The 2020 NHL Draft will mark eight years since a Canadian goaltender was taken in the first round. It was Malcolm Subban in 2012, going 24th overall to the Boston Bruins. He wasn’t even the top goalie selected in his draft class.
In that time, Canada has produced three first-overall picks (Connor McDavid, Aaron Ekblad, Nathan Mackinnon), and have had ten defencemen selected in the top-10 of the NHL Entry Draft.
Obviously, goalie prospects aren’t as prevalent at the draft tables by NHL teams as other positions, and it appears that selecting goalies in the first-round is a downward trend that continues to grow in that direction over the years. We have to consider that there is an entirely different dynamic to drafting goalies, and part of that falls into the unpredictability of their development trajectory.
However, with all the elite level forward and defencemen prospects Canada has produced, it raises the question: is there an underlying reason they aren’t producing goalies at a similar level? This article is going to take several different angles to explore that topic and look to when Canada will finally find it’s next great goalie prospect.