Don’t let Alex D’Orio’s recent record fool you — he’s a Penguins goalie prospect
Last September, Alex D’Orio must have felt on top of the hockey world.
Not long after turning 18, he capped a strong season for the Saint John Sea Dogs by leading them to the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League title. Soon after, he played in the prestigious Memorial Cup tournament, earned an invite to Penguins development camp on a tryout and stood out enough there and for the Penguins entry at the Prospects Challenge tournament that he earned a three-year contract with the organization.
This past season, though, was not nearly as memorable for D’Orio. Saint John’s roster entered a youth movement, and statistics that looked so pretty for D’Orio in 2016-17 (a 19-2-1 record, 2.40 goals-against average) turned rather ugly (9-26-2 record, 4.01 GAA) in 2017-18.
Through it all, D’Orio took it in stride, and so have the Penguins.
“For sure, last year we were a rebuilding team, so it was (expected) because guys were younger and a lot of guys were in their first year in juniors so it was much more difficult to get wins,” D’Orio said. “But this year our team is going to be older and more mature, so I think it’s going to be a good year for us.”
— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) September 13, 2017
With the trade of highly touted prospect Filip Gustavsson in late February, the Penguins’ organizational depth chart at goalie is much thinner . Still only 19 and a long way from reaching the NHL, D’Orio remains a possible part of the organization’s future.
The 6-foot-2, 209-pound D’Orio will play his final season in juniors this winter.
“I’ve learned so much about being a pro on and off the ice (at Penguins development camp this week). Now I want my last year at juniors to be fun,” D’Orio said. “Improve as much as I can and have fun.”
Chris Adamski is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at [email protected] or via Twitter @C_AdamskiTrib.