Yes, he Kelowna Rockets defenseman Cal Foote is the son of 20-year NHL defenseman Adam Foote. Pedigree may help Foote make it to the league, but it will not keep him there. His size, skills, and sense will though, and make him a compelling option for the San Jose Sharks with the 19th pick in the first round.
Standing 6-foot-4 and weighing over 210 pounds, Foote’s size is perhaps more noticeable than the famous nameplate on the back of his jersey. Foote doesn’t necessarily use that size to physically intimidate his opponents, but uses it enough defensively. His long reach makes his stick check particularly disruptive, and he pairs that with good gap control.
Foote also has strong offensive instincts and passing ability. 42 of his 93 WHL points over the last two seasons came on the power play, though, so he may not be a consistent producer at even strength. Still, Foote has legitimate power play prowess, which would prove useful for San Jose as its current veteran core will be on the decline by the time Foote is ready to contribute.
Although Foote is a capable skater for someone his size, he does struggle at times. According to Future Considerations’ scouting report, he “can look a tad sluggish when quickly forced to elevate his tempo.” Like many previous Sharks prospects, though, Foote’s skating struggles are outweighed by his hockey sense. His hockey IQ is his most commonly-praised attribute by scouts, and drives his two-way ability.
The defenseman is pretty much a consensus first round pick, but opinions on where he will be selected among the first 30 picks vary. He was on the board at 19 when we selected him in Saturday Sports Extra on TSN 1260’s mock draft over the weekend, and was available and on our mind for SB Nation’s mock draft as well.
There’s a good chance Foote will be available when San Jose picks on Friday. Plus, given the mixed opinions, he may represent another player the Sharks can still select if they trade down and acquire more draft picks Defense isn’t the Sharks’ biggest draft priority, given their organizational depth at the position. Foote will likely not be pro ready for a while, and since five of San Jose’s seven defensemen are 29 or older, he can avoid the blueline logjam.
But, the team is thinner there following the Mirco Mueller trade over the weekend, and Foote has the upside of a potential top-four defenseman. There’s much more to his game than his famous last name, and it’s enough to keep an eye on him in the first round.
Name: Cal Foote
Nationality: Canada / USA
Hometown: Englewood, CO
2015-17: Kelowna Rockets
2014-15: Colorado Thunderbirds (T1EHL U16) / Omaha Lancers (USHL)
ISS Hockey: 12
Future Considerations: 25
McKeen’s Hockey: 30
NHL CSS: 12 (NA)
- Hockey IQ
- Defensive fundamentals
Areas of Improvement
- Even strength production