Welcome back to Top Shelf Prospects, the column that brings you the next crop of professional hockey players. Each day our LWOS Prospects Writers will bring you a new player profile or topical article in the lead-up to the 2023 NHL Draft. Be sure to bookmark the site, follow Ben Kerr, Kyle Pereira and Frederik Frandson on Twitter, and spread the word for the site that will bring you analytical and critical profiles and scouting reports! Last Word On Hockey Prospects is your new headquarters for everything “NHL Draft”! Today we bring you our Trey Augustine Scouting Report.
One of the heroes of Team USA’s Under 18 World Championships gold medal run was undoubtedly their netminder, Trey Augustine. During the tournament, Augustine posted a .934 save percentage and made key save after key save. He was especially stellar in the finals against Sweden, where he was vital in bringing the game to overtime with a bunch of great saves in the last 30 seconds.
Looking at Augustine’s season overall, one thing instantly stands out. Trey Augustine wins hockey games. During his unbelievable season, he has won all but five games according to Eliteprospect.com. Two of those five losses were in overtime as well, meaning that he got a point in 52 games out of a total of 55 possible games. That is a win rate of a staggering 94.545%!
With a season like this, his draft stock has been on the rise and questions could be made as to whether he will be selected in the first or second round.
Trey Augustine Scouting Report: 2023 NHL Draft #41
Goalie — shoots Left — Catches Left
Born February 23rd, 2005 — South Lyon, Michigan
Height 6’1″ — Weight 183 lbs [185 cm/83 kg]
Trey Augustine is a goalie with a very complete skill set for his age. His movement is extremely quick and polished, especially side-to-side. In addition, his butterfly is extremely smooth and he transitions into it seamlessly. His edges are brilliant and allow for him to be one of the better goalies against the rush. On top of that, his reflexes are the best of the draft class, both in terms of low shots and shots toward the top of the net. He has a quick glove and commands a very strong and calm presence on the ice.
When he is in the butterfly, he moves equally well and takes away a lot of the lower portion of the net. He makes himself as wide as possible, while still allowing for his strong push to the side if needed. He is also extremely aggressive in his style and likes to play a bit further out of the net, making his butterfly quickness vital to get back and cover a potential second chance on the back post.
Before the season, some were a bit skeptical of Augustine’s positioning and tracking, but during this season, Augustine silenced those critics for the most part. His tracking has improved a lot, and he reads the game at a much higher level. He also uses his movement a lot better to get into the right position to avoid unnecessary scrambling. It feels like Augustine has matured a lot as a goalie over the season which is a great sign for his future development at Michigan State University.
While Trey Augustine has improved his tracking and positioning a lot over the past season, there are still a few holes in his game. Most notably he tends to slightly overcommit to the shooter. This tendency can leave him vulnerable to a pass or rebound. Especially since he is an aggressive goalie who likes to be far out of the net. Often Augustine will try to combat this with his great edges and movement, but it’s unsure if that can transition into the NHL, where players think and act quicker than in the USHL.
Another area to improve for Augustine to be a success in the NHL is his rebound control. It’s not terrible and has shown signs of improving, but not as refined as other goalies in the draft. There are times when doesn’t get the puck to stay in front of him to cover or into the corners. Instead, the puck will end up in the slot or beside him for a chance on the backdoor tap-in.
His style and overcommitment to the shooter can leave him scrambling around the edge of the crease and this causes a ton of rebounds to end up in and around the slot. This is partly down to how he counteracts his smaller size, but it does need work. Especially if he is to make it as an NHL starter.
Comparable and Prediction:
Overall, Trey Augustine is widely viewed as the second-best goalie at the 2023 NHL draft, only behind Carson Bjarnason. However, arguments can be made that he might be the one that could be the most successful of the two. His movements and the great butterfly are especially promising and with his style counteracts his size is similar to Juuse Saros. To reach Saros’ level, Augustine has a lot of work ahead, but he has the potential of an NHL starter. All it takes is continued work on improving his style and rebound control.
Main Photo: John Mersits / USA TODAY NETWORK