players epitomized last year’s force-fed mantra of “always earned, never
given.” Those two players were Josh Jooris and Garnet Hathaway.
saw that coming?
on the one hand, had professional experience and a rather underwhelming rookie
season in Abbotsford, but made the Flames out of sheer will. On the other hand,
Hathaway came into camp on an AHL contract and by the end of the season had
earned himself a shiny new two-year entry-level deal because of his stellar
may sound cliché, but will and determination are the only reason these two are
where they are today.
deep and talented as the Calgary Flames’ system is today, it’s astonishing to
see a 23 year old college free agent crack the top 20 list, but the closer you
look at his style of play and what he was able to accomplish in Adirondack, the
less surprised you should be. So let’s run through why the FlamesNation family
voted Hathaway as a top-20 prospect.
19 goals last season tied him for second place in team scoring beside one of
the Flames top prospects, Emile Poirier (just one goal back of David Wolf’s
team leading 20 goals). What’s impressive about this statistic isn’t that he’s
a rookie who was able to score at that rate; it’s that he was able to do so
without any history of being a prolific scorer at any level throughout his
hockey career. Here’s a glance at each rookie’s goals as a percentage of team
when Hathaway scored, the Adirondack Flames won 65% of their games – not bad
for a team that placed 12th in the Western Conference.
the scoring, however, Hathaway’s known for his down-to-earth, spade-in-hand,
10-toes-down style of play. Each game this season, he was the one player who
would consistently set the dinner table on his first shift. He’d lay out the
game and set the tone.
Hathaway ever gets a shot in a Flames uniform you can expect a carbon copy
Bouma performance. I like to compare his style and tenaciousness to something
like what Tommy Wingels brings to the Sharks. He hits like Jack Tatum and eats
pucks like a blue whale eats entire schools of fish. Off the ice, he remains friendly
and humble and even started
up his own lobster cart business, the Lazyman Lobster, in Rhode Island. He
used that money to help pay for his own hockey sticks.
We at FlamesNation voted Hathaway as the Flames’
19th best prospect because, while he doesn’t have the ceiling of
Bennett or Poirier, we feel he’s close to NHL-ready. He was one of final cuts
at last year’s main camp despite not having an NHL contract and throughout the
season progressed to the point where (had he had a contract) I wouldn’t have
been surprised to see him get a call-up in place of, say, one of David Wolf’s
call-ups. Look for him to make a strong case for a fouth-line role in Calgary
at some point this season. Yes, it’s crowded right now, but no prospect is
closer to a fourth-line energy role in the NHL than Hathaway is right now.
He needs to just continue to do what he did this year for us. As you said, he came in on an AHL deal and he earned himself an NHL contract, and it’s not an easy thing to do what Garnet did. I think for him, no matter how we used him, he understood what we were asking of him and he made changes right away, for the better. When you look at a player like him or when you see his path or where he may be headed… If he’s back with us we see him in a leadership role because he does everything the right way, both on and off the ice. He’ll be your hardest working guy night-in, night-out; that’s in practice, that’s in games, you always know what you’re going to get from him. I think when you’re projecting him, because he does everything the right way coaches trust him a lot, and I think when he does get his opportunity Bob’s going to feel the same way about him. And eventually he’s going to get that chance. He just needs to be doing what he did. He just needs to believe in himself like he always does and I think success will be around the corner for him.
Stockton Heat (and former Adirondack Flames) head coach Ryan Huska on what Garnet Hathaway needs to do to build upon last season