Vancouver Canucks final top prospect report: Utica Comets Edition

LAVAL, QC - NOVEMBER 25: Utica Comets left wing Reid Boucher (24) and Laval Rocket center Jeremy Gregoire (37) battle for the puck during the first period of the AHL game between the Utica Comets and the Laval Rocket on November 25, 2017, at the Place Bell in Laval, QC (Photo by Vincent Ethier/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
LAVAL, QC - NOVEMBER 25: Utica Comets left wing Reid Boucher (24) and Laval Rocket center Jeremy Gregoire (37) battle for the puck during the first period of the AHL game between the Utica Comets and the Laval Rocket on November 25, 2017, at the Place Bell in Laval, QC (Photo by Vincent Ethier/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /
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No. 2 – LW Nikolay Goldobin (Utica Comets, AHL)

Okay, I should disclose this now. Nikolay Goldobin is technically not a prospect according to my criteria. I view prospects in the lens of being under 25-years-old and yet to play 25 NHL games in a single season. So, both Boucher and Goldobin don’t exactly fit that description.

However, since we are at the end of the season and there aren’t any other prospects to talk about, I’m working with what I have. Besides, how could ignore what Goldobin did during the playoffs? The Russian winger was busy this week, picking up four assists in three games.

When the Comets were officially eliminated, Goldobin tallied six assists in the series. He was effective despite taking a few dirty hits into the boards.

Many players are crowding the left side of Vancouver’s forward group. It does not help Goldobin since he is a similar player to Sven Baertschi and Brendan Leipsic. Playing on the top line would put him in the best possible situation to grow.

This is part of the reason why I want to see Baertschi moved. Goldobin will need waivers for assignment next year and I would rather give him every possible chance instead of losing him. He is at that point where he is caught in between the NHL and AHL. Next season, he can show the progress made over a summer. Maybe, just maybe that turns into opportunity.