2021-22 Staff: Seattle Thunderbirds (WHL)
Date of Beginning: April 14, 2003
Position of Beginning: New Westminster, BC, Canada
Ht: 6-foot-0, Wt: 170 kilos
NHL Draft Eligibility: 2022 second-year eligible
After going undrafted in 2021, Thomas Milic put himself firmly at the map in 2021-22. With a career-high 47 begins and a 2.44 goals-against moderate (GAA) and .912 save proportion (SV%) all through the common season and an eye-popping 2.29 GAA and .925 SV% together with two shutouts within the playoffs, he used to be the whole thing and extra for the Seattle Thunderbirds. Actually, he led them the entire option to the WHL Ultimate opposed to the powerhouse Edmonton Oil Kings. Sadly, his staff couldn’t experience him to the Memorial Cup as they ended up shedding 4-2 in a hard-fought collection the place he simplest allowed greater than 3 aims as soon as.
Along with his spectacular season in the back of him, all Milic can do is stay up for the 2022 Draft to spread to determine if he’s going to have an NHL staff subsequent to his title on Elite Possibilities when the festivities come to a detailed on July 8. It’s difficult to consider an international the place that doesn’t occur, as he did the whole thing to face out amongst a goaltending draft elegance that doesn’t have the flashy names of Sebastian Cossa and Jesper Walstedt.
Whilst Milic didn’t get any larger for the reason that 2021 Draft, he did get extra revel in between the pipes, showing in 36 extra video games than the final two seasons blended. Status at 6-foot-0, he’s nonetheless some of the shortest goaltenders to be had, however that doesn’t imply he can’t be successful. Simply have a look at Juuse Saros (5-foot-11) and Casey DeSmith (6-foot-0). Having mentioned that, his loss of peak can be a hurdle that he must bounce over all over his profession if he hopes to be successful as a starter, backup or perhaps a third-string American Hockey League (AHL) goaltender one day.
However sufficient of Milic’s weaknesses. Let’s speak about his strengths. Certainly one of them lies within the psychological recreation, as he’s almost certainly some of the calmest and maximum accumulated goalies available in the market. He additionally flourishes beneath force and turns out to boost his recreation when the going will get difficult, living proof, the WHL Playoffs. After all, his positioning, athleticism and play-reading talents are very spectacular, which is a need given the peak he has to paintings with.
Different THW Draft Profiles
Thomas Milic – NHL Draft Projection
As discussed, Milic used to be left with out a spouse following the 2021 Draft. That shouldn’t occur this time as a staff with a loss of goaltending possibilities will indisputably take a possibility at the undersized delicate from New Westminster. He may even garner some consideration within the fourth or 5th spherical relying on the place the higher-ranked goaltenders move.
“I’m a constant goaltender that you’ll depend on each unmarried night time. I play a peaceful, accumulated taste, however too can make giant, athletic saves when wanted. Reliability is a phrase that I love to make use of.” – Thomas Milic
“When all cylinders are firing — this recreation, his aggregate of focal point, play-reading talent, and aggressive hearth — he’s borderline unbeatable. The convenience with which he used to be studying the play and arriving sq. to the puck earlier than a shot used to be made used to be noticeably irritating the opposition…The strengths of Milic’s recreation are in his psychological processing, predictive talent, balance of idea, and compete stage. Those extra intangible aspects are tougher to hold your hat on and take a swing on as a draft pick out. Having observed him persistently outperform extra hyped and prototypical goaltending possibilities since he used to be 14-years-old, I believe I lean to Milic being some of the exceptions to the guideline” (from ‘23950 – Edmonton vs. Seattle Participant Document’, Donesh Mazloum – FC Hockey, 6/7/22).
“A powerful, unswerving gatekeeper between the pipes that most often play with self assurance. Performs a tidy, technical recreation. Is self-aware and aware on the subject of the location. Compensates for his dimension with quickness and competitive positioning. Hardly ever locks onto an perspective as he’s shifty and environment friendly on his ft. Displays sturdy decrease frame agility and ready to transport his ft to conform and provides decrease proportion seems to be on the web. Dynamic velocity shifting laterally and stays poised. – FC Hockey’s 2021 Draft Information
- Compete stage
- Psychological recreation
Beneath Development (Enhancements to Make)
What is going to almost certainly grasp Milic again from turning into a starter within the NHL is his loss of peak. Sadly, the location continues to be in large part ruled by means of goaltenders who’re no less than 6-foot-2 or taller. That doesn’t imply he can’t be successful, it’s simply that it is going to be harder to take action. Fortuitously for him, he’s were given different equipment that may be able to make up for it in his aggressive hearth, positioning and athleticism. It is going to be difficult, however I will be able to see him turning into a forged backup within the NHL someday, particularly bearing in mind the huge step he took in his recreation in just a season. It could take a couple of years, however be careful for Milic one day, whether or not he finally ends up being drafted or now not.
Chance – 3/5, Praise – 4/5
Milic used to be named to the USA Department’s 2021-22 2d All-Superstar staff and gained a U18 Global Junior gold medal with Staff Canada in 2021. He used to be additionally named the WHL’s Goaltender of the Week for the week finishing Might 15, 2022.
Thomas Milic Statistics
Matthew Zator is a THW freelance author, media editor, and scout who lives and breathes Vancouver Canucks hockey, the NHL Draft, and possibilities normally. He loves speaking about younger avid gamers and their doable. Matthew is a must-read for Canucks fanatics and fanatics of the NHL Draft and its possibilities. For interview requests or content material data, you’ll observe Matthew via his social media accounts which can be indexed beneath his photograph on the conclusion of articles like this one about Tyler Motte.