Our 18 | Three Questions on the 2023-24 Victoriaville Tigres
What’s next for the team that surprised everyone last year?
The toughest thing for the Tigres will be to face a set of opponents who are no longer surprised at the abilities of this upstart squad. Fortunately, there’s a group of players at the heart of this lineup that is seemingly up to the task. Back for one more season are overage forwards Maxime Pellerin and Tommy Cormier, author of 80 goals and 171 points between one another last year. Making his way into a veteran laden defense corps is Anaheim Ducks prospect Noah Warren, looking for a long playoff run after a serious shoulder injury denied him one in Gatineau last spring. For a club that is just one season removed from missing the postseason, the Tigres status as potential contenders is not only legitimate, but also very impressive.
What will the next step in Gabriel D’Aigle’s junior hockey career look like?
He isn’t NHL Draft eligible until 2025, but Gabriel D’Aigle has already put the hockey world on notice. Putting up 13 wins and a pair of shutouts in your rookie season will do just that. Now, it’s time to see what he’ll do next, entering a situation that’s about as ideal as a netminder could ask for. D’Aigle will have an impressive mix of veterans playing defence in front of him, including Warren, Pier-Olivier Roy, Francesco Iasenza and Igor Mburanumwe. He’ll also have last year’s top goaltender Nathan Darveau alongside him to form what will arguably be the top goaltending tandem in the league this season. All of these factors should allow D’Aigle to thrive as his stock continues to rise.
Will the team’s import players take the next step in year three?
For the second year in a row, the Tigres did not make a selection at the CHL Import Draft. With winger Egor Goriunov and center Nikita Prishchpov in the fold, the European contingent of the roster is well stocked already. Both are entering their 19-year-old seasons and may well be the factors that put the Tigres over the top. If the progression of these two from their first to second years is any indication – both nearly doubled their production, combining for 83 points in 2022-23 – the Tigres offensive depth could be a force to be reckoned with during the upcoming campaign.
CLICK HERE to follow the Tigres on CHL TV
|Record||40-20-2-6 (88 points)|
|Division Ranking||2nd Central|
|Goals For||244 (6th)|
|Goals Against||190 (3rd)|
|PP (Overall)||26.9% (3rd)|
|PK (Overall)||81.2% (2nd)|
|Leading Rookie||Simard (7-10-17)|
|Leading Scorers||Pellerin (40-46-86)|