg’s performances at camp it’s only a matter of time before this young Swede is called upon.