Boston Bruins Prospect Ratings

( Photo Credit: NHL.com )

By: Dominic Tiano | Follow me on Twitter @dominictiano

I’ll begin by saying this is not a ranking – that will come at a later date – but rather a rating on the player’s performance from the 2021-2022 season. The players on this rating are: either drafted or free agent signings of the Bruins, played outside the NHL or AHL, and the Bruins must hold their NHL rights beyond next season. It does not include the Bruins late-season free-agent signings.

The ratings are based on several things. Skating includes many things like mobility, strength on skates, lateral movement, pivots, and turns; forward to backward skating; technique; and speed (first step, top speed, and acceleration). Something like expectations is a little harder, and honestly, there is no way to gauge it since it is based on what my personal expectations were of a player entering the season.

Other things, such as coachability and others, are based on viewings and how I see them. Leadership is not exclusive to just wearing a letter. It includes things like whether the coaches can use him in any situation, can he take over a game, and does he make everyone around him better? And most importantly, how does he respond to the coaching staff?

A player is rated on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being the lowest possible score and ten the highest. When it comes to my expectations of a player entering the season, a score of 5 means he met those expectations, a score of 1 means he fell well short of my expectations, and of course, a score of 10 means he absolutely crushed it (and maybe my expectations were low). That part of the rating is very subjective.

Some might think that coachability or leadership qualities are subjective as well. But you can see those things with interactions on the bench or on the ice. And you can get a sense when talking to those in and around the player – which I did on each of these players.

Again, this is from my own personal viewings and talking to others in the game. There is nothing here to suggest any of this translates to the NHL. It is a rating on how they did in their own leagues.

Feel free to disagree and post your thoughts in the comment section.

Fabian Lysell

Selected 21st Overall In 2021

( Photo Credit: BRIAN LIESSE )
Skating (First step, top speed, separation gear, strength, backwards, mobility, technique)9
Scoring ability (Can he score from all areas)8
Playmaking10
Vision (How does he see the ice; does he miss obvious plays – decision making)10
Met expectations?7
Hockey sense (how is his anticipation: does he make the right decisions)10
Compete level (drives the net, battles on the walls, works hard in all three zones)10
Shot (accuracy, velocity, purpose, variety)8
Puck handling (can he gain the O-zone; can he stickhandle in tight-through traffic)10
Leadership (trusted in all situations, does he make everyone better, can he influence a game)9
Coachability (does he talk to coaches, and how does he respond when they speak to him)10
Physicality (does he stand up for himself and his teammates, does he engage in hard areas)8
OVERALL RATING9.1

My expectations of Lysell were pretty fair, in my opinion, considering that he was in a new country, playing on the small ice for the first time and with players he had never played with before. I had him down for 25 goals and 43 assists on the season, and although he fell short of that, I had to be fair to Lysell. Considering he missed 15 games, he would have surpassed those totals.

Mason Lohrei

Selected 58th Overall In 2020

( Photo Credit: Ohio State Athletics )
Skating (First step, top speed, separation gear, strength, backwards, mobility, technique)9
Scoring ability (Can he score from all areas)7
Playmaking10
Vision (How does he see the ice; does he miss obvious plays – decision making)9
Met expectations?10
Hockey sense (how is his anticipation: does he make the right decisions)9
Compete level (drives the net, battles on the walls, works hard in all three zones)9
Shot (accuracy, velocity, purpose, variety)8
Puck handling (can he gain the O-zone; can he stickhandle in tight-through traffic)10
Leadership (trusted in all situations, does he make everyone better, can he influence a game)9
Coachability (does he talk to coaches, and how does he respond when they speak to him)10
Physicality (does he stand up for himself and his teammates, does he engage in hard areas)8
OVERALL RATING9.0

Honestly, I expected 2 or 3 goals and 15 helpers for the freshman, and I would have been happy with that. But Lohrei just blew that away. On top of that, he finished the year with a plus-16 which was much higher than expected. The scary thing for opponents? He’s only going to get better. I don’t know anyone (if they were being honest) expected a near point-per-game as a freshman. Lohrei could have taken the easy route and decided to turn pro, but he wants to work on getting better – and that he will.

Brett Harrison

Selected 85th Overall In 2021

( Photo Credit: NHL.com )
Skating (First step, top speed, separation gear, strength, backwards, mobility, technique)8
Scoring ability (Can he score from all areas)9
Playmaking8
Vision (How does he see the ice; does he miss obvious plays – decision making)8
Met expectations?4
Hockey sense (how is his anticipation: does he make the right decisions)9
Compete level (drives the net, battles on the walls, works hard in all three zones)6
Shot (accuracy, velocity, purpose, variety)10
Puck handling (can he gain the O-zone; can he stickhandle in tight-through traffic)10
Leadership (trusted in all situations, does he make everyone better, can he influence a game)10
Coachability (does he talk to coaches, and how does he respond when they speak to him)10
Physicality (does he stand up for himself and his teammates, does he engage in hard areas)5
OVERALL RATING8.1

I had Harrison pegged for a 30-goal and 40-assist season, and he fell a little short. It’s difficult for a player when you’re moving all over the lineup – center, wing, first line, second line, and the fact that he only played teams in his own conference didn’t help. Not trying to make excuses for him; that was just the reality of the season.

Ryan Mast

Selected 181st Overall In 2021

( Photo Credit: NHL.com )
Skating (First step, top speed, separation gear, strength, backwards, mobility, technique)7
Scoring ability (Can he score from all areas)4
Playmaking8
Vision (How does he see the ice; does he miss obvious plays – decision making)9
Met expectations?10
Hockey sense (how is his anticipation: does he make the right decisions)7
Compete level (drives the net, battles on the walls, works hard in all three zones)9
Shot (accuracy, velocity, purpose, variety)8
Puck handling (can he gain the O-zone; can he stickhandle in tight-through traffic)7
Leadership (trusted in all situations, does he make everyone better, can he influence a game)10
Coachability (does he talk to coaches, and how does he respond when they speak to him)10
Physicality (does he stand up for himself and his teammates, does he engage in hard areas)10
OVERALL RATING8.2

Honestly, I don’t know too many people that expected the offensive output that Mast produced. I had him at four goals and 20 assists on the season, so his nine goals blow that out of the water. As I’ve said many times here, it’s doubtful that translates to the NHL, and almost everyone I speak with agrees. But that’s no reason to downgrade what he has done on the season. His overall rating is obviously affected by his expectations score. Next season will be essential for his development.

Oskar Jellvik

Selected 149th Overall In 2021

( Photo Credit: Aftoubladet / Lena K Samuelsson )
Skating (First step, top speed, separation gear, strength, backwards, mobility, technique)8
Scoring ability (Can he score from all areas)8
Playmaking9
Vision (How does he see the ice; does he miss obvious plays – decision making)10
Met expectations?8
Hockey sense (how is his anticipation: does he make the right decisions)8
Compete level (drives the net, battles on the walls, works hard in all three zones)8
Shot (accuracy, velocity, purpose, variety)8
Puck handling (can he gain the O-zone; can he stickhandle in tight-through traffic)10
Leadership (trusted in all situations, does he make everyone better, can he influence a game)9
Coachability (does he talk to coaches, and how does he respond when they speak to him)10
Physicality (does he stand up for himself and his teammates, does he engage in hard areas)8
OVERALL RATING8.7

Yes, it was the J-20 Nationell, so expectations were high. His 31 goals and 33 assists in 47 games were still higher than my expected 25 goals and 30 assists. For Jellvik, though, it all begins next season as he transitions to North America and Boston College in the NCAA. I am very high and confident it will go well for him once he grows accustomed to this side of the pond.

Matias Mantykivi

Selected 185th Overall In 2019

( Photo Credit: Matias Mantykivi / @Maentykivi )
Skating (First step, top speed, separation gear, strength, backwards, mobility, technique)8
Scoring ability (Can he score from all areas)8
Playmaking8
Vision (How does he see the ice; does he miss obvious plays – decision making)9
Met expectations?10
Hockey sense (how is his anticipation: does he make the right decisions)8
Compete level (drives the net, battles on the walls, works hard in all three zones)8
Shot (accuracy, velocity, purpose, variety)8
Puck handling (can he gain the O-zone; can he stickhandle in tight-through traffic)9
Leadership (trusted in all situations, does he make everyone better, can he influence a game)9
Coachability (does he talk to coaches, and how does he respond when they speak to him)10
Physicality (does he stand up for himself and his teammates, does he engage in hard areas)8
OVERALL RATING8.6

Hard to predict what a youngster will do playing in the Finnish Liiga, and based on previous games and seasons overseas, I didn’t have high offensive expectations for Mantykivi at just seven goals and 12 assists, but he topped that easily with 12 goals and 19 helpers after a prolonged start to the season. Maybe my expectations were low, but after producing four goals and 11 assists in his previous two seasons combined (85 games), I don’t think I was far off.

Andre Gasseau

Selected 213th Overall In 2021

( Photo Credit: Sean Rice Photography )
Skating (First step, top speed, separation gear, strength, backwards, mobility, technique)6
Scoring ability (Can he score from all areas)8
Playmaking8
Vision (How does he see the ice; does he miss obvious plays – decision making)8
Met expectations?8
Hockey sense (how is his anticipation: does he make the right decisions)8
Compete level (drives the net, battles on the walls, works hard in all three zones)10
Shot (accuracy, velocity, purpose, variety)8
Puck handling (can he gain the O-zone; can he stickhandle in tight-through traffic)7
Leadership (trusted in all situations, does he make everyone better, can he influence a game)7
Coachability (does he talk to coaches, and how does he respond when they speak to him)9
Physicality (does he stand up for himself and his teammates, does he engage in hard areas)9
OVERALL RATING8.0

I love the size and his willingness to battle, and his 200-foot game. There are things he needs to work on as he enters the NCAA with Boston College next season, but there is plenty of time for that. After his time with the USNTDP last season, I thought he was capable of 16 goals and 20 helpers this season. He blew away my expected goals for but didn’t quite reach the assist mark. Gasseau needs to work on his skating, and since he is a long-term project, there is ample time for him to work on it.

Trevor Kuntar

Selected 89th Overall In 2020

( Photo Credit: Joseph Weiser | Weiser Photos )
Skating (First step, top speed, separation gear, strength, backwards, mobility, technique)6
Scoring ability (Can he score from all areas)10
Playmaking8
Vision (How does he see the ice; does he miss obvious plays – decision making)8
Met expectations?6
Hockey sense (how is his anticipation: does he make the right decisions)6
Compete level (drives the net, battles on the walls, works hard in all three zones)9
Shot (accuracy, velocity, purpose, variety)10
Puck handling (can he gain the O-zone; can he stickhandle in tight-through traffic)7
Leadership (trusted in all situations, does he make everyone better, can he influence a game)8
Coachability (does he talk to coaches, and how does he respond when they speak to him)8
Physicality (does he stand up for himself and his teammates, does he engage in hard areas)8
OVERALL RATING7.8

Kuntar is one of my favorite prospects, and there is plenty to like, especially his shot which is NHL caliber right now. However, I am a little disappointed in his production but not concerned. In terms of points-per-game, there was a slight improvement over a season ago. His playmaking improved, as shown by his near doubling of assists per game. He will take on a more significant role with Boston College next season, and I expect it to be his breakout year. Working on mobility and speed are needed.

Jake Schmaltz

Selected 192nd Overall In 2019

( Photo Credit: Russell Hons )
Skating (First step, top speed, separation gear, strength, backwards, mobility, technique)8
Scoring ability (Can he score from all areas)5
Playmaking8
Vision (How does he see the ice; does he miss obvious plays – decision making)9
Met expectations?7
Hockey sense (how is his anticipation: does he make the right decisions)9
Compete level (drives the net, battles on the walls, works hard in all three zones)8
Shot (accuracy, velocity, purpose, variety)7
Puck handling (can he gain the O-zone; can he stickhandle in tight-through traffic)7
Leadership (trusted in all situations, does he make everyone better, can he influence a game)8
Coachability (does he talk to coaches, and how does he respond when they speak to him)8
Physicality (does he stand up for himself and his teammates, does he engage in hard areas)8
OVERALL RATING7.7

After three seasons in the USHL, where he showed marked improvement year-over-year, I expect he will show the same type of trajectory with the University of North Dakota. As a freshman this season, I had him pegged for six goals and 12 assists, and he surpassed that with his eight goals and 16 helpers in 39 games. His biggest strengths are vision, hockey sense, and a 200-foot game.

Riley Duran

Selected 182nd Overall In 2020

( Photo Credit: Providence College Athletics )
Skating (First step, top speed, separation gear, strength, backwards, mobility, technique)8
Scoring ability (Can he score from all areas)8
Playmaking9
Vision (How does he see the ice; does he miss obvious plays – decision making)8
Met expectations?6
Hockey sense (how is his anticipation: does he make the right decisions)7
Compete level (drives the net, battles on the walls, works hard in all three zones)8
Shot (accuracy, velocity, purpose, variety)9
Puck handling (can he gain the O-zone; can he stickhandle in tight-through traffic)8
Leadership (trusted in all situations, does he make everyone better, can he influence a game)7
Coachability (does he talk to coaches, and how does he respond when they speak to him)8
Physicality (does he stand up for himself and his teammates, does he engage in hard areas)9
OVERALL RATING7.9

Not a bad Freshman year for Duran, who was moved up and down the lineup regularly and not always put in the best offensive situations. However, I expect that to change with Providence College next season as he will be given a regular role and asked to contribute more offensively. There’s a lot of talent here – skating, puck skills, and shot that say he will eventually be an NHL player. But he is also a long-term project and still very green.

Quinn Olsen

Selected 92nd Overall In 2019

( Photo Credit: UMD Athletics )
Skating (First step, top speed, separation gear, strength, backwards, mobility, technique)8
Scoring ability (Can he score from all areas)4
Playmaking8
Vision (How does he see the ice; does he miss obvious plays – decision making)8
Met expectations?4
Hockey sense (how is his anticipation: does he make the right decisions)8
Compete level (drives the net, battles on the walls, works hard in all three zones)10
Shot (accuracy, velocity, purpose, variety)8
Puck handling (can he gain the O-zone; can he stickhandle in tight-through traffic)8
Leadership (trusted in all situations, does he make everyone better, can he influence a game)7
Coachability (does he talk to coaches, and how does he respond when they speak to him)8
Physicality (does he stand up for himself and his teammates, does he engage in hard areas)8
OVERALL RATING7.4

There is a lot to like about Olson, his shoot-first mentality, yet he can make plays, his drive and determination, and his puck handling, but his expectations were far below what I needed to see. His playmaking was where I expected, but his goal production lacked, especially for a player that shoots as much as Olson. He is entering his final year with Minnesota-Duluth, and the Bruins hold his rights until August 2023.

Ty Gallagher

Selected 217th Overall In 2021

( Photo Credit: Boston University Athletics )
Skating (First step, top speed, separation gear, strength, backwards, mobility, technique)7
Scoring ability (Can he score from all areas)7
Playmaking8
Vision (How does he see the ice; does he miss obvious plays – decision making)9
Met expectations?8
Hockey sense (how is his anticipation: does he make the right decisions)7
Compete level (drives the net, battles on the walls, works hard in all three zones)7
Shot (accuracy, velocity, purpose, variety)9
Puck handling (can he gain the O-zone; can he stickhandle in tight-through traffic)7
Leadership (trusted in all situations, does he make everyone better, can he influence a game)7
Coachability (does he talk to coaches, and how does he respond when they speak to him)8
Physicality (does he stand up for himself and his teammates, does he engage in hard areas)9
OVERALL RATING7.6

I’m still bewildered that the Bruins were able to get Gallagher with the 217th pick, but that’s a story for another day. The overall rating for Gallagher may seem a bit low. He has all the tools, and it’s all about developing them now. For example, his playmaking abilities are all there, but he needs to make better decisions at times and find more accuracy, especially with his stretch passes that too many times lead to icings. In terms of expectations, yes, he surpassed them for his freshman year.

Dustyn McFaul

Selected 181st Overall In 2018

( Photo Credit: Clarkson University Athletics )
Skating (First step, top speed, separation gear, strength, backwards, mobility, technique)7
Scoring ability (Can he score from all areas)1
Playmaking7
Vision (How does he see the ice; does he miss obvious plays – decision making)7
Met expectations?3
Hockey sense (how is his anticipation: does he make the right decisions)7
Compete level (drives the net, battles on the walls, works hard in all three zones)9
Shot (accuracy, velocity, purpose, variety)7
Puck handling (can he gain the O-zone; can he stickhandle in tight-through traffic)8
Leadership (trusted in all situations, does he make everyone better, can he influence a game)7
Coachability (does he talk to coaches, and how does he respond when they speak to him)9
Physicality (does he stand up for himself and his teammates, does he engage in hard areas)8
OVERALL RATING6.8

Based on his Junior A days in Pickering, I had hopes of McFaul developing into an NHL shut-down defenceman and that some of the offense he displayed there would show up as he moved ahead. Well, the offense never materialized, but the defensive part of his game has steadily developed. Is it enough, though? A big year is coming for McFaul as the Bruins only hold his rights until August 2023. This is the type of player you take a chance on in late rounds and hope they develop. He still may not, but it was worth the gamble.

Mason Langenbrunner

Selected 151st Overall In 2020

( Photo Credit: NHL.com )
Skating (First step, top speed, separation gear, strength, backwards, mobility, technique)8
Scoring ability (Can he score from all areas)3
Playmaking8
Vision (How does he see the ice; does he miss obvious plays – decision making)8
Met expectations?6
Hockey sense (how is his anticipation: does he make the right decisions)7
Compete level (drives the net, battles on the walls, works hard in all three zones)8
Shot (accuracy, velocity, purpose, variety)8
Puck handling (can he gain the O-zone; can he stickhandle in tight-through traffic)8
Leadership (trusted in all situations, does he make everyone better, can he influence a game)7
Coachability (does he talk to coaches, and how does he respond when they speak to him)8
Physicality (does he stand up for himself and his teammates, does he engage in hard areas)8
OVERALL RATING7.3

A lot of the reactions from fans at the time of this pick were, “great; the Bruins drafted another family member of someone in management.” I will admit it; I thought the same thing at first. But there is some talent here. He has good size and mobility with some good puck skills. He’s headed to Harvard University for what could be four seasons next year, and he will get the opportunity to further develop his two-way game.

Roman Bychkov

Selected 154th Overall In 2019

( Photo Credit: Yaroslavl Lokomotiv / KHL )
Skating (First step, top speed, separation gear, strength, backwards, mobility, technique)6
Scoring ability (Can he score from all areas)1
Playmaking7
Vision (How does he see the ice; does he miss obvious plays – decision making)8
Met expectations?3
Hockey sense (how is his anticipation: does he make the right decisions)6
Compete level (drives the net, battles on the walls, works hard in all three zones)8
Shot (accuracy, velocity, purpose, variety)8
Puck handling (can he gain the O-zone; can he stickhandle in tight-through traffic)6
Leadership (trusted in all situations, does he make everyone better, can he influence a game)3
Coachability (does he talk to coaches, and how does he respond when they speak to him)8
Physicality (does he stand up for himself and his teammates, does he engage in hard areas)7
OVERALL RATING5.9

I really didn’t expect a lot from Bychkov as a rookie in the KHL. It was a developmental year for him in Russia’s top league as he saw a lot of healthy scratches, and when he did play, he had minimal ice time. If he is ever going to play in North America, he is going to have to take a major leap next season. For a smaller defenceman, he needs to add more speed. And despite a lean frame, he engages physically. Bychkov has shown to have some offensive abilities.

Closing Thoughts

Chances are, you may disagree with the rating of your favorite prospect. All I can say to you is that they are still in the development stages of their careers, and some may go up, others may stay flat, and others could drop. This is something I have used to map out progression over the years.

A low score isn’t a be-all-end-all because of the stages they are at. Let me use Harrison as an example. Just like the Bruins do, I have set expectations for him (although they may differ). And to be honest, his average score of 8.1 is not really that great. Even if you leave my expectations out of the equation, his score suffered because of an average score in physicality and compete level. Granted, very late in the season and the playoffs, there was an improvement, but I need to see year-over-year improvement and consistency. This is simply what I use to map that progression.

Coming soon will be my prospect rankings. Stay tuned for that.

Follow me on Twitter @dominictiano

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