It hasn't been a great year for the Bridgeport Islanders. The New York Islanders AHL affiliate is off to a rough start with a 15-18-4-4 record. The corresponding 0.463 points percentage has then at the bottom of the AHL's Atlantic Division.
It's not all bleak of course. AHL veteran and off-season acquisition Chris Terry is just under a point per game with 30 in 33 contests. Prospects Otto Koivula and Arnaud Durandeau have healthy production all year. And 2019 first-rounder Simon Holmstrom is taking a big step forward.
But its goalie Jakub Skarek that's standing out right now.
New York Islanders prospect Jakub Skarek putting up impressive run
The 2018 third-round pick has played 26 games this year and is averaging a respectable 2.76GAA and 0.911SV%. Now neither of those numbers are impressive of course. What is impressive is his record of late.
Over his last seven starts, Skarek is unbeaten in regulation. In those seven starts, dating back to January 1, Skarek has stopped 206 of 221 shots for an impressive 0.932SV% and a 2.14GAA. Now those are impressive numbers.
Skarek is routinely keeping the B-Islanders in games they would otherwise be well out of. If they could support their goalie with some shot suppression - he's the third most worked goalie in the league with 776 shots against - maybe Bridgeport could put up a few more wins on the board?
This isn't the first time he's gone on a run like this. Just last year he went unbeaten - in regulation - in 6 of 7 games with even better goalie stats:
So does this bump Skarek's ceiling a bit higher? I don't think so. I still think he could be a solid NHL backup someday (soon). He'd have to show this type of return more consistently than once a season to have that ceiling bump to up to an NHL starter. Probably....
We have to remember, goalies are voodoo. You can scout them and track them as closely as you want and they can still come out better (or worse) than you predict.