Washington Capitals Prospect Review and Forecast: Brian Pinho

Graphic: Providence College

We continue our prospect review and forecast series with a review and forecast for Brian Pinho. (You can access all of our Capitals Prospect Reports and player analysis on our “Prospects” page in the top menu bar or right here.)  

Pinho signed a two-year entry-level contract on April 4, 2018 for $833,750 average annual value (AAV). He will be a restricted free agent on July 1, 2019. Pinho is waivers-exempt for the coming season.

The Capitals selected Pinho with the 174th overall pick in the sixth round of the 2013 NHL Draft. Pinho (23), played all four years at Providence College, increasing his offensive output each of the first three seasons. The 2016-2017 season was his statistical high-water mark, where he was also selected as the team’s Alternate Captain.

Pinho joined the Capitals on April 4th, but would soon return to Providence College to complete graduation.

Pinho attended his sixth Capitals development camp at the end of the June, 2018. He centered the top line for the White Team in this year’s camp scrimmage, where he registered a goal and an assist in the game.

Pinho’s offensive production began to catch fire midseason. (more here) After a slow start to the season, the Captain of the Friars found his offensive game in December and January. He was named MVP of the Three-Rivers Classic in December, and was named a finalist for the Hobie Baker Award in January.

Pinho finished the 2017-2018 regular season with 12 goals and 20 assists for 32 Points.

The following is a compilation of our month-by-month prospect reports for Brian Pinho during the 2017-2018 season.

Just like Chase Priskie, after having a stellar season, Pinho was selected as captain of his team. He had 12 goals and an astounding 28 assists (40 points) in 39 games last season. But so far this season, it’s been less than stellar for the setup man. He only has one goal and two assists in seven games. He will need to step up his game because whether he signs with the Capitals this offseason or another team, he will be need to show he’s worth the roster spot.

Trending: Same

After only having one goal and two assists in his first seven games, Pinho has recorded three goals and four assists in his last seven games. So good news he’s starting to find his stride again. He needs to keep it up and lead his team as captain.

Trending: Up

Brian Pinho (Providence College) had a good month of December with the Providence Friars, scoring two goals and two assists in just six games for the Month of December. Pinho was also named MVP of the Three Rivers Classic and to the All-Tournament Team on December 30. After a slow start to the season, Pinho now has seven goals and nine assists in 20 games this season. Pinho and the Providence Friars have 14 games remaining in their regular season.

Trending: Up

Pinho continued his up-tic in January. He scored a goal and added an assist against Brown on January 3 in the annual “Mayors Cup”. “Brian’s second half of the game, he was really dominant. He was excellent against Robert Morris in the championship game (in PC’s win on Saturday),″ said Providence coach Nate Leaman. “It’s all about him getting his feet moving. When he’s moving his feet he’s pretty darn effective. He made a great play on his goal. A lot of poise there.″ Pinho added another goal and two assists against Merrimack on 1/6. Pinho totaled four goals and five assists in eight games in January. He now has 11 goals and 14 assists in 28 games this season. Providence College has six games remaining in the regular season. Finally, Pinho has been named one of the 74 nominees for college hockey’s highest honor, the Hobey Baker Award.

Trending: Up

In addition to being named a finalist for the Hobey Baker Award in January, Pinho was also named one of 16 semifinalists for the Walter Brown Award which is given to the best American-born college hockey player in New England. On 2/24, Pinho became just the fourth Friar in program history to reach 150 games played. On the ice, Pinho cooled off a bit in February, scoring one goal and four assists in six games played in February. Pinho finished the regular season with 12 goals and 18 assists in 34 games played for a .88 points per game average. Pinho registered a total of 104 shots for an 11.5 shooting percentage and was a +13 in the regular season. Providence will await their opponent for the Hockey East Quarterfinals set from March 9-11 at Schneider Arena.

Trending: Same

The Friars swept Maine in two games in the first round of postseason play on March 9 and 10 and advanced to the Hockey East Semifinals the following weekend vs. Northeastern. After beating Clarkson on March 23, the Friars were ultimately elimimated by Notre Dame on March 24, thus ending the Friars season and Pinho’s collegiate career. After the game, Friars head coach Leaman was asked about Pinho: ‘Brian Pinho’s been a warrior for us for four years. What a kid. … He had a chance to sign last year and he came back. For me, that means the world for the program. He did an outstanding job in leading us this year in everything he did’.  The Friars’ senior captain earned the Frank Jones Award as New England’s Best Defensive Forward and becomes the fourth member of the program to win the award. Pinho also garnered Third Team Hockey East All-Star accolades after matching a career-high in goals (12) and posting 32 points overall. Pinho was named Hockey East Player of the Week on January 8 for the first time in his career and was a Walter Brown Award semifinalist. Pinho also earned All-Region recognition at last weekend’s NCAA East Regional and was also the Hockey East’s Best Defensive Forward this season. According to Corey Pronman in The Athletic, several sources believe Pinho will test free agency on Aug. 15. Pronman also provided his assessment of Pinho’s game: “Pinho has been better the past two seasons, lately playing as an all-situations center for Providence College. He can make plays, has fine stick skills and works hard to win pucks. His two-way game has improved in college. I’m not completely sold on him as an NHL player in terms of how high-end his abilities are, and he’ll be a guy I’ll want to see in the AHL first.” Look for Pinho to enter unrestricted free agency if no contract is announced within the next week or so.

Trending: Same


Pinho will join the wave of youth descending on Hershey this fall and battle for an open forward/center spot.

His current (long-term) plan for the Capitals would be to fill a need in the bottom six forwards. His above-average stick skills, hard battles on the puck and leadership qualities will go a long way in seeing that he does just that.

Pinho has an outside shot for the current opening on Capitals 4th line, but will be battling with several other prospects for the spot this fall.  Don’t be surprised if he earns the spot, if he has an outstanding month of September.

Pheonix Copley
Shane Gersich
Tobias Geisser
Garrett Pilon
Travis Boyd
Lucas Johansen
Jonas Siegenthaler
Axel Jonsson-Fjallby
Connor Hobbs
Nathan Walker
Vitek Vanecek

By Jon Sorensen

About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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