CANUCKSARMY PROSPECT PROFILE 2015: #8 ALEXANDRE GRENIER

CA8
Banner courtesy: Matthew Henderson

When one talks about miles traveled in reference to hockey players, they primarily mean the physical toll that player has suffered over the course of their career. When one talks about miles traveled in reference to Vancouver Canucks prospect Alexandre Grenier, it is said literally and with the utmost sincerity.

For the first time since being drafted by the Vancouver Canucks with the 90th overall pick in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, Grenier was able to ply his craft in the same location over the span of a full calendar year. Building on an uninspiring rookie performance with the Utica Comets in 13-14, Grenier posted a highly productive 14-15 campaign which now has him in the discussion among the Canucks’ top prospects.

Representative of Mike Gillis’ strange appreciation for overage players named “Alex” in the middle rounds of the NHL draft, Grenier checks in at eighth in our organizational prospect ranking.

Having recently been re-signed to a one-year, two-way contract extension it’s clear that Grenier is chomping at the bit for NHL action. Grenier has always possessed the size for such a gig, but has only recently put together a level of production that would deem his play worthy in a role beyond that of fourth-line plug. 

The consensus opinion of Grenier heading into last season was that his hands and offensive instincts were broaching on NHL level, but he struggled with taking advantage of his size (where have I heard this before) and play within the confines of his own zone. It would seem that his two-way game and the hardness with which he plays improved this season, at least to hear Utica Comets head coach Travis Green tell it.

“He went from being a player I’d never use in the last five minutes of a game, to a guy that had two empty-net goals for us (on this playoff run),” Green told Thomas Drance back in June. “I think that tells you a lot about how his game has developed.”

Grenier has a keen nose for the net and is very active in the offensive zone, often shifting in and out of passing lanes as a constant outlet for his linemates. For a player of his stature, 6-foot-5 and 200+ pounds, one might expect more of Grenier physically – although, he took a major step towards shedding the ‘gentle giant’ label this last season.

Using this imposing size and continuing to refine upon an already impressive offensive toolkit, Grenier put together a hugely impressive 14-15 campaign. Playing primarily in the Comets’ top-six forward group, Grenier posted a 17G 26A 43P in 67GP last season – good for .64 PPG that season. These totals acquit themselves nicely when factored into his PCS score – a tool which uses statistical and stature based historical comparisons to draw a percentile chance of making the NHL (while simultaneously projecting his likely output in the event that Grenier makes it):

ZNMQXj0t

There’s certainly an encouraging trend here, especially looking at the two years which follow his all-too-brief stay with EC Salzburg – a campaign which was cut short by an awful concussion. 

In speaking with the Army’s dedicated Comets observer, Josh Weissbock, there’s certainly a sense that Grenier is on the cusp of breaking through. Weissbock hasn’t any doubt in his mind that Grenier is deserving of an NHL opportunity. He went on to add that Grenier will likely slide into the first line with the Comets should he slip from the Canucks roster. 

On the bright side, Grenier won’t require waivers to travel between the two clubs. Then again, we’re encroaching on the point where that won’t be worth worrying about at all. That’s more than you could ever realistically expect from an overage third-round selection, so that’s something worth be excited about. 

MORE PROSPECT PROFILES FROM CANUCKSARMY:

#20 – Evan McEneny

#19 – Nikita Tryamkin

#18 – Dmitri Zhukenov

#17 – Andrey Pedan

#16 – Guillaume Brisebois

#15 – Lukas Jasek

#14 – Ben Hutton

#13 – Jordan Subban

#12 – Thatcher Demko

#11 – Nicklas Jensen

#10 – Brendan Gaunce

#9 – Ronalds Kenins

      • Locust

        The ‘lack of moderation’ on this site is either laziness or blatant stupidity.

        The Oilers site is moderated, that’s why this dumb-ass troll is here.

        Would love to see management of this site grow a pair and deal with this.

        Or maybe we should all just go to one of the other sites where management has a backbone and supports ‘their’ supporters.

        That’ll leave double dumbass, space cookie, danjalopy and a few others as the only commenters …. now that would be funny

        • Dirty30

          I agree — rather than posting a new article every 10.2 seconds, whoever runs this site might want to weed out the very obnoxious and basically useless trolls.

          There is a difference between free speech and spewing garbage — if the admins are incapable of discerning the difference then that’s a very obvious problem.

          I enjoy a lot about CA including questioning Canucks management about their moves, but what does the latest ass-drippings from DD contribute?

          If admins can’t answer that basic question then I will happily find another site that can.

          • Double Dees

            Oilersnation.com.

            It’s free to join! More exciting news. More info. More wins.

            Come on down! We’ll treat you right!:).

            And what management moves are u talking about?

            Signing bartkoswki as ur 7th dman? Trading a better goalie and keeping the older one? Trading away prospects that u have more for to get them?

            Hmmmm… Oh those moves! Anyone on the street can make those moves.

          • Double Dees

            Dude what hits??? This site is hurting… Oilers nation has more hits in one article than CA does in a month. But I guess that’s what happens when u have 80% bandwagon fans….I’ll give u the 20%…I’m a nice guy:).

            No exciting prospects. Aging over 35 veterans. No culture.

            =

            No hits.

        • Double Dees

          It might be passable if the idiot ever posted something intelligent but he doesn’t. Every comment is just moronic and without ANY contribution. Sadly, I think Double Dumbass contributes about as much to society in general. Born loser, following a team that hasn’t been relevant for decades and trolling like a loser – it all makes sense in a sick way.

          ANYWAY! I like Grenier and think he should make the Nucks. I’m hoping Virtanen develops a bit more in junior. Grenier might be ready now. Put him on line 4 and let him work his way up the lines. If he stumbles then send him down.

          • Double Dees

            Ok. I’ll play nice. Finally something I can agree with u on.

            Jake Virtanen will not score more than 15 goals a season. He probably will only get 10 his first year.

    • Double Dees

      Since I’m obviously talking to myself you’ll have to excuse me for my confused posts.

      Actually our second line is:

      Taylor Hall – Connor McDavid – Nail Yakupov. Yes that is our SECOND line.

      So I’m sorry for my obsessed copycat. He has Canuck issues.

      Btw what is the lame Canucks second line anyways????

      ? – Brandon sutter who? – ?

      A lot of question marks. But if someone can fill me in that would be great!

  • Spiel

    It is astonishing that you have a 23 yr old career minor leaguer ranked higher than Demko.
    Demko is rated by the hockey news as the #4 goaltending prospect on the planet. Incidentally Markstrom is ranked #5 in the same rankings.

    So the Canucks Army writers would trade Grenier straight across for Demko?

  • Darryl

    At what point during this countdown does one get annoyed at seeing all these bottom six players ready to compete for a fourth line job with Benning signing multiyear contracts to fourth line (at best) players?
    Shouldn’t the GM be trying to create roster spots for some of these players instead of trading for 31 year old players?

  • bigdaddykane

    I think its hilarious that the first commentator on many a CA article is our friend and Coiler supporter, otherwise known as Double Dees. Our boy actually is first in line to get his slag in. While I’d love an honest debate any day, this whole troll thing gets tiresome. The response is always “i know you are but what am I?” Dude. Find your people. Go to them. Talk about how great the oilers have been the past 10 years. Talk about Connor McJesus. Talk about anything you want. This ain’t your show, boy. You want oiler nation. Its two doors down, past the Flames nation door.

    • Double Dees

      I’m trying to interpret all ur mumbo jumbo… So in conclusion:

      I am a SMALL daddy Kane?

      Not sure if u want it be associated with Patrick Kane right now shawty…unless u want to get me drunk and-

      Nope. Sorry. Be careful dude…I’m just looking out for ya.

      Here’s a question: are u happy with the Canucks direction? Riddle me that.

  • Double Dees

    This is one of the players that I really hope gets at least a few games in the NHL, if not many, many more.

    If only there were room on the roster for him…

  • Double Dees

    Another reason that Dorsett and Prust are on this team…..

    Grenier and Jensen both need to mimic the way Prust and Dorsett play. I’m not talking about the gighting, but the physical and competitive streak they play with. If Grenier and Jensen can apply half the hustle and toughened those guys possess, then they will be in the NHL for a long time.