Matt O’Connor’s world has certainly changed.
The Boston University goaltender went from being a relative unknown, and within weeks has had no less than 14 NHL teams that have come calling for his services.
Fresh of winning the prestigious Beanpot tournament, the Terriers netminder not only has been courted by many NHL teams but has also been promised playing time this season by some before the year is over.
The Edmonton Oilers are one of those teams rumoured to be heavily pursuing O’Connor, and with the state of goaltending in Edmonton, it certainly makes sense.
The Oilers have been all over free-agent G Matt O'Connor for months with the cupboard almost bare of prospects other than Brossoit.#oilers.
— Jim Matheson (@NHLbyMatty) February 25, 2015
Will have a brief story up on TSN.ca shortly. 14 NHL teams chasing BU goalie Matt O'Connor. Leafs, Canucks, Sens, Flames and Oilers on list.
— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) February 25, 2015
Ben Scrivens is the team’s starter and has played well recently but struggled on the whole this season. Backup Viktor Fasth is currently injured however will likely be dealt at the trade deadline or leave as a UFA at season’s end.
Behind that there is the AHL tandem of Richard Bachman and Laurent Brossoit. Bachman has been stellar in the AHL but has struggled when given the opportunity in the NHL.
Brossoit is the team’s goaltender of the future but is at least a year or two away from competing for top spot.
There isn’t a lot of depth in the Oilers system at the position.
Who is Matt O’Connor?
A Toronto native, O’Connor is a 23 year old, 6’6″ goaltender who is in his third season with Boston University, the first as a full-time starter. Last season he spilt time with Penguins draft pick Sean Maguire, but this year was the team’s undisputed starter.
He’s a big goaltender who covers a lot of the net. A classic late bloomer who has appeared to have a steady progression in each of his years with BU.
There is not a lot of information on O’Connor, but based on his size and style of play has drawn comparisons to Tampa Bay’s Ben Bishop.
If GM Craig MacTavish can ink him to a deal, it could be a low risk – high reward move for the Oilers. Best case scenario they find a diamond in the rough that develops into a solid NHL goaltender. Worst case scenario he’s a project and still provides organizational depth at the position.
Follow Carl on twitter @CarlTHW for more articles