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2019 NHL Draft prospect profile: Colten Ellis is a raw goalie with a promising skill set

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Ellis is an intriguing option mid-draft for a team looking to bolster its goaltending depth.

Rimouski Oceanic v Blainville-Boisbriand Armada Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images

Colten Ellis is another new-era goaltender who mixes good buttefly style with great athleticism, strong technique, and excellent puck-tracking skills.

He burst onto scouts’ radar last year with his succes and accolades gathered with the Rimouski Oceanic. Any teams keeping an eye on the potential 2020 first overall pick, Alexis Lafrenière, would have seen how Ellis played.

Birthplace: Whycocomagh, Nova Scotia, Canada
Catches: Left
Position: Goaltender
Height: 6’1”
Weight: 183 lbs.
Team: Rimouski Oceanic (QMJHL)

The trade that sent him from the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles to the Oceanic changed his projection. He truly found his footing with Rimouski and was able to make an impact. Last year, he played 51 games, ending the campaign with a 2.35 goal-against average and a .913 save percentage. He also posted six shutouts along the way and was named to QMJHL All-Rookie Team.

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The first year with his new team gave him a future as professional goalie, The 2018-19 season helped him secure an NHL selection, perhaps in the first half of this year’s draft.

In the video below, Ellis is #92 white jersey (G)

Ellis isn’t the biggest goalie out there, but he isn’t small by any means. At 6’1”, he understands how to use his size to cover and cut angles.

His biggest strength seems to lie in his reaction time and agility. He’s a quick and shifty goaltender who’s able to follow the play and anticipate where he has to be in order to make the save. He is quick thinking, with good reaction time, and great awareness, and that makes him a tough goaltender to beat. He still has to polish a few aspects of his play if he wants to be able to dominate in the pro ranks, but there’s plenty of time to work on refinements.

As seen in the video, his puck-handling skills aren’t the most developed. He does an okay job passing to his teammates, but that’s the extent of the ability. He’s quick but could really limit the unneccesary movements he does when moving from one post to the other. He is also a bit of a risk-taker in some occasions, playing very aggressively at the edge of his crease. He also tends to really get absorbed in the play, sometimes to his disadvantage.

Still, due to his fairly good skill set, he’s able to make the save more often than not. Such habits could be toned down with time, especially if he learns to maximize his aggressive stance with a sound technical foundation.

It was recently confirmed that Ellis has received an invitation to participate in Team Canada’s camp to evaluate players for the 2020 World Juniors, to be held June 5-8. Scouts and management do seem to believe Ellis has potential and could be good enough to carry Canada to a medal next year.

His potential is undeniable. He is still a bit raw in a few respects, but will continue to develop with time.

Rankings (not all rankings are final)

Future Considerations: #56
McKenzie/TSN: #51
NHL Central Scouting: #8 (NA Goalies)

For a team in need of goaltending depth, Colten Ellis is a fair bet to take late in the second round or early in the third. He has the makings of a potential starter, with the usual mix of athleticism, good hockey sense, and strong technical build. As long as the team selecting him doesn’t have any pressing need right now, the decision could pay off in a few years’ time.