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Faber’s Prospect Rankings #5: Arturs Silovs continues to raise his ceiling after a strong AHL season and dominant World Championship performance

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Photo credit:@canucks, @arturssilovs1, @abbotsfordcanucks on IG
Faber
By Faber
8 months ago
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We kick off the top five with one of the better stories out of the Vancouver Canucks organization this past season.
Arturs Silovs, who turned 22 years old in March, finished up a strong AHL season with a 26-12-5 record, notching a .908% save percentage, a 2.44 goals against average, along with four shutouts. He was the starter in the AHL for the majority of the season even though he split starts with Spencer Martin over the final three months of the year.
After Silovs’ conclusion to his pro season, he reported to his hometown of Riga, Latvia and played lights-out in net for Latvia at the IIHF World Championship. Silovs was named Most Valuable Player of the tournament after posting a 7-3-0 record with a .921% save percentage.
As much as we loved Silovs’ performance at the WC, we were impressed enough by what he did in Abbotsford as well as in the NHL this past season. On top of his 10 games at the WC and 44 games in the AHL, Silvos played in five NHL games this past season. He held a .908% save percentage and was 3-2-0 in his five NHL starts.
Silovs is doing a lot at such a young age but there’s still a ton of room for him to grow. It’s clear that the combination of his work ethic and Ian Clark’s goaltending guidance is beginning to look like a great fit. Silovs is so athletic and has a lot of length in his limbs.
We’re not going to get too deep into the goalie mumbo jumbo but there are some things that we see in his game that we love from a young goalie prospect.
Silovs has a degree of confidence during his scramble. Many goaltenders seem to flop while the best goalies in the world seem to be able to scramble under control, and that’s what Silovs does so well. We saw that during his time in the OHL, but he’s made such big improvements in being confident during scramble situations. It feels like Silovs never puts himself in a situation where the shooter has an open net. Silovs tracks the puck extremely well and seems to take away most of the net on 95% of the shot attempts against him.
As much as we like the young goaltender, we are also realistic with his current-day evaluation.
Silovs just turned 22 years old and he has a lot of improving to do before becoming a successful NHL goaltender. There are a decent amount of long-distance shots that beat Silovs last year during his 44 AHL games. He seems to have a stronger glove side compared to his blocker side. There are a lot of similarities in his development to what we saw with Jacob Markstrom. Both have a lot of length and athleticism but seem to have to figure out how to handle less-dangerous attacks. When a slot shot is coming on Silovs, he does a good job of challenging the shooter and cutting down the potential holes for goals. If Silovs can improve his play to a level where these low-danger chances become nothing more than chances, he will be ready for consistent NHL games — until he can figure that out, developing in the AHL is a great place for him to continue to play, and play a lot.

PROSPECT COVERAGE PRESENTED BY BETWAY

Ceiling: NHL starter. It’s simple, Silovs has this type of ceiling if he continues to develop at a great rate.
Floor:  NHL fringe goalie. It’s an easy argument to make this be the floor of Silovs’ potential because he is already there. We don’t think he will fall off a cliff over the next few years — Silovs is already a top-three goalie in an organization with a true number one starter. Silovs has runway left before he is thrown into a tough ask in the NHL.
Production (and how): His 26-12-5 record in the AHL was impressive. Putting up four shutouts was great to see as well. Abbotsford played a very structured defensive system that worked very well with Silovs in net. We will see how much he plays next season and how often he is recalled to the NHL for spot starts.
Prediction (for the 2023-24 year): We predict that Silovs will begin the season in the AHL as Abbotsford’s number one. It would be a heck of a shock if Silovs didn’t get a few NHL games in next season. Any small injury to Thatcher Demko or Spencer Martin means it’s Arty-Party time. We could see Silovs winning the backup job out of main camp but just believe that because he still has some part of his game to iron out — he will begin in the AHL and spend a majority of the season down on the farm. We expect to see Silovs get 40-50 starts in the AHL and play in up to 10 NHL games. As for a prediction on his stats, we’d love to see Silovs get into the conversation to be AHL goalie of the year and have a save percentage around 0.915%.
ETA: His time of arrival could be as soon at September but we are more likely expecting to see him as the NHL backup for the 2024-25 season. Martin’s contract is up and they have enough on the farm to make it work with him moving up.
Silovs’ future is bright and you have to believe that went into this offseason with a ton of confidence after being names Abbotsford’s MVP as well as the MVP honours he received from the World Championships.
We expect him to have a hell of an offseason and challenge for the backup role in the NHL. Though he may be the second-best current-day goalie in the organization — because he still has to room to grow and skills to develop, we see him being the starter in the AHL and getting a ton of starts. We may even see him get some back-to-backs during the season.
Silovs is coming. And he’s coming quickly. There’s just a few final tweaks he needs to make to his game before becoming an NHL-calibre goalie.
They got a good one here. The streets know.

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