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Stephen Halliday is one of the more interesting Sens prospects. After his tremendous season in the NCAA, many fans are left wondering what he could be at the NHL level. Fast forward to the Senators development camp where Halliday was one of the most impressive prospects to attend. With his recent season and success at camp, what should fans expect from the 21-year-old prospect?
Stephen Halliday’s Season At Ohio State
This past year, Stephen Halliday was a member of Ohio State. In his first season with the Buckeyes, Halliday put up 9 goals and 32 assists for 41 points in 40 games. Halliday led his team in points and was the lone player to score above a point per game. Ohio State was not a very offensively-minded team either, which makes Halliday’s performance even more impressive.
Halliday’s numbers weren’t just impressive for Ohio State however. When looking at all players in the NCAA ages 20 and under, Halliday ranked 11th in points. This is nothing to scoff at as he outperformed top prospects like Rutger McGroarty and Matthew Coronato while just finishing behind players like Jackson Blake and Matthew Knies.
Halliday will be returning to college next season where I will be looking for him to take the next step. After his success this season, Halliday should be aiming to be one of the most productive players in the NCAA. If he can take his game to the next level, he could be a candidate to make the NHL roster as soon as 2024/2025.
Halliday’s Standout Development Camp
As the development camp came to a close, a few names stood out from their performances. The most common recurring names to hear included Tyler Boucher, Stephen Halliday, and Tyler Kleven. Oftentimes, Halliday was at the top of this list. Both management (Dorion) and fellow players (Pettersson) were sure to mention how impressed they were with his performance.
Halliday was able to showcase his creativity and his vision with the puck during this development camp. He is a pure playmaker, and he made sure to show management how effectively he can find teammates. At Ohio State, Halliday led all players in assists. Halliday also finished 8th in the NCAA in assists.
The biggest weakness in the game of Halliday is his skating. Although, what is promising for Sens fans is that he has gradually improved in this facet year by year. Also important to keep in mind is that this has not stunted his ability to put up points wherever he plays. As Halliday continues to work on his skating, he will become more and more dangerous every year.
What Should Sens Fans Expect From Halliday
As a fan, I believe it is important to temper our expectations with prospects. As Halliday seems to be very underrated by hockey fans altogether, he could catch some people off guard. Halliday to me is a player who has a high ceiling, but also a low floor. If his skating is not good enough for the next level, he will be unlikely to contribute to the NHL. However, if he finds a way to play his game regardless of that weakness, or if he improves his skating, he will be a very effective player.
I am expecting Halliday to become a future middle 6 forward at the NHL level. I don’t believe the top 6 is out of the question, but I would expect him to be more of a 5th or 6th best forward on a competitive NHL team, if he reaches his potential. I think he would be a luxury on a third line as a player who can provide some secondary offence, while also contributing to a secondary power play unit.
If you’re interested to see where Stephen Halliday ranked in my top 10 Sens prospects list, click the link below!