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11-30-2003, 01:35 PM
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Originally Posted by penopekoo
Things aren't looking great for the Habs' ECHL affiliate, the Columbus [Georgia, not Ohio] Cottonmouths. They are one of the youngest and worst teams in the league, and although recently they've been outshooting their opponents, goaltending remains a problem. As does attendance, which rarely exceeds 3000.

There are four Montreal prospects on Columbus - Larrivee, Shasby, Thinel, and goaltender Michaud. Winger Jerome Marois is currently on loan to the Long Beach Ice Dogs, another ECHL team, where he has collected 2 goals and five points in ten games. His plus / minus is even, which is decent considering the rest of the team is mostly negative. He is playing alongside Eric Laplante, who was a try out for Hamilton in the AHL preseason.

As for the Columbus players:

Christian Larrivee has 1 goal and 5 assists in 21 games, with a -13 to boot. Not very promising for a centre prospect. Unless he makes some big changes, he's destined to stay in the minors for the remainder of his career. At age 21, more is expected.

Matt Shasby also has 1 goal and 5 assists in 21 games. He is -10. Theses are mediocre numbers, although him being a defensive defensemen on a terrible team provides a decent excuse. Still, he needs to improve by leaps and bounds if he ever wants to make it to Hamilton - he is 23 years old already.

Olivier Michaud continues to suffer from some terrible inconsistency. One game he'll be great, the next will be a blowout. On such an awful team, his 5-8-1 record can be excused, although an awful save percentage of .885 in 16 games needs to be improved. He's only 21, but he's got some work to do.

Marc-Andre Thinel is the latest player to be sent down to the Cottonmouths. Though he was amazing as a junior, his 1 goal and 3 assists in eight games with Columbus is definitely disappointing. His -9 is even worse. At only 5.10 and 178 lbs, Thinel is going to need to start scoring or else he'll fall out of Gainey's radar for good.

Forget stats, they play on the WORST team in the ECHL. I have seen a few ECHL games, but so far none this year. Who's to say what will happen next year, but if we lose the Tampa prospects, and a few of our propsects make the Habs, then I could see one of Larrivee, Shasby making the team. Shasby has a better chance, with a thin blueline in Hamilton next year. Beauchemin if he really plays better could end up being a better Bouillon. He's close to being as physical, and his style of play somewhat reminds me of Bouillon just bigger and more offense. But who knows. That leaves Archer, Cote, Plante, Shasby, maybe Glenn, maybe Flood, which would give Shasby a chance to make the Dogs next year.

Shasby isn't a defensive defensemen, IMO. I consider him more of a Hainsey, as he skates well, makes good passes, and is good on the PP, but in his own end he needs to improve. I haven't seen him play this year though, so I can't comment on his progression.

Thinel I believe will be a RFA this summer, and if he doesn't improve, I could see him being let go. He hasn't progressed much, and lacks a lot of physical strength to compete in the AHL. Marois could be in the same boat, as I think he's an RFA this summer, and last year he was just downright brutal, and was sent down from the ECHL to the CHL which a step below sort of. I think he played for New Mexico of the CHL, but not sure, either way he needs to show a lot this year, but he does have the size going for him.

Michaud has been up and down, but when you play on such a crappy team, it's really hard to guage a players progress. I'm not very high on Michaud, but I haven't been overly impressed with Damphousse, so who knows who could be in Hamilton next year, as Fichaud is in his final contract year, so there could be a spot in Hamilton next year.

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