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01-17-2013, 01:14 PM
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In the first period Seth Jones looked like he was at a level far beyond anyone else in the game --in the next two,he was solid but did not attack as much ...the final 2 periods saw Nikita Zadorov make fools of Central Scouting mid-term rankings--30thNA
skater-ARE YOU KIDDING ME? BOTH ISS and CRAIG BUTTON have him in their top ten --after Jones,he is either the 2nd or 3rd best D-prospect in this draft -depending on whether you want more offense or defense RASMUS RISTOLAINEN--who of course as a euro was not in the game-- is the other contender for 2nd or 3rd best D-man with Zadorov... Zadorov kept up big hits and easy also rub-outs along the boards- and AS USUAL --along with D-partner MADISON BOWEY -also AS USUAL (since both are among the very best D-men in the CHL in +/-.....BOTH registered a +2 for the game ...I think ZADOROV made saps of the CSS ranking --he looked like a man playing with boys ...shame on CSS for such an egregious mistake in ranking..
BTQW-I also liked my first look at BOWEY--very mobile and agile and can rush the puck up ice pulling away from checkers and very good agility to stick with his checks when oppents do twists and turns --he looked mid-level in physicality--not a great physical strength and edgy hitter like Zadorov --but mid-level good enough in that Dub sort of way -I see him as quintessential 2-way d-man with great skating and mobility and being a RD --of value to teams who may be thin at that position..

I also thought CHRIS BIGRAS showed very well as a solid SAH shutdown D,pl;aying a simple but very effective mistake-free and solid game-you rub guys out ,use proper positioning,disrupt plays,make clears---just very very solid..

Forr losing team Cherry---Darnel Nurse cemented his spot in the debate about being in the top 5 d for the draft..

Here is how I now rank the top 7 D-men:

1. S. Jones
2. R. Ristolainen
3.N. Zadorov
4. D. Nurse
5. M. Bowey
6.R. Hagg
7. C. Bigras

Nurse is and big size 6'5 192 to effectively take out rushers easily --but does not hit as impactfully like Zadorov 6'5 228 can.. Both are LD's so no position preference among these 2 BIG D-men ..
Some might flip Bigras over Hagg --Bigras is a LD SAH type--Hagg is more of a two-way type who I think also plays LD (he shoots left anyway)..

Having seen all these guys now -I think I have it about right on the top 7 d -men for this draft..Of course we did not see Pulock in the Top Prospects game due to injury--but I did see him before and i would not put him in that top 7 ...not even sure if he is 8th ..

NOW--as to GOALIES: Once AGAIN FUCALE proves he can't stop pucks efficiently-I do not get his #! NA rannking on most lists -his save% stats on a top Halifax team in the Q and not facing barrages of shots -just do not justify such hype about him.

I was MORE IMPRESSED at my first looks at TRISTAN JARRY and PHILLPE
DESROSIERS ....I like the techniques of both goalies--JARRY also handles the puck very well --made some spectacular saves and showed great quickness---the trouble was he only played 16 games so far this season for EDM behind Brossoit --and does not face a lot of shots per game-so you wonder at his great save% and 4 shutouts in 16GP -but after what I saw last night from him- I can see he has "got it" -there is als a confidence in his game that just screams he could be a #1 goalie solution down the road for some NHL team that drafts him . To me, he jumps to #1 NA goalie --I like him a lot better than Fucale... I like Desrosiers too from what i saw ...OF course cOMRIE was not in the game,and he is supposed to be the #2 rated NA goalie-I have seen him play and I think I would prefer JARRY and DESROSIERS over him too.
HOWEVER--while my gut instinct says JARRY has "IT" already -- I would like to get other looks at DESROSIERS just to be sure--agfter all he did play with a superior D-group last night (Jones,Zadorov,Bowey,Bigras made Team Orr superior as they STYMIED the hyped forwards of Team Cherry (MacKinnon,Drouin,Mantha etc..)
Still i saw something in Desrosiers and i might put him art #2NA goalie now ahead of Comrie..I do not think i can even put Fucale 4th NA goalie-I just do not think he stops pucks well enough..
So if there was one BIG revelation to me from the TOP PROSPECTS GAMe -it was the showcase of TRISTAN JARRY -he now ought to be a RISER on the RADAR of any NHL team looking to draft a top goalie prospect with their first rounder ..

What about SPENCER MARTIN who stopped all 16 shots he faced in starting the game for Team Orr? Well I saw him early this year when he got off to a spectacular start for Mississauga --BUT I also saw him flub horribly later during a slump that saw his save% plummet -exposing flws in his technique ...Even last night while he did not let any pucks past him there were some juicy rebounds team Cherry just did not get to and so I still am concerened about his technique and focus isues..In any case I do not see the "IT" factor as my gut instinct saw in the super confident JARRY..
I cannot explain the instinct-it just is..I think JArry has that "special" quality like Brodeur had for so many years.. He also plays a hybrid style-not the usual butterfly drop only technique.. Some save he made standing straight up --some were athletic robbery saves,some were position square to shooter saves--some were slide saves with the pads ..and some were quick reflex glove saves any case the radar should be on him now --if only EDM would give him more playing chances ..but we shall see which NHL team grabs him and when-a ver interesting goalie prospect --IMO..

NOW--as to the forwards:

MacKinnon,Drouin -they were STYMIED by the team Orr d and MacKinnon often had the dogged BO HORVAT shadowing him which also helped in rendering the hyped MacKinnon as unable to be effective ..

For Team Orr--neither SEAN MONAHAN nor MAX DOMI had any kind of shine to their games either..

Thus a lot of the most hyped "star" forwards did NADA to impress anyone in this game..

RATHER we got -a replacement player who CS ranked 41st NA--LAURENT DAUPHIN with 1 gand 1a plus he hit a post --it of course is only one game and nobody expects the "big hyped guns to drop or Dauphin to rise into the first round just because of either stinker or great performances..

We did see the pip-squeak line of Duclair Petan and Bjorkland be the best line in the game ---actually LW Anthony Duclair(quebec,QMJHL) is not that small --5'11 185
but the 2 Portland Winterhawks -- (C) Nicolas Petan 5'9,166 and his RW Oliver
Bjorkstrand 5'11 164 ---are small -in height and/or weight ....DUCLAIR is also the youngest with an August birthdate-- so maybe he spurts bigger yet..
In any case PETAN despite his size showed great skill And WILL --and while I criticized Dub small forwards as maybe never translating their games to pro success in the NHL-you can see that PETAN has that extra "desire" factor-not just satisfied with his own skill marvles -because when he got knocked down -he got right back in to battle and win pucks--great heart and so MAYBE he bucks the odds of liitle skill guys ever making it? DUCLAIR -i just loved his hockey sense and beautiful saucer passes off the rush --I think he will surprise a lot of teams that pass on him in the draft to be a better NHL'er than many hyped forwards taken ahead of him--also as one of the youngest in this draft he still has room to make a big improvenent rise,,
THIs ia ANOTHER hunch pick of mine for greater than expected "value" or return on investment..

So -if I had to sum thiis games up:

1. JONES as advertised.

2. MacKinnon,Drouin,Monahan,Domi--big FLOPS...

3. ZADOROV makes CSS look like huge FOOLS..

4. NURSE,BOWEY,BIGRAS all solid bets -theiur draft teams will not be disappointed..

5. JARRY --the best NA goalie and has "IT"...DESROSIERS merits closer RADAR look -could be 2nd best NA goalie of the crop?

6. BO HORVAT --need a 2-way centre who can shutdown top stars of other lines,play Pk,win faceoffs, and will get scoring chances and some games will csh those in--SOLID sure-fure bet for NHL 2C or #3C role---very vALUEABLE COMMODITY..

7. DUCLAIR -surprise--keep your eye on him..

8. PETAN --maybe a little guy who CAN?

I think I summed it up pretty well,n'est-ce-pas?

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