Ducks Prospects: Elvenes, Tschigerl & More

The Anaheim Ducks have been going through a rough patch, but their prospects have been on the upswing lately, led by two of their 2021 draft picks and buoyed by a recent waiver claim.

Elvenes Adapting Quickly with Gulls

Lucas Elvenes was supposed to be mutually terminating his contract with the Vegas Golden Knights. He was supposed to be heading back to his home country of Sweden, where he would presumably play in the Swedish Hockey League (SHL), the league he had played in prior to making the move overseas to play in North America. How quickly things can change.

After the Ducks plucked Elvenes off of waivers and assigned him to the San Diego Gulls in the American Hockey League (AHL), all the 22-year-old has done is score five points in just four games. Those five points were highlighted by a trio of assists in Wednesday’s 3-2 win over the Stockton Heat. Elvenes had the primary assist on two of the three Gulls goals and is quickly showing why he was such an intriguing prospect from the 2017 NHL Entry Draft.

Lucas Elvenes Hartford Wolf Pack-Ducks Prospects: Elvenes, Tschigerl & More
Lucas Elvenes, formerly of the Hartford Wolf Pack (Jenae Anderson / The Hockey Writers)

Given the Ducks’ merry-go-round of forwards due to players entering COVID protocol left and right, there may be an opportunity for Elvenes waiting right up the I-5. Creativity and fluidity have been inconsistent at times for the Ducks and adding another younger player to the mix could shake things up. It’s worth a shot, at least.

Tschigerl Riding Hot Streak

Sean Tschigerl is finding a way to do it all. His two goals last Saturday helped propel the Calgary Hitmen to a 4-1 win over the Prince Albert Raiders and his two goals (one in regulation, one in the shootout) on Tuesday against the Regina Pats sealed a 4-3 win.

Tschigerl is currently riding a three-game point streak after collecting an assist on Wednesday and has found his form after the Hitmen had a two-week layoff following the turn of the New Year. Touted as part of the Western Hockey League’s (WHL) Next Generation, he is an absolute puck-hound and his ability to create rushes off of turnovers is something that will continue to benefit him as he gets bigger and stronger.

Pastujov Finding His Form Again

Sasha Pastujov didn’t have the greatest time at the abridged 2022 World Juniors. Relegated to the 13th forward and barely getting any ice time as it was, it was probably best for the 2021 third-round pick that the tournament was postponed. He returned to the Guelph Storm only to have more games postponed due to COVID, but the winger looks to be back in the groove now.

Sasha Pastujov Guelph Storm-Ducks Prospects: Elvenes, Tschigerl & More
Sasha Pastujov, Guelph Storm (Tim Cornett/OHL Images)

With two goals and two assists this week, the familiar sight of Pastujov filling the net has again taken center stage. Though not every game he scores in results in a Storm win (wouldn’t that be something?), the frequency that he’s scoring at in his first Ontario Hockey League (OHL) season speaks volumes to the level of improvement that he is striving for. Some will remember that the reason Pastujov fell to the third round of the draft was that scouts felt that his skating ability was below-average, perhaps even subpar enough to prevent him from ever reaching the upper echelons of hockey.

Related: Ducks Rookie Updates: Dostal, Perreault, Tracey, and Groulx

He’s proven the skeptics wrong so far and it can’t be understated what a tremendous job Barb Underhill has to be doing with him. If this is how often Pastujov can score as a “bad skater”, imagine the levels he could hit once he becomes a “good” skater.

Quick Hits

  • Blake McLaughlin scored a goal for the University of Minnesota last Saturday in a 3-2 loss to the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Jackson Lacombe had two assists in two games for the University of Minnesota as well.
  • Artyom Galimov accepted an invite to ROC’s Olympic training camp, which began on Monday.
  • Gage Alexander stopped 25 of 26 shots last Saturday in a 5-1 win to improve his record to 16-5-1.
  • Ethan Bowen had a goal and an assist for the Chilliwack Chiefs last Saturday in their 4-3 win over the Coquitlam Express to extend his points streak to eight games. Unfortunately, he snapped the streak by going scoreless last night in a 6-5 loss to the Express.
  • Alex Limoges scored two goals––including the game-winner on Tuesday––this week for the Gulls. Bo-Olivier Groulx had a goal and an assist in that same game, a 4-2 win over the San Jose Barracuda. Bryce Kindopp also lit the lamp.
  • Mason McTavish is on a three-game point streak after scoring two goals and assisting on one in an 8-1 win over the Kingston Frontenacs on Sunday. He missed last night’s game after suffering an injury in warmups but should be fine for this weekend’s games.
  • Brayden Tracey had three assists for the Gulls this week and continues to build on his strong season.
Olen Zellweger Everett Silvertips-Ducks Prospects: Elvenes, Tschigerl & More
Olen Zellweger, Everett Silvertips (Photo by Christopher Mast/Getty Images)
  • Olen Zellweger had an assist in the Everett Silvertips’ 6-3 win over the Tri-City Americans on Sunday.
  • Albin Sundsvik snapped an 11-game scoreless skid with a goal for Skellefteå in their 5-2 win over Frölunda on Tuesday.
  • Sam Colangelo continues to play well following his return from injury as he potted a goal and assisted on two others this week.
  • Joshua Lopina has also fared well since returning from an injury of his own. He scored in the University of Massachusetts-Amherst’s 3-2 win over Colangelo’s Northeastern University.
  • Trevor Janicke had a goal and an assist in the University of Notre Dame’s 8-2 win over Boston College on Wednesday.
  • Axel Andersson returned from a long-term injury that had kept him out since November and scored a goal in his first game back for the Gulls on Wednesday. Coincidentally, Andersson also scored in the last game he played in, in November.
  • Jack Badini would also grab an assist in that Wednesday game, he continues to garner consistent playing time in the Gulls’ bottom-6 this season after splitting time between the AHL and ECHL last season.
  • Thimo Nickl did not appear in either of AIK’s games this week due to illness.

It’s no secret that the Ducks have stocked their system well. There’s still a matter of numerous seasons before most of them are ready, but McTavish could be the first to become a full-time NHLer, and a handful of players aren’t far behind.

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