New Jersey Devils Prospect Update: Week 28

Bruce Bennett

The Devils finished off the season strong and are headed to the Calder Cup Playoffs for the first time since becoming the Albany Devils.

While the 2014 Calder Cup Playoffs began last night, the Albany Devils don't begin their series against the St. John's IceCaps until tomorrow night in Albany. This weeks post includes an in depth look at the Devils' first round opponent along with keys to winning. We'll also take a look at the two junior prospects still battling in the WHL and OHL Playoffs.

Player Birth Year Team League Position GP G A PTS PPG +/- PIM PP SHG SOG SH%
Joe Whitney 1988 Albany AHL LW 73 22 31 53 0.73 0 34 6 0 198 11.1%
Mike Sislo 1988 Albany AHL RW 59 23 17 40 0.68 7 24 7 2 137 16.8%
Kelly Zajac 1988 Albany AHL C 67 12 32 44 0.66 8 4 3 0 83 14.5%
Scott Timmins 1989 Albany AHL C 61 13 26 39 0.64 10 26 3 1 125 10.4%
Reid Boucher 1993 Albany AHL LW 56 22 16 38 0.68 -3 10 7 0 146 15.1%
Tim Sestito 1984 Albany AHL C 51 13 14 27 0.53 -1 79 2 1 78 16.7%
Harri Pesonen 1988 Albany AHL LW 75 15 21 36 0.48 13 52 2 0 145 10.3%
Stefan Matteau 1994 Albany AHL LW 67 13 13 26 0.39 6 66 2 0 108 12.0%
Mike Hoeffel 1989 Albany AHL LW 53 7 12 19 0.36 5 40 2 0 98 7.1%
Chris McKelvie 1985 Albany AHL LW 57 9 12 21 0.37 6 86 0 1 96 9.4%
Rod Pelley 1984 Albany AHL C 74 13 7 20 0.27 5 55 0 2 133 9.8%
Raman Hrabarenka 1992 Albany AHL D 48 6 15 21 0.44 -3 26 5 0 75 8.0%
Reece Scarlett 1993 Albany AHL D 48 6 14 20 0.42 11 18 6 0 58 10.3%
Mattias Tedenby 1990 Albany AHL LW 42 9 13 22 0.52 5 24 1 0 67 13.4%
Dan Kelly 1989 Albany AHL D 71 3 14 17 0.24 13 86 0 0 65 4.6%
Adam Larsson 1992 Albany AHL D 33 3 16 19 0.58 2 16 1 0 64 4.7%
Artem Demkov (X) 1989 Albany AHL C 22 6 5 11 0.50 6 6 1 0 45 13.3%
Brandon Burlon 1990 Albany AHL D 54 5 6 11 0.20 3 39 2 0 77 6.5%
Jon Merrill 1992 Albany AHL D 15 2 8 10 0.67 -1 0 2 0 21 9.5%
Seth Helgeson 1990 Albany AHL D 75 1 9 10 0.13 12 100 0 0 65 1.5%
Corbin McPherson 1988 Albany AHL D 69 0 10 10 0.14 16 41 0 0 57 0.0%
David Wohlberg 1991 Albany AHL LW 62 5 7 12 0.19 1 41 0 0 52 9.6%
Eric Gelinas (X) 1990 Albany AHL C 13 1 4 5 0.38 6 10 1 0 41 2.4%
Alexander Urbom 1989 Albany AHL D 35 1 10 11 0.31 -3 26 0 0 38 2.6%
Riley Boychuk (X) 1984 Albany AHL RW 18 1 1 2 0.11 2 14 0 0 6 16.7%
Cam Janssen 1986 Albany AHL C 27 0 3 3 0.11 -1 24 0 0 3 0.0%
Darcy Zajac 1990 Albany AHL D 19 1 5 6 0.32 -1 43 0 0 20 5.0%
Harry Young (X) 1991 Albany AHL D 10 0 0 0 0.00 -1 15 0 0 3 0.0%
Ben Johnson 1994 Albany AHL C 5 0 1 1 0.20 1 0 0 0 11 0.0%
Graham Black 1993 Albany AHL C 2 0 0 0 0.00 1 0 0 0 3 -
Curtis Gedig 1991 Albany AHL D - - - - - - - - - - -
Joe Faust 1991 Albany AHL D - - - - - - - - - - -
Goalies GP Mins W L SOL SO GA GAA SVS SV%
Keith Kinkaid 1989 Albany AHL G 43 2518:58:00 24 13 5 4 96 2.29 990 0.912
Scott Wedgewood 1992 Albany AHL G 36 1979:42:00 16 14 3 4 79 2.39 702 0.899
Maxime Clermont 1991 Elmira ECHL G 17 915:00:00 6 9 1 0 51 3.35 474 0.892
Anthony Brodeur 1995 Gatineau Olympiques QMJHL G 30 1467:39:00 13 10 1 2 71 2.9 560 0.887
(X - not on active roster)
Player Birth Year Team League Position GP G A PTS PPG +/- PIM PP SHG SOG SH%
Artur Gavrus 1994 Dinamo Minsk KHL C 30 1 3 4 0.13 -11 8 1 0 36 2.78%
Vladimir Zharkov 1988 CSKA Moskva KHL RW 49 2 5 7 0.14 0 6 0 0 75 2.67%
CSKA Moskva - Playoffs KHL RW 4 0 0 0 0.00 -2 2 0 0 4 0.00%
Graham Black 1993 Swift Current Broncos WHL C 69 34 63 97 1.41 18 43 9 2 - -
Swift Current - Playoffs WHL C 6 2 2 4 0.67 1 4 2 0 - -
Myles Bell 1993 Kelowna Rockets WHL LW 69 42 35 77 1.12 21 51 10 2 - -
Kelowna - Playoffs WHL LW 4 3 1 4 1.00 0 2 2 0 - -
Damon Severson 1994 Kelowna Rockets WHL D 64 15 46 61 0.95 47 63 5 1 - -
Kelowna - Playoffs WHL D 12 4 11 15 1.25 4 14 2 0 - -
Ben Johnson 1994 Windsor Spitfires OHL C 59 28 25 53 0.90 18 30 5 2 - -
Windsor - Playoffs OHL C 4 4 2 6 1.50 -4 2 2 1 - -
Ben Thomson (total) 1993 North Bay Battalion OHL LW 55 27 18 45 0.82 15 90 6 2 - -
North Bay - Playoffs OHL LW 17 4 7 11 0.65 8 49 1 1 - -
Ryan Kujawinski 1995 Kingston Frontenacs OHL C 45 23 18 41 0.91 3 39 8 0 - -
Kingston - Playoffs OHL C 7 1 1 2 0.29 -5 2 0 0 - -
Blake Coleman 1991 Miami Ohio NCAA C 23 18 6 24 1.04 8 63 6 0 96 18.75%
Miami Ohio - Playoffs NCAA C 4 1 3 4 1.00 0 2 0 0 14 7.14%
Alexander Kerfoot 1994 Harvard University NCAA C 25 8 6 14 0.56 0 8 3 0 40 20.00%
Blake Pietila 1993 Michigan Tech NCAA LW 37 8 19 27 0.73 -3 82 7 0 112 7.14%
Michigan Tech - Playoffs NCAA LW 2 0 1 1 0.50 -1 2 0 0 2 0.00%
Derek Rodwell 1990 University of North Dakota NCAA LW 25 5 2 7 0.28 5 20 0 0 53 9.43%
UND - Playoffs NCAA LW 8 0 3 4 0.50 0 8 0 0 3 0.00%
Miles Wood 1995 Boston College NCAA LW - - - - - - - - - - -
Joe Faust 1991 University of Wisconsin NCAA D 34 2 12 14 0.41 11 6 0 0 29 6.90%
University of Wisconsin - Playoffs NCAA D 2 0 0 0 0.00 -2 2 0 0 3 0.00%
Curtis Gedig 1991 Ohio State University NCAA D 30 2 7 9 0.30 2 8 2 0 47 4.26%
Ohio State - Playoffs NCAA D 3 0 1 1 0.33 2 0 0 0 12 0.00%
Steve Santini 1995 Boston College NCAA D 29 2 8 10 0.34 27 44 0 0 33 6.06%
Boston College - Playoffs NCAA D 7 1 0 1 0.14 -5 14 0 0 5 0.00%

Players in italics have been eliminated from the playoffs. Their season is done.

Albany Notes - Regular Season Wrap-up:

  • The Devils finished the season strong and head into the Playoffs on a five-game winning streak.
  • Here are some stats from the regular season:
    • The Devils lost just five games in regulation when leading after the first period (22-5-0-2) and three when leading after the second (32-3-0-5).
    • They came back to win just two games in regulation when trailing after the first period (2-14-3-2) but came back to win four when trailing after the second (4-16-3-1).
    • They were 16-8-0-0 in three-goal games, 6-4-0-0 in two-goal games, and 14-8-5-8 in one-goal games.
  • After finishing 12th in the Eastern Conference with a 31-32-1-12 record in 2012-2013, the Devils improved greatly finishing the 2013-2014 regular season with a 40-23-5-8 record - good for fifth in the East.
  • 2013-2014 was the first 40-win season for the Albany Devils. The team averaged 2.89 goals-per-game with 220 goals for.
  • Joe Whitney lead the team in points with 53 (22g 31a) in 73 games while Mike Sislo lead the team in goals scored with 23.
  • Three players reached the 20-goal mark - Mike Sislo (23 in 73 games), Joe Whitney (22 in 59 games), and Reid Boucher (22 in 56 games). Six other players reached double digits - Kelly Zajac (12), Scott Timmins (13), Harri Pesonen (15), Tim Sestito (13), Stefan Matteau (13), and Rod Pelley (13).
  • No player finished the season playing in every game. Seth Helgeson and Harri Pesonen came the closest with 75 games (missed one game each).
  • Graham Black signed an entry-level contract with the Devils. He definitely had to earn it while dealing with major health issues, but after a 97-point season and a solid two games with Albany after his season with the Swift Current Broncos ended, that's exactly what he did.

Playoff Primer:

The Albany Devils face the St. John's IceCaps in the first round of the 2014 Calder Cup Playoffs. It is a best-of five series with the Devils playing their first two games at home and the final three (if all are needed) in Newfoundland. Thanks to a great post by the IceCaps, here are some must-knows to get you ready for the action tomorrow night:

  • Neither team has the strongest special teams. Albany has the 21st power play in the league with a 16.2% success rate while the IceCaps are 13th with 18.1% success. On the penalty Kill, the Devils are 14th with 82.7% success while St. John's are ninth with 83.5% success.
  • These teams are very unfamiliar with each other. They haven't played at all this season and have only faced each other four times in three seasons. St. John's won three of the four games played.
  • While the Devils are coming into the series on a five-game winning streak, the IceCaps have also been successful and are on their own three-game streak.
  • The IceCaps have much more experience in the Calder Cup Playoffs. Only Tim Sestito and Scott Timmins have experience in the playoffs (Sestito as a Lowell Devil in 2010 and Timmins with San Antonio in 2012). On the other side, Andrew Gordon has won the Cup twice with Hershey in 2008-2009 and 2009-2010 and captain Jason Jaffray made the postseason eight straight seasons.
  • One point of strength on both sides is goaltending. We are familiar with the consistent play of Keith Kinkaid. He is third in the AHL with a 2.29 GAA. Scott Wedgewood is 11th in the league with 2.39 GAA. St. John's will be looking to Michael Hutchinson who played just 24 games this season, winning 17 of them with a 2.30 GAA. He also played three games with the Winnipeg Jets in which he won two of them. Hutchinson has also had success against Albany going 2-0-0 with a 0.96 GAA and a .960 S% from his time with the Providence Bruins.
  • Both teams relied on scoring by committee this season. Jason Jaffray was the IceCaps with 59 points and had five 20-goal scorers.
  • Heading into the series, the Devils have Reid Boucher and Harri Pesonen going in on point streaks (3g, 4a in last three for Boucher and 2g, 4a for Pesonen in his last four). Keith Kinkaid has won his last three games and hasn't allowed more than two goals in any of those wins. Jerome Samson is on a five-games point streak for the IceCaps (3g, 7a) with seven points in his last two games (he was named the AHL Player of the Week for the last week of the season). Along with Samson is Carl Klingberg who is riding a five-game point streak and was just sent down from a stint in the NHL.

For a quick breakdown, check out this infograph released by the Albany website.

Here is a full bracket of the Calder Cup Playoffs:

Screen_shot_2014-04-23_at_7.58.14_pm

Other Notes:

Will you be traveling to see the Albany Devils in the playoffs? What are your predictions for the first round? Who do you think was the Albany Devils MVP for the 2013-2014 regular season? Please leave any thoughts and comments below. Thanks for reading!

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