Top 25 San Jose Sharks Under 25: No. 13 Jayden Halbgewachs needs to out-play his size

There are two things that immediately stand out about 25-year-old Jayden Helbegwatch.

The first is his name, which may be reminiscent A specific sketch of SNL (“It has about 30 letters, none of which are movements”). The second thing is its size.

when are San Jose Sharks Signed Halbgewachs in 2017 as a free agent without a draft After the forward led the entire CHL in achievements as an overly WHL player, there was still a chance he would add at least a few inches to his 5-foot frame – and if nothing else, develop some muscle to sharpen the shot His and rushed to the NHL Caliber to make up for what he lacked in size.

There’s a small but formidable club of small-stakes forwards in the NHL – Brad Merchand, Mats Zuckerlo, Cam Atkinson, Alex Debrinck and Brendan Gallagher, all of whom come up as strikers who stand under 5-foot-9 (the name of the Lebgovach is currently listed) – but It does not come without its unique challenges. A few more inches of height means a longer wing span, a longer stick and a larger body to separate other players farther from the disc.

Common to successful NHL players below size is how they overcome their size. They need a strong and fast step, to take into account less distance per step. They need a strong shot, to compensate for the inflexibility from a shorter stick. They need to know how to take advantage of their smallness as well, find creative ways to manipulate bigger players who will try to use their size to chase them off the disc.

Speed, strength and skill are essential for a low-sized forward to succeed.

As Levgovach made the move to the professional leagues, the challenges of becoming a smaller player became clearer. It was one thing to be small as an overplayer in the WHL, but AHL players are older, more experienced and ultimately bigger and stronger. The competition has grown to the next level. Halbgovach does not.

With four professional seasons in his belt, the Levgovach got off track, but all hope was not lost.

Maybe the expectation was that his skill could carry him if he could expand physically, and when he was not bigger, he lacked those skills that smaller players rely on to get to the next level. I get it – I never had to go to high school, and the first time I faced the need to go to college, I realized I did not know how to do it and, frankly, I was not good at it. Halbagwatch took a step back when he entered the AHL, but he had to learn how to adjust his lack of size.

Given that more than half of his professional career was during the uncertainty period of the COVID era, which was not easy for minor leagues lacking NHL support, of course he did not really find his. Feet, but still, he seems to be finally swinging upward.

The 2021-22 season saw the Levagwatch reach his highest scoring rate (.69 points per game) since joining the AHL, scoring 41 points (17 goals, 24 assists) in 59 games, second in the team in scoring, despite his plus / Minus was a career low of -38. San Jose Barracuda was not a big team defensively this year, scoring 291 goals against 202 goals. No doubt there are other issues in the game, but do not expect the Levagwatch to be a defensive star – making it even more difficult for the big club to enter the future. Although his last WHL season showed an upside in the second row in the young winger, his AHL game points to more of a mediocre six player at best, and a six underweight player most likely. This is not exactly where a coach would want to poke the 5-foot-9 guy who is having a hard time defending.

Due to his age, Helbegwatch is an unlimited free agent in Group 6 and despite being a cheap depth, it feels likely the Sharks will choose to let him go this summer. The team has a lot of players who fill the same archetype of its player but better (hello Jonathan Dalen) and the organization will have to make room for players who have since jumped into the depth table.

What we love

Despite all that has to be knocked on his game, it is hard to ignore the ability and scoring ability of the Levgwatch. When he was called up for three games in relief this season (his NHL debut, with one assist at that time), he was put in alongside Thomas Hartl and Alexander Barbanov, to match his skills to supportive goal scorers. He put three shots into the net in his first game in the NHL, a 5-2 loss to Vancouver Knox.

Areas of improvement

If adding more muscle does not start, then the levagwatch should improve its smoothness. His inexperience in the NHL ahead of his 25-year-old season will hurt him on entering a free agency, but if his skating and physicality can improve, there is still a chance he will become a late-season Berkeley Godro-style bloom.


This power gate was started by Ryan Markley on the blue line, but using Halbgewachs as the front guy on the net for the skater advantage is a decision that I think puts him in the best position to succeed. Instead of making it part of the cycle from the outside, where there is more opportunity for him to break away from the disc, he is the guy who went into the crisis to be sure the disc went inside.

Top 25 San Jose Sharks Under 25: No. 13 Jayden Halbgewachs needs to out-play his size Source link Top 25 San Jose Sharks Under 25: No. 13 Jayden Halbgewachs needs to out-play his size

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