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2007 Development Camp

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Old
07-24-2007, 12:00 AM
  #51
Dr GLU
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I wouldn't read a lot into the number thing. Crombeen's wearing 17, and he's not coming anywhere close to the NHL. The Stars have pretty definite plans for Niskanen at the moment. Only training camp will change that, not anything done this summer.

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07-24-2007, 12:22 AM
  #52
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It's hard to get a gauge on where guys stand in prospect camps since participants are not of NHL quality, or at least most as of yet, however I'll say this. Niskanen has improved areas of his skills game immensely from last year. In my view he was the top player on the ice Monday and if he will not be overwhelmed by better competition in training camp, he's going to push hard for a roster spot this season, which would include a spot on the Stars PP that still does need a second pairing assuming Tippett reverts back to the regular season Zubov-Boucher pairing that he yanked in the playoffs for reasons nobody but he knows.*

*Mandatory rip on Tippett

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07-24-2007, 12:36 AM
  #53
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Day 1 Prospect camp

Tom Wandell-Smooth skater, likes to dangle, sometimes he dangled to much. Showed improvement from last year though.

John Lammers-was much improved from the last time I saw him, his shot seemed more accurate and he worked well in tight. Later I noticed his skating.

Keven Dupont-I kept writing this kids name down. He stood out on both ends of his game. Nice shot with a lot of power in it, effective skater and on the few defensive drills they had he was effective.

Richard Bachman-He had several good glove hand saves in a row. He did well in the 2 on 0ís, had good positioning. In tight I did feel like he gave up on the puck, if the skater was patient that could get past him.

Nico Sacchetti-I didnít notice him for a long time, in fact I didnít think he was out on the ice, but then without about 30 minutes to go he started to stand out. Made a nice goal during this one drill where they had 4 nets around center ice. Later I noticed him in the same drill where they had one guy who was supposed to come in and block the skater charging the net. Later in the cross crease passing drills he also got in more than a few pretty shots.

Aaron Gagnon-Didnít notice him much at either, but he did stand out in the same drill where I noticed Sacchetti.

JC Blanchard-I liked this goalie. He made the some great saves, and his short game was particularly good. He is an athletic goalie and never gave up on the puck. During the 2-0ís at the end of the practice he was stoning guys left and right and often leading them to verbally scream out. He was beat blocker side high more than a few times.

Luke Gazdic-I wasnít expecting much from this kid who is supposed to be an enforcer, but he skated decent for a big guy and was able to handle the puck. I think I noticed him more for his size though. He rarely stood out to me though.

Ben Van Lare-This kid is local and good. I noticed him a lot today. He has really sweet hands, a decent shot and skated well, he also quite noticeable on the forecheck drill. He seemed to work better in the partner drills.

Nealís- I liked what I saw from both, they are workers. They just seemed comfortable out there. James is obviously more of the stand out right now, he just is so creative on the ice. Nice moves, great skater, hit the back of the net, a lot. He was just a confident fun skater to watch and probably the best one in the afternoon session.

Colton Sceviour-I noticed him several times, good hard shot that eluded the goalies.

David McIntyre-He seemed improved from last year, but I didnít pay much attention to him today.

Mark Fistric-Also much improved and was very impressive on the ice. He used his size well, much like I saw from him in the playoffs last year, he is just a force out there. Even though today was about offense he stood out.

Ivan Vishnevskiy-I like this kid, he is crafty, skates well and has a great shot. He was getting shots past Bachmanís glove hand when others were not. He and Niskanen were paired together on the 2-0ís and were a blast to watch. They are both fluid skaters, fast, great passers, accurate shots and smart. They had Bachman and Kraus in knots. He reminded me of Zubie on a drill where they had to defend against a skater coming in. They couldnít shake him.

Matt Niskanen-Like I said under Vishnevskiy, this kid is good. Has a hard shot, skates well and sees the ice well. He also did well on defensive end of his game, stayed with the skater and was able to shake them off their game. He was definitely one of the standouts from today.

Ondrej Roman-nice skater, I didnít pay much attention to him today, but towards the end I did and it was a treat. He had several nice wristers find their way into the back on the net.

Matt Nickerson-The guy is huge, not the best skater but he did stand out on the defensive drills in front of the net. Skaters just couldnít get around him.

Jamie Benn- has a great shot, I need to watch him more tomorrow.

At the end of the workouts they have these 2 on 0ís which are a lot of fun, here are a few standouts for me. (They were divided in Black and white practice jersey's and the were divided in half, I don't know if the pairings were picked at random or if they were planned.)

Niskanen and Vishnevskiy were by far the best duo, but I already stated that.

BJ Crombeen really stood out, was a lot of fun to watch and he and James Neal, who also stood out, connected for a few sweet goals.

Van Lare had this one pretty goal right under the crossbar. He was really fast and his back check was impressive.

Bachman made a nice stop on Hull

Clune and Szczechura teamed up for a nice goal, lots of hustle.

Benn had a nice goal.

Sertich and Nickerson teamed up well. Sertich took a while to get warmed up but during the 2 on 0ís he seemed to come alive.

Gagnon and Lammers worked well together and Lammers put in a sweet goal.

Sceviour also looked good out there, he was more noticeable in this drill than any of the others.

Only time I noticed Snow was when he was playing around waiting for a drill.


Sorry this is all over the place or vague, little sleep will do that to you.

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07-24-2007, 12:58 AM
  #54
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I for one wouldn't mind seeing them both in the lineup, assuming both play well enough in preseason. Find someone to dump Robidas on and roll with Zubov, Boucher, Norstrom, Daley, Grossman, and Niskanen. Sure, you'll get a few more mistakes from Niskanen that you will with Robidas, but you'll also get more offense, which is still what they need. Of course, this is dependant on Niskanen's play in training camp/preseason games.
No, I'd still trade Robidas however, but I'd give Niskanen another half season in Iowa, if he's ready then can call him.
Re-sign Klemm cheap or bring over Vadim, either way it'd be better if Niskanen had at least 30 more games in the AHL.

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07-24-2007, 02:29 AM
  #55
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Im glad to hear Ivan Vishnevskiy is doing well, we love him in Rouyn-Noranda. And what a beautiful skater this guy is!

He obviously need to work on his defensive game but he's improving so fast, when he came here it was like he was a forward playing defense. Now he's okay defensively and still has his superb offensive game.

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07-24-2007, 03:07 AM
  #56
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Here are a few pics I took, I didn't take many during the drills.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/streakg...7600975784524/

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07-24-2007, 06:17 AM
  #57
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Thank you for the review! I KNEW Nisky and Fistric wouldn't let me down! I have to agree with Blankey, though. We only got Nisky here at Iowa towards the end of the season last season. (after his Collegiate season) Though he impressed in that short amount of time, there was also the need for a little seasoning in his game, in my estimation. At least a half season in the AHL and then he will be ready.


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07-24-2007, 12:16 PM
  #58
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Day 2

Benn-Has a real nice set of hands. Picks corners well and can dangle a little.

Crombeen-Invisible today. I hardly noticed him.

Neal- The best forward on the ice, did well in the stickhandling drills and got to throw his body around near the end of the day.

Sachetti- Looked better today, although thats not hard to do when you look as bad as he did yesterday.

Wandell-I love that he's always trying to pick corners with his shots, but he misses the net a ton. More on him at the bottom.

Fistric-Very solid again. Got to play some one on one defense, and no one even came close to getting around him.

Nickerson- Big and lumbering is the best way to describe him.

Niskanen-Best player on the ice again. The puck is like a magnet on his stick. I think he only lost it during the stickhandling maybe once or twice.

Vishnevskiy- Decent, but got beat one on one because he was sort of lunging at the puck with his body.

Bachman- Best goalie again.

Blanchard- Big, big goalie with bright yellow pads. Was decent once again.

Gadzic- SUCKS.

There was one drill that was fairly entertaining. The players would take a pass and skate towards a small triangle of cones. They'd have to like put the puck between their legs and spin backwards, then go through the cones. Wandell was easily the best one at this, as he barely even slowed down. Nickerson was horrible, but then again, if Nickerson is ever doing that in a game, something has gone horribly wrong.

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07-24-2007, 01:25 PM
  #59
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Just wanted to say thanks to all those who are taking the effort to give us reports on the camp. I really appreciate it and am impressed that you can comment on so many players. Thanks again.

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07-24-2007, 02:03 PM
  #60
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Any thoughts on the non-roster guys? Doyle was suppose to be around 2 type talent and with no defensive picks thought he may be worth signing? thanks again all

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07-24-2007, 02:43 PM
  #61
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I'm not going to go through everyone again. I didn't really watch everyone today since it was just the morning session.

I will say that I don't think anyone particularly stood head and shoulders above anyone else today. The ones that are supposed to be better were for the most part, but there wasn't anyone controlling things like there was yesterday, IMO.

Jason, McKnight was out there, but he basically was invisible. He did nothing to stand out. Most of the time I only noticed him when I was looking at his number waiting for a drill.

Lammers and Gagnon looked the most improved from yesterday. Gagnon especially benefited from some of the drills. He found his hands and displayed a great wrist shot. Solid defensive guy too. Lammers was picking corners today with regularity.

Sacchetti also looked more comfortable but got absolutely demolished by Clune in a 1-on-1 drill.

Still really liked what I saw out of Roman and Benn. Both are quality late round picks. Benn should really benefit from the NCAA. It will give him time to round out as a player. You can't teach his instinct for putting the puck in the net. Roman probably just needs more bulk, a touch more edge to his game, and a willingness to shoot. He definitely has the talent.

I'll slightly revise my comments about Smith's skating. It's only his straight-line skating that looks sloppy. His crossovers are fine, and he does have good jump, he just seems to top out rather quickly.

I would really like to see more of Sertich in game situations. He's very good with the puck on his stick, but he's not a finisher. Most of these drills focus on that, so his skills tend to get lost.

Still don't really care for many of the try-outs. Szczechura still didn't really stand out. Soryal has been ok. Doyle's skating is terrible. Dupont has a great shot, but I haven't seen much else. Van Lare's hustle is great and his skill level adequate, but I don't see NHL talent. Blanchard and Kraus don't look ready at this point. I wouldn't sign any of them.

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07-24-2007, 11:48 PM
  #62
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Day 2 Prospect Camp (Sorry soooo long)

Today there were a lot more offense drills, attention to stick handling, foot work so forth. However, they also had a few one on one drills, where one skater would start with a bit of a lead and another skater would have to chase him down and then if able to catch the other player they would try to defend in front of a goalie. They ended practice with a 3 team competitive drill. Three skaters 1 puck, two goalies between the offensive zone boards and a lot of pushing and shoving, but it was a lot of fun to watch and seemed fun for the skaters, however, they teams that would get behind had to do push-ups on ice. During the two competitive drills, I started noticing all of the illegal stuff going on, hooking, crosschecks, holding. There were more than a few wipeouts. During the practices they do two sessions of stretching, the first one was led by Marty Sertich and the second one was led by Matt Niskanen.

When the hour and a half was up most of the players left the ice, but a few stayed on the visitors bench. After the ice was zammed again, it turned out that the players left were all defensmen and one Goalie, Adam Kraus. They did defensive drills for another hour, with the primary focus being passing. First working in pair’s one skater would control the puck while the other would be skating parallel after they switched sides in front of the net, the whistle would blow and the puck carrier would pass cross-ice to his partner. (Most of the skaters had trouble controlling pucks in this drill.) Once they passed another whistle would go and they would have to pass it to the coach who would then pass it back and once more around they would go, with a pass and then they both would drive towards the net, the skater without the puck would pick one up and they would try to score.
The other drills were all individual, they would have to start out in the corners, skate to behind the net, make a sharp turn and then skate back the way they came and up the ice, when the coach at the blue line would blow the whistle and they would have to pass the puck to him and then he would pass it right back. This exchange went back and forth until the Coach sent him on to shoot on the Goalie who was set up at Center Ice.
The next drill they would start in the corner again, go behind the net, do what looked like a half stop/turn and then continue on, around some cones and then towards the Goalie. The last drill they did was receiving passes from the half walls and then taking a slapshot.


Today no one player stood out more than another, but at moments or during certain drills certain players did stand out, and mostly it was the players I mentioned yesterday. Today was also weird because toward the end 1/3 of the guys put on red jerseys with no numbers so it was hard to know who they were unless they got close enough for me to read their number on the back of their helmet.
Anyways here are my way too long notes. Lol



The Goalies:

Richard Bachman-is a butterfly goalie with a good glove hand, and like most butterfly goalies he shuts down the bottom of the net extremely well. However, he had a bad sequence today where everything up high was getting behind him. During the 3 teams drill he was very aggressive with his stick, poke checking and puckhandling with ease. Several times he was able to lift the puck over the 3 skaters heads and send them scrambling back the other way.

JC Blanchard- reminds me of the older style standup goalies, he will drop down and has shown good athleticism but was putting on a kick save demonstration today. He also showed a much better glove hand.

Adam Kraus-was getting eaten up by Matt Niskanen today, I don’t think he stopped one of his shots. He did have a nice save on Crombeen & Neal. At the beginning of practice he got beat by three different guys in a row on the blocker side under his arm. His Glove hand seems to need work but it got stronger the longer he practiced. During the 3 teams drill he had a nice sequence of saves and really seemed to track the puck well, and never gave up, even when he got himself way out of position.

The Skaters:




Austin Smith-today was just a much better day for him, he seemed more relaxed and he did really well in the drills. He seemed to have a great deal of energy and acceleration in his skating. His skating at times seemed all over the place, but it didn’t keep him from getting to his target before the other skater. He reminds me of a Robidas or an Ott, just barrels forward while being able to outmaneuver his guy but a few times he would outmaneuver himself too much and would end up crashing into the goalie. In the worst one he ended up upside down with his skates dangerously near the goalies face and throat. He needs to bulk up, that was obvious today, he didn’t have the strength to match the bigger guys, but he used his creativity to still get the puck to the net.

Ivan Vishnevskiy-this kid is just so impressive, I would almost say he was the best one on the ice today, but since I saw him for an extra hour it just wouldn’t be fair. But he is a gifted skater, not as fluid as Niskanen and not as fast as him either, but close. However, his shot was hard and accurate during the slapshot drill and at the end when he was playing around, he shot a few from the blueline that hit the middle of the net in a hurry. I didn’t really get any notes on him during the competitive drills because he was put in a red jersey. During the D drills, he passed really well, and has a pretty wrister that was eating Kraus up.

Jamie Benn-out of this year’s draft class he has been the best these two days. What I like about this kid, is that with each different Goalie, all of whom have a different style, he would score. He would just seem to see their holes and put the puck in the net. He may end up being one of those late round gems that end up scoring 20 plus goals in the NHL. He is very young, second youngest actually, but he has seemed very comfortable and was impressing us with his goals under the cross bar. Which he did in many different ways, but in tight he is just a beauty to watch. He could definitely work on his skating (though on the 3 teams drill he was weaving in and out and showing a lot of creativity) and work on bulking up, but he has that natural goal scoring touch you can’t teach.

Nico Sacchetti-he had a better day, but still seemed to be dealing with nerves, he wiped-out a few times and during competitive drills he was out muscled by the bigger guys. But like yesterday he got better as the practice went on and had some good moments and put in some pretty goals.

Matt Niskanen- continued to look great. He is just the best skater out there. So smooth going both forward and back, and in the D drills he was faster and stronger than everyone. During the full practice he was impressive with his hard shot, and was getting pucks in the net from every angle and in different spots each time. He was really good at outmaneuvering his man on the one on one drills and in return was good and keeping his guy from the goal. One funny moment today involved Bachman sticking his pad and stick out at the right moment that made Matt wipe out. He was also hit hard at one point during the 3 teams game and seemed really shaken up. During the D drills he passed well, though he like the others did not do well on the first drill. His slap shot was low and hard, but was not as accurate as Ivan and Fistric, his shots kept going wide to the left.

BJ Crombeen-was a lot stronger today. Skating seemed improved and his shot was a lot more creative and accurate. During the competitive drills he was able to get by his man and put in the puck. Though I am not sure how much that had to do with him being good or Doyle being bad. He also stayed on the ice at the end and worked with Lammers tipping pucks.

Richard Clune-is a fun player to watch, he looks like the agitator type. Players had trouble shaking him and he also put a few glove side high goals in the net.

Paul Szczechura-I noticed him more today, he had a couple of nice goals, and did well in the puckhandling drills, but he was invisible in the competitive drills, however, that could be because he was disguised in red.

David McIntyre-I noticed him early when he put in a nice goal, but that was it until the end of practice when he out hustled his partner in the one on one drill and put in a pretty top shelf goal.

Matt Nickerson-today showed his weakness in both puckhandling and skating, and he was not impressive during the D drills either. He just looked slow and his passing was so-so. He seems to have a heavy shot, but it was not very accurate. He hit one of the two kids that were skating at the other end of the ice though, knocked the kids stick right out of his hands.

Tyler Ludwig-last year he looked ok, this year I just think they are being nice to Craig by having him there. He had this one nice dangle that fooled the Goalie, but that was about it. He just wasn’t very fast and during the one on one drills he was out defended on both sides of the drill. During D drills he was paired with Les Jackson’s kid, so it was hard to tell how his passing was, since Jr Jackson struggled in that area. His slapshot was ok, not very hard and he shanked half his shots.

Keven Dupont-continued to do well today, he isn’t the fasted skater nor the smoothest, but was still able to defend well and his shot continued to fool the goalies. During D drills he struggled like the rest in the first passing drill but looked great in the rest. Despite not having as much speed as Ivan and Matt, he had good footwork and control. He had a funny moment during the slapshot drill when he broke his stick and the coach called out, “That was perfect!”

Mark Fistric-I know he is not here to create offense, but today he was impressive and also I think he was quite impressed with himself, or at least that is how I took those lengthy goal celebrations. On the one on one drills he out-hustled Van Lare and gave him no room to shoot. On the other side of that drill he was really good at protecting the puck and managed to score a pretty goal because of it. His passing was good and his slapshot was very accurate; every single one of them went on goal. His shot is not as hard, so that could be part of it.

Aaron Gagnon-had a much better day today, his footwork looked good and he did well in the one on one drills.

Aaron Snow-was also more noticeable today, he skating was not impressive but he had a nice shot, or at least that is what I wrote multiple times.

Marty Sertich-has such nice hands, and really moves the puck well. Which works with his speed, but his lack of finish was a problem.

John Lammers-he has good speed, good puckhandling, and had a few pretty goals today.

James Neal-I didn’t watch him as much today, but during the competitive drills he really stood out. He drives toward the net, while battling two defenders and was tough for the goalie to deal with in tight. His skating in the tighter areas also was impressive.

Tom Wandell-had trouble holding on to the puck again today, but did have a few nice shots.

Matt McKnight-bleeped onto the radar for the first time late in the practice, during the one on one drills where he showed good speed and outmaneuvered his guy to score a pretty goal.

Ben Van Lare-I didn’t watch as much today, but he had some nice goals and was a tough competitor in the 3 teams drill.

Ondrej Roman-again I didn’t notice him much, but that could be because he was one of the ones in red, but early on he had a sweet goal.

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07-24-2007, 11:53 PM
  #63
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Link to today's pictures http://www.flickr.com/photos/streakg...7600989997917/

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07-25-2007, 01:24 AM
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Matt Niskanen- continued to look great. He is just the best skater out there. So smooth going both forward and back, and in the D drills he was faster and stronger than everyone. During the full practice he was impressive with his hard shot, and was getting pucks in the net from every angle and in different spots each time. He was really good at outmaneuvering his man on the one on one drills and in return was good and keeping his guy from the goal. One funny moment today involved Bachman sticking his pad and stick out at the right moment that made Matt wipe out. He was also hit hard at one point during the 3 teams game and seemed really shaken up. During the D drills he passed well, though he like the others did not do well on the first drill. His slap shot was low and hard, but was not as accurate as Ivan and Fistric, his shots kept going wide to the left.
Interesting that's Niskanen was the strongest player out there, I thought that'd be Fistric.

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07-25-2007, 06:38 AM
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They are both excellent players, and both will be playing in the NHL eventually, IMO. I will be very happy to have either one, OR BOTH, back here in Iowa working on their game!

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07-25-2007, 07:05 AM
  #66
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really sad Lindgren can't be there :-/

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07-25-2007, 08:25 AM
  #67
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So why all the hoopla about Sachetti- it seems like we had him higher than most-Did we overrate him because of his connection to Niskanen

Suprised Doyle has not shown more given his draft ranking-goes to show how scouts can be right and ISS wrong I guess

Good news on Benn especially since we passed on Mayorov to get extra picks.

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07-25-2007, 08:29 AM
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Quote:
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So why all the hoopla about Sachetti- it seems like we had him higher than most-Did we overrate him because of his connection to Niskanen
that were his first 2 days......he played high school hockey so far, most of the others are playing at major junior, NCAA or already pro

give him some time

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07-25-2007, 08:37 AM
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that were his first 2 days......he played high school hockey so far, most of the others are playing at major junior, NCAA or already pro

give him some time

I understand Niskanen was pretty much the same story and now looks like he will be a significant player for years although with him everyone knew he was an exceptional athlete and skater. I just wonder what it was that people saw that was so attractive about Sachetti

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07-25-2007, 09:01 AM
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Thanks for the reports from Day 2! I'm not a Stars fan per se (nor do I dislike the team, though), but getting to know a number of their prospects while following them for a year for HF and then still watching the I-Stars has encouraged me to continue follow Dallas' prospects more than I would most teams (although I do like to follow all prospects in general). Even if I move away from the Des Moines area, I'll keep an eye on them and what prospects Dallas drafts and could be sending the I-Stars' way. And I certainly hope that AHL hockey is in Des Moines from here on out. Between the USHL and now the explosion of AHL teams close to Iowa, it's a great time to be here.

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07-25-2007, 12:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Starsdude
I understand Niskanen was pretty much the same story and now looks like he will be a significant player for years although with him everyone knew he was an exceptional athlete and skater. I just wonder what it was that people saw that was so attractive about Sachetti
You realize that Sacchetti's at least four years away from the NHL?
Most likely five years and not to mention he's the youngest player out there no one should expect anything from him.
Only as long as he's improving each time out there that's what matters.

It's equal to saying a franchise goalie prospect allows five goals in his first to NHL starts and he's a bust.

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07-25-2007, 12:49 PM
  #72
Starsdude
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I understand all that about Sacchetti, I am not even really criticizing the pick. I am more curious what we should be excited about / looking for in aguy so far away that would merit a high pick

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07-25-2007, 01:27 PM
  #73
Dr GLU
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Again, I'm not going to comment on everybody, just specific things I noticed.

Sacchetti is looking better every day. He still has down moments (and seems to beat himself up about them), but he's steadily improving and adjusting to the pace of the camp. He's especially starting to show better in competitive drills.

Vishnevskiy, despite being a little undersized, does not shy away from physical play. He actually initiated it against Clune. I really like his skill and the ability to do things at high speed.

Fistric is still doing fantastic. He defended well physically and with positioning and reach. Definitely a different, more confident player from last year.

Neal again stood out amongst the forwards. Aside from Fistric and Nickerson, there's really no one out there that can handle him physically. Great protecting the puck with his body and very good defensively.

Speaking of Nickerson, he's gotten frustrated a few times and just flattened people (not cleanly either) because he can't keep up.

Wandell is still fading in and out. You really notice him at times and at others you forget he's there.

McKnight looked a little better, but mostly in a defensive role. He bottled up almost everyone he faced defensively, even Neal.

McIntyre looks like he's found his legs again and is starting to stand out a little more. He's scored some nice goals and tons of hustle.

A lot of the other guys I didn't have a ton on because they ended up at the other side of the rink more often than not. I didn't pay attention to the goalies at all.

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07-25-2007, 04:45 PM
  #74
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Nickerson is frustrated because he just plain STINKS! When he played in his first game at Iowa last season, I thought it was some kind of joke or something. Little did I realize that the Stars were serious about this guy. He truly isn't even good enough to play in the ECHL. He is not worth the effort OR the money. He isn't even a good fighter! He lost every single fight, with no exceptions. He stunk on defense and he stunk even worse(barely possible) when they tried him at winger. The Stars would be wise to cut their losses with this guy and turn him loose on the burger-flipping circuit.

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Old
07-25-2007, 06:30 PM
  #75
Dr GLU
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He's only got one year left on his deal. Doubt they're interested in retaining him past that, but I could be wrong.

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