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Road to the NHL Draft: Thatcher Demko

By John Vogl

Thatcher Demko

Position: Goaltender

Junior team: Boston College (NCAA)

Born: San Diego

Measurables: 6-foot-4, 192 pounds

2013-14 stats: 16-5-3, 2.24 GAA, .919 save pct.

Central Scouting rank: No. 1 (North America)

Lowdown: Just a freshman, Demko has already put himself alongside Jimmy Howard, the Detroit and U.S. Olympic goalie. Demko recorded a goals-against average of 1.35 versus Hockey East competition this season, the lowest total since Howard’s record of 1.15 in 2003-04.

The California native helped the Eagles advance to the Frozen Four, his second major tournament of the year. Demko was also a member of the U.S. world junior team but didn’t see any action. He spent one season with the U.S. national development program and picked up 15 of the under-18 team’s 22 victories.

Demko’s size and strength set him apart. He reads plays well and has the frame to overcome positional mistakes. His rebound control could use work. Only two goalies have been taken in the first round during the last three drafts.

They said it: “He was so far ahead of the underage players last year that if he was draft-eligible in 2013 he would have probably been drafted high. He's a huge, strong goalie with excellent net coverage. He has that NHL presence in the net.” – Al Jensen, NHL Central Scouting to

The Buffalo News is profiling 30 prospects in 30 days leading up to the NHL draft, which begins June 27.


NHL Entry Draft
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John Vogl

John Vogl

John Vogl has been covering the Sabres since 2002-03, an era that has included playoff runs, last-place finishes and three ownership changes. The award-winning writer is the Buffalo chapter chairman for the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association.

@BuffNewsVogl |

About Sabres Edge

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington, a Canisius College graduate who began his career as a News reporter in 1987, has been covering the Buffalo Sabres since 2007. He is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association and can vouch that exposed flesh freezes instantly when walking in downtown Winnipeg in January.

@BNHarrington |

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz |