Olivier Roy was at one point thought by many to be the best goaltender in the draft, but he slipped to the Oilers with the 133rd overall pick. I’ve scoured the internet for scouting reports, which are listed below, and then formed a composite report based on them, found at the end of the article.
“He’s a good junior goalie but if he’s a good NHL goalie, I’m not sure. He’s small, we hear a lot of NHL scouts tell us that in the new rules where the defenceman can do nothing in front of the net, all the forwards rush the net and they look at goaltenders over six feet. He’s good, he’s a gamer. He’s quick, he’s fast but I’m not sure about him physically. No doubt he’s a good goaltender at the junior level but for the NHL, not sure.”
Chris Bordeleau, Scout with the Central Scouting Bureau:
“He catches your attention. He’s steady and he plays well all the time.”
Mario Durocher, Head Coach in Cape Breton:
“He competes and he’s a passionate player. For me, those are two important qualities you need to be successful upstairs (in the NHL). Everybody will talk about his size because he’s not six-foot-two or six-foot-three, but he competes really hard. The other thing for me is he showed up in the shootout all season long. He didn’t allow a goal all year. It was the same thing in the ADT game (vs. the Russian all-stars) and the Top Prospects game. They had some contests and he didn’t allow one goal.
“And the first game against Quebec in the playoffs, there were 15,000 people and they were yelling his name but he still kept his focus. He played seven periods that game and he was excellent. Those are all qualities that you don’t find in too many young kids. And he reminds me of Marc-Andre (Fleury) when he’s challenging the shooter. He’s really efficient when he’s doing that.”
“He’s got the legs to improve. He’s a fast guy and he’s like Marc-Andre. He makes the first save and then sometimes he gets out of position, but he will do everything to make the next save. The player will think it’s a sure goal but he could get caught on that. I think that’s a good quality. The rest can be improved. The speed will be better upstairs but Olivier is a young kid and I think he will work on his (shortcomings).”
Max Giese, Scout with McKeen’s Hockey:
“I like Olivier Roy because he really knows how to challenge shooters. He’s probably the quickest and best reflexes in this draft as a goaltender. I really liked him when I saw a little bit of him and I thought he was the best guy I saw in the CHL but I think the guy that’s probably going to go higher is Scott Stajcer. (Stajcer’s) bigger and more polished. (Roy) has that Québec butterfly-type thing down to a science.”
Scott Gouthro, Goaltending Coach with Cape Breton:
“Olivier Roy has extremely quick reflexes and when he challenges is extremely hard to beat. He continues to work on his puckhandling which is a key tool for the next level. He is a warrior, his competitive nature and desire to win is exceptional.”
Al Jensen, Scout with the Central Scouting Bureau:
“I could see where he thinks that he’s a hybrid goalie, but I think he’s still more of a butterfly guy personally from what I saw. But he does have those instincts to realize that he doesn’t have to go down on every shot. He knows when he has to go down on a shot and when he doesn’t because of his terrific sense of being able to read the play. He’s not a big goalie, which is why he doesn’t always go down on the first shot.”
“Sometimes a goalie’s leg strength isn’t as strong as you need in the NHL. To be a goalie in the NHL, you need a strong leg drive to get across the crease quick enough. With low passes and one-timers you need to get over there, but he has that strength — unlike most other goalies that are his age. On one play I saw a guy pass it across the crease low and he was right there. He’s very determined and he plays in the paint a bit, but near the top of the crease. He’s not one to go way out.”
Olivier Roy on himself:
“I try to be a hybrid goalie. I use butterfly a lot, but I don’t like to butterfly on every shot. I am somewhere between a butterfly and a stand-up goalie.
“Most every goalie is a butterfly, but I like to be a little bit different. A lot of guys go around the defense and I like to move my feet and be quicker and deflect the rebounds to the corners.”
Kyle Woodlief, Red Line Report:
Roy has great athleticism and flexibility and is a tough-minded competitor who never gives up on a play. While he’s fairly advanced technique-wise, the problem for this typical butterfly netminder is his penchant for constantly going down to the ice too early and swimming around the crease. He gets by with that style in the junior ranks, but at only 5-11 and 163 pounds, he’s too small to cover the corners, and we suspect that pro shooters will pick him apart up high and take advantage of his habit of overcommitting.
Final Picture: Olivier Roy
- Good mental makeup: Roy’s a passionate and highly-competitive player who maintains his focus even under adverse conditions.
- Good athleticism: Roy has great lower-leg strength and quick reflexes. He can make the highlight-reel save.
- Decent butterfly technique: Roy challenges shooters well and doesn’t always go down on the first shot.
- Size: Roy’s small, both in height and weight, and he’s unable to cover the top of the net because of it. There are also concerns about his ability to handle crease-crashers at the NHL level.
- Butterfly Goaltender: Because Roy is smaller and plays a butterfly style, he simply doesn’t cover enough of the top of the net. He likes to think of himself as a hybrid goaltender, but he probably needs to move away from the butterfly style a little more to keep from being picked apart while he’s on his knees.
I like the selection, especially given how far into the draft it was made. Focus and competitiveness can’t be taught and are important qualities in a goaltender, and I’m not nearly as scared of small goaltenders as most NHL scouts seem to be right now (Tim Thomas being perhaps the best example from this past year). Roy could end up never playing an NHL game, but he’s a fine risk to take in the fifth round.
Something that isn’t mentioned in the quotes above is that Roy has been a starting goaltender since he was 16 years old; that much experience at a young age can only help his development.