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05-12-2012, 02:45 PM
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It will be an interesting season for the Ams next year.

And if Hiller moves up, it could very likely be a "rebuild" type year. The Ams balance of talent at the forward spots between age groups is kind of a mess. After Feser and likely Mychan being 2 20 y/o forwards next year, the bulk of the talent falls on the young guys Williams, Rankin, and Stromwall. The Ams really do not have any top end 19 y/o forwards, only two talented but mostly unproven 18 y/o's in Rankin and Stromwall. The 17 age group looks promising (B. Williams is a stud), but the incoming 16's is huge question mark (the other Brian Williams still hasn't signed).

The Ams are setting up Comrie in a great situation for his draft year as most of their D corps will be back. If Ryckman is the 3rd 20, the Ams will have basically have a full 6 veteran Defensive lineup already set.

Scoring looks like it will be a big problem though, not surprising losing 3 100pt guys. If Bob can land a couple 18-19 y/o goal scorers (who are not easy or cheap to acquire) the Ams could be in the hunt for another 40 win season, but I just don't see it yet.

Getting back to the topic of Portland and Jones, it sounds like Jones will likely be a one and done guy anyway. It makes sense for Johnston to load up for next year again with the Blades having the Mem.Cup and therefore it being a possibly easier path to get there.

Personally I'm glad Jones is coming to the Dub, just not to a division foe. I can't believe I actually used to feel sorry for their team a few short years ago and now every other guy they have is a 1st round NHL pic. Junior hockey is cyclical, Portland's ride will have to cool off sometime. Hopefully come 2013-2014 when the Ams should be heating up again.

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