The calendar has flipped from January to February and that means it’s time to look back and rank the Ontario Hockey League’s players eligible for the 2013 NHL Draft in June. With NHL Central Scouting releasing their mid-term rankings in January, I have included where the players rank on their list in respect to OHL players only.
While a few players re-entering the draft do get selected, the majority do not which is why I stick to first time draft eligible players. Central Scouting includes a few players on their lists that are re-entering the draft so the Central Scouting ranks below do not include those players.
This is in no way intended to knock the NHL rankings but for comparative purposes only. Many different lists have many different rankings. I don’t choose to follow anyone else’s lead but make my own honest and sincere evaluations based on sitting in an arena three to five times a week.
Today we begin by looking at the top five goalies. Tomorrow we will begin counting down the top 20 skaters from number 20 to number 11 and finally the top 10 on Saturday.
5. Jordan DeKort – Windsor Spitfires
Previous Rank: 4
Central Scouting: 3
Date of Birth: August 8, 1995
Hometown: Markham, Ontario
Stats: 16GP – 1W – 5L – 2OTL; 3.98 GAA .889 SV%
This isn’t s drop in rankings because of DeKort’s play but because of the expected (in my eyes) rise of Charlie Graham. Although DeKort has appeared in 16 games, he has decisions in only 8 games. He has come in relief of Jaroslav Pavelka on several occasions.
His size is his biggest asset but that doesn’t limit his mobility. He’s athletic for a goalie his size. He’s calm in his crease, strong positionaly, and uses his size effectively to take away openings for his opponents.
4. Alex Fotinos – Barrie Colts
Previous Rank: 3
Central Scouting: 6
Date of Birth: January 2, 1995
Hometown: Toronto, Ontario
Stats: 13GP – 6W – 5L – 1OTL; 3.00 GAA .908 SV%
Again, this isn’t a drop in rankings because of Fotinos’ play but the rise of Graham. Getting into game action has become a problem in giving him a proper evaluation. He’s the oldest goalie on the list (if age means anything here) but it’s all about potential and development. I believe in his potential but his development may have been slowed down just a bit because of playing time.
Fotinos is calm and cool in his crease. He challenges shooters extremely well, remains square to the shooter, has good rebound control and is positionally well which puts him in a position to make those second saves.
3. Michael Giugovaz – Peterborough Petes
Previous Rank: 2
Central Scouting: 2
Date of Birth: May 8. 1995
Hometown: Brampton, Ontario
Stats: 27GP – 8W – 13L – 3OTL: 3.64 GAA, .896 SV%
Giugovaz was at one point the lone bright spot for the Petes. At one point he had even taken over the number one duties from veteran Andrew D’Agostini. However, a coaching change occurred in Peterborough and he lost those duties to the veteran as they try and make a push for the final playoff spot.
His stats aren’t out of this world, but considering the position of his team and the changes they’ve made for a rookie they are good. Giugovaz kept his squad in games they shouldn’t have been in. He’ll do whatever he has to in order to stop pucks. He tracks the puck and the play extremely well, challenges shooters and is positionally strong, especially in close, and is excellent at making second and third saves.
2. Charlie Graham – Belleville Bulls
Previous Rank: 5
Central Scouting: 4
Date of Birth: June 30, 1995
Hometown: Toronto, Ontario
Stats: 17GP – 9W – 5L – 3OTL: 2.36 GAA, .929 SV%
Graham had his opportunity to showcase himself while teammate and number one goaltender Malcolm Subban was off tending goal for Team Canada at the World Junior Championships. And he didn’t disappoint. It was as if Subban was still back there stopping pucks. His won lost record is a little skewed to the wrong side because most of his starts came before trade deadline and his Bulls were having trouble scoring.
Graham leads all draft eligible goaltenders in goals against average and save percentage and is top 5 in the league in both categories. When you watch Graham it’s like watching a mirror image of Subban. He has great athleticism, challenges his shooters and anticipates and follows plays exceptionally well. As the Bulls head towards a playoff berth, expect the Bulls to give Subban a bit of a rest and if Graham can continue on his current pace it will just solidify this current ranking.
1. Spencer Martin – Mississauga Steelheads
Previous Rank: 1
Central Scouting: 1
Date of Birth: June 8, 1995
Hometown: Oakville, Ontario
Stats: 34GP - 14W - 15L - 2OTL; 3.08 GAA .907 SV%
Martin has been number one on this list (and all others) since the initial pre-season rankings and has done nothing to relinquish that ranking all season. He had a tremendous start to the year winning games the Steelheads had no business winning but went into a little slump. Some speculate he was playing with an injured knee. But he has rebounded as of late to his early season form.
Martin is positionally strong, aggressive, good athleticism, tracks pucks well with very good anticipation and plays a very strong butterfly. He has good size and he uses it well to close down options for shooters. If there is one area of his game that needs improving its rebound control, an area that can be coached.
Martin was ranked number one among OHL goaltenders on Bob McKenzie's survey of NHL scouts