The big bodies and heavy hitting in the NCAA didn't stop Rocco, but I do agree that he needs to get even faster and quicker if he wants to make it in the NHL. He needs a mentor like Kane had with Pat Verbeek. That would make a huge difference in terms of learning the tricks for little guys in the NHL.
Finally finished with my appointments, I have some line combos, my analysis and then videos later on.
I agree with much of what Luby had to say about our prospects.
I was noticing Juho with Trocheck plenty, Ekblad and McCoshen were again a constant, Rocco was with Shaw, Rau was with Payne and Wegwerth, Hyman and Fidler were together, Brickley and Kosov, Weegar and Matheson, Matheson was also with Racine early on.
As I said in my previous post, there was a lot of physicality. It seemed that almost everyone, even most of the smaller guys (Tro, Rocco, Kyle...) were in on it. As has been mentioned, Ekblad started really slowly, but once he got his bearing under him, he looked really comfortable. I liked Cody Payne, I really hope he gets a contract, he really used his size very well to go with his hands and finishing ability. Logan Shaw, IMO has been good all week, and showed it again today. Jonathan Racine was the best defensman at camp this week AINEC. He is completely improved, hands, skating, defensive positioning, everything. If he gets any form of offensive game, he will be a top-4 NHL d-man. Juho was using his legs very well today, I like him more every time I watch him, I'd love him to come to come to NA, he didn't look out of place on the smaller ice surface at all.
Cowley really did disappoint today, along with Hugo. Stevens played well and Brittain was good until the end.
Honestly, the biggest surprises for me this week were Tony Turgeon, Mike Vecchione, and Miguel Fidler. Those three were all great, but overshadowed. With proper development those guys could be players down the line. I liked Rau, Rocco, Trocheck, Yaro and Basaraba today in terms of the other forwards. Trocheck has done some fanning on pucks all week, including a phenomenal chance today that was a sure goal, but as mentioned, his defense was exceptional. Kosov was great, he really knows how to protect the biscuit and get the puck on net with a guy all over him. With his size, hands, and (I hadn't seen it until today) speed, he could become a very good player. We have so many guys in the pipelines it's ridiculous. Even Connor Brickley played great today, using his physicality and tying the game with 19 seconds left (It was Connor, not Rocco). For D, Taker was noticeable out there, Matheson and McCoshen played very well too.
For those worried about Ekblad's skating, it's not his speed, he has wheels, he just looks very awkward, kind of like Gudbranson but faster. He is going to Coach Vincent's skating school, so he could very well improve. I like Grimaldi, but he 100% needs to start in the A.
The OT was great, 3 on 3 is so much fun to watch, honestly, that's another reason Rocco should be in the A. He'll win every game that goes past OT
The shootout was good, I have videos coming up, if you have anything else you want to hear about, because I know I probably missed stuff, feel more than free to ask.
I have met Marty St. Louis on numerous occasions. The guys is barely 5'5. I know this because I tower in at 5'6 and I'm noticeably taller than he is.
He walked underneath my chin after his Stanley Cup Final Game 6 OT goal in presser area at Saddledome. I was in my lugz Security boots, and he was in his flip flops out of shower/post exercise workout. Still, smallllllll dude I knew he was small but not that small. I'm 6"1 dude , far from some of the beasts he has to go up against every night. Mad props to him and his tree trunk legs.
Did the camera guy fall asleep before the Ekblad goal? lol
Frank Forte said via Twitter, check out the highlights professionally shot and not from a camera phone on the foxsportsflorida.com. Funny how the amatuer phone shot caught the Ekblad goal and the professional shot totally missed it.
Thank goodness for our fans. They're on the ball more than the professionals as usual. Maybe we can teach them how to have extra unwrapped panels in stock in case of a break. Only happens to us.