OHL Prospect Profile: Benjamin Gaudreau
– Benjamin Gaudreau-
North Bay Trappers (GNML) | Goalie | 2019 OHL Draft Eligible
Corbeil, Ontario | 6-foot-2, 170-pounds | Nov. 1, 2003
The Major Midget North Bay Trappers were an unstoppable force in the GNML this past campaign, playing to a spectacular 36-0 record in regular season play. One player critical to the Trappers’ success was goaltender Benjamin Gaudreau — a sizeable and highly athletic netminder widely regarded for his calm composure in the crease.
In fact, it was Gaudreau’s uncanny ability to stop pucks which saw him selected to Team Ontario’s roster for the 2019 Canada Winter Games. Although Team Ontario would ultimately fall short to Team Quebec in the final, Gaudreau proved that he could compete and succeed against the most stern of competition at his age level — a major reason why he will be one of the first goaltenders chosen in the 2019 OHL Draft.
- Size and Strength
- Lateral Movement
- Shot Tracking and Reflexes
Gaudreau is a well-rounded netminder, and one of the very best goaltenders eligible for the 2019 OHL Draft.
Standing 6-foot-2 and 170-pounds, Gaudreau features impressive size and is an intimidating presence in-goal. Of solid strength, Gaudreau is an explosive goaltender who can move throughout his crease with not only speed but power. Precise in his lateral movements and not one to overplay his position, Gaudreau is a highly technical netminder who can make highlight-reel saves when called upon to do so.
Related: 2019 OHL Draft Rankings
In addition to Gaudreau’s impressive size and strength, there is the youngster’s positioning. As mentioned above, Gaudreau does not overplay his stance and knows exactly how to position himself in order to minimize shooting angles and opportunities for his opponents. Further, with exceptional puck-tracking abilities and lightning-quick reflexes, Gaudreau is seemingly impossible to beat — even for the most lethal of shooters.
Related: 2019 OHL Draft — Prospect Profiles
The one facet of Gaudreau’s game which glues all of his abilities together, however, is the youngster’s composure and sense of calm within his crease. Not rattled by a goal against or familiar with taking himself out of position, Gaudreau holds steady between the pipes despite the pressure applied by his opposition and simply allows pucks to hit him owing to his size and positioning.
Areas of Improvement:
- Rebound Control
Despite his standing as one of the top goaltenders eligible for the 2019 OHL Draft, room for improvement does exist within Gaudreau’s game.
In particular, there is Gaudreau’s ability to control his rebounds. Now, although this is certainly not a glaring issue, Gaudreau can — at times — produce rebounds which afford his opponents which additional chances to put the puck into the back of the net. Now, although his attackers aren’t able to pot these rebounds with substantial consistency, their occurrence could lead to an elevated goals-against-average at the next-level if not eliminated in the immediate future.
Ultimately, Gaudreau has the skill-set and abilities necessary to become a star goaltender at the next-level. Of impressive size, strength, and innate abilities within his crease, Gaudreau stands as an intimidating presence in-goal who affords his opposition with virtually no opportunities to do damage on a game-by-game basis.
Come the 2019 OHL Draft, expect Gaudreau to be amongst the first goaltenders selected. In fact, don’t be surprised to see the young netminder nabbed by an OHL franchise in the second-to-fourth round of the event — he is simply that good and promising.