Give Garnet Hathaway a Contract!

If
you’re not familiar with Garnet Hathaway, I’m writing this article for you
because there’s a very real chance he’ll be signed by Brad Treliving this
offseason. No, I’m not joking.

For
those who aren’t regular Adirondack observers, it’s rumoured that Garnet
Hathaway’s parents stole some of Lance Bouma’s DNA in order to create their own
child. I just created that rumour. I’m hoping it’ll stick.

The
comparisons between the two players are freakishly endless though. They’re
nearly the same size (Hathaway is 6’2” 210lbs while Bouma is 6’1” 210lbs).
Hathaway is putting up slightly higher points-per-game than Bouma did at the
AHL level (0.43 and 0.28, respectively). They skate exactly the same. They both
play the game with reckless abandon. In his rookie season, Hathaway has 12 goals
and 11 assists through 54 games. In Bouma’s rookie season, he had 12 goals and
eight assists in 61 games. Both will stick up for teammates at the drop of a
dime (even though they’re not fighters), as evidenced here in Hathaway’s second
professional fight:

However,
the uncanny resemblance between 23-year-old Hathaway and 24-year-old Bouma is
their sick infatuation with blocking pucks. I don’t understand it. I probably
never will. But that’s why we’re fans and bloggers and they’re the type of
people who thrive on jumping on the proverbial grenade for the good of the
team.

But
if you take a look back at Hathaway’s roots, it’s not hard to see why he is the
way he is.

The
Brown University alumnus was born in the hockey hot bed of Naples, Florida but
calls Kennebunkport, Maine home. In the winters, he played hockey. In the
summer, he
ran a lobster cart
to make extra money. On some days he’d make up to $200
selling lobsters, which went straight to his hockey stick fund. In fact, he
scored his first goal with a stick he bought with his lobster money.

A
hockey player in one season, a lobster salesman in another. Bad ass.

It’s
that meat and potatoes work ethic that has put him in a favourable position to
earn a two-way contract this off-season, and Flames fans should be thrilled to
have him.

On
any given night, here’s what you can expect from Hathaway on a consistent basis. Outside of David Wolf,
Hathaway is the biggest terror to play against. When an opposition player has
the puck, he’s on you like stink on a pig. When the play is in his end, he’s
the Hakeem Olajuwan of the Adirondack Flames – no puck is getting through if he
can help it. Just two weeks ago, in the dying minutes of a game versus the
Oklahoma City Barons, Hathaway saved three,
yes, three goals that were headed for
an open net by Superman-ing in front of them.

Offensively,
he has the necessary skills to cycle the puck for long periods of time, and
then he’ll head to the net and clean up the garbage. His ability to read the
play in the O-zone is above-average for a player in his role. At times
throughout the season, he’s played with skilled guys. Like any good symbiotic
relationship, not only does Hathaway’s play become more effective by playing
with Granlund, Ferland or Baertschi, but surprisingly so too does the other
party.

Now,
you may be thinking, “so what? He’s just another fourth liner. They grow on
trees.” Yes, he is just another fourth liner, and no, they don’t grow on trees.
Especially not lately in the Flames organization, and especially not guys like
Hathaway. He’s been a wonderful discovery by Frank Anzalone (the Flames’ NCAA
scout).

A
couple of weeks ago, in this Turner Elson
article, I showed how
the Flames used to be saturated with gritty, energy, leadership-type prospects,
but for a myriad of reasons no longer have that sort of depth. This is why
Garnet Hathaway may be a valuable piece for the Flames and that value is only increased
when you take into account what position he plays: right wing. Yes, a right
shooting, right-winger that actually exists within the Flames’ system.

That
means his current competition for an NHL fourth line, crash-and-bang,
jack-of-all-trades job on the right wing is Hunter Smith, Austin Carroll and
Tim Harrison. There’s a hope that Smith becomes more than that – perhaps a
second or third line power forward. Carroll is an exciting prospect who has all
the tools to make the NHL, including a propensity for peskiness. Harrison is
considered a long shot to make the Bigs, sort of like winning a mini-bike at
the Stampede twice in a row. Wait, what?

In other words,
Hathaway’s put himself in an opportunistic position and doesn’t have the greatest
competition to win that spot, say, next September. Now is a good time to start
looking out for his name because the Lance Bouma of the AHL will soon become
Garnet Hathaway of the NHL.

  • everton fc

    I’m with you on this. Hathaway is another gem found out of Hockey East/Ivy League. Definitely worth signing.

    Finally someone sees the value in this type of kid for our organization. And he’s putting up some #’s, as well.

  • Canrock 78

    Great article. Nice to hear something positive.
    Hopefully Frank can find us a young defenseman and convince that Boston Goalie he should come play with JG.

    • The Real Slim Brodie

      I though Calgary already passed on thatcher demko in the draft for mason mcdonald….canucks drafted him not long after…hope mason can prove us right because canucks seem to have a lot of luck drafting goalies especially out of boston teams…wow are we finding gems everywhere these days though like jooris..Hathaway..Turner Elson looks good….Doug Carr…lol he is actually holding the fort…go flames go 2015 the plan all comes together…r.i.p scorch may you make the echl team

      • Canrock 78

        I believe Demko had hip surgery that may been why they went with McDonald. Also they were trying to sign a golie from the Khl at the trade deadline I assume they are concerned about depth at the ahl level. Not sure what McDonald’s estimated time fram for school is.

        I remember cliff Fletcher saying you had to draft 1 golie per year. If we can pick one up for free then that saves 1 pick for d or rw.

  • Nick24

    Hathaway was excellent in the Young Stars classic last year. I thought they were going to sign him out of that tournament, but he’s done a great job in his rookie season, and I’d be happy if the Flames gave him a contract!

  • Burnward

    Developing players like this is underrated. You still need guys like this to round out your lineup and bang bodies and block shots, especially come playoff time. The art of it is to develop players like this that also have some scoring touch, so you can feel comfortable putting then out enough to let your stars rest. Not having to play your stars 20-25 minutes a game is key. Look how scary Tampa Bay is, and it’s because they can play all four lines, and equal time for their top two. It’s teams like that that scare me come playoff time over a Pittsburgh.

    • The Real Slim Brodie

      What do you know first hand about baertschi and his character? I met the kid and he was pumped about being a flame during his first young stars stint. Burke just wanted to make a splash when he came to calgary…from that point on he focused on defensive play hence the low scoring numbers…he deserved first or second line minutes but was given 4th line minutes…when he was on the top line he wasn’t scoring as much as was expected but he had assists much like he did in the juniors sven has always been that player…2 games 3 assists with utica..that is what got him drafted he should have been given room to play his game…The goals would have come but he was on a line where he fed monohans…after that …the plug lines

  • The Real Slim Brodie

    Say what you want about sven but it seems funny that his old assistant coach in Portland is coaching in Utica and weisbrod was the main guy that drafted him and he is now in van city…I really liked brad until he traded our most ( offensive skilled guy for a second round pick to our biggest rival…c’mon the battle of alberta died years ago..i just wish we could have seen sven play with bennett while gaudreau played with monahan next year…instead we help a rival re-stock on the go

    • piscera.infada

      …weisbrod was the main guy that drafted him…

      Wrong. Weisbrod still worked for Boston during the 2011 draft. He had nothing to do with drafting Baertschi, Granlund, Wotherspoon, Gaudreau, or Brossoit.

      • The Real Slim Brodie

        Thanks i stand corrected..guess i should save the rants for a night im not half done a bottle of rye…Im still happy with the team we have and the future it has….atleast the Greg nemiz mitch Wahl days are over

      • piscera.infada

        Wasn’t Weisbrod’s most prominent piece of “talent analysis” the Jankowski fiasco? He was the one with the blizzard story and the sole viewing that essentially made Janko a first-round pick. I was always under the assumption that was all him. Or am I thinking of someone else?

  • The Real Slim Brodie

    Treliving looks like feaster 2.0 when it comes to trades and burke has done nothing other than what falls right into his lap…i miss feaster…he and sutter built this team through some mistakes..but a few home runs from a good drafting group….look at our future core and captain and tell me burke isn’t where its going downhill. He had nothing to do with most of these players Gio…tj…bouma….Russel..backlund…gaudreau…hudler..grandlund..if you remember the hard working group started in the second half of the season feaster took over…that is when we gained our identity of a hard working team. I will cheer for (our) team as i have since i was born 33 years ago. But it will be another team dropped mid rebuild in Burke s lap lets hope we are not Toronto 2.0 promising then ruined by turbulence….drunk rant over and out

    • ChinookArchYYC

      I don’t miss Feaster’s poor return on most of his trades, but it would be unfair to criticize his drafting in Calgary. Frankly, drafting success under the Feaster regime was above average, and has been the foundation of their current relative success. In the end, I didn’t mind Feaster’s dismissal, because I thought he was doing more harm than good. On the other hand, Burke may have thrown out the baby with the bath water, when he fired Weisbrod. With ‘Post Apex’ Weisbrod in Vancouver, you have to wonder if the Flames got their pockets picked on the Baertschi trade. Time will tell.

      Correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t Hathaway a Feaster/Weisbrod project as well?

  • The Real Slim Brodie

    I hate auto correct but it saves me more often than it gets it wrong. Thanks for the update on the demko..mason draft choice…i think mason mcdonald will turn out great..i will not judge any draft prospect until the have the ability to play on the nhl and ahl roster playing and prove they belong ….it used to be goalies hindered..because we played kipper almost every game…im glad we can now draft and teach players of all positions on our team….go flames

  • The Real Slim Brodie

    Agree with your article suggesting we sign this kid. I watched him closely in Penticton…RW with a right handed shot, nice size and speed, works his ass off and has some skill….nice 4th line guy in the future…

    • I believe he’s been a Flames’ scout since 2012-13. Right around the same time Feaster reportedly expanded the scouting department, so that would make sense.

      So yeah, it would appear Anzalone may have had a hand in the Jooris discovery.

  • The Real Slim Brodie

    Great insight on Hathaway. Also love the completely unexpected Hakeem Olajuwon reference, who happens to be my favourite basketball player of all time, and he share’s Iggy’s Nigerian heritage.

    I know he’s a slightly different player from Elson, but in some respects they may be competing against each other for that bottom-six role. Who would you give the edge to in terms of career potential?

    • Ooo that’s a tough one. I honestly can’t pick between the two.

      Hathaway legitimately has all the tools to be a very effective fourth liner, but Elson just has that speed and surprising shot that blows you away.

      I hate you for bring up this question haha. It makes my brain hurt thinking about their individual career potentials.