An international series between Czech Republic and Slovakia sees a prospect have a great first game. A Minnesota Wild prospect is loaned overseas for next season. A prospect selected in the CHL Import Draft commits to the Sarnia Sting and we look at a player who had a solid season in the Western Hockey League (WHL) for our Prospect of the Day.
Strong Game by Czech Prospect Mysak
With the first live hockey back up and running this week, the second international series sees the Czech Republic take on Slovakia. With some highly touted prospects such as Jan Mysak, Jaromir Pytlik and Stanislav Svozil suiting up, the first game certainly did not disappoint.
With the Czechs coming out on top by a score of 6-2, it was captain Mysak who lead the way. Finishing the game with one goal and two assists, he was all over the ice, helping out at both ends. Not only did he display his great vision by setting up his teammates in the slot, but he also showed his relentlessness in backchecking when the puck transitioned the other way.
Splitting this past season between HC Litvinov of the Czech league and the Hamilton Bulldogs of the OHL, Mysak managed to collect 20 goals and 14 assists for 34 points in 48 games played. He also represented his country internationally where, in 22 games played, he scored 6 goals and added 6 assists for 12 points.
Mysak is currently projected as a mid-first-round pick in the upcoming NHL draft.
Wild Prospect Lodnia Heading Overseas
After loaning fellow Russian prospect Alexander Khovanov overseas for next season, the Wild decided to do the same for OHL star Ivan Lodnia. He will get the chance to play and develop amongst men amidst the unknown of when the OHL will come back.
Drafted by the Wild in the third round, 85th overall, in the 2017 NHL Draft, Lodnia spent this past season playing for the Niagara IceDogs. In 41 games played, he managed to score 27 goals and added 35 assists for 62 points to go along with 22 minutes in penalties. He will have the chance to make the NHL as soon as 2021-22, as the Wild could use some winger depth in their lineup.
Geci Commits to Sting
The Sarnia Sting announced that centre Alex Geci has committed to the team for the 2020-21 season. The seventh-overall selection in the 2020 CHL Import Draft, Geci will look to jump in and make an impact straight away.
The 16-year-old spent this past season playing for HC Slovan Bratislava U20 of the Slovakia U20 league and Lukko U18 team in the U18 SM-sarja. In 40 games played, he scored 14 goals and added 17 assists for 31 points. He also represented his native country of Slovakia where, in three games played, he scored one goal and added an assist for two points.
The native of Topolcany, Slovakia, will join a bright young Sting team that includes top pick Max Namestnikov. Geci is also a prospect eligible for the 2021 NHL Draft.
Prospect of the Day – Jack Finley
For our Prospect of the Day, we will take a look at Jack Finley. Ranked 38th amongst North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting, he had a solid season playing for the Spokane Chiefs of the WHL. In 61 games played, he managed to score 19 goals and added 38 assists for 57 points to go along with 32 penalty minutes.
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Finley is a player who could make an impact later on. Standing at 6-foot-5, he makes great plays with the puck on his stick and has the ability to use his size when battling for the puck. One of the younger players in this draft, Finley has the chance to develop into something special down the road.
Our own Josh Bell feels as though Finley is most dangerous when he is in front of the net.
“But with his size, his bread and butter is right in front of the net, where he can use his size to screen the goaltender, make tips, and fight off defenders with relative ease. Whether he’s standing in the goalie’s way or along the boards, he keeps his head up and has the ability to make plays. Seeing him take more of an offensive role next season could see him impress.”
Although the game is continually shifting to a smaller and faster pace, many NHL teams still see size as a serious advantage. Finley is an attractive option and many teams are probably hoping that he is still available when it is their turn to pick.
My name is Mathieu Sheridan. I am a writer here at THW who covers the OHL and prospects in general.