Welcome to May’s edition of Dobber’s QMJHL update! With the playoffs underway as of May 5th, I thought it would be a good idea to get a look at a few players who have the potential to lead their teams on a deep playoff run and have a chance to play in the first Memorial Cup since 2020.
There are a lot of talented teams in the Q this year, and since the Saint John Sea Dogs are hosting, there will be two QMJHL teams at the Memorial Cup. The playoffs are a good chance for these young players to separate themselves from the pact and boost their value with a strong playoff run, especially the draft eligible players.
Without further adieu, let’s get into the list of five players to keep a close eye on during the 2022 QMJHL playoffs.
William Dufour – RW – Saint John Sea Dogs
Is there a better player to start off with than William Dufour? He lead the league in goals with 56 and finished second in scoring with 116 points, doing this all in 66 games. He has found tremendous chemistry on the Sea Dogs top line with fellow overager Josh Lawrence. Dufour and Lawrence have each played over 200 regular-season games in the Q but have only played in four and six playoff games, respectively. It is safe to assume these two will be motivated for success, knowing this is their last opportunity at winning a championship.
Dufour, a fifth-round pick in 2020, signed his entry-level contract with the New York Islanders this past month. He will get the chance to begin his pro hockey career next year in the AHL with Bridgeport.
Nathan Gaucher – C – Québec Remparts
Gaucher is a draft-eligible centerman that spent the season on the second line of a stacked Remparts team that finished with the best record in the league during the regular season at 51-15-2. He is expected to be drafted between the late first and second round, and if he wants to ensure that he is drafted in the first round, then a strong playoffs can really boost his draft stock.
The 6-foot-3 forward is counted on to play in all situations: he is deployed on both special teams and takes faceoffs. Gaucher finished fourth in the league in faceoff percentage at 59.2% while taking the twelfth most faceoffs. Gaucher has a lot of physical tools that NHL teams will find attractive including his size and straight-line speed.
David Spacek – RD – Sherbrooke Phoenix
A personal favorite of mine, Spacek is in his second year of draft eligibility and in his rookie year in
the Q. He played in only 17 games across four levels of competition last year because of the
pandemic. In his first year playing in North America, the son of former NHLer Jaroslav Spacek led
draft-eligible defensemen in points-per-game with a 0.88 average from his 50 points in 57 games.
The nineteen yea