Currently sitting in second place of the OHL’s Eastern Conference, the Barrie Colts’ success this season can be attributed to a pair of Calgary Flames prospects.
Andrew Mangiapane and Rasmus Andersson are two of the Colts’ top four scorers this season, and have both been a force in their final OHL season.
Despite scoring 51 points in his rookie OHL season, Andrew Mangiapane was initially passed over in his first year of eligibility for the NHL Draft in 2014. However after doubling his point totals in his second OHL season, Calgary picked up Mangiapane in the sixth round of the 2015 draft.
Earlier this week, Andrew Mangiapane broke the 100-point mark for his second season in a row. Mangiapane has been key for the Colts in the past two seasons, tallying an incredible 205 points since the start of the 2014-15 season. Mangiapane currently sits second in the OHL in goals, (only one behind Coyotes’ prospect Christian Dvorak), and was recently named Canadian Hockey League Player of the Week.
— Calgary Flames (@NHLFlames) March 15, 2016
Despite Mangiapane’s size, by drafting the forward in a late round, Calgary pulled the trigger on a low-risk, high-reward move. Since the 2011 NHL Draft, only two players selected in the sixth round have gone on to score more than 4 points in the NHL, so Mangiapane can only exceed expectations.
To show Mangiapane’s potential, here’s a comparison of his stats to those of OHL graduate Max Domi, who like Mangiapane, only stands around the 5’10″mark.
When comparing the two players’ stats in their respective last two OHL seasons, Mangiapane and Domi are almost identical. Mangiapane has averaged 1.64 points per game, with 205 points in 125 games since 2014-15, while Domi had a 1.65 points per game average, scoring 195 points in his last 118 OHL games.
Needless to say, if Mangiapane’s NHL career starts anything like Domi’s, the Flames are in a good spot.
Drafted in the second round of the 2015 NHL draft, Rasmus Andersson was an absolute steal for Calgary. The Swedish defender scored 64 points in 67 games last season, and could have been deserving of a top 30 selection. Andersson has continued his strong play this season, once again nearing point per game totals with 60 points in 62 games. This season, Andersson is third in OHL scoring among defencemen.
Along with Andersson’s point production, he’s also been very strong defensively. In two seasons with Barrie he has a combined +46 rating, and is a catalyst on the Colts’ power play. Andersson’s defensive zone mistakes are seldom, and he’s typically very responsible in his own end.
The Flames’ are a team that pride themselves on offensive defencemen, and in a couple of years, Andersson should fit in with the likes of Mark Giordano and T.J. Brodie. It’s almost a guarantee that Andersson will start next season in the AHL with Stockton, but look for him to quarterback their power play and make an impact shortly after arriving.
Between Mangiapane and Andersson, the Flames will be drawing some of their best prospects from the Colts. If the two can bring their momentum with them to Stockton next season, expect to see the duo in Flames jerseys sooner rather than later.
Ben is a journalism student at Ryerson University and covers the Toronto Maple Leafs.