Top 5 Vancouver Canucks prospects currently in the system

VANCOUVER, BC - APRIL 5: Adam Gaudette #88 of the Vancouver Canucks skates up ice during their NHL game against the Arizona Coyotes at Rogers Arena April 5, 2018 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. (Photo by Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)"n
VANCOUVER, BC - APRIL 5: Adam Gaudette #88 of the Vancouver Canucks skates up ice during their NHL game against the Arizona Coyotes at Rogers Arena April 5, 2018 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. (Photo by Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)"n /
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No. 2 – Thatcher Demko (Goaltender)

The Vancouver Canucks goalie of the future. Some have anointed him as Cory Schneider 2.0. However, if you look where Schneider is in his career now, we may want to throw in a disclaimer that we want his best years when we talk about Thatcher Demko.

Vancouver had an incredible run when we had both Roberto Luongo and Schneider. Goalie controversies were interesting, they got people talking and ultimately, both goalies were forced out. Schneider was dealt in the best rebuild move in the last five years for Bo Horvat. While the owner’s coaching choice drove the best goaltender in franchise history away.

Today, the controversies are gone. We try our best to stir some up, but we tend to get middling to mediocre netminding in the present. This is where we can see change. Vancouver has a potential 40-goal scorer in Boeser. A near 60-point centre in Horvat and an incredible amount of skill from Pettersson. Hopefully, Demko adds to this with a stabilizing presence as a bona fide NHL starter.

During prior prospect reports, I lamented on not having access to better AHL stats for goaltenders. Those days are over thanks to Colin Cudmore. He has his own Hockey Viz for the AHL and calculated goals saved above average (GSAA) values for goaltenders.

In short, GSAA is that the value compares goalies to the league average. Higher and more positive numbers are good, while negative numbers are bad. This season, Demko had the third best GSAA at 21.7, meaning he saved roughly 21 more goals than the average goaltender.

I can’t wait to see Demko get regular starts with the Canucks. He’s calm, cool and the organization may just have something truly special with the kid from San Diego.