The panel picks for the Cup Final are coming tomorrow.

 

Good morning! The Fantasy Prospects Report is released in three days. You know you want it!

 

Oops, I guess rereading it, it kind of does look as though I place some value in the KHL-Huberdeau thing. What I meant to say was rather than 0% chance, perhaps it is actually a 0.001% chance.

 

The KHL draft was held yesterday. They generally draft Russian players, of course, but occasionally they will place dibs on Canadian, American or Swedish players if the team thinks there is an outside shot that they can convince the player to cross the pond. I was very interested to see that one team took Jonathan Huberdeau fifth overall. That is a very high pick to waste on a player who is not coming over… so the team would have to have some reason for the pick.

 

Other drafted players of note: Landeskog, the younger Granlund, Jarnkrok, R. Murphy, Strom, McNeill, Couturie – drafted in that order (but in the later rounds)

 

An older column, but Chesnokov reports that Jagr is only talking to KHL teams, according to Jagr’s agent.

 

The Hurricanes plan to shop for a backup goalie for Cam Ward. Justin Peters will play in the AHL next year and battle Mike Murphy for the starting role.

 

Houston and Binghamton are deadlocked at a game apiece in the AHL Calder Cup Final. The leading scorer of the postseason is Binghamton’s Ryan Potulny, a long-time Dobber favorite who is getting Lonny Bohonos’ed out of the NHL. He’s made the AHL his bitch, and his stint in Edmonton to me was a good one. I also think he was a solid and promising prospect in Philadelphia who was moved because there was no room for him there. One piece of bad luck after another, and were it not for a bounce here or a bounce there, he could be a second-line NHL player today. Now? Journeyman forever.

 

The top scorer for Houston is Patrick O’Sullivan, who is probably following Potulny down the same path. One the biggest and most surprising declines in my fantasy hockey history, ranking right up there with Alexander Daigle, Kevin Stevens and Jonathan Cheechoo.

 

I know that Jacob Markstrom’s debut North American season was unimpressive, but take a look at his monthly stats breakdown, courtesy of Litter Box Cats. I just see that SP improving after a brutal two months:

October 4-5-0, 3.33 GAA, .891 SV%

November 3-5-0, 4.05 GAA, .868 SV%

December 4-4-0, 2.37 GAA, .930 SV%

January 5-5-1, 2.32 GAA, .929 SV%

February 0-1-0, 3.04 GAA, .909 SV%

 

Here are some interesting CHL Award Winners:

Prospect of the year – Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (profiled in the Fantasy Prospects Report and No.1 on Matt Bugg’s Mock Draft)

Top Scorer – Linden Vey, LA Kings prospect, also profiled.

Scholastic Player of the Year – Dougie Hamilton, another 2011 draftee who is fully profiled in the FPR.

Rookie of the Year – Nail Yakupov, a possible first overall pick for 2012.

Goalie of the Year – Darcy Kuemper, Minnesota Wild prospect who is profiled by Justin Goldman in the FPR and he appears on both Justin and my own charts (keeper league goalies to own).

Defenseman of the year – Ryan Ellis, Nashville prospect, also profiled of course.

 

Tonight’s Memorial Cup Final – Saint John (featuring Jonathan Huberdeau) vs. Mississauga (featuring Casey Cizikas and Maxim Kitsyn). I’m most interested in Saint John goaltender Jacob DeSerres. Philadelphia didn’t sign him to a contract last summer and he went back into the draft…where teams ignored him. So what does he do? He joins a top team in Saint John and bangs off a 27-3-0 record with 2.22 GAA and 0.916 SP…and then in the Memorial Cup he goes 2-0-0, 2.18, 0.934. I don’t care how strong the team is in front of a goaltender and I don’t care about “style”. As a fantasy guy, I care about stats – and this guy wins. So despite having no team to speak of right now in the NHL, I have him 25th on my top goaltenders to own who have not played a single NHL game. Goldman is doing a column on him tomorrow based on his performance tonight, to give you his thoughts on the style and skills of DeSerres. But I personally believe he gets signed or drafted by an NHL team this year. He’s a long shot – and a long ways away, of course, but what goalie isn’t?

 

On the Forecheck gives their Report Card on Sergei Kostitsyn, dig up a quote from me from back in September and repost it. I must say, I’m impressed with myself…

 

Ray Shero says that the Penguins will not be re-signing Alex Kovalev or Mike Comrie, and that Comrie “might be leaning toward retirement”. Also, Crosby is back in Pittsburgh and will be re-evaluated by a concussion specialist this week.

 

Torontonians we have narrowed the date of the DobberHockey Event down to two evenings – Thursday June 16 or Friday June 17. Join Justin Goldman, myself and other writers from around DobberHockey and the blogosphere at a pub near Yonge and St. Clair for drinks and hockey talk. Please vote on your preferred night – Thursday, Friday or “either one”.

 

My favorite crazy play-by-play goal-call voice Rick Jeanneret will work on 51-56 games next year as the team fazes him out…or he fazes himself out. Either way - noooooo! Want to know what I mean? Here:

 

 


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Darcy S said:

swamp_mule
Re: Jacob DeSerres I know another goalie who helped carry his team to a Memorial Cup championship: Kelly Guard (Kelowna Rockets, 44-14-4, 1.56, 0.925). Where is he now? Hockeydb's last record was in Italy for 2008-09, but I got wind that he played in China a couple years ago. Hot CHL goalies are a fickle bunch.
May 29, 2011
Votes: +0

Dobber said:

Dobber
... Eric - that is not a known issue. Email me if it persists
May 29, 2011
Votes: +0

fzusher said:

fzusher
Huberdeau to KHL? Dobber, I wouldn't read much into that. The team that drafted him are the Chris Simon - led KHL bad boys Vityaz Chekhov (also featuring Darcy Verot and Josh Gratton), who are on a short leash from the league due to their fighting ways. Seren-Rosso or Chesnokov may know more - I remember they were put 'on notice' during the season after instigating a bench clearing brawl that gave the league bad rap. Can't remember if that was the same game that saw Jagr drop'em with Verot ... anyways, my guess is the team knew it nobody it would pick that high would actually want to play for them; picking Huberdeau is the equivalent of writing in Rick Mercer on a Canadian election ballot ...

A few picks that did catch my eye:

Anders Nilsson 10th to Dynamo Minsk - Nilsson signed with the Isles two days ago, but is facing a deep crease in Bridgport with Poulin likely starting the season there and Koskinen still around. He is contracted in Finland until 13-14, and MInsk have Lars Haugen and Andre Mezin locked up until 12-13, but if he struggles to establish himself in the A over the next two years, this gives him a backup plan.

Joel Armia 14th to Severstal Cherepovets - Poised to slide down the NHL draft, could the disappointment push him to the KHL now? Or would it mean reluctance on the part of his NHL team to give him money and assurances, with the result of him pulling a Harju and going to the KHL for a season? For me it drops his draft stock a bit more.

Teuvu Teravainen 23rd to Lokomotiv Yaroslavl - Who? Never heard of the kid, which is exactly why I got interested. Also, word search on the forums here came up empty, so I got even more interested. Well, 5'10''/146 kid born Sept 11 1994, meaning he'll be among the youngest in the 2012 class. Already this year he got 20 points in 26 games in Finland's u-20 league, adding 5 in 8 in the playoff, playing against kids 3-4 years older. Plus 17 points in 11 games for the Finnish u-17 national squad (though no points in 10 games for the U-18, including 6 in the U-18 WC. That a KHL team used a 1st rounder on him means there's potential there. To me, if he doesn't break out (or physically grow) next year and goes undrafted, he's a good candidate for a low round flyer in one deep keeper where we can take undrafted but draft-eligible kids, as he could be one of those come out of nowheres the year after (unless, of course, Bugg spoils it by profiling him in next year's prospect report LOL). Needs to put on serious muscle, but 5'10'' at under 17 is not bad.

Jerry Kaukinen 22nd to AK Bars Kazan - same logic as above with 2012 eligible goalie. Kazan also drafted highly ranked Fin G Christopher Gibson (Chicoutimi).

Adam Almqvist 33rd to CSKA Moscow and Calle Jarnkrok 43rd to Severstal Cherepovets - I own both players in one league, and am not worried about them not coming over to DET at some point. I take this more as a verification of their potential that these two KHL clubs made sure to secure their rights just in case so early (2nd round).

Alexander Ruuttu 68th to Dynamo Riga - Smallish kid who jumped from 41st to 16th among Euros on CSS. That spike itself puts him on my radar as I really like draft late risers. But he also has bloodlines - his dad Christian played 8.5 years in the NHL with the Sabres and Hawks (and a short stint with the Nucks), and has been the Yotes'head Euro scout since 06.

Jarrod Rabey 121st to Dynamo Riga - another kid I checked simply because I'd never heard of him. Not ranked by CSS either. American D plays in the USHL. What's notable about him is that at under 19 he is already 6'1''/245. His size alone should intrigue some NHL team into spending a low pick on him. If it's a team with a good track record developing Ds (e.g., Buffalo), I am intrigued. Missed 2010 draft eligibility by 3 days, so an older kid too.
May 29, 2011
Votes: +0

Robert Esquire said:

bullwinkle
Rick Jeanneret - One Of A Kind I too was sad to hear that RJ was reducing his game load this coming season. I think the Sabres have the best broadcasting tandem, RJ and Harry Neale. Neale's dry wit compliments RJ's bombastic calls nicely.

RJ wants to hang on until the Sabres win The Cup - which shouldn't be that far away now. I hope he can and I hope when he goes they don't replace him with his son, who now calls for the Portland Pirates. He is awful.
May 29, 2011
Votes: +0

Mr Sausage said:

Mr_Sausage
O'Sullivan I hope he can get it back. His confidence was obliterated and he was a shell of a player in the end. Shying away from hits and becoming a perimeter shooter. He got away from what made him successful in LA.

On a side note, I don't Kevin Stevens shouldn't even be in that same paragraph with Cheechoo, Daigle and O'Sullivan. Stevens had 4 great seasons then was derailed by that terrible facial injury that derailed his career. That factored with no Mario doesn't make his decline that surprising. Stevens career points are about 50 less than the other 3 combined.

Looking forward to that fantasy prospects report!
May 29, 2011
Votes: +0

Eric Daoust said:

ericdaoust
Forum issues I've been having problems all morning with various links in the forum leading to a "Error 404 - not found" page. Basically I can't reply to topics or navigate to certain pages in threads. Is this a known issue related to the cosmetic changes going on right now?
May 29, 2011
Votes: +0
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