By Thomas Harrington
Angus Redmond signed a three-year entry-level contract with the Ducks back in April. He spent one year in the NCAA before joining the Anaheim organization. He went to San Diego after signing the contract but did not play in any games. Given that the Gulls were gearing up for the playoffs, that isn’t a surprise. By signing Redmond, the Ducks have added a very good prospect to a position that they have been very weak in since John Gibson left the prospect ranks. Between Redmond, Kevin Boyle, Garrett Metcalf, and the recently drafted Olle Eriksson Ek, Anaheim finally has a fair amount of depth at this position and could have Gibson’s future backup in the system.
Redmond had a stellar freshman season at Michigan Tech. The Huskies had a slow start to the season, as they struggled to determine who their starter would be. Their previous starter Jamie Phillips had graduated the year before, leaving a big hole in net to fill. They tried senior Matt Wintjes and sophomore Devin Kero, but they combined for one win in their first eight games of the season. With their more experienced goaltenders struggling, the Huskies turned to their freshman. Redmond stepped in and helped turn their season around. Overall, he appeared in 38 games and started the final 37 games of the season. He had a record of 22-10-5 and recorded all but one of the Huskies’ 23 wins. He had a goals against average 1.85, good for fourth in the NCAA, and a save percentage of .917, good for 20th in the NCAA. He also led the team with four shutouts. Twice, he won four games in a row last season, while his longest losing streak was three games. Overall, Redmond had a very strong freshman season at Michigan Tech and the Ducks were eager to bring him into their system.
This coming season, Redmond will be fighting for playing time with a few other Anaheim goalies. Depending on how things shake out, he could end up in the ECHL, the AHL, or both. Given that the Ducks signed him to a three-year deal, they definitely like what they see from him and he’ll hopefully be good enough to play for the Gulls. However, he’s going to have some stiff competition in San Diego for playing time. The Gulls already have veteran goaltender Dustin Tokarski, who is number three on Anaheim’s depth chart behind Gibson and Ryan Miller. They also have Boyle, who put up good numbers while splitting time between the AHL and ECHL last season. Finally, the Ducks have the recently signed Reto Berra, who could supplant Tokarski as the team’s number three goalie. Injuries will no doubt be a factor in playing time for these four, but I think one of Boyle or Redmond will be with the Gulls and splitting time with Tokarski and/or Berra, while the other will likely be in Utah and be the full-time starter there. Redmond had great numbers in the NCAA last season, but Boyle has shown that he can win in the AHL. It’ll really come down to what these two do this summer to get ready for the season and who plays better in training camp. There’s also a decent chance the two could flip-flop leagues throughout the season.
Goaltenders are notoriously hard to predict. Henrik Lundqvist was a seventh-round draft pick before becoming one of the best goaltenders in the world, so it’s hard to say what Redmond’s NHL future holds. One thing that I can say with relative certainty is that he will not make his NHL debut this season. Between Gibson, Miller, Tokarski, and Berra, the Ducks have four solid goalies with NHL experience. It would take several injuries or just some amazing play from Redmond for him to get any time with the Ducks this season. I think that he’s likely to split time between the AHL and ECHL this coming season, before becoming a full-time Gull for the 2018-2019 season, and have a shot to make his NHL debut that season or the following year.
Redmond was signed to a three-year deal, so the Ducks obviously think very highly of his future. When his deal ends, he’ll be a restricted free agent. At that point, if the Ducks think they’ve found Gibson’s future backup, he could be on a one-way deal to Anaheim. However, if they think he’s not quite there, he could be signed to another two-way deal and split time between the AHL and NHL.
Next up will be the final prospect profile of the summer: Mitch Hults.
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July 10th, 2017