Today’s Prospects News & Rumors column will feature a look at two members of the New Jersey Devils’ pipeline. Plus, a pair of young goaltenders had a big night; one from the Colorado Avalanche and one who recently signed with the Dallas Stars.
Nolan Foote Back in Binghamton
After recently making his NHL debut, the young 20-year-old defenseman is heading back to the American Hockey League (AHL). Foote played three games for the Devils against the New York Rangers, Pittsburgh Penguins, and Philadelphia Flyers before the team announced he was reassigned to the Binghamton Devils of Friday.
Foote did not look out of place in his three games with the big club. He recorded his first NHL point with an assist against the Rangers in his debut. He followed that up with his first NHL goal in his very next game versus the Penguins.
He will return to Binghamton, where he had a very successful start to his professional career. Foote’s scored six goals and 16 points in 20 AHL games this season. He is expected to be in the lineup tonight when the Devils host the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins.
Foote was originally drafted by the Tampa Bay Lightning with the 27th overall pick of the 2019 NHL Entry Draft, two years after they also picked his older brother Cal. He was traded to the Devils at last season’s trade deadline as part of the package that sent Blake Coleman to Tampa. Both Cal and Nolan have the pedigree as their father Adam won two Stanley Cups with the Colorado Avalanche.
Arseni Gritsyuk Extends His Stay in Russia
Staying with the Devils organization, it was reported today that Gritsyuk has signed a new extension with Avangard Omsk in the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL). The new deal will keep him in Russia through the end of the 2022-23 season.
New Jersey selected the left winger in the fifth round (129th overall) of the 2019 NHL Entry Draft. He played a total of 26 games this past season in all three levels of Russian hockey. In his 12 regular-season games with Avangard, he had a goal and an assist. He appeared in three playoff games but did not find the scoresheet. He was part of the Gargarin Cup championship team that featured former Devils Ilya Kovalchuk and Reid Boucher and former number one overall pick Nail Yakupov.
Gritsyuk had a huge 2019-20 season, scoring 28 goals and 63 points in 59 games for Omskie Yastreby in Russia’s top junior league. He played for Russia in each of the last two IIHF World Junior Championships, scoring two goals and five points in 10 total games.
Trent Miner Makes Huge Save
When the Vancouver Giants needed a big stop on Thursday night, they got it from Miner. The young goaltender denied Kaedan Korczak of the Kelowna Rockets on a shorthanded breakaway chance. He was looking for the Rockets’ second shorthanded goal of the second period, but Miner was up to the task.
Unfortunately for Miner and the Giants, the Rockets won 4-3 as his 22-save effort was not quite good enough to earn a victory.
The Avalanche selected Miner in the seventh round (202nd overall) of the 2019 NHL Entry Draft. He posted a .924 save percentage (SV%) and 1.98 goals-against average (GAA) during his draft season with the Giants.
He made his professional debut earlier this season with the Colorado Eagles while waiting for the WHL season to begin. He was solid in his six AHL starts with a .903 SV%, 2.86 GAA, and a shutout. That success followed him back to Vancouver. Even after giving up four goals last night, he still has a .927 SV%, 1.82 GAA, and four shutouts this season.
Adam Scheel Comes Up Big
Scheel was the star of the night in the Texas Stars’ 2-1 shootout win over the Cleveland Monsters on Friday. He stopped 39 of the 40 shots he faced in regulation and overtime before stopping all three Cleveland shot attempts in the shootout. The only blemish against him was Cliff Pu’s with just over three minutes to play in the third period.
The Dallas Stars signed Scheel, an undrafted free agent, shortly after his college career at the University of North Dakota came to an end. He has made a rather smooth transition to the professional game. He is off to a 2-4-0 start in his AHL career, but the record is a bit misleading. The Stars have scored 16 goals in his six starts, with seven of those came in one game. He has a .918 SV%, 2.88 GAA, and has made at least 30 saves in five of his six games.