Well, it's that time again. Some leagues are already underway, some are in training camp, the Ivan Hlinka Memorial is over and the CCM/USA All-American Prospects Game is just over three weeks away.
Going to be another good draft with Reinhart, Nylander and Ekblad leading the way. I know many people out there are already out in full force watching/ranking these players with yours truly included.
The Bruins of course will be picking late again this year (hopefully 30th) and there will be some talent to be found. Interesting to see what the Bruins do with the changing of the guard and Chiarelli wanting to expand beyond the OHL more - considering it's looking like an OHL heavy draft (No bias here).
Anyway, just did my preseason rankings of OHL'ers. Looking at about 80 games live plus playoffs this year with many more on video and a northern trip of 3 games in 3 days at least once (6 hour drive to the Soo )
Will just add: CHL has banned drafting goalies in the import draft to help develop Canadian goalies completely beginning next year. Odd, considering it's an American goalie that leads the way once again.
Last edited by Mr. Make-Believe: 09-03-2013 at 08:51 PM.
Indeed, in TSN's annual pre-season survey of 10 NHL scouts, no less than four players received at least one vote as the No. 1 ranked prospect. While two players – Kootenay Ice offensive centre Sam Reinhart and big Barrie Colts defenceman Aaron Ekblad – somewhat distanced themselves from the rest of the pack, everything about this draft is as far from clear cut as you can get. Reinhart and Ekblad were the only two prospects to show up on every one of the 10 scouts' Top 10 ballots.
His superb rookie season earned him a spot on Team USA at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament where he led the Americans to a silver medal. He finished the tournament with a 2.99 goals against average and .897 save percentage.
Nedeljkovic will also take part in the All-American Prospects game on September 26 in Pittsburgh PA. The second annual game will have 40 of the top American players eligible for the 2014 NHL Draft and is similar to the CHL – Home Hardware Top Prospects Game.
Comparing players in this group to NHL players is something I personally try and avoid, but I did pose the question to the coach who replied “Alex's game is very simple with not a lot of excess movement so with that being said, I would compare him with the likes of a Cam Ward/ Ryan Miller.”
He’s described by many as a franchise player at the junior level – a player you build your team around. It should be a great battle between McKeown and Aaron Ekblad as the number 1 defenseman to be drafted at the NHL Draft.
We had the opportunity to speak with Frontenac’s head scout Jeff McKercher:
ITO: There is no question Roland is an excellent skater who possesses extraordinary offensive abilities. How has his defensive game developed?
McKercher: Roland's really improved his defensive game as you can see by his +9 rating right now but I think the biggest thing for him is he got a lot stronger over the summer and this has really helped him out. Let’s face it, it’s tough for any 16yr old to come into our league and then we ask him to play 20 plus minutes a night against quite often the other team's top lines like he did last year. You won't find many 16yr olds that can do what he did. He's really taken his defensive game to another level and it’s been good to see.
** Edit: with a plus 4 last night he's at plus-13 in just his sixth game - plus-5 better than his closest competitor
25 Schmaltz, Nick RW Green Bay USHL
26 Ho-Sang, Joshua RW Windsor OHL
27 Goldobin, Nikolai RW Sarnia OHL
28 Deangelo, Anthony RD Sarnia OHL
29 Larkin, Dylan LW USA Under-18 NTDP
30 Poganski, Austin RW Tri-City USHL
25. Kasperi Kapanen LW Kalpa Dad is Sami Kapanen
26.Matt Mistele LW Plymouth
27. Tyson Baillie C Kelowna
28. Spencer Watson RW Kingston
29. Alex Nedelijkovic G Plymouth
30. Jared McCann C Sault Ste. Marie
As always, Red Line is a must have if you're into this stuff, full page spread on local boy (Newburyport Ma) Shane Eiserman
There’s no questioning the talent DeAngelo possesses. The question right up to the draft will be his 5’11 167 pound frame and how that will translate to the National Hockey League. That aside, he is a very good skater with excellent vision. Team those qualities up with excellent hockey sense and you have a recipe for success.
Like any young player, getting the most out of those assets is the key. That doesn’t necessarily mean that DeAngelo is a “me first” type of player or that he isn’t a team player. Simply, if he can utilize those assets to the fullest, there’s no telling where his ceiling may be. He’s learned to be more responsible in picking his spots to pinch and is learning how to use his teammates more instead of trying to beat 5 defenders on his own all the time, but it is still a work in progress, and something his coaches have been working on with him.
During a recent road game in Peterborough, Petes’ head coach Jody Hull had this to say about 67’s players to watch: “On defense, Jacob Middleton leads the way as he is a very steady, reliable player who plays in all situations." And it’s a sentiment heard around the league when opposing coaches talk about the 67’s.
We spoke with Ottawa 67’s associate coach Misha Donskov about Middleton and his progression. “When we acquired Middleton, he was playing about 5 minutes a night with Owen Sound but we believed he was the type of player that we could build our young team around. He suffered a concussion late in the season and worked hard back in Stratford to get ready for this season” replied Donskov when asked what intrigued them most about Middleton.
Donskov went on to say “Middleton has good size and plays a very good two way game. He plays a very good defensive game, blocks shots, will take the body, and is very good at jumping into the play from the neutral zone in.” Donskov added “we have the youngest defense in the OHL and Jacob plays in all situations for us.”
Read with great interest Dom's story about Ottawa Jrs defenseman Jacob Middleton. He seems like a real prospect and it was a very good article. Usually you just hear about how good and talented the players are, but, this put in a more serious perspective. While often, (myself included) expect too much to soon from the junior players.
I really like watching junior hockey, reading about prospects and there's alot too. But, not all is good. We're probably spoiled here having guys like Dominic and Kirk among others to give us good info about the prospects.
Among guys I've seen play or heard of, Jacob Middleton, will be one I'll be rooting for this draft. It seems to be one the very best for OHL draft eligble players if you look at the draft list coming out. Both fowards and defensemen dominate from OHL.
Does anyone know much on this Julius Honka kid? Leading the whl in defenseman scoring, draft eligible, not on any list I've seen though as far as a first round player. I bet the bs take him, this kid is finnish and the bruins this past draft went heavy European. Plus although he's undersized at 5-11, 175 the success and pending free agency of torey krug might merit another flyer on a skilled player for the backend