When the Dallas Stars took Jack Campbell with their 1st round draft choice, 11th overall, in 2010, it seemed that the team had drafted a goalie with the potential to be their number one in the future.
So far Campbell is still living up to that potential, with a sparkling 10-1-1 record in the AHL this season, supported by a 1.58 goals against average and a .937 save percentage.
However, it's starting to look like Campbell might have some healthy competition in his quest to become the top netminder in Dallas thanks to the recent emergence of another goalie in the system, 18-year-old Philippe Desrosiers.
Desrosiers, drafted in the 2nd round, 54th overall, in last June's NHL Entry Draft, has been absolutely on fire for the past two months playing for the QMJHL's Rimouski Oceanic. He put together a fantastic 14-game winning streak in February and March, and even set a league record for longest shutout streak in that time, which was stopped at a whopping 243 minutes and 35 seconds.
In February alone he went 9-0 with a 0.94 goals against average, a .965 save percentage and three shutouts, which was good enough to be named the QMJHL's first star for the month. For a league that has an average save percentage of below .900, Desrosiers' numbers that month were simply stellar.
His winning streak was eventually snapped in his last regular season game, ending the year with a 31-14-7 record, but he's carried on right where he left to start the playoffs, going 4-0 as the Oceanic swept the Chicoutimi Sagueneens. They will face the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada in the second round.
Desrosiers' style of play is highly enticing, as he combines athleticism, competitiveness, and a solid understanding of the fundamentals of the position. From Hockey's Future:
"Aggressive, confident butterfly goaltender that has a surprising amount of athleticism and quickness. Can get out of his butterfly stance just as quickly as he can get into it. Anticipates the play well and challenges adeptly. Advanced rebound control at his age. Understands the concept of directing rebounds. Actively makes saves, doesn't just block shots. Moves pretty well in the crease, mainly because he doesn't give up his leverage to push across entirely because he's not a "lazy" butterfly goalie - he's an active player. High shots can be problematic for him. No young goalie is ready out of the box, still holes to fill in his game."
The native of St-Hyacinthe, Quebec, also has international experience on his young resume, representing Team Canada at the World U18s. He helped lead the Canadians to a gold medal with a perfect 5-0 record, an 0.80 goals against and a .970 save percentage. If he can continue his strong play in the Q his success at the U18s could increase his chances at making the Canadian team at the 2015 World Juniors.
Ranked 12th overall in the most recent edition of our Defending Big D Prospect Rankings, Desrosiers still has a long way to go to catch up to the NO. 1 ranked Campbell, but a little competition in the organization is never a bad thing. His development is going better than initially expected, so he'll certainly be one of the top Stars prospects to keep an eye on in the coming future.