Monday, 15 April 2019

OHL Awards

How I would vote for each award based on the 3 finalists from each conference. Based on some of the articles I have read recently it seems some in the media have forgotten that each conference gets the 3 nominee's.

Rookie of the Year / Emms Family Award Finalists:

1)  Cole Perfetti

 No brainer selection here. Perfetti finished the year with 74 points in 63 games and led the Division winning Spirit in scoring. He is the highest scoring 16 year old rookie since Alex Galchenyuk. It will be exciting to see what he has in store for his final season in Saginaw next year.

2) Jamie Drysdale

The only defenceman nominated this year. Drysdale finished the year with 40 points for the Otters  breaking Travis Dermott's franchise rookie record of 28. His 15 power play assist led all rookies but what impressed me most was his 116 shots in 63 games which is a very high total for a 16 year old defenceman. Only Ryan Merkley has had more since it has become an officially tracked stat.

3) Quinton Byfield

The Jack Ferguson award winner finished 2nd among rookies with 182 shots. His 2 SHGs and 3 SHPs were most among rookies. He finished 3rd among rookies with 61 points.

4) Marco Rossi

The '01 born import forward made a great impact with the 67s this year finishing with 65 points in 53 games. His 1.23 points per game were tops among rookies but being an '01 born player and being on a loaded Ottawa team has him 4th on my list.

5) Jacob Perrault

The rookie pivot from Sarnia joined Cole Perfetti in the 30 goal club. Those two along are among the only five 16 year old rookies since 09-10 to hit the 30 goal mark joining Matthew Puempel, Alex Galchenyuk and Arthur Kaliyev.

6) Tyler Tullio
Had a very productive season on the Oshawa Generals finished 6th among OHL rookies in scoring.

Overage Player of the Year / Leo Lalonde Memorial Trophy Finalists:

1) Justin Brazeau

Led the OHL with 61 goals and finished 2nd with 113 points and was the only offensive weapon on the North Bay Battalion. Brazeau scored 21.5% of North Bays goals and had points on 49.1% of their goals

2) Mac Hollowell
Fans will point to Frost and Hayton as the stars of the Greyhounds but the most irreplaceable player on the team this year without a doubt was Mac Hollowell. Hollowell led all OHL defencemen in goals with 24 and points with 77 this year.

3) Tye Felhaber
Finished 2nd in the OHL with 59 goals and added 50 assists to place himself 3rd in the league with 109 points.

4) Kevin Hancock
Finished the year with 52 goals and 107 points. Averaged 1.68 points per game while with Owen Sound. His 1.36 per game while with the London Knights was a team high.

5) Brandon Saigeon
Finished the year with 92 points split between Hamilton and Oshawa. Scored 16 power play goals for the 2nd consecutive year. Was a disappointing -3 while with the Generals.

6) Sean Durzi
Only played in 35 games this year but finished with 37 points. Under a point per game in Owen Sound but picked it up with 20 in 17 games with Guelph.

Most Sportsmanlike Player of the Year / William Hanley Trophy Finalists:

1) Ryan McGregor
 Does anyone really spend that much time in picking this winner? Do they just look at PIMs and go from there? McGregor is my choice for sticking it out in Sarnia and breathing in that chemical air for 4 years.

2) Cole Carter
Showed great leadership and class on a young Mississauga team.

3) Nick Suzuki
 I made my picks before I pulled up the previous winners and see that Nick has won 2 in a row. He will likely win a 3rd in a row because it seems like the easy thing to do when you try and quantify a qualitative characteristic like sportsmanship.

4) Ryan Suzuki
Not sure how the OHL feels about someone from Barrie being nominated for this award (i kid, i kid)

5) Allan McShane
2 Canadians prospects nominated for this. How about that.

6) Jospeh Garreffa
He finishes last as punishment for the Kitchener media continually whining about 3 stars.

Coach of the Year / Matt Leyden Trophy Finalists:

1) John Dean
Took over the reigning Western Conference champions who fielded the 3rd youngest team in the league this year after a host of graduations from last years squad. The teams best player Barrett Hayton only suited up for 39 games yet the team led the West Division for most of the year before being passed in the final month by Saginaw after they loaded up at the deadline.

2) Andre Tourigny
No teams core has shown more growth from last year to this year than that of Ottawa. A lot of credit has to go to Andre Tourigny as he helped guide the Easts 8th place team from '17-'18 to 1st place by December which allowed the management team to push all in.

3) Chris Lazary
I wouldn't be surprised if Lazary won the award but is he going to win it because of the job he did or because this team grossly underachieved while Troy Smith was the coach?

4) Greg Walters
The Generals did a great job this year of keeping shots to the outside as Kyle Keyser faced more shots from low danger areas then any other OHL starter with over 79% of his shots coming from the outside. The 1st year coach led the Generals to 44 wins and the 3rd seed in the East

5) Dale Hunter
Dale Hunter did a great job managing players with NHL aspirations and young players accumulated at the deadline last year. Finished 1st place in the Western Conference with Joseph Raaynakers as his goalie which is a feat in itself.

6) Cory Stillman
Pros: Took at team that finished last in the league 1 year ago to home ice in the 1st round of the playoffs
Cons: Was it the coach or was it star goalie Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen?
Pros: This team got home ice advantage while having the Pilon brothers play significant minutes.
Cons: This is the 6th oldest team in the OHL so you hope with a veteran team that they would have success
Cons: Worst power play in the OHL. Last 4 coach of the years PP ranks? 3,1,2,3

Goaltender of the Year Award Finalists:   

1) Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen
Led the league in save percentage, wins and shutouts. Did not have much in front of him and helped orchestrate a miraculous turn around for the Sudbury Wolves.

2) Kyle Keyser
 2nd in the OHL in save percentage and 6th in wins. Constantly making highlight reel saves for the Generals. What keeps him from the top spot in my eyes though is that Oshawa does a better job than anyone and keep shot attempts to the outside. Keyser led all OHL starters with 79% of the shots he faced being from low danger areas while 5vs5

3) Ivan Prosvetov
Highest save percentage in the league 5vs5 on shots from high danger areas in the slot. Finished 3rd in the league with a .910 save percentage

4) Matthew Villalta
Finished his OHL career with a record of 98-20-9 after a 5th place finsihed his season with 33 wins. His save percentage 4vs5 was 2nd in the OHL at .909

5) Cedrick Andree
Isnt even the best goalie on his team ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

6) Joseph Raaymakers
Isnt even the starter on his team for the playoffs  ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Defenceman of the Year / Max Kaminsky Trophy Finalists:

1) Mac Hollowell

 Led all defencemen in scoring in the OHL with 77 points this year and helped anchor a defense core that lost Noah Carrol, Conner Timmins and Rasmus Sandin from last years squad. Played in all situations for the Hounds this year and excelled in all areas from breakouts to controlled entries. He is great in transition and among the best in the league in breaking up plays at the blueline.

2) Bode Wilde
The Saginaw defender finished 3rd among OHL defenders in points in what I imagine will be his only OHL season. Carries the Saginaw back end at times and plays in all situations for the team.

3) Evan Bouchard
Finished with 53 points in 45 games. His 1.18 points per game were 2nd among OHL defenders behind only Mac Hollowell. Arguably the best defenceman in the league but hard to put him number 1 when he played 19 fewer games then Hollowell.

4) Thomas Harley
58 points in 68 games for a Mississauga team that was not very good. Kept them competitive post deadline and should be a favourite to win this award in one of the next 2 seasons.

5) Noel Hoefenmayer
The 4th year defender set career highs across the board as he finished 4th among OHL defenders in points with 62 this season.

6) Declan Chisholm
His 5 goals were the fewest among those nominated for the award and arguments could be made for other defenders from the East to take this spot. Chisholm though brought a level of consistency to the Petes this year. He led all OHL defencemen with 33 even strength assists.

Most Outstanding Player of the Year / Red Tilson Trophy Finalists:

1) Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen
Only 2 goalies have won this award in the modern OHL. Michael Houser in 2011-12 and Andrew Raycroft in 99-00. Luukkonen came in and helped take a team that finished in last its previous season to the 4th seed. Led the league with a .920 save percentage and tied for the league lead with 6 shutouts. 

2) Justin Brazeau
As I mentioned earlier he carried a North Bay team that sorely lacked talent. He scored 21.5% of their goals and had points on more than 49% of their goals. He led the league in 5vs5 points with 71. What works against him is that he is an OA and it doesn't look like an OA has ever won this award at least not in the 20 team era of the OHL.

3) Morgan Frost
His 1.12 5vs5 points per game were most in the OHL this year. Led the league in assists with 72 and finished 3rd in the league in points with 109.

4) Jason Robertson
OHLs leading scorer, if he were to win he would be the first player to win the award in a year that he was traded since Vincent Trocheck. Did most of his damage on the power play with 17 goals and 36 assists.

5) Kyle Keyser
5th on this list but IMO it is a coin flip between anyone from 2 to 5. Was fantastic for the Generals while they were short handed this year. With him in net their penalty kill was 8% better then when the backup was in net.

Wednesday, 10 April 2019

2019 OHL Draft Recap

If you are looking for draft grades this isnt the post for you. If past OHL draft results have taught us anything it is that it is futile to grade a draft of 15 year old kids a couple of days after it takes place. Now you could grade based on value that each team got with their selections but I am not the man for that. I believe will be posting an article with Grades at some point this week and I would highly recommend checking that out.

The OHL did a good article on some of the Takeaways form the draft that I would recommend giving a read.

In this post and take a look at where the players came from and see where OHL teams like to take their players from whether it be the GTHL, the Ottawa area or the USA.

Where did the 2019 draft picks come from and how does it compare to previous years

To the surprise of none the GTHL led the way with 81 draft picks in this past Saturdays Priority Selection. 26 picks from the first 3 rounds were taken from the GTHL which represented just under 42% of the players taken in those early rounds. This was similiar to 2018 when 25 players from the GTHL were taken in the first 3 rounds.

There was a jump in players taken from the USA this year with 63 total players hearing their name called. This was a jump from 56 in 2018. Surprisingly though there were none taken in round 1 and only one player taken in round 2. There were 26 taken in the final 5 rounds which were the most out of any league. This is the norm however as teams are taking flyers on potential lottery tickets with NCAA interest.

The Alliance and NOHA each saw jumps this year. The NOHA's charge was led by a very strong Sudbury team who had 9 players drafted which was tied for 6th most in the draft.

the OMHA saw a drop from 84 players in 2018 to 74 in 2019 and HEO midget saw a drop of 1 but with 4 players taken in round 1.
2019 OHL Priority Selection

2019 OHL Priority Selection

2018 OHL Priority Selection

2018 OHL Priority Selection

What rounds did the position runs happen in

 A total of 81 centres were taken in the Priority Selection and if you include C/LW C/RW and F that total jumps up to 89 which accounted for 29.5% of the players drafted. More than half of the players selected in rounds 1 and 2 were centres and 40% of those selected in round 3 were Centres as well.

The run on goalies this year started surprisingly late. Outside of Ben Gaudreau the first goalies weren't taken till round 4 when 2 were taken. 3 followed in each of the next 4 rounds. Overall 23  goalies were selected (my pivot table includes the ceremonial pick the OHL made) as OHL teams averages taking 1.15 goalies in this draft. Teams that selected more than 1 goalie include the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds who have taken 2 goalies in 5 of the last 6 drafts. Erie, London, Owen Sound and Saginaw while Flint and Windsor did not select any goalie.

Overall 106 defencemen were taken in the draft. They were taken steady throughout but the biggest run occured from rounds 4-7 when 34 were taken over that 4 round stretch. 6 were taken in the opening round with 4 coming after the 17th pick where Niagara went with Isaac Enright from the Pemborke midget program.

 Where did your team pick its players from

It should come as no surprise as the majority of  US based players were drafted by teams in the Western Conference. 40 of the 63 players from US leagues went to teams from that Conference. Geographically it should come as no surprise since the 3 US based teams play in the Western Conference and the OHLs 3 border teams are also in that conference. Every team in the Western Conference selected atleast 3 US based players which were the most any team in the East selected.

In the West Division the Greyhounds were the only team to select a player from the Ottawa area. In 2018 they selected the most as well picking 3 while nobody else in the division selected more than 1. They Greyhounds have had a fair bit of success with the Ottawa area in recent years taking players like Zach Senyshyn, Jacob Leguerier, Alex Johnston and Joe Carroll.

Flint and Sarnia both selected 5 from the GTHL and were also the only 2 teams in the division to pluck players out of the NOHA.

Saginaw went heavy with USA based players taking 5 from the youth ranks, 1 prep player and 1 Jr player. With their success of getting commitments in recent years I would not be surprised to see if more than half of these players commit to their program.

Windsor concentrated on 3 leagues taking 4 players from the GTHL, OMHA and USA.

West Division
No division selected more players from the GTHL than the Central. The Barrie colts lead the way with 8 of their 15 picks coming from the Toronto based league. The Steelheads stayed close to home with 5 from the GTHL and 6 from the OMHA.
The Icedogs spread the Burke's money around well in this draft. They also were the only team to take players form the Ontario Jr Ranks. It is an area they have had success in the past with Castleman and Singer being plucked from there.
The divisions 2 northern enteries North Bay and Sudbury spread out their picks taking from someone from all MM leagues.

Central Division
The Alliance is the farthest division from the East but unlike the West Division which barely ventured into the Ottawa area the East divison went heavy on Alliance based talent with 12 picks which accounted for 30% of the Alliance selections.
The Bulldogs went heavy on the Alliance and OMHA (2 leagues with teams based in Hamilton) with 9 of their 14 picks.
Kingston and Oshawa both spread their picks out taking 3 more than 3 from each the GTHL, Alliance and OMHA.
Ottawa and Peterborough stayed close to home with their picks as Ottawa took 5 from HEO and the Petes led the way with 7 OMHA selections.
East Division

The Midwest drafted heavy in the USA youth leagues, OMHA and the Alliance.
Erie and Owen Sound selected 5 and 6 players respectively from the OMHA. The Attack also tied the Greyhounds for the most selections from the Alliance.
Guelph and Kitchener had the majority of their picks from the GTHL and USA with a couple of picks from the OMHA and the Alliance as well.
The big bad London Knights tied for the fewest picks from the GTHL but selected the most players form the Ottawa area out of any Western Conference team. They also led all OHL teams with 6 minor midget aged players from the USA.
Midwest Division

Which minor midget program has been producing the most OHL Players

In 2019 the top 5 OHL draft producing teams all came from the GTHL. The OHL cup Champion Don Mills Flyers led the way with 14 selections. The Marlboros, Red Wings, Rebels and Nationals all added double digit draft selections as well.

The top producing teams outside of the GTHL were the Compuware U16 team and from the NOHA the Sudbury Wolves who had 9 of the 14 selections from the NOHA. The London Jr Knights were the top producing team from the Alliance, the Whitby Wildcats were tops in the OMHA-ETA, Pembroke with 6 including 1st round picks Mason McTavish and Isaac Enright led the way for HEO and the Guelph Gryphons with 6 had the most from OMHA-SCTA.

In 2018 the Oakville Rangers led the way with 14. The Marlboros are the only team to be in the top 5 in each of the last 2 years. Their 26 picks the last 2 years are the most. Don Mills who had 9 in 2018 have the 2nd best 2 year total with 23.

Thursday, 4 April 2019

2019 OHL Conference Semi Final Preview

Western Conference

(1) London Knights vs (4) Guelph Storm

1. Fri Apr 05 @ LDN
2. Sun Apr 07 @LDN
3. Mon Apr 08 @ GUE
4. Wed Apr 10  @ GUE
5. Fri Apr 12 @LDN
6 *. Sat Apr 13 @ GUE
7. Tue Apr 16 @LDN

Reason to be optimistic
They are the London Knights and they are playing Guelph
Handily defeated the Rangers in round 1 and the players the team they assembled at the deadline seems to be finally coming together.

Reason for concern
50% (10/20) of their goals in round came from defencemen. That in itself isn't much cause for concern but the lack of production from the forward group is. They will need more from them if they are to avoid an upset at the hands of Guelph

Out of the remaining starting goalies in the playoffs Popovich was the only one to have a sub .900 save percentage in the regular season. He was stellar against Kitchener but can he keep it up against teams that have talented players?

London in 5

(2) Saginaw Spirit vs (3) Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds


1. Fri Apr 05 @ SAG
2. Sun Apr 07 @ SAG
3. Tue Apr 09 @ SSM
4. Thu Apr 11 @ SSM
5. Fri Apr 12 @ SAG
6. Sun Apr 14 @ SSM
7. Tue Apr 16  @ SAG

Reason to be optimistic


Coming off of their first playoff series win since 2012 and their first opening round sweep since 2009

Sault Ste. Marie

They are the most experienced team in the playoffs and Matthew Villalta had his best 4 game stretch in the playoffs in his career to start the series against Owen Sound.

Reason for Concern

The Spirit have lost 13 straight playoff games to the Greyhounds and are 2-16 in their last 4 series.

Sault Ste. Marie

In round 1 the Greyhounds gave up 2 goals to Owen Sound OA forward Zack Poirier. Giving up 2 goals to a player like Poirier can fracture the psyche of a team.

Saginaw in 7

Eastern Conference

(1) Ottawa 67s vs (4) Sudbury Wolves


1. Fri Apr 05 @ OTT
2. Sun Apr 07 @ OTT
3. Tue Apr 09 @ SBY
4. Thu Apr 11 @ SBY
5. Sat Apr 13 @ OTT
6. Mon Apr 15 @ SBY
7. Tue Apr 16 @ OTT

Reason to be optimistic

Arguably the deepest team top to bottom in the OHL. Sudbury will have a difficult time matching their depth
Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen has already bested Michael DiPietro once this year in a quarter final match up and would anybody be truly surprised if he did it again?

Reason for concern

While they dominated on special teams against Hamilton the play was  a lot closer 5 on 5. Luukkonen had the highest short handed save percentage in the league during the regular season so Ottawa cant expect to feast on PP opportunities.

The Wolves have not made it past the 2nd round since 06-07 and have lost their last 8 2nd round match ups with both series ending in sweeps.

Ottawa in 6

(2) Niagara Icedogs vs (3) Oshawa Generals

1. Fri Apr 05 @ NIA
2. Sun Apr 07 @ NIA
3. Tue Apr 09 @ OSH
4. Thu Apr 11 @ OSH
5. Sat Apr 13 @ NIA
6. Mon Apr 15 @ OSH
7. Tue Apr 16 @ NIA

Reason to be optimistic
The Icedogs are one of the better diving teams in the OHL. The led the league in power plays in the regular season and averaged over 5 a game in round 1 against North Bay.

7 different players scored more than 2 goals in the opening round. They have multiple lines clicking right now and the types of players who could make life difficult for Robertson and Thomas.

Reason for concern
During the regular season Stephen Dhillon had the worst save percentage in the league 4vs5 among playoff starters with a .823 save percentage. Kyle Keyser had the 3rd highest at .908. In fact when Keyser was in net the Generals penalty kill was over 7% more successful.

The last 2 starting goalies to win an OHL title are Kaden Fulcher and Troy Timpano. Depth and talent in the forward group and on the blueline have gone a lot farther recently in the OHL playoffs and is an area where Niagara has quite the edge.

Niagara in7

Tuesday, 2 April 2019

OHL Draft Success

With the OHL Priority Selection happening on Saturday April 6th I decided to take a look at some of the success teams have had at drafting players that would ultimately go on to play in the OHL.

I looked at the amount of OHL games each played from the last 5 years for each OHL team. This wasn't just OHL games played with the team they drafted them but all OHL games total. I wanted to take a look at see if there were certain teams that did a better job of drafting players that would go on to play in the league. Obviously not all the draft class's have finished their OHL eligibility. '14 has completed 5 seasons while '15 has finished 4, '16 has finished 3 etc.

Obviously looking at games played isnt the perfect way to look at draft success. After all 60 games as a 19 year old are more valuable than 60 games as a 16 year old. Further more a 50 point season from an OA isn't as valuable as a 50 point season from an 18 or 19 year old. That said you can get an idea of how successful a team is at lacquering OHL talent through the draft.

I then went and looked at the 5 year stretch  from '09 to '13 to get an idea of what an average draft class should be able to pull in. The reason I wanted 5 other than a larger sample was that as a junior player you have 5 years of eligibility if you play an OA season. Also there are only so many roster spots available so logically if you have a strong draft class one year there will be less spots available for the next class to develop and play in the OHL.

I also went and broke it down further to see which teams have more success in the middle and late rounds and which teams were more reliant on early round picks. If there is one thing that makes OHL fans horny it is 2nd round draft picks and while I didn't go into too much depth there I want to see if which teams can be success full without them.

2014-2018 OHL Priority Selection

Over the last 5 seasons the 3 teams that have had the most success in drafting have been the Barrie Colts, Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds and the Guelph Storm. The Colts have been a model of consistency has they are currently in the top 10 in OHL games played for each draft class. What makes it even more impressive is their inability to sign 1st round draft picks yet they keep getting OHL games out of their players.

In terms of total games from their draft classes Barrie, Sault Ste. Marie, Erie and Niagara round out to top 4. What may be surprising to some is that these 4 teams and the 4 fewest 2nd round draft picks over that period with 1, 2, 1 and 3 respectively. You can have all the 2nd round picks in the world but when drafting 15 year olds you can get talent in more than just the early rounds.

This year marks the 6th straight season the Greyhounds have made it to the 2nd round of the playoffs. A lot of that success comes form their strong drafting. Particularly their 2014 draft which produced 9 OHLers out of their 16 picks. he 1738 games played by that draft class is the 4th highest in the last 6 draft class's that have completed their 5 years of OHL eligibility.

The only time in the past 5 years were the Greyhounds are not in the top 5 among games played by draft classes would be their 2018 draft were they are 13th but with only a 16 year old season in the books it is to early to read to much into that.

The Guelph Storm have had strong early returns from their 2018 draft class which is surprising when you consider the fact that they were a contending team this year. They have had slightly above average draft classes in terms of games since a below average 2014.

The bottom 3 teams have one big surprise and that is the Oshawa Generals who are consistently among the lowest in the OHL among OHL games from their draft class. Owen Sound, Windsor and North Bay are the next 3 on the list.

The Generals have finished either 18th or 19th except for 2016 when they were able to come in at 15th. What has allowed them to stay competitive though is they do a very good job of hitting on their early picks and Roger Hunt has shown an uncanny ability had extracting as much value as he can from the trade market.

Windsor's 2014 draft produced only 2 players. Logan Stanley and Daniil Vertiy in a draft that can only be described as a disaster for the team. If not for the selection of Michael DiPietro who is one of the best goalies the OHL has seen in recent memory the past 5 years could have been worse. Although how much worse could it have gotten than 6 playoff wins in the last 5 years.

Top 5 Rounds

A lot of focus is directed at the top 5 rounds and rightfully so. Most of the top talent is taken in the early rounds and the majority of those who will play in the OHL are taken in the top 5 rounds. Some teams are more reliant than others on getting talent in the top 5 rounds and some struggle to make an impact with their early round picks.

Most reliant on the top 5 rounds

Oshawa received a staggering 96% of their drafted OHL games from the first 5 rounds since 2014. They have done well getting players like Serron Noel and Nick Wong (who they moved for an impact player at this past deadline) in round 2 but their lack of success after the early rounds may be one of the reasons why this team has been unable to get over the hump. In past years they have been able to find quality OHLers like Jimmy McDowell, Chris Carlise and Jalen Semerek in the later rounds but not recently.

The Petes lead the way with 3286 games played from the top 5 rounds. With their yearly large cupboard of draft picks this doesn't come as much of a surprise. 92% of their drafted games played comes from the early rounds but with so many early round picks it shouldn't come as a surprise. If they were to have a little more success with their later round picks however maybe it would allow them to move some of these assets to help them now?

Sudbury, Kitchener and Saginaw are the only other teams with more than 85% of their games coming from the top 5 rounds. All 3 teams had plenty of 2nd round picks. Saginaw has actually had the most in the past 5 seasons with 9.

Fewest games played by top 5 round draft picks

Windsor, Mississauga and North Bay all have the fewest drafted games played by their early round picks.

North Bay particularly has struggled to hit with their top picks. Their highest NHL drafted player that they selected in the OHL priority selection is Cam Morrison who never set foot in North Bay. The Colorado 2nd rounder just wrapped up his Junior season with Notre Dame. Outside of that there haven't been any real stand out players who have forced their way into making an impact at the OHL level.

Windsor had a horrendous 2014 draft which was mentioned above. A strong '15 draft but were missing a 1st in 2016 and sold the farm for '17 which attributed to their low early round numbers. Still they managed 6 2nds over that period. 2 of which never played in the OHL.

Mississauga is surprisingly low considering they had 6 1st over the last 5 years. Unfortunately they went with Jack Hughes who was never going to play in the OHL and Nizhnikov who they at least got value out of via trade but he is no longer in the OHL and adding to the games played numbers.

Fewest 2nd round picks

Barrie and Erie have only had 1 2nd round pick the last 5 seasons. They had the 12th and 15th most games played from top 5 round picks over that period

The Soo Greyhounds only had 2 2nd round draft picks the last 5 years yet have the 7th most games played among players taken in the top 5 rounds.

The Niagara Icedogs with only 3 2nds have the 10th most games played among their first 5 round draft picks over the past five seasons.

Why did I want to look at these teams? Because over the past 4 seasons these 4 teams have the top 4 spots for most games played from the past 5 draft classes.

Middle and Late Rounds

 Barrie Colts and their Mid Round success

The Colts have over 1500 games from their mid round selections over the past 5 drafts. Less than 100 away from what the North Bay Battalion of gotten from their picks in the top 5 rounds. This ability to get OHL calibre players has allowed the Colts to get aggressive in their rebuilds and bounce back to home ice calibre in short order. Jaden Peca, Kade Landry and Christopher Cameron were all mid round picks in 2015. Their presence allowed the Colts to make a quick run in 2018 with Svechnikov as they gave their roster some much needed depth.

Erie and Sault Ste. Marie and their late round finds

The Otters and Greyhounds have shown an uncanny knack for finding hidden gems in the later rounds. In 2014 the Hounds selected Mac Hollowell in round 12. He now has an NHL contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs and will likely be a finalist for the Max Kaminsky Trophy. Some other gems include Theo Calvas who put up strong seasons with Sarnia and North Bay, Zack Trott who has developed into a very tenacious 3rd liner with a bit of a scoring touch and the last player taken in the 2017 draft Cullen Mclean.

In 2014 the Otters tabbed Christian Girhiny in round 11. he would suit up in parts of 4 seasons and even added a memorial cup goal. In 2016 they selected Cade Robinson (who is now with Owen Sound) in round 11 and Maxim Golod in round 13.

 North Bay's 2014 draft

The Battalion had quite an ending to their 2014 draft as they selected both Cam Dineen and Justin Brazeau in the later rounds. Brazeau will likely win the OA player of the year award this year after setting a franchise record for goals in a year and Dineen was likely the most electric defender in Battalion history and brought in quite the bounty when dealt at the 2018 deadline.

Guelph and Flint

The Storm and Firebirds seem to have gone into a lull in terms of identifying talent from the later rounds.

Flint has been loaded in terms of draft capital in recent years so one may point to a lack of opportunity for their early round picks

While the Storm have 0 games from the last 5 rounds they do have the 2nd most from their mid round picks which has allowed them to make a push this year with players like Popovich, Ralph and Stevenson who have given them the depth needed to support the stars they have acquired.

2009-2013 drafts

I wanted to run the numbers from these 5 drafts because they are the five most recent without any current OHLers on them and it will give an idea of what an average OHL draft brings in terms of OHL games played. At the end of the day there are only so many spots available and you can also add in the amount of games taken from import picks and FA signings. Depending on how the u18 draft continues to develop there will be another avenue for players to get into the league outside of the priority selection.

There wasn't much different in terms of total games with 2009 bringing 23522 OHL games worth of players while 2011 only brought in 21295. The difference of about 112 per team.