Angus here again - covering the week for Dobber.

 

The final OHL ramblings of the year - a great read to get a good idea of what is going on with several top prospects in Ontario's best junior league.

 

Prospect Report – about two weeks away. Putting the final touches on hundreds of player profiles – goalies, defensemen, forwards, sleepers, and more. The fantasy guide helps you win each year, but this guide helps you win each year over the long run.

 

Tyler Seguin had two beautiful goals and two assists last night – he’s stepping up with Bergeron out. Seguin’s speed and shot make him an electrifying offensive player – similar to #91 on the team he is facing.

 

Dennis Seidenberg played over 30 minutes last game – a full five minutes more than Chara.

 

Vinny Lecavalier’s return to stardom continues – a goal and three helpers for the Lightning last night.

 

Manny Malhotra skated in full gear yesterday. He’s working his way back in to game shape. Look for him to return either late in this series, or early in the next (if the Canucks advance).

 

Malhotra’s vision is improving each day. Still far from perfect, but he was taking part in line rushes and looking pretty good doing it.

 

I feel like the Sharks are wasting Joe Pavelski on the third line. They can't bump Couture down, but perhaps they slide Pavelski up to line two with Clowe and Couture?

 

Mem Cup – Saint John’s (QMJHL), Mississauga (host), Owen Sound (OHL), and Kootenay (WHL). Kootenay has a ton of depth, but the Saint John’s Sea Dogs are stacked.

 

The Sea Dogs are led by 2011 top prospect Jonathan Huberdeau, who has 16 goals and 30 points in 19 playoff games.

 

Kirill Kabanov had a solid postseason for Lewiston, scoring eight goals and 20 points in 15 games. I’d only consider owning him in a deep keeper league with a deep farm roster. Huge risk, and not really sure his upside outweighs it.

 

Joey Hishon is the offensive catalyst for the Owen Sound team – 19 assists in 22 games. He’s had a huge postseason and his development has gone very well since the Avs surprised most of the hockey world by reaching to take him in the first round.

 

Mississauga has a deep offensive attack, led by Justin Shugg (going for his third straight Memorial Cup), Casey Cizakas, and Devante Smith-Pelly.

 

Undrafted (and unsigned) forward Bobby Mignardi has 15 goals for Owen Sound in the playoffs. He has two consecutive 30-goal regular seasons.

 

Ryan Johansen (who is out of the playoffs as his Portland team lost in the final) led the WHL in playoff scoring. I’d place his odds at making the Jackets at 90% this training camp.

 

Among Kootenay players, I’d say Cody Eakin has the most NHL upside. He’s a third round pick of the Caps – quick, feisty, and skilled offensively. Could develop into a solid 20-25 goal secondary scorer.

 

Eakin was dealt from Swift Current for a whopping eight players. The Broncos GM said that Eakin was the best player who has suited up for the team since Joe Sakic. Solid company, no?

 

Surprised more isn’t being made of Brayden McNabb’s season. Originally drafted as a defensive/two-way guy, he had 22 goals and 72 points in the regular season, and he added 27 points in 19 playoff games.

 

McNabb is a Buffalo draft pick – he’s got great size and is a solid skater. Will be interesting to see if he can continue his positive development.

 

Radulov stuff – if he does return, Nashville still holds his rights. How would his return impact what is looking to be a very interesting offseason for the Preds? Does it change Shea Weber’s mindset regarding a long term contract (for better or worse)?

 

Nashville is probably a gamebreaking forward away from making the next step… I’d say Radulov has that upside.

 

The more I see Logan Couture play, the more he reminds me of Jonathan Toews. Skilled, big, strong, and does all of the little things well every single shift.

 

Far and away the best read in hockey – Elliotte Friedman’s 30 thoughts. The latest one is right here.

 

I could post my thoughts on all 30 of his, but I’ll stick to one. Brendan Smith is NHL ready. His upside is huge – 12-15 goals, 50-60 points, 100+ PIM. Minute eating defenseman who plays with a nasty edge and loves to create offensively. He’ll be a fan favourite after a shift or two.

 

Seguin looking an awful lot like Stamkos with this beauty of a goal:

 


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Nick Porter said:

Southpaw20
SeaDogs Haha you are right Big EV! Jk. Got to see a bit of the Sea Dogs this season...looking good for sure. Huberdeau is unreal. Another guy to watch (who has not received a lot of attention) is Zack Phillips. Great setup guy who could surprise
May 18, 2011
Votes: +0

Big Ev said:

Big Ev
Mem Cup Poll Question It's Saint John, not Saint John's.

Saint John = New Brunswick.

St. John's = Newfoundland.

Just letting you know because some New Brunswick folk will be pissed.
May 18, 2011
Votes: +2

Curtis Curve said:

tcescon
Radulov/Chara Radulov-does it really matter w/him if he has a signed KHL contract? Any contract is a mere formality w/this guy and not binding in any way. Take your chances if you want to keep him, Oilers rock 99.

Chara-don't forget he lost some serious weight due to illness in just a day or two earlier in the playoffs as well as whatever is ailing him now.
May 18, 2011
Votes: +0

Chadosaur said:

Chadosaur
Re: Radulov @ Oilers rock 99 - check out Dmitry Chesnokov's article on Puck Daddy from a few days back...gives some insight into the nature of KHL contracts, finances, etc.
May 18, 2011
Votes: +0

Repent Tokyo said:

repenttokyo
chara is also off the first power play unit the injury must be getting worse.
May 18, 2011
Votes: +0

bball said:

bballplyr321
Pavs Pavelski on the third line is ANYTHING but a waste. That third line has been the difference maker throughout the last month of the season and into the first two rounds. When TM needs energy or he needs to send someone out there to get control of the game, that line of Pavelski, Mitchell and Wellwood is ALWAYS trotted out. Pavelski has MADE that line tick and in looking at how they are used, TM has a TON of confidence in that line.

IF you were to move Pavelski up to the second line, you would have to move Heatley down to the third line or up to the top line. So now you have either Heatley, Mitchell and Wellwood or Seto, Mitchell and Wellwood. Neither of those lines is good enough to really be out there and be a legitimate threat. As you said, you could drop Couture but he has been playing so well and developed some awesome chemistry with Clowe. You could move Clowe down but then who is going to be the legitimate center on that team who is going to drop down and play responsible defense. Having three very good centers on the Sharks is the reason that they are able to push so hard. Each of their centers are able to get back and play defensively responsible hockey.

I agree that Pavelski is capable of being more then the capacity that he is being used in. Pavs WILL be the captain of the Sharks within the next 3 years but by using him in the role that he currently plays in, TM has so much more flexibility. Pavs plays the point on the top PP unit and occasionally slides down to play canter on the second unit. He provides so much leadership on that third line and he has forced the games of Mitchell and Wellwood to step up and really become factors on this team. Need a key face off won? You can trot Pavs out there because he is not logging huge minutes on those top two lines. And he is by far the best PK player on that team. He has become a jack of all trades. Now if he could just develop a slapshot from the point for the PP................

But a waste? No way. An ingenious use of a very good player to maximize his impact on any given night. Yes sir.
May 18, 2011
Votes: +0

back check said:

back check
the next rokie breakout? Seguin looked great tonight, not just in goals and assists, but little things in the offensive zone and puck pursuit. On one play he took 3 TB players with him to the net, leaving a ton of ice for his team mates. This begs the question is he likeley to have a break out next year. Many players perform big in the playoffs, but do not have the skills, drive, consistency, opportunity to carry it into the next regular season (see: Leino, Ville). I don't see that with Seguin, as he clearly has the talent. I guess that leaves drive, consistency and opportunity to consider for next year.

All this got me thinking, who is next year's rookie break out? I took a flyer on Skinner this past year (I took him with the last pick in our draft - its a keeper league, but we can only keep 18 guys and must fill a 23 man roster). I took Skinner because I read he had trained in the off season with Gary Roberts. Doing that seemed to help Stammer, so.... Angus (and others), my long winded question is this. Now that Roberts has agreed to work exclusively with Dallas, is there another fitness guru we should be aware of who might help rookies make the jump to the NHL? Did Roberts have a (lower profile) partner who helped develop the fitness regime that seemed to help Skinner and Stamkos so much? It seems that a guy like Seguin might really benefit from that kind of training. Its not a guarantee for success (see: Hodgson, Cody), but it might help. If you or anyone can dig up the answer to my question, it might make for an interesting summer article when news gets slow. Think something like "Who is the next Gary Roberts and can he help your rookie succeed?"

Just an idea... thanks - Back Check
May 18, 2011
Votes: +0

Mr Sausage said:

Mr_Sausage
Chara I have watched every Boston game this post season(except for tonight unfortunately) and he has not been good at all. And I'm not basing this on just strictly his point total. He looks unsure what to do in his own zone. I've see him do a few bad giveaways and his hitting has vanished this postseason. He loos really uncomfortable on the ice out there. I've even seen a few players just deke him out of his shoes as well.

There is a reason Siedenberg played more than Chara tonight. He's played better during these playoffs overall. I'm curious to what Boston fans think.
May 18, 2011
Votes: +0

Oilers rock 99 said:

Oilers rock 99
Radulov....? can someone Pleeeease explain the Radulov thing did he not just sign a new contract with the KHL and is he able to exit that contract for the NHL when he wants?? Please if you know respond as I have held him and was going to drop him this year maybe...
May 17, 2011
Votes: +0
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