With the season now over for the IceCaps, it’s time to reflect on the year (and playoffs) as a whole. Here are our final grades for 2016-17, beginning with the goalies and defencemen.
Players must have played in at least 20/76 regular season games to receive a grade. Traded/released players are not listed even if they saw action in 20 or more contests.
Charlie Lindgren – A-: The numbers don’t necessarily bear it out but Lindgren was pretty much the only reason they were able to squeak into a playoff spot (aside from the rule change that gave them the opening to sneak in). He quickly established himself as a legitimate starter and logged a lot of ice time down the stretch as they started to use him more in back-to-backs. Lindgren wasn’t completely on the radar after just a one game stint with the Habs last season but he has cemented himself as one of the bright spots in the prospect pool moving forward.
Season Stats: 48 GP, 24-18-6 record, 2.56 GAA, .914 SV%, 5 SO
Playoff Stats: 4 GP, 1-1-2 record, 2.21 GAA, .922 SV%, 0 SO
Yann Danis – C: At the beginning, Danis looked like a nice consolation prize when Mike Condon didn’t make it through waivers and there was a brief time where he pushed Lindgren for playing time. However, he faded as the season went on and had too many nights where he was off his game altogether. With Michael McNiven set to turn pro this summer, I don’t think there’s a spot for Danis to return for next season.
Season Stats: 25 GP, 11-9-4 record, 2.99 GAA, .902 SV%, 1 SO
Playoff Stats: N/A
N/A: Zach Fucale (only three games), Bryan Pitton (released)
Zach Redmond – B+: St. John’s spent a good chunk of the season without a real top pairing defender (Mark Barberio was for a time early on but never made it back) and Redmond was at least able to fill that void. He became someone that could eat some big minutes while chipping in some offence. Unfortunately, some of the defensive concerns that bumped him off the NHL roster came into play but all in all, he had a very strong second stint with the IceCaps.
Season Stats: 26 GP, 4 goals, 14 assists, 18 points, -4 rating, 8 PIMS, 60 shots
Playoff Stats: 4 GP, 1 goal, 1 assist, 2 points, -1 rating, 2 PIMS, 12 shots
Keegan Lowe – B: After being acquired in a midseason trade, expectations were rather low as Lowe had playing a minor role with Carolina’s AHL team. He got the opportunity to play a bit more with St. John’s and made the most of it, quickly becoming a reliable defender while actually contributing a bit at the offensive end as well. He’s slated to be a restricted free agent this summer and there’s certainly a case to be made that he’s worth a qualifying offer next month.
Season Stats: 22 GP, 3 goals, 3 assists, 6 points, +8 rating, 21 PIMS, 25 shots
Playoff Stats: 3 GP, 0 goals, 0 assists, 0 points, -1 rating, 0 PIMS, 3 shots
Julien Brouillette – B: Brought in as a midseason pickup to add some depth, Brouillette went from being insurance to a regular player. Part of that was due to the fact that their defence was lousy most nights but that’s not to take anything away from what he was able to accomplish. It wouldn’t be surprising to see him get another minor league deal to serve in a depth role with the Rocket next season.
Season Stats: 57 GP, 3 goals, 10 assists, 13 points, +2 rating, 14 PIMS, 73 shots
Playoff Stats: 4 GP, 0 goals, 0 assists, 0 points, +1 rating, 0 PIMS, 4 shots
Brett Lernout – B-: I was hoping that Lernout would have taken a bigger step forward this season but he did at least make some strides in pretty much all facets of the game. After being basically a complete non-factor offensively, he was better in that end while playing his usual physical style. The next step for him – and one that he needs to take next year – is the ability to take on a top checking role. He was okay at times in that role and struggled in others; they need more of the former than the latter from him in Laval.
Season Stats: 74 GP, 3 goals, 13 assists, 16 points, +5 rating, 63 PIMS, 95 shots
Playoff Stats: 4 GP, 0 goals, 1 assist, 1 point, -1 rating, 2 PIMS, 7 shots
Joel Hanley – C+: Hanley spent a good chunk of the season in a top pairing role, a true sign of the lack of defensive depth they had. To be honest, he did okay in that spot most nights but in a high minute role, they needed more than just okay play. He’ll be 26 next month and it will be interesting to see if he’s qualified. He’s good enough to play a serviceable role next season but at that age, the remaining upside is pretty low overall.
Season Stats: 65 GP, 2 goals, 20 assists, 22 points, +11 rating, 34 PIMS, 81 shots
Playoff Stats: 4 GP, 0 goals, 0 assists, 0 points, -1 rating, 2 PIMS, 2 shots
Josiah Didier – C: When he was in the lineup, he was his usual self – good in the defensive end and a complete non-factor offensively. Didier’s challenge was that when he found himself in the lineup, he wasn’t doing enough to force himself to be played as a regular for more than a couple of weeks at a time. He could potentially be back on a minor league deal but I think he’d be better served taking his chance with another organization.
Season Stats: 39 GP, 2 goals, 6 assists, 8 points, +3 rating, 25 PIMS, 38 shots
Playoff Stats: 4 GP, 0 goals, 0 assists, 0 points, -2 rating, 0 PIMS, 1 shot
Tom Parisi – C-: I don’t think he was in the best situation to succeed but it was not a great first pro campaign for Parisi. The Habs opted to keep him as a scratch with the IceCaps in the early going and that put him going in the wrong direction in a hurry. The skill set is intriguing but he hasn’t been able to put it together yet. He has one more year to do so and he’ll need to make some big strides next season.
Season Stats: 45 GP, 1 goal, 8 assists, 9 points, -4 rating, 10 PIMS, 56 shots
Playoff Stats: DNP – Healthy Scratch
Ryan Johnston – D: He received plenty of playing time early on (while getting a baffling recall) and did very little with it. Sylvain Lefebvre finally saw the light and moved him out of the top six late in the year. There’s no denying the offensive talent but that alone isn’t enough to overcome a lack of size and a lack of defensive ability. Unless Marc Bergevin still thinks he can fix his in-zone struggles, it’s hard to imagine he’ll be qualified next month.
Season Stats: 50 GP, 5 goals, 13 assists, 18 points, -6 rating, 22 PIMS, 69 shots
Playoff Stats: DNP – Healthy Scratch
N/A: Mark Barberio (lost on waivers), Jonathan Racine (traded), Philip Samuelsson (traded)