Chet Pickard
Image: NHL

Chet Pickard


Winnipeg Manitoba

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1st round (18th overall), 2008


213 lbs.

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2007-08: Chet Pickard began the year with the thankless responsibility of following Carey Price as the Tri-City Americans starting goaltender. He embraced the opportunity, posting a 46-12-2 record in 64 games for the WHL regular season champions. Pickard was rewarded for his consistent play this season, recognized as the Top Goaltender in the CHL, and WHL goaltender of the year.

2008-09: In his fourth junior season, Pickard played 50 games as the starting goaltender for Tri-City. He finished with a 35-12-3 record, 2.28 goals against average, .921 save percentage, and a career-high 6 shutouts. Pickard played 11 playoff games for the Americans, finishing with a 6-4-1 record, 3.41 goals against average, and .877 save percentage. He suited up for Canada's gold medal winning squad at the WJC, where he earned a .50 goals against average and .958 save percentage in 2 appearances. He earned the Del Wilson Trophy as the WHL's top goaltender for the second consecutive season and was again named to the league's First All-Star Team.

2009-10: Pickard appeared in 34 games with the AHL's Milwaukee Admirals in his rookie season. The netminder finished with a 14-16-3 record, 2.85 goals against average, and a .892 save percentage. He gave up 1 goal on 10 shots in a brief playoff appearance for the Admirals.

2010-11: Pickard was the odd-man out for AHL Milwaukee in his second pro season as former Colgate goalie Mark Dekanich and 2007 second-round pick Jeremy Smith handled the bulk of the goaltending duties for the Admirals. Pickard appeared in seven games for Milwaukee, spending most of the season with Cincinnati in the ECHL. He had a 1-5 record with one overtime loss and had a 2.96 GAA and .899 save percentage for with Milwaukee. Pickard did not fare much better with the Cyclones – he was 9-17 with one shutout in 29 games with a 3.39 GAA and .877 save percentage and did not see any playoff action.

2011-12: Pickard spent his third pro season in the ECHL – splitting time with Panthers' prospect Brian Foster in Cincinnati. He was 14-14 in 32 games, with two of the losses coming in overtime, and had one shutout; finishing with a 3.12 goals against and .890 save percentage. Pickard was called up to Nashville and Milwaukee briefly during the season – but did not see any game action.


Talent Analysis

Pickard's greatest asset is his mental game, staying very at ease in the net.  He plays a butterfly style and uses his size effectively. Pickard covers the net with efficiency and has become proficient in corralling the many pucks that inevitably come into contact with his upper body. He plays his angles well, likes to play the puck.

"Pickard is a much more relaxed, patient, 'stand-upish' goalie, and waits for the puck more than other guys," described Mitch Korn, goaltending coach for the Nashville Predators.

Pickard needs "to elevate the urgency and quickness,” Korn said. “He's got the quickness, but he's got to get out of that comfort zone, the junior speed and crank it a couple of notches."



After struggling for the last three years to find his game, Pickard has been loaned to the Djurgården in the Allsvenskan for this season to hopefully regain his confidence. His NHL entry level contract ends at the end of this year and the first round pick could be released if he can't show good improvement in his overall game.


Bourque, Josi, Ellis among standouts for Nashville Predators prospect awards

by Eugene Oliker

Photo: Chase Balisy is coming off a strong season with Western Michigan, where he managed 13 goals and 24 assists in 41 games. (Patrick S Blood/Icon SMI)


At the trade deadline, the Nashville Predators traded away their first round pick in 2012 as well as their second round picks in 2012 and 2013. While it may seem like they gave up a lot of future assets, they did so with the knowledge that many of their top prospects are gradually meeting their potential. The inaugural edition of the HF Prospect Awards is a testament to this notion as many of the recipients have seen time this season in the NHL.

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