Calvin Pickard is currently playing with the Seattle Thunderbirds of the Western Hockey League.
It has been a trying season thus far for the Seattle Thunderbirds in the US Division of the Western Hockey League. Starting the season as the youngest team in the WHL is never easy, and for a team that has only moved to get younger through the course of multiple deals this year (with only has 4 players over age 18), one player has given them a steady presence in their most important position. Goaltender Calvin Pickard might be quickly recognized by casual fans as the younger brother of Chet Pickard, a first round pick by the NHL’s Nashville Predators. Calvin has quickly proven to many, however, that Chet is not the only bluechip goaltending prospect in the Pickard household.
After a very respectable 16 year old rookie season in 2008-09 for Seattle, in which Pickard uprooted highly-touted Philadelphia Flyers draft pick Jacob DeSerres as starting netminder, Calvin started his draft eligible season on a team rebuilding for the future. Through 45 games, however, the 17 year old from Winnipeg has impressed scouts enough to be the number 1 ranked CHL goaltender on almost every mid-term scouting report. Playing more minutes (2704) than any other goaltender in the WHL, Pickard has posted a very solid 91.7% save percentage, and a respectable 2.86 goals-against average. Pickard has become a player that the young T-Birds can rely on for solid goaltending on a night in, night out basis; a fact that is proven by his ability to keep his team in games that they seem to have no business playing in.
While he doesn’t have the size of his brother (Calvin stands notably 2-3 inches shorter than Chet), Pickard fills alot of the net and gives opposition shooters very little to look at. Positionally sound, and also with very strong rebound control, you don’t see Calvin give up many soft goals, and he seems to bounce back fairly quickly after being scored on; which is a testament to his mental ability. With his impressive statistics on a fairly poor team, it is fathomable that Calvin could follow in big brother Chet’s footsteps and become a first-round pick in the upcoming NHL Entry draft.