Raaymakers to the rescue?

August 4, 2016

In many corners throughout the Ontario Hockey League, the Soo Greyhounds are seen as a legitimate contender within the Western Conference.

If their goal-tending question is solved or resolved, there is little question that the Greyhounds can and will contend with the London Knights and Windsor Spitfires for first place in the Western Conference in 2016-2017.

After two years as the Greyhounds undisputed starting goalie, Brandon Halverson is being ticketed for a position within the National Hockey League system of the New York Rangers this season.

Without Halverson in Houndtown, the plan is for third-year puck-stopper Joseph Raaymakers to assume the starter’s position after two seasons of being groomed for the job.

The 6-foot, 185-pound Raaymakers has been touted as the future starter ever since the Hounds drafted him in the second round in 2014.

But after a good rookie season as a 16-year old in 2014-2015, the numbers on Raaymakers were not nearly as good in 2015-2016 — and he was bypassed at this year’s National Hockey League draft.

Those numbers?

As a rookie, Raaymakers had a 14-7-0 record, 3.05 goals against average and .898 save percentage.

As a sophomore, Raaymakers regressed to a 13-10-4 record, 3.61 goals against average and .891 save percentage.

If they get good goaltending from Raaymakers — or whoever else might lay claim to the starting job — the Greyhounds should be a contender in what will once again be a highly-competitive Western Conference.

The big word, as it pertains to Raaymakers, is “if.”

There is no doubt that Raaymakers has the tools to be a top tender in the OHL.

And it’s time for him to sharpen those tools.

PHOTO: Joseph Raaymakers is slated to begin his third season with the Soo Greyhounds. (Photo by Terry Wilson/Ontario Hockey League.)

What you think about “Raaymakers to the rescue?”

  1. With a solid team returning and with what Raaymakers has shown backing up Halvy, I believe he can certainly be up to the task of leading the team towards what many believe is a West Division title! I know GM Raftkis will have his cell phone handy should Raaymakers falter! Joseph will have some wiggle room, I believe, but if the team isn’t firmly entrenched in a first place battle in November, there will be panic on Queen and Bay Streets and the phone will be calling out!

  2. I agree with Randy and Chris on the points been made. There is no need to panic !! 16 of 20 Team’s make the play-offs in the ‘O’

  3. There were questions too if Halverson was up to the task. I think Raaymakers handled himself quite well when Halverson was with the World Juniors. No reason to think he can’t carry the mail. Last year’s numbers are indicative of a rebuilt roster.

  4. Don’t know why the Soo does not get Kment from
    North Bay, and North Bay ask for the rights of halverdon… North Bay needs a starter and the Soo needs insurance?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *