• PROSPECT-UPDATE ARCHIVE
The weekend is coming, so the action involving 2018 draft prospects is about to get intense. Thursday provided a nice warm-up, with games in nine leagues, including three in both the OHL and QMJHL. There weren't enough performances for a full 10-player list, as we had on Wednesday, but there were five very good ones.
It's possible not all of the five players listed below will be drafted -- a lot of deserving players miss out on draft day -- but these guys are definitely putting themselves on the radar with performances like Thursday's. Here are the two Europeans and two Canadians who made the cut:
LUKAS DOSTAL -- Dostal, who starred for the Czech Under-18 team in its recent exhibition series with Russia, has been playing in the WSM Liga of late, but he returned to his Brno U20 team on Thursday and made 39 saves in Kometa's 5-2 win over Jihlava. It was Dostal's first U20 start since Sept. 9. He is now 3-0 in U20 play, and this win was his most dominant. Dostal has risen quickly to become the second-highest ranked goalie on the HDC Top 62. (Note: Third appearance on this list in 2017-18)
DANIL GIZATULLIN -- Gizatullin had a goal and assist in only 12:47 of icetime during Yaroslavl's 4-3 overtime win at Cherepovets. His goal, scored at 8:21 of the third period, forced the overtime period. He then picked up the lone assist on the winner at 2:19 of OT, capping his third multi-point MHL game this season. (Note: Second appearance on this list in 2017-18)
MATTHEW GROUCHY -- A lower-profile forward prospect in the QMJHL, Grouchy was the No. 2 star of Charlottetown's 3-2 win over Saint John on Thursday with a goal and an assist. He set up a power-play goal at 2:55 of the second period for a 2-1 lead, and he scored the game-winner at 7:21 of the second, breaking what had been a 2-2 tie. The goal was the Newfoundland native's second of the season. You really have to hope he reaches the NHL at some point, because this guy has an amazing hockey name. Listen to the call in the video above just to hear it.
MATHIAS LAFERRIERE -- Laferriere scored twice for Cape Breton in Thursday's 7-6 overtime loss to Shawinigan. Even in defeat, he was the best player on the ice -- earning No. 1 star honors. He opened the night's scoring just 2:05 into the game, and he later scored on a power play with 2:11 left in regulation to force OT. (Note: Third appearance on this list in 2017-18)
RYAN ULLAN -- In a goalie-heavy year of prospects you might not have heard of Ullan. The former U.S. NTDP Under-17 netminder is spending this season with the NAHL's Bismark Bobcats, and he has helped that team move into a tie for first in its division. On Thursday, he stopped 24 shots as the Bobcats rolled over Minot 4-1. After a rocky start to his NAHL career, Ullan has now won three straight games, posting a 1.67 GAA over that span.