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Arsenii Sergeev goes to college (and other notes): FlamesNation prospect report

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Photo credit:Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Ryan Pike
2 months ago
It’s been a weird off-season for prospects, with the Calgary Flames able to have their first in-person development camp since 2019 and the existence of a summer World Juniors tournament.
But as September turns to October, there’s enough ongoing prospect activity that it’s time for updates to begin.
Two disclaimers: Since this is the first regular report of the season, “Change from last week” is going to include all the games everybody’s played to this point so we can eliminate some early-season noise from the data and fully catch up. The other caveat is we’re only focusing on Flames-affiliated players that are eligible for the Calder Trophy.
College hockey is starting to get underway in the typical scattershot fashion – Harvard doesn’t start until the end of the month, but everybody else gets going at various points throughout October. The Canadian major-junior leagues are seeing the return of NHL-drafted players from training camps, so the talent pool in those leagues is starting to normalize a bit.
Here’s a snapshot of how the Flames prospects who have started their regular seasons look so far.

Jack Beck – RW, Ottawa 67’s, OHL

Calgary’s sixth round pick (168th overall) in the 2021 NHL Draft; 9th-ranked prospect
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Beck had a superb season last year, some gnarly injuries notwithstanding. He’s off to another strong start for the 67s already, playing on the wing on their top two lines and racking up back-to-back multi-point games.
His goal for this season is to show the Flames that he’s worth an entry-level contract. He’s off to a decent start so far.

Parker Bell – LW/C, Tri-City Americans, WHL

Calgary’s fifth round pick (155th overall) in the 2022 NHL Draft
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After missing Flames rookie camp and the first weekend of the WHL regular season with a shoulder injury, Bell returned and resumed his top six role on the wing for the Americans. Bell has size and considerable potential; it’ll be interesting to see what exposure to the Flames’ training and development staff can do to help him unlock it.

Lucas Ciona – LW, Seattle Thunderbirds, WHL

Calgary’s sixth round pick (173rd overall) in the 2021 NHL Draft
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Ciona missed the opening weekend Seattle since he was away at Flames camp, but he resumed his previous role in the Thunderbirds’ middle six and had a goal in his first game of the season. Seattle made it all the way to the WHL Championship series last season, and Ciona’s physical game played a big part of their success.

Cole Huckins – RW, Sherbrooke Phoenix, QMJHL

Calgary’s third round pick (77th overall) in the 2021 NHL Draft
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Last season, Huckins never really got his feet under him in Acadie-Bathurst and it seemed like him and the team were just not a good fit. (He went home midway through the season, but returned before the playoffs.) Now he’s in a different environment in Sherbrooke and it’s so far, so good. If he can click with some of the higher-end prospects that the Phoenix had, his numbers could really pop.

Cole Jordan – D, Moose Jaw Warriors, WHL

Calgary’s fifth round pick (141st overall) in the 2021 NHL Draft
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The good news? Jordan is healthy and energized heading into the season, and he’s slotted onto the second pairing for the Warriors. The awkward news? Jordan’s defence partner on the second pairing is Edmonton Oilers prospect Max Wanner.
Jordan didn’t hit the scoresheet over his first weekend back.

Demetrios Koumontzis – RW, Arizona State University Sun Devils, NCAA/Independent

Calgary’s fourth round pick (108th overall) in the 2018 NHL Draft
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Koumontzis has become the forgotten man within the Flames system, as he’s dealt with injuries, inconsistency and a changing role with the Sun Devils. He’s back for a red shirt senior year, something the NCAA is allowing for a bunch of players because of the disruptiveness of the pandemic 2020-21 season.
He’s started off his fifth year in college with a goal. Let’s see if he can follow that up.

Cade Littler – C, Wenatchee Wild, BCHL

Calgary’s seventh round pick (219th overall) in the 2022 NHL Draft
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The youngest player in the Flames’ system, Littler is captain and top centre for Wenatchee this season. He’s off to a decent enough start in the BCHL, but for a player of his experience and stature – and as one of the few NHL-drafted kids in his circuit – the expectation is probably for him to go off with a higher than point-per-game season.

Topi Rönni – C, Tappara Tampere, Liiga/U20 SM-sarja/CHL

Calgary’s second round pick (59th overall) in the 2022 NHL Draft; 13th-ranked prospect
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Rönni’s had an up-and-down few months. He attended Flames development camp in July and was named the fittest Flames prospect at the camp. Then he had the opportunity to attend Finland’s World Junior camp, and subsequently was part of the under-20 Four Nations Cup tournament in August. He suffered a minor injury in that tournament, came back and played one U20 game for Tappara… and subsequently went down with an illness following that game.
Rönni’s on the mend and expected to be a big piece of Tappara’s pro club when he’s back to 100%.

William Strömgren – LW, Rögle BK/Brynäs IF, SHL/J20 Nationell/CHL

Calgary’s second round pick (45th overall) in the 2021 NHL Draft; 16th-ranked prospect
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As much as Rönni’s had an eventful few months, so has Strömgren. He attended Sweden’s World Junior camp and then returned to Rögle’s camp after he didn’t make the team. He was lost in the shuffle for Rögle a bit and didn’t play a ton in pre-season, and his role diminished even more after their youngsters returned from the World Juniors.
Looking for more SHL reps, Strömgren’s camp negotiated an exit from Rögle and a new deal with Brynäs. It’s a less prestigious club – Brynäs didn’t qualify for the Champions League, for example – but so far Strömgren has carved out a nice role for himself on their fourth line, playing about 10 minutes per night. Perhaps he’ll have some upward momentum there, something that probably wouldn’t exist at the SHL level with Rögle.

Cameron Whynot – D, Halifax Mooseheads, QMJHL

Calgary’s third round pick (89th overall) in the 2021 NHL Draft
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Another 2021 draft pick that had a rough post-draft season – it’s a spooky trend – Whynot’s opening weekend was shortened due to Cape Breton’s arena not being available due to the recent hurricane. In the home half of the weekend, he had two points, though.

Arsenii Sergeev – G, University of Connecticut Huskies, NCAA/Hockey East

Calgary’s seventh round pick (205th overall) in the 2021 NHL Draft; 15th-ranked prospect
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Up to date160.960
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Wanna know where Sergeev was all summer? He was at college, taking classes! The Russian is making the jump to the NCAA this season after being the USHL’s top netminder. He’s one of four goaltenders in Huskies camp, and split the weekend’s starts with sophomore Logan Terness. He might not play a ton early on as UConn’s coaching staff figures out who their best goaltender is.

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