DRAFT CENTRAL: Show-stopping Backstoppers

Tuesday, 06.13.2006 / 12:00 AM ET / News
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DRAFT CENTRAL: Show-stopping Backstoppers
Jonathan Bernier and Leland Irving

By Jason Lockhart

In this year's Entry Draft there are at least two netminders projected to become NHL starters.

With less than two weeks away from the June 24 Draft in Vancouver, here's a glimpse of the two top-ranked goalie prospects.


Jonathan Bernier
Laval, Quebec
Height: 5-11
Weight: 180
2005-2006 Team: Lewiston (QMJHL)
2005-2006 Stats: W-L-T: 27-26-0, G.A.A.: 2.70, SVPCT: .908

 

It doesn't hurt Jonathan Bernier that he's French-Canadian. The province of Quebec is known for breeding quality NHL netminders including the likes of Patrick Roy and Martin Brodeur, two of Bernier's favorite players.

Bernier is not projected to be in the same class as his idols, but is still expected to be a first-stringer and a first round selection at this year's Draft.

The butterfly-style goaltender has quick feet and challenges shooters well. He covers the cross-ice crease feeds effectively because of his good lateral movement.

Known for controlling his rebounds, Bernier will if necessary battle hard to cover up loose pucks in his crease.

"He is a prototypical NHL goalie," one scout told The Hockey News. "He covers the angles well, he has a good glove hand and his focus is great."

Bernier put up excellent numbers in his second season with the Lewison Maineacs of the QMJHL, placing in the top six in wins (27), G.A.A. (2.70) and SVPCT (.908).

 

Leland Irving
Barrhead, Alberta
Height: 6-0
Weight: 177
2005-2006 Team: Everett (WHL)
2005-2006 Stats: W-L-T: 37-22-1, G.A.A.: 1.91, SVPCT: .925

 

If positive attitude lends itself to success, then Leland Irving is looking at a productive NHL career. Everyone raves about Irving's likeable personality.

One scout describes Irving as an "old-time goalie" who isn't fancy, but is a great kid off the ice.

Irving might not dazzle as much as Bernier, but he's steady and reliable, mirroring his game after Pittsburgh Penguins netminder Marc-Andre Fleury.

The Alberta native has already mastered the "paddle-down" technique used to prevent wrap-around and stuff attempts.

Irving's stick skills are also apparent by his dependability while playing the puck behind his net. He communicates well with his defensemen, making the smart breakout pass.

Along with his skillful stick, Irving displays a strong glove hand.

He also plays his angles well, coming far out of his crease and widening his stance, appearing bigger than his 6-0, 177-pound frame suggests.

Durability is a key component to Irving, who played in 80% of his club's games during the 2005-2006 season.

MORE OF THE DRAFT CENTRAL '06


 

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 x - NYR 74 47 20 7 226 172 101
2 MTL 75 46 21 8 197 167 100
3 TBL 76 46 23 7 244 198 99
4 PIT 75 41 23 11 207 188 93
5 NYI 76 44 27 5 230 211 93
6 DET 74 40 22 12 216 201 92
7 WSH 75 40 25 10 218 186 90
8 BOS 75 37 25 13 199 195 87
9 OTT 73 37 25 11 213 195 85
10 FLA 74 34 26 14 184 202 82
11 PHI 76 30 29 17 198 219 77
12 CBJ 74 35 35 4 203 230 74
13 NJD 74 31 31 12 166 189 74
14 CAR 73 27 36 10 170 201 64
15 TOR 75 27 42 6 194 241 60
16 BUF 74 20 46 8 141 249 48

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 76 34 40 -3 74
R. Strome 75 15 32 19 47
K. Okposo 54 15 31 -10 46
F. Nielsen 75 13 28 9 41
B. Nelson 76 18 22 9 40
A. Lee 70 23 16 12 39
J. Bailey 64 15 23 4 38
J. Boychuk 66 8 25 9 33
T. Hamonic 66 5 25 16 30
N. Leddy 72 10 19 15 29
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 35 16 2 .915 2.39
C. Johnson 8 8 1 .889 3.08

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