2023 FlamesNation prospect rankings: #9 Cole Schwindt
Photo credit:Terence Leung/Calgary Wranglers
20 days ago
Cole Schwindt was the lesser talked about piece of the Matthew Tkachuk trade of last summer. Understandable with him at the AHL level, but he still had a promising year with the Calgary Wranglers. His ranking this year is only one off of his position from last year and his place at the middle of the prospect pack was earned for some solid stretches he had last year. Schwindt is not quite in the conversation with the top three or five prospects in the organization, but he could be with some fine-tuning.
Born April 25, 2001 (Age 22) in Breslau, Ontario
6’3”, 195 pounds
Selected in the third round (105th overall) by Florida in the 2019 NHL Draft
Schwindt was one of the only players on his team to not beat his personal best season in the league. His point production dropped a few points in the 2022-23 regular season. Previously, in the 2021-22 season, he earned a total of 40 points with the Charlotte Checkers but was down to 32 points with the Wranglers last season through 70 games.
Ice time and opportunity may have been a factor as the depth the Wranglers carried brought him down to the second or third line at times. When his production went quieter too, Schwindt even spent some time on the fourth line. However, he did get some good ice time with almost all of his teammates and really exposed himself to different levels of play.
The thing about Cole Schwindt is he is a very streaky player. He can keep up with the best of them for five straight games and then be completely unnoticeable for the next five. It didn’t seem to correlate with the opponents he faced either. The Pacific Division is a very competitive division and Schwindt’s production didn’t seem to correlate with the level of play on the other side of the rink.
Another lesser-known fact about Cole Schwindt is he is another Calgary AHLer who has NHL time on his hockey resume too. Schwindt appeared in three games for the Florida Panthers before he made his move to Calgary but did not put up any points in any of those appearances.
He is mostly placed in a position to centre a line but did get some time on the wing last year too. I found, he was more comfortable at centre and that might be a factor in his hot and cold scoring. Changes behind the bench this season may affect that and give Schwindt the opportunity to play more time in one spot. He was also a good special teams player with seven power play goals in the regular season and two in the post-season.
In the playoffs, Schwindt tied Connor Zary and Adam Klapka in points. He had three goals and one assist through the eight games he played in with two of his goals taking place in the last two games against the Coachella Valley Firebirds.
Expectations for 2023-24
Cole Schwindt is in the last year of his entry-level contract and will join the Calgary Wranglers this fall for the 2023-24 season.
Next season, I’d like to see Cole Schwindt have a career year. I don’t think his previous 40 points are the best he can do in this league. I did see points where he could use some maturing in the league and with next year being his third full season, it might be the time to flip a switch. He needs to play a more disciplined game and settle into maybe more of a set-up role.
I also think this could be the year for him to crack the first power play unit. Matthew Phillips and Jakob Pelletier were a part of the first unit and with Phillips gone to the Capitals and Pelletier assumedly with the Flames, Connor Zary and Jeremie Poirier are going to need more talent up front on the man-advantage.
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