AHL Prospect Rankings: #16 – Guillaume Lefebvre

Jonathan Willis
January 29 2009 01:39PM

Guillaume Lefebvre, like many a rough-and-tumble player before him, was drafted by the Philadelphia Flyers. He bounced around the QMJHL as a junior, playing for four different teams before being selected (as an overage player) by the Flyers in the seventh round of the 2000 NHL Entry Draft.

He didn’t have much hype as a prospect; the most noteworthy incident of his junior career was a nine-game suspension he received for a hit that left Bruins’ prospect Tuukka Makela with a third-degree concussion. Makela would only play nine games that season, and the following year he returned to Finland, where he’s played ever since.

Though most of his career, Lefebvre’s collected far more penalty minutes than points (at roughly a 5:1 clip), but he’s never been a one-dimensional player in junior or the AHL. Early on, Lefebvre killed penalties for the Phantoms (Philadelphia’s AHL affiliate), took a regular shift, and even chipped in some offence. He also saw spot duty in the NHL, playing seventeen games for the Flyers between 2001-03.

In March of 2003, Lefebvre was traded to the Phoenix Coyotes along with draft choices for Tony Amonte, who the Flyers wanted for a playoff run. Phoenix quickly flipped Lefebvre to Pittsburgh, where he played 21 NHL games over parts of three seasons. He also had his most successful AHL season, recording 35 points, 113 PIM and a +12 rating in only 66 games.

Lefebvre turned 25 in the off-season, and headed back to Quebec for “personal reasons”; he ended up spending two seasons with the St. Jean Chiefs of the Ligue Nord-Americaine de Hockey (LNAH). The LNAH is probably the roughest hockey league in the world, and it has a reputation as a bit of a circus because of the on-ice antics. After two seasons there, the 27-year old Lefebvre accepted a tryout at this fall’s Oilers training camp.

Lefebvre showed up to camp in top shape, but couldn’t move past Steve MacIntyre for the enforcer’s job. He ended up being released by the Oilers, but signed an AHL contract with Springfield. He has seven points and 145 PIM through 44 games with Springfield, and a whole bunch of fights. At this point, Lefebvre’s only real shot at an NHL job seems to be fighting his way into one, and while a willing combatant with a bit of a kamikaze style, he’s probably undersized for that kind of work and he doesn’t add enough in other areas to compensate.

NHL Contract Status: N/A

AHL Performance Compares To: Zack Stortini (on-ice performance, not fighting style)

Career Projection: Tweener/Enforcer

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Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, Sportsnet, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
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#1 Fiveandagame
January 29 2009, 04:26PM
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Having scored 35pts in the AHL, does his stats this year represent misuse in Springfield? Springfield doesn't appear to be particularly deep. Or is it a case of ice time going to actual prospects and having his role limited for him?

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#2 Wanye Gretz
January 29 2009, 04:29PM
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I like these summaries. They will be of particular use now and during training camp when we all sit around saying "That Lefebvre sure is some kind of dynamo" or the like - in the event a prospect makes some noise.

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#3 Ender the Dragon
January 29 2009, 04:58PM
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Wanye Gretz wrote:

I like these summaries. They will be of particular use now and during training camp . . .

I like them too, but JW does such a thorough job that they don't initiate much discussion. You can't really argue with it, because honestly how many of us have enough knowledge of Guillaume Lefebvre's playing style to call Jon out on a perceived error in judgement?

It's kind of like reading an article in National Geographic. It's informative, and at the end you just sit back and say, 'Well, that was interesting. I think I'm hungry now; where's the Doritos?' and that's that.

Don't stop sending them out, Jon; just 'cuz no one comments doesn't mean we don't all read them.

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#4 B-Rad
January 29 2009, 05:11PM
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would you say he is like a David Clarkson, Jared Boll type player then?... he might help are weak and sissy little forwards on the third and forth when we run into injurys and such.

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#5 Jonathan Willis
January 29 2009, 09:11PM
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Ender the Dragon wrote:

You can’t really argue with it, because honestly how many of us have enough knowledge of Guillaume Lefebvre’s playing style to call Jon out on a perceived error in judgement?

That's a strong point - it's obviously just my somewhat educated opinion, which is a loooonngg ways from infallible.

Don’t stop sending them out, Jon; just ‘cuz no one comments doesn’t mean we don’t all read them.

Thanks. I eventually want to have a snapshot of every prospect in the system, for general reference if nothing else.

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#6 Jonathan Willis
January 29 2009, 09:14PM
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@ B-Rad:

Except with a much lower ceiling than those two. The thing is, with both MacIntyre and Stortini ahead of Lefebvre, there probably isn't much room for him on the team even if they do run into injuries.

Still, he's a bruiser, and as we've seen with Steve MacIntyre (among others) it's difficult to count these guys out because that skillset's always in demand.

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#7 Ducey
January 30 2009, 09:28AM
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I like your work but can't agree that this fellow is a prospect, nevermind #16.

Petry, Chorney, Wild, Schremp, Eberle, Peckham, Vande Velde, Nash, DD, Plante, Trukno, Omark, Lerg, Bisaillon, Cornet, Kyntar are 17 guys ahead of him. This does not count Potulny, JFJ, Stone or Brule.

27 year old guys who are out of hockey, spend two seasons in the LNAH and had their last NHL cup of coffee in 2003 are not prospects.

He is AHL muscle, nothing more. Maybe he gets a few NHL games if the Hansen brothers visit, AND Steve M and Stortini are injured, AND there are no enforcers on the waiver wire, but this does not make him a "prospect".

Nevertheless, keep up the good work.

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#8 Drago
January 30 2009, 09:35AM
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@ Ducey:

the title clearly states AHL prospects

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#9 Ducey
January 30 2009, 10:55AM
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Ah, I understand now.

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#10 Jonathan Willis
January 31 2009, 10:04AM
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@ Ducey:

I'm going to do a separate non-AHL prospect count, once I've finished meandering my way through the AHL team.

Also, with Ryan Stone in the fold, the numbers will be off a bit as I don't have him ranked (since I made my list before that trade).

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