Excuse me! Excuse me, everyone, but his name is Alexander, thank you very much.” – Mrs Kerfoot.
Dear Mrs. Kerfoot, It has come to our attention that some members of the staff here at Burgundy Rainbow have referred to your son inappropriately as Alex, rather than the preferred Alexander. Please be assured that we will take all necessary measures to ensure that your son receives the utmost respect and that your desire is fully carried out. In all seriousness, Mrs. Kerfoot, we applaud you for all the sacrifice you’ve invested in your son. He seems to model the combination of talent, humility, and gumption rarely found in professional athletes. He is a source of optimism for the Avalanche and you are a source of inspiration at Burgundy Rainbow!
Photo by @thevoiceofvlad
Avalanche rookie Alexander Kerfoot (13) currently has three goals and two assists in the first eight games of the season. Not a shabby showing for the center, especially as the Avs put him on Matt Duchene’s left wing. Playing on the Avs #2 line is exactly why Kerfoot chose to sign with Colorado.
Yes, you read that correctly – free agent Alexander Kerfoot decided to sign with the Colorado Avalanche. And it came about via an odd turn of events.
Who is Alexander Kerfoot and how did he land in Denver?
Vancouver, BC was home to young Alexander. Born in 1994, he is the oldest of three boys, all of whom play hockey. His parent’s vacation home near Whistler, includes a full-sized, indoor rink. His father, Greg Kerfoot, also plays recreational hockey. In addition, the elder Kerfoot has a vision for local and Canadian sports. He owns the majority share in the Vancouver Whitecaps soccer team and is one of the largest contributors to Canadian Women’s soccer. The latter also have access to the Whitecaps field and training facility.
Early on, Kerfoot’s future was all about sports and hockey. In 2009 he was drafted by the Seattle Thunderbirds and went on to play developmental hockey for the West Vancouver Giants and then the Coquitlam Express.
Kerfoot had the Express firing on all cylinders the 2011-12 season. He posted 69 points in 51 games (25 goals), potted the OT Gold-medal GWG for Canada in the World Junior A Challenge, and took home the Coastal Rookie of the Year award for the British Columbia Hockey League. Looking back on all that, it was only fitting that Alexander find himself selected in the fifth round of the 2012 NHL draft by the … New Jersey Devils.
Despite other offers, Alexander chose to go the NCAA route to continue his hockey growth. His parents had always helped in his decisions and they suggested an economics degree would be useful to him during and after his athletic career. So, he chose Harvard University primarily for the academics, but also for their solid hockey program.
And he excelled there. Much of the time Kerfoot centered the team’s top line along with captain Jimmey Vesey. Over his collegiate career, Alexander accumulated 123 points in 121 games (84 goals). With the graduation of Vesey, Kerfoot took on the captain’s C for his senior year and guided Harvard to its most recent Frozen Four appearance since, well, he was born in 1994. Alexander was also named a Hobey Baker finalist and ECAC MVP.
The Hobey Baker award went to a defenseman at Denver University named Will Butcher. Similarly to Alexander, Butcher was selected in the fifth round of the 2013 NHL draft by the … Colorado Avalanche. The similarities continued in the summer of 2017 as both draftees eschewed their sponsoring organizations and set out at as NHL free agents.
After stopping by the hometown Vancouver Canucks, the San Jose Sharks, and the New York Rangers (where colleague Jimmey Vesey now plays), Alexander settled on the Colorado Avalanche. He says Joe Sakic sold him on the immediate opportunities he’d have in the Avs lineup. As it turns out, Will Butcher finally chose to play for the New Jersey Devils for that very same reason.
What do the Avs have in Alexander Kerfoot?
Scouts describe Kerfoot in terms of his on-ice vision, passing creativity, and elusiveness. He’s crafty with the puck, has terrific vision and has a knack for just slipping around defenders. Here’s a couple of samples of his superb vision and passing. The first from the Prospect Showcase: Click the link, zero the audio and watch as Kerfoot enters the zone with the puck. He’ll travel down the far-side boards and enter behind the net. He stops, spins, and comes back up the boards on the same side. He then passes the puck through an opposing player to Sergei Boikov darting into the slot from the blue line.
This next clip shows Alexander feeding Barrie in a similar play.
17:50 Tyson Barrie (1) Slap Shot, Assists: Alex Kerfoot (1), Chris Bigras (1) 3 – 2 COLhttps://t.co/unmAPEqKbl
— Nathan Rudolph (@DNVR_Rudo) October 6, 2017
Alexander brings a steadying influence to his line. He’s one of those players that makes the others around him better without being flashy. He quietly leads the team in Corsi for at 56.59%.
The next experiment could feature Kerfoot centering Wilson and Greer as the 3rd or Energy line. I predict we’ll see stats for the two wingers improve in that line combo. Eventually, he’ll be the steady playmaker the Avs have been missing since the departure of Paul Statsny.
Oh, and continue to keep an eye on Harvard hockey. Alexander’s younger brother, Colton currently continues the tradition.