2021-22 Team: London Knights (#30)
Date of Birth: Sept. 9, 2002
Place of Birth: Windsor, Ontario
Ht: 5’11” Wt: 176 pounds
NHL Draft Eligibility: 2022 third-year eligible
At one point this season, Brett Brochu was ranked in the top-20 North American goalies, specifically 16th on that list, by NHL Central Scouting. But, for whatever reason, some players fall through the cracks throughout the season and Brochu happens to be one of those players. Whether it’s other goalies stepped up or Brochu didn’t offer enough to scouts, the London Knights goaltender now sits 31st on that same list with a chance that he may go undrafted during the 2022 NHL Draft.
With that in mind, consider this. After an unbelievable rookie season with the Knights in 2019-20 in which he compiled a 32-6-0 record with a 2.40 goals against average (GAA) and .919 save percentage (SV%) with two shutouts, Brochu played just one game for the AHL Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins during the COVID shutdown for the OHL.
After barely any hockey in 2020-21, the 19-year-old returned to form with the Knights again in 2021-22 with a 29-11-2 record during the regular season with another two shutouts, a .909 SV% and 2.75 GAA. The postseason wasn’t as kind, but Brochu was also expected to play for Canada at the World Juniors that were postponed until the summer of 2022. Prior to the postponement, however, he did get into one game for Canada in which they won with him giving up just two goals.
Related: THW 2022 NHL Draft Guide
All things considered, Brochu was playing this season with a much different Knights team in front of him. COVID stoppages, injuries and schedule changes caused for a lot of inconsistencies at times throughout the season, but over that span, Brochu still managed to earn the Jim Rutherford Trophy as the OHL’s top goaltender.
What makes this even crazier is that Brochu is now in this third-year of eligibility when it comes to the NHL Draft and his numbers haven’t dipped. So what’s taking team’s so long to select the Knights’ goalie?
Some have suggested that his size is the main reason for him remaining an undrafted prospect. At just shy of six feet, Brochu would be on the smaller side when it comes to modern-day NHL goaltenders. But, the size debate is something that we continue to see blow up when we talk about skaters, so the same could be said about goaltenders given the opportunity.
Brochu has shown over his junior career that he is a quick mover, can get across the net incredibly well and finds pucks through traffic as well as any other goalie. His rebound control shouldn’t deter teams as he manages the puck well and he understands his angles and how to play the puck. Still, he could see another year roll by without hearing his name and if that’s the case there better be an NHL team that takes a waiver on this kid. It’d be a shame to never give him a chance.
Other THW Profiles
Brett Brochu – NHL Draft Projection
Let’s be real for a second, there’s a good chance Brochu remains undrafted after the 2022 NHL Draft. However, if teams are seeing what some outside scouts have seen over the past two years, there’s a shot he could be a late round pick – likely in the late-sixth or early-seventh round. But don’t hold your breath.
“Brochu has an all-time OHL record of 48-11-1 — playing on a good team helps, but ask anyone on London and they’ll credit Brochu as being one of the team’s most important players night in and night out.” — Steven Ellis, The Hockey News
“It’s definitely tough seeing two years go by without my name picked. I used it as motivation.” — Brett Brochu via Mark Masters, TSN
- Rebound control
- Vision through traffic
- Post-to-post movement
Under Construction – Improvements to Make
It’s really hard to say considering the size factor seems to be a deterrent for teams. That said, given the opportunity, Brochu could end up being a reliable 1B at the NHL level. He’s nearly mastered the junior ranks with consistent numbers over the past two seasons. The real test will be whether or not he can continue to use the lack of interest from NHL teams as motivation even into his pro career. It’s time to prove everyone wrong.
Risk – 3.5/5, Reward 3/5
Fantasy Hockey Potential
Goaltending – 6.5/10
In 2019-20, Brochu was awarded the Dignity Moore Trophy as the best rookie GAA in the OHL with a 2.40 GAA. He was named to the OHL First All-Rookie team and had the best GAA in the entire league, which is pretty telling. As mentioned, this season he picked up the Jim Rutherford Trophy as the OHL Best Goaltender. He becomes just the fourth Knights goalie to earn the honours, joining Adam Dennis (2006), Steve Mason (2007) and most recently, Michael Houser (2012).
Brett Brochu’s Statistics
Andrew is in his 8th year reporting for The Hockey Writers covering the Toronto Maple Leafs. He began his broadcasting with CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada team as well as being part of their coverage of the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi. He’s the former play-by-play voice of the London Jr. Knights for Rogers TV and currently hosts the Sticks in the 6ix podcast. You can follow him on Twitter at @AndrewGForbes.
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