2023 QMJHL Draft | Under the Microscope: Caleb Desnoyers
Caleb Desnoyers eats, sleeps, and breathes hockey. He’s energetic, full of life, and a joy to be around. Very talkative in the dressing room, he’s always encouraging his teammates to push themselves.
Caleb’s passion for the game stems from growing up in a hockey family and not surprisingly, just like his father, uncle, and older brother Elliot, he was also blessed with a lot of talent.
He is a dynamic centreman in the offensive zone, where his intelligence, vision and great hockey sense allow him to find his open teammates with noticeable ease. This season, he’s also developed into a strong finisher around the net. Desnoyers plays an effective 200-foot game, while also winning his fair share of faceoffs.
“Caleb is a developing and improving left-handed center,” said Pierre Cholette, Director of QMJHL Central Scouting. “His hockey sense, anticipation and vision are all above average. He has a good shot that we would like to see him use more often. He’s also an excellent passer and playmaker, who pays attention to even the most minor details.”
Desnoyers just completed his first regular season in Quebec’s U18 AAA Development Hockey League with the Saint-Hyacinthe Gaulois, the same team his brother Elliot played for. With an impressive tally of 23 goals and 53 points in 42 games, he finished as the league’s second-best scorer at just 15 years old.
Caleb has his sights set on following in the footsteps of his brother and mentor, Elliot, who currently plays professionally with the AHL’s Lehigh Valley Phantoms after being drafted by the Philadelphia Flyers in 2020. He’s doing so by carving his own path, and successfully forging his own identity. Elliot practiced with Caleb and the Gaulois’ in Saint-Hyacinthe during the latest AHL All-Star Break and both their strong brotherly bond and love for competition was evident.
While Desnoyers has been working on his play without the puck as well as his positioning in all three zones this season, off the ice he’s focused on his mindset and what he can control. His head coach with the Gaulois, Jean-Philippe Sansfaçon is a firm believer that having a strong mental game will help him as his career progresses.
“I think that’s his approach, to take it one step at a time. There’s going to be adversity. So, for him, it’s going to be about learning from it and always being the best teammate he can be,” said Sansfaçon of the promising prospect. “He’ll need to continue to improve his weaknesses, but most importantly, to keep focusing on his strengths, and not forgetting that those are what got him to the level he’s at now. It’ll be important that he continues to focus on what he can control, but I think he has enough talent to make it.”
Given all the tools he possesses, it’s easy to see why Desnoyers will be a valuable addition, even in the short term, for whichever team selects him at next June’s QMJHL Entry Draft.
Height: 6’1″ | Weight: 163 lbs
Date of Birth: April 11, 2007
Birthplace: Saint-Hyacinthe, Quebec