Monday, July 11, 2011

Get to Know the Invitees: Jacob Gervais-Chouinard

Instead of the usual "Focus on Prospects," I changed it up a bit to introduce you to the development camp free agent invitees. We all know the guys the Caps have drafted, but who are the others at camp?

I'll start out with the only free agent goaltender attending this year's development camp, Jacob Gervais-Chouinard.

 photo by Bridget Samuels/bridgetds

Name: Jacob Gervais-Chouinard
Position: G
Catches: Left
Height: 6'1"
Weight: 160 lbs
Birthdate: 1992-03-21
Hometown: Sherbrooke, QC
Roster # at camp: 80

First, the basics. Gervais-Chouinard just wrapped up his second season with the Val D'Or Foreurs of the QMJHL. Last season, he acted as number one goaltender for Val D'Or, appearing in 54 games with a GAA of 3.45 and save percentage of .882. Gervais-Chouinard was included in the QMJHL's Three Stars of the Week in March after backstopping two Val D'Or wins with one shutout, a .961 save percentage, and a .96 GAA.

In June, Gervais-Chouinard was traded to Rimouski Oceanic, as Oceanic's top goaltender aged out at the conclusion of the past season. He's expected to step in to Rimouski's number one goaltending spot and start the majority of games.

Gervais-Chouinard led the Foreurs into the playoffs, ending the regular season ranked  14th of the 18 QMJHL teams. But ultimately, the Foreurs were swept out in the first round by the Quebec Remparts. Gervais-Chouinard's performance in the playoffs was pretty rough - a 7.19 GAA and .784 save percentage in three games played.

But Gervais-Chouinard was playing behind a weak team in Val D'Or, a team that had just one roster player who averaged over a point per game. For perspective, the Memorial Cup-winning St. John Sea Dogs had four point-per-game players this past season.

With Gervais-Chouinard now in Rimouski, things should start to look up for him. He's got a better team in front of him, in the middle of the pack league-wise at 10th in the Q.

In terms of playing style, he's got flashes of brilliance. He has the ability to make fantastic leg pad saves, but is weak on his low glove side. Not to mention he was majorly gassed after sprints today. Considering he doesn't have a lot of weight on his frame, it could be the reason for his exhaustion. Bulking up would greatly help him with his playing performance.

I'll keep you updated as the week goes on, but he was down on the other end of the ice from where I was standing, so I didn't get to watch him as much as other goalies. I'll also update if I get the chance to chat with him.

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