Caps should have new faces on the bench
With the June 30 NHL entry draft fast approaching – the Capitals own eight selections, including the 23rd overall pick – we’ve compiled a list of the top 10 prospects already in the organization and a brief scouting/progress report on each.
Capitals Insider Chuck Gormley will profile all 10 prospects, in descending order. Today’s top prospect, at No. 4: Philipp Grubauer
Ht/Wt: 6-1, 185
Hometown: Rosenheim, Germany
Drafted: 4th Round [112th overall] in 2010
Contract Status: 2 years remaining on 3-year, $1.86 million entry-level contract [$65,000 AHL, $550,000 NHL, $607,222 cap hit in 2013-14]
2012-13 Teams: Reading [ECHL], Hershey [AHL], Capitals [NHL]
Record [ECHL]: 19-5-1, 2.30 GAA, .912 SP
Record [AHL]: 15-9-2, 2.25 GAA, .919 SP
Record [NHL]: 0-1-0, 3.57 GAA, .915 SP
Scouting Report: Grubauer appears to be the next in a long line of young goalies developed by the Capitals in recent years. Because the NHL lockout forced Braden Holtby into the starter’s role in Hershey, Grubauer began the season with the Reading Royals and was named starter for the ECHL All-Star Game. When the lockout ended and Grubauer was promoted to Hershey he again stepped up to the challenge. Known for his excellent positioning and his ability to steer rebounds into the corners, Grubauer showed flashes of his potential with 35 minutes of shutout hockey in his NHL debut for the Caps on Feb. 27, then following with 40 saves in a 5-2 loss to the Islanders on March 9.
2013-14 Expectations: If Michal Neuvirth is moved to another NHL team this summer, Grubauer would be an inexpensive backup to Holtby. However, the Caps would like to see Grubauer continue his development as a starter by playing a full season in Hershey, which is probably how they’ll approach their offseason plans in goal.