DETROIT — Going from juniors to execs was an enormous step for Sebastian Cossa. Transferring from ECHL Toledo to AHL Grand Rapids this season could be one other degree of development for the prized Detroit Crimson Wings goalie prospect.
Cossa did effectively with the walleye. Now he’ll face quicker gamers whose passes are faster and sharper and who shoot tougher and extra correct – if he wins the job.
“It is a massive step ahead and I need to maintain doing it for my growth,” Cossa stated. “I’ve to show that I might be there first.”
The Crimson Wings are relying on it. Cossa, who turns 21 on Nov. 21, is anticipated to crew up with newly signed veteran Alex Lyon, 30, and provides the Griffins a greater goalie than final season once they used eight goaltenders.
Cossa was within the squad however not prepared for the AHL, posting a 5.57 goals-against common and .783 save share, albeit in a small pattern dimension (three video games).
The 2021 fifteenth general choose fared a lot better in Toledo, going 26-16-4 with a 2.56 GAA and .913 save share. He went 5-2 within the playoffs, with a 2.32 GAA and .917 save share, serving to the walleye attain the Western Convention Finals.
“I had my ups and downs, however I feel I had a superb second half and a superb push within the playoffs,” Cossa stated.
He is shaped a powerful tandem with John Lethemon (18-1-3, 1.99 GAA, .930 save share), the ECHL’s Goaltender of the Yr who may even be competing for a job at Grand Rapids.
“Leth and I acquired alongside rather well,” Cossa stated. “He is a veteran who had been within the league for a couple of years and actually helped me. Excellent goalkeeper, very aggressive. We pushed one another day-after-day.
“Once you see a man like that on the opposite finish of the rink each apply, working as laborious as he does, simply the little issues off the ice, that is most likely what’s most vital.”
The 6-6 Cossa have a protracted record of areas they should enhance on this season.
“Hold engaged on the skating,” he stated. “I am actually, actually targeted on my ankles, my monitoring, my palms, the stick recreation. There are plenty of little particulars that I can work on. To my style within the AHL, they transfer the puck quick. Ensure my monitoring is right. If I am fixated on the pucks, if I am on the angle, not a lot goes to beat me.
“There’s plenty of pre-shot stuff that I am engaged on. A whole lot of it’s about management, about steadiness. I feel from junior to professional they spin the puck quicker. On the facility play, it takes possibly a couple of inches deep so I can get from level A to level B quicker. Clearly it is skating, however it’s additionally participant recognition, realizing that I am an enormous man and generally I do not must be on the high of my crease to make saves. It is sort of changing into conscious of the sport and getting used to that degree.
Crimson Wings assistant director of participant growth Danny Cleary credited goalie scouting and growth supervisor Phil Osaer for serving to Cossa take the following step.
“It is simply there for him,” Cleary stated. “He had a superb run in Toledo. Coss goes to be right here engaged on his recreation with Phil. It will be the consistency to have a straight thoughts day-after-day. However he has definitely grown. Coss is maturing. He is a enjoyable child. He’s at all times nice and talkative, however he is an effective goalkeeper. He is massive, he is good and he is gotten higher.
Cossa is joyful that Dan Watson, his head coach in Toledo, has been employed in the identical capability for the Griffins.
“He is undoubtedly a participant’s coach,” Cossa stated. “Very nice with the gamers and everybody would stroll via a wall for him. Through the playoffs and even in the course of the 12 months, we had top-of-the-line energy performs and penalty kills within the league. Clearly, this additionally displays on our assistant coaches, however he additionally helps with that.
Cossa added: “He brings a relaxed to the locker room. It is a spot you prefer to go day-after-day. You might be actually joyful.
Cossa was the primary goaltender chosen within the 2021 draft, 5 spots earlier than Minnesota took Jesper Wallstedt, who was an AHL star participant final season, his first with the Iowa Wild.
Time will inform if the Crimson Wings made the best name.
Extra: Projecting Crimson Wings traces, protection pairs to start out season