Capitals 2009-10 NCAA prospects update

By Dan Watkins

The Washington Capitals have six prospects playing in the NCAA, including four forwards, one defenseman, and one goalie.

Phil DeSimone, C — University of New Hampshire
6’1, 195 lbs
Acquired: 3rd round, 84th overall, 2007

One of the nice surprises this season in the Capitals prospect pool, DeSimone is putting together a solid junior year at the University of New Hampshire. Playing on a top 20 program, the former USHL MVP has finally started to put up some solid offensive numbers while playing in all situations. In 24 games, he has six goals and 15 assists. Among his six goals is one shorthanded and one on the power play. DeSimone has also been clutch, netting two game-winning goals, which is second on the team.

When the New York native was drafted in 2007, he was seen as a project. Now, the 22-year-old is finally starting to turn the corner. He will most likely play all four years at college.

Nick Larson, C — University of Minnesota
6’1, 186lbs
Acquired: 7th round, 185th overall, 2007

In his sophomore season, Larson has been able to get into 21 games thus far, netting two goals and two assists. His production is small, but Larson is not getting a ton of playing time. Normally a mainstay on the bottom two lines, the Minnesota native does not get much power-play time either. At least he is getting into more games this season than last, which only saw him in 14.

With a solid skill set, which includes a smooth wrist shot and offensive instincts around the net, Larson simply needs to improve his overall game and mainly his skating. With certain improvements, he could gain more playing time in his last two seasons at school to hope to return to relevancy in the Capitals prospect pool.

Greg Burke, LW — University of New Hampshire
6’3, 205lbs
Acquired: 6th round, 174th overall, 2008

After losing most of last season in the USHL to injury, Burke has rebounded to register one goal and six assists despite limited playing time in 20 games. Now a freshman at UNH, he will have plenty of opportunities to see his playing time increase over the years. Once again, Washington drafted a project when they took a flyer on Burke, but he does have a high upside. Already putting on weight to his lanky frame, the 19-year-old has above average offensive skills, including a skating stride that is very well put together for someone so tall. This is a player who will be interesting to watch mature in the NCAA.

Andrew Glass, LW — Boston University
5’11, 180lbs
Acquired: 7th round, 199th overall, 2007

Playing on a struggling Terriers team has not helped Glass this season. In 15 games, the Massachusetts native has only notched one assist. In limited playing time, Glass has simply not stood out, though he appears to have offensive potential. Having incredible agility and puck-control skills has not translated into results, however. He still has two more years of eligibility to turn it around, but if he doesn’t start improving soon, he won’t be receiving a contract.

Patrick Wey, D — Boston College
6’2, 200lbs
Acquired: 4th round, 115th overall, 2009

Wey has had a promising start to his collegiate career despite injury setbacks. He appeared in the Eagles first 17 games before breaking his wrist, registering three assists in the process. While currently still out of the lineup, Wey has displayed a steady overall game at Boston College. He does not look out of place, even for a freshman. The Pittsburgh-born prospect has an above average slap shot from the point and makes an accurate and quick first pass out of the zone. On the defensive side, Wey is able to be physical without getting too much out of position and plays a smart game. Look for him to develop into one of the Eagles most dependable players throughout the next few seasons.

Dan Dunn, G — St. Cloud State
6’5, 200lbs
Acquired: 6th round, 154th overall, 2007

The tall and athletically gifted Dunn has appeared to finally be settling in during his junior year at St. Cloud State. With freshman and Coyotes prospect Mike Lee away at the World Juniors, Dunn took the reins and now has a record of 10-2 with a 2.33 GAA and .920 save percentage. Look for both of them to split time down the stretch as they have both proven to be capable goalies at the NCAA level.

While most tall goaltenders are butterfliers, Dunn relies on his reflexes more than anything. With a quick glove and lateral movement, Dunn can seem to really take up a lot of space in the net. As with most goalies, consistency in the past has been an issue, although he seems to be rectifying that during his junior campaign. Dunn could possibly add more goaltending depth once he graduates to the pros in an organization that is already incredibly deep in net.