Capitals Prospect Camp: Day 6 (First Day On-Ice)
By: Seth Keggins & Josh Land.
Today marked the beginning of the on-ice training for the Washington Capitals Prospects. Brian Sutherby and Maxime Ouellet headlined the many prospects in attendance this afternoon at Piney Orchard. G.M. George McPhee, new coach Bruce Cassidy as well as TV announcers Joe Beninati and Craig Laughlin were all in attendance.
Drills included 2-1, and 3-2 offensive drills. Then Caps scouts began 3-3 scrimmages, before ending in exciting 1-1 drills.
Goaltenders Maxime Ouellet, Maxime Daigneault, and Rob Gherson all got plenty of net time for these drills.
M. Ouellet G 6-0 175.6 06-17-1981
Maxime looked lost a little rusty on the first day. Granted he was mainly up against the higher tier fowards during “most” of the drills, but especially on the 3-3 and 1-1 drills. His reluctancy to consistently use the butterfly, helped open up a few holes (especially low on the stick side). He caught on late in the drills by compensating his positioning toward right side slightly, but still did not solve his problems beween the pipes. Otherwise, he blocked alot of the net when he did go down correctly and was pretty efficent. Rust? It was only the first day.
M. Daigneault G 6-2 187.1 01-23-1984
Maxime II looked very solid on his first day. Also using the butterfly technique, he came out blocking shots more consistently and more efficiently than Ouellet. Had a tendency from time to time, of letting a blocked shot trickle behind him. But, would recover in time to make the cover-up. Glove reflexes were very impressive, as both Maxime II and Gherson put on a glove save presentation, with cheers and many oohs and aahs from the spectators.
Whispers from the left said that this guy was a steal, and the management was very happy to snatch him up so late in the draft.
R. Gherson G 6-1 155.1 10-08-1983
Gherson was also quick to the glove, also plays a butterfly style but with his shoulder/body level lower to the ice. His play style was very similar to Sebastien Charpentier. Robert spent most of his time, splitting the net time with Maxime II. His reaction with his glove hand was also amazingly quick. However, his size and style allowed players to put the puck into the top shelf on occasion. Though he is taller than Ouellet, he does not utilize the butterfly style as both Maxime’s do and therefore he was more apt to let in a few top shelf goals.
On the first day of on-ice workouts at the Washington Capitals’ rookie camp, the forwards really showed their speed and used their size and strength very well, but nobody truly stood out from the lot better than the Caps’ top prospect, Brian Sutherby. Most everyone skated well, but Sutherby looked more like a seasoned NHL veteran than any other skater. He mishandled the puck three or four times and made a few errant passes, but on every graceful stride, he fearlessly and powerfully maneuvered himself towards the net. He displayed some impressive quickness and balance today as well as taking a few tremendous shots. He also connected on a few well-timed pinpoint passes to his teammates. Other notable forwards who performed well on the first day of the mini-camp were Graham Mink, Marian Havel, Owen Fussey, and Chris Corrinet.
All four defensemen at the mini-camp played an exceptional, physical brand of defense today. Management got their first look at 2002 first round pick Steve Eminger in a Capitals uniform and he looked very good. Eminger stuck with every skater from end to end and in the scrimmage, he made a few terrific passes to spring breakaways. Jakub Cutta may have been the most brutal of the defensemen today as he frequently banged the opposing forwards around, consistently keeping the puck on the outside perimeter of the defensive zone. Nathan Paetsch was undone a few times by the Caps’ young forwards, but he held his ground for the majority of day one. Patrick Wellar also played very well, using his massive frame to intimidate and effectively move the opposition where he wanted them. If the Capitals’ future defenders continue to perform as they did on the first day of the mini-camp, all four may earn training camp invitations and an opportunity to skate with the top players of the Washington Capitals’ organization.