In his Copper & Blue - Top 25 Under 25 debut Laurent Brossoit sits in the 23rd spot. The former Oil Kings goalie's rank of 23 is the lowest a goaltender has debuted in the Top 25 (both Tyler Bunz and Olivier Roy debuted at 22 while Devan Dubnyk debuted at 21). And like previous goalie rankings the panel was all over the board with a range of 15 spots between his highest and lowest ranking, both Ben and DB had him ranked at 31 while Michael and I had him ranked at 16 and 17 respectively.
|23||Laurent Brossoit||03/23/93||#164, 2011||19||31||23||31||21||22||16||20||28||17|
Previous Rank: N/A
In 2011 the Calgary Flames drafted Brossoit in the 6th round much to the chagrin of the Edmonton Oilers management team. On November 8, 2013 the Oilers traded Ladislav Smid, a legitimate NHL player, and Olivier Roy for Brossoit and Roman Horak. With the addition of Brossoit, the Oilers' system now includes 5 former Oil Kings, 6 if your include Kristians Pelss who passed away over the summer. It would seem that the Oilers would like to have the rights to every player from the 2012 Ed Chynoweth Cup winning team and adding Brossoit has gotten them that much closer to their goal.
As bad as the trade seemed at the time it may not be as bad as it appeared on the surface. Smid had struggled this season in Edmonton and his struggles have carried over to Calgary. Meanwhile Brossoit has played quite well for the Bakersfield Condors of the ECHL, in the 16 games he's played for them he has posted a .930 SV% and a 1.88 GAA and has also recorded 3 shutouts. With the Alaska Aces (Calgary's ECHL affiliate) he was also a perfect 1.000 SV% and an obvious 0 GAA in his 2 full games played for that franchise.
Shortly after the trade Brossoit got a glimpse of AHL action when Devan Dubnyk and Richard Bachman both went down with injuries and the Oilers had to recall Jason LaBarbera from OKC. Brossoit's started in 6 games and also came in for relief for 1 game as well. His stint in the AHL wasn't great, he allowed 21 goals against with a record of 2-4-0 and .885 SV% and 3.53 GAA. Obviously he was playing well above his current ability but as we know as Oilers' fans this seems to be the norm more than the exception. But I will add that after his 6 game stint in the AHL the Oilers did realize they may have rushed him. They made a decision to place him in the ECHL and give him time to develop.
There is one very interesting asterisk on Brossoit's early professional career. A lot goalies have a very difficult time adjusting from junior to professional play but Brossoit has actually improved by quite a bit. Granted it's a very small sample size, only 19 games, but Brossoit's SV% has improved by .027 and his GAA has dropped by .93. Compare that to Bunz's drop of .022 in SV% and increase of .48 GAA when he turned professional that is quite a feat for Brossoit.
After Edmonton's history with goaltenders it's no surprise that Brossoit was ranked so low in the Top 25. It's tough to rank goalies and it's even tougher to predict their progress. Maybe the Oilers have a real number one goaltender for the 2017 season or maybe they don't. His early numbers are promising but that doesn't always translate to the NHL. Goalies take a long time to develop but hopefully by the time he graduates from the top 25 under 25 Brossoit will be a legitimate NHL goaltender.