Jacob Peterson is not a name that many Dallas Stars fans recognize, but if he continues to perform at the level he has been at thus far into his 2018-19 season that is sure to change in a hurry.
After all, when you can score goals like he can it’s only a matter of time until people really started to take notice.
The 19-year-old forward has been a mainstay this season with Bjorkloven in the Allsvenskan, Sweden’s second-highest professional league and the home of a few former NHLers every season. That alone is a good sign for a young player’s potential, but Peterson isn’t just taking up a roster spot — he’s making a real difference.
Through 22 games Peterson has eight goals, which leads his entire team, and 12 points in total. League-wide, those eight goals have him tied for 10th.
What’s most impressive, however, is how Peterson is scoring those goals.
Utilizing a quick mind, quick feet, quick hands and a quick release, Peterson has shown a dynamic quality to his game, taking opposing defensemen and goaltenders by surprise, sometimes without the help of any teammates.
Peterson, drafted by Dallas in the 5th round, 132nd overall, in the 2017 entry draft, is pretty skinny, and that’s probably how his body type has always been, so playing a power game has never been his strong suit. However, he’s learned to overcome his thin frame by having an elusive element to his game thanks to his ability to easily shift gears and change direction and some deft puck-protection skills.
Because he is still a teenager Peterson is eligible to play for his native Sweden at this year’s World Juniors, and that will be a possibility to keep an eye out for. He has played for Sweden internationally before, scoring a goal and an assist at the 2017 U18s, and his home nation doesn’t have a very strong group of 1999-born forwards with which to choose from, helping his chances.
If that happens it will give Stars fans an excellent opportunity to watch a player who is quickly becoming one of the top prospects in the system.
North American Juniors
Two-way power center Rhett Gardner was a man on a mission on Friday and Saturday, scoring one goal in the first game and then two in the second, the last of which coming on a beautiful individual effort to secure a win for the University of North Dakota. His three-point weekend bumped him up into a tie for the scoring lead on his team.
We are still riding the high from this!— UND Insider (@undinsider) November 25, 2018
Relive the best 1:24 of last night's @UNDmhockey game as the Fighitng Hawks scored three goals, two by Rhett Gardner, to tie and overtake Alaska Anchorage to complete the sweep.#UNDproud @TheNCHC pic.twitter.com/B3oEyijeDG
Goaltender Jake Oettinger headed over to Ireland — yes, Ireland — this past weekend to take part in a four-team NCAA tournament called the Friendship Four. He stopped 39 of 41 shots a Friday win to advance to Saturday’s final (and was named player of the game for his efforts), and then stopped 36 of 38 as Boston University fell to Union 2-1. It wasn’t exactly a relaxing trip, having to face that much rubber between the pipes, but hopefully it was a memorable experience for the young netminder.
Power forward Jason Robertson wasted no time getting acclimated to his new team, the Niagara IceDogs, following a trade last week, scoring a goal and adding three assists in his first two games with the club.
Curtis Douglas continues to add to his season’s scoring totals, picking up three points in three games. He’s currently riding a five-game scoring streak and has 10 points in his past 10 contests.
Not all of this week’s news is good for Stars prospects playing out of the OHL, however. Ty Dellandrea missed all three of Flint’s games with an injury that still has not been disclosed publicly (although it is likely something upper-body), while a report from Kitchener came out stating that Riley Damiani suffered an upper-body injury and could be out “maybe until after Christmas.” It’s a tough break, as both players were red-hot before being forced to miss time.
It was a net negative weekend for the Texas Stars, dropping two out of three games against the state-rival San Antonio Rampage (by scores of 4-1 and 4-3), but on the bright side things certainly ended on a high note, with Texas stomping their opponents 7-3 in the third and final weekend match on Sunday.
Rookie winger Adam Mascherin had a night to remember on Sunday, scoring his first professional hat trick while also adding an assist. There isn’t a prospect in the Stars’ system who can shoot a puck better than Mascherin.
Adam Mascherin's night to remember ( + + = ) pic.twitter.com/UZ7UhfIGfW— Texas Stars (@TexasStars) November 26, 2018
Denis Gurianov had quite game as well, scoring once and adding three assists.
This was a nice assist by Denis Gurianov pic.twitter.com/2cTxy938A1— Sean Shapiro (@seanshapiro) November 25, 2018
Also occurring in the three games was Joel L’Esperance picking up a goal and two helpers, while Nick Caamano and Ben Gleason each had two assists. Gleason missed Sunday’s game due to injury. Philippe Desrosiers lost both of his first two AHL starts this season before Colton Point took over the net on Sunday and stopped 21 of 24 shots for his second AHL victory.