Day 3 of Sabres development camp is in the books and it featured some pretty good goal tending from youngsters Jonas Johansson, Cal Petersen, and Jason Kasdorf. Tim Murray said it himself at the NHL draft that somebody in the Ullmark, Johansson, and Petersen group was going to have to separate themselves given the fact that Robin Lehner is now with the Sabres.
SabreStop has been down at camp for the past three days and if you were to ask me who seems to be the goalie that has come along the most since last summer, it is the 6'4 19 year old Johansson. His positioning has been incredible, his glove side is nearly unstoppable. Unless you find a way to rip one top shelf, good luck getting past the giant net minder. Johansson had a solid season in the Swedish league with a 2.32 GAA and a .911 save percentage. His worst weakness over the past year was mobility. There is no doubt that the size and technique is there, but often times Johansson got caught racing to the opposite side of the net. He looks to have gotten a lot lighter on his feet and has a quickness to him that he did not have last time we saw him.
With Ullmark sidelined until the fall, Johansson is being given a great opportunity to compete with the other 5 goalies at camp, and make himself stand out to Tim Murray who loves tall goaltenders.
Petersen has shown off incredible quickness with his glove, Kasdorf has made some impressive strides, but nobody has played as fundamentally sound as Johansson.
Robin Lehner is going to be the starter in 2015 that seems to be obvious after Murray gave up a first round pick for the 23 year old, but Lehner is young and unproven just like these prospects. Cal Petersen, Linus Ullmark, and Jonas Johansson are all going to have an opportunity to not only make the Sabres roster in the foreseeable future, but push Lehner for the starting job.
It all starts with moving ahead of the other prospects fighting for a roster spot, and right now it is a tight race that will take time to find a winner.