||07-26-2013 12:59 PM
*OFFICIAL* Cape Breton Screaming Eagles 2013-2014 Thread
Might as well get around to taking a stab at this. I won't make any point predictions this year, this team will be whatever it is. That said, things are looking much brighter. The lack of puck-movers on the blueline notwithstanding, the prospect pool is deeper and the bad news seems to have subsided. That includes Nicholas Roy.....we'll recoup some assets and life goes on.
I won't see any games this year. Now living and working in Calgary, and my vacation time is booked for Peru. But I'll be following the team closely, and here's a preliminary stab at the lineup:
Alex Bureau (17) Maxime Lagace (20)
While it seemed odd that Dumont added a 20 year old goalie who in a best-cased scenario is the back-up, it just places more of a spotlight on the investment in Bureau. I suppose the idea is to start giving Bureau a little bit more of the leash as the season goes, which actually started a bit at the end of last season. The idea being Legace is there as a reliable veteran if and when he falters. Cape Breton has a history of young goalies taking the starters job and running with it. Everyone has their fingers crossed that it will be sooner than later with Bureau. No surprises in nets for the Eagles.....this is the tandem.
Justin Hache (19) Stephen Woodworth (20)
Loic Leduc (19) Gareth Nicholson (18)
Jason Bell (16) Brendan Nickerson (17)
Stephen Midensky (19)
The blueline will probably be fluid all year long. Hache, Woodworth, Leduc and Nicholson are locks. The investment we made with next years 1st rounder makes Bell as close to a sure thing as a 16 year can be. I have Midensky penciled in as the number 7D, but that isn't anything close to a lock. He's there because I'd personally keep him over Walsh and Hartley, but ideally you don't want a 1994 in that roster spot. It doesn't look like Louis-Phillipe Page is coming to camp, and we could land a 1996 or 1997 D in a Nicholas Roy trade. If Bradley Lalonde makes an impression it could be his spot. There could always be some surprises....Dumont is bringing in two Toronto kids, Matthew Nosella and Matthew Donnelly, and he knows them better than us. I've seen comments on Donnelly filling the role of enforcer, but if we designate one it really shouldn't be someone who plays D. I'd give him a look as a 4th line winger. If they can play a bit, all the better.
William Carrier (19) Kyle Farrell (19) Charles-Eric Legare (19)
Michael Clarke (20) Bronson Beaton (18) Raphael Corriveau (19)
Maxim Lazarev (17) Clark Bishop (17) Michael Lyle (18)
Timothe Simard (17) Zach Moody (17) Nick Marois (17)
Julien Pelletier (17) Danick Gaudreau (17) Nicholas Dozzi (18)
So many variables with a team in transition like this, including sitting on a 1st overall pick who won't play for us. Once the tree gets shaken after Christmas things will look quite a bit different. Carrier will be gone, with Corriveau another strong possibility. Farrell and Legare have value, if Kyle can stay healthy and Legare scores at the same clip he did (34 goals over a full-season). I'd like to see Legare stay as a 20 next year if he brings those hands back for a 2nd season with us. I think Bishop and Lazarev together is a bit of a no-brainer, and I hope nobody gets their panties in a bunch that this preview has them on the 3rd line. They'll be top 6 guys, sooner than later. Maybe on opening night. Dumont made some good moves thinning the herd with Cole Murphy, Sebastien Lemieux and Zach Beaton shipping out. I liked Murphy's work ethic, but time will tell if he can develop a set of hands at the Q level. I added Nicholas Dozzi into the mix based on Dumont's comments to the Cape Breton Post, but what he brings will be determined in camp. His Tier 2 numbers aren't exciting. I won't even speculate on any American players coming this season. As for the overager spot up front, I keep Clarke over Milson strictly for offense, but Dumont may like the grit that Milson brings to such a young line-up.
My guess would be middle of the pack, with some growing pains in the 2nd half. We'll get some nice pieces with Carrier, Haches and Roy on the move. If we can get a 95/96 who can man the PP, things will really start to take shape for 2014-15 and 2015-16. We could be a real contender by 2015.