Scouting Report: Colby Ambrosio

Photo Credit: Eldon Holmes / Tri-City Storm

The Welland, Ontario native has been playing competitively in the United States since 2017 when he spent the season played with the Buffalo Jr. Sabres 16U. When he was playing midget hockey up in Buffalo, he had played alongside fellow 2020 NHL Draft eligible prospect, Luke Tuch (now part of the USNTDP program).

After the 2017-2018 season, Ambrosio joined the Tri-City Storm of the USHL and has completed two seasons with the Kearney, Nebraska based club. This past season, he recorded 26 goals and 24 assists in 48 games played. Ambrosio lead the Storm in totals points and was second in the USHL in power play goals with 13 (behind Christian Sarlo of the Lincoln Stars).

Next season, Ambrosio will be joining the Boston College Eagles. He will get the opportunity to play of one of the most notable college hockey coaches in Jerry York. In addition, he will be playing in a strong offensive unit which features Alex Newhook (Colorado Avalanche), Nikita Nesterenko (Minnesota Wild), Jack McBain (Minnesota Wild), Logan Hutsko (Florida Panthers) and Matthew Boldy (Minnesota Wild).

Given the relationship that the Minnesota Wild have with Boston College, I would not be shocked to see the Wild scoop up Ambrosio at the draft. But, do not rule out the Avalanche and Panthers, who have multiple prospects on the Eagles.

Player Profile

D.O.B –August 7, 2002
Nationality – Canada
Draft Eligibility – 2020
Height –5’9
Weight –170 lbs
Position – Center
Handedness – Right

Ambrosio’s Style Of Play

Colby Ambrosio has a lethal shot and if you could not tell from the above content, he is dynamite on the power play. While you could argue that having a dynamic power play quarterback like Mitchell Miller would make Ambrosio stronger, you can not ignore how accurate Ambrosio is with his shot on the left side of the ice. He has his Alexander Ovechkin-style preferred power play shooting spot and frustrates goaltenders whenever he is being fed one-timer passes.

In addition, Ambrosio does embody solid speed and his crossovers help drive him. He can get up and down the ice at a relatively quick pace. He will dart after loose pucks and apply some pressure in the offensive zone to try to regain the puck.

While Ambrosio does have a fast stride, I have noticed some issues with his acceleration. Ambrosio tends to plant his left skate on the ice and then use his right skate to help propel him. This means that Ambrosio is exerting quite a bit of power from his right leg to push him forward.

While this might not seem like a big issue, it is a habit that needs to be addressed. This style of skating with damper his speed and creates challenges when the puck is quickly turned over and Ambrosio has to quickly react.

From a passing perspective, Ambrosio is a good tape-to-tape passer. But, occasionally will struggle in the slot with a decent amount of pressure and will find difficulty in completing cross ice passes. There are instances in which Ambrosio is aiming to complete a cross ice pass, but instead of connecting with his teammate, the puck misses the mark and he ends up giving the puck away.

When you look at Ambrosio’s aggression, he has fight in his game and is determined to keep the puck in the cycle when his opponent is looking to clear the puck. Also, Ambrosio seems to fare well at open ice when poke-checking. But, when Ambrosio has the puck along the boards, he has challenges fending off his attacker and that has a lot to do with his size. In the defensive zone, Ambrosio does not have the same aggression in his game and tends to move around the left side of the ice and wait for a loose puck. In fact, InStat Hockey has provided several challenge metrics from Ambrosio’s 2019-2020 campaign. He will average anywhere between 2-4 challenges in the defensive zone per game. Ambrosio should be looking to improve his defensive game next season in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts.

If Ambrosio does not seem to be improving upon his defensive game, I suspect that Jerry York will experiment with Ambrosio on the wing instead of at center.


Victor Olofsson, Left Wing, Buffalo Sabres

Just like Olofsson, Ambrosio has plenty of speed and a dangerous shot that allows for quite a bit of success on the power play. Also, both forwards are looking to improve their productivity at 5v5 as their 5v4/5v3 production truly out-weights their 5v5 production.

stats from InStat Hockey and EliteProspects

Prospect report written by Josh Tessler. If you would like to follow Josh on Twitter, his handle is @JoshTessler_.

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