Canadiens CHL and NCAA prospects update

By Dan Linn





Below is the look at how the Montreal Canadiens North American junior and<br />NCAA prospects are performing so far in the early part of

Below
is the
look at how the Montreal Canadiens North American junior and
NCAA prospects are performing so far in the early part of the season.  Most Hab fans will be closely watching the progress of Kyle
Chipchura
with interest, as he is the first top pick of the Canadiens to
play in the CHL since Eric Chouinard back in the 1998 draft. 
Playing in Canada, he is much more accessible to fans across the country
compared to the more recent picks that were either from the NCAA or European
leagues, which are not easy to view live. 



WHL

Kyle

Chipchura
,
C
(2004, 18th overall) After a major groin injury
last season affected his play, Kyle Chipchura looks to show why he was rated so
high by the CSB last year, and to help Prince Albert improve from last season. 
So far this season he has not disappointed. He is tied for the team lead
in scoring with 17 points and has been one of the top 20 scorers in the league. 
The offensive production from Chipchura is good news as he is already a
solid all round player, who plays in all situations, which should help him get
ice time at the next level. 



Team

GP

G

A

Pts

PIMs

+/-

Prince
Albert

18

7

10

17

28

0

QMJHL

Maxim
Lapierre
,
C
(2003, 61st overall) Many questions were raised
as to how Lapierre’s offensive game would unfold with the loss of key
offensive players Michael Lambert and Cory Urquhart. 
Lapierre did start off slowly but has picked up his scoring touch as the
season went on, and is currently third on the team in scoring. Perhaps being
named the team’s captain at the start of the season has had an effect on his
early lack of production.  He also
leads the team in penalty minutes with 69, as he continues to bring a physically
intense game, and a key part of the success PEI has found this year.

Team

Games

Goals

Assists

Points

PIMs

+/-

PEI

22

9

10

19

69

+2

Jimmy
Bonneau
, LW (2003,
241st overall) After putting up career numbers for PEI last season,
the highly respected tough guy is learning to help the team with his play on the
ice and not with his abilities to drop the gloves. 
Seeing quality ice time on the first line with Lapierre and David
Laliberte, Bonneau is currently sixth on the team in scoring with seven points,
as head coach Alain Vigneault has gotten Bonneau to play a more complete game,
and to know when to help his team by not dropping the gloves. 




Team

Games

Goals

Assists

Points

PIMs

+/-

PEI

22

4

3

7

65

0

Danny
Stewart
, LW (2003,
123rd overall)  Playing on the same team as highly touted Sidney Crosby,
it’s easy for Stewart to get overlooked, but as
long as he continues to produce offensively he will get noticed by the Canadiens
management.  This season has not
gone was well for Stewart, as he’s currently seventh on the team in scoring. 
He is playing this year for a contract and will need to work hard all season.



Team

Games

Goals

Assists

Points

PIMs

+/-

Rimouski

23

7

10

17

14

-3

Alexandre
Dulac-Lemelin
, D (2004,
278th overall) After scoring only two goals all of last season in his
rookie year for Drakkar, Dulac-Lemelin is already half way there in just a
quarter of the time.  Seeing increased ice time, Dulac-Lemelin leads all defensemen
on the team in plus/minus and is second in scoring for defensemen on the team.



Team

Games

Goals

Assists

Points

PIMs

+/-

Drakkar

19

1

6

7

12

+7

Loic
Lacasse
, G (2004,
181st overall) Lacasse was able to display good skills while at the
Canadiens development camp this summer, and he has his work cut out for him this
year as Drakkar is in an ongoing rebuilding stage. 
Lacasse will not get much help from his inexperienced defense, which
could explain the numbers he’s put up so far this season.



Team

GP

GAA

Save %

GA

Shots

SO

Drakkar

13

3.61

.881

43

361

1

Jaroslav
Halak
,
G
(2003, 271st overall) Halak will make his debut
in the QMJHL after playing in the Slovakian league last year and he was the
starting goalie for Team Slovakia at the U-20 world junior tournament. 
Things didn’t go very smoothly for Halak moving to North America. He
had visa problems which kept him from starting in a few games, but since he has
joined the team he has been one of the better goalies in the Q this season. 




Team

GP

GAA

Save %

GA

Shots

SO

Lewiston

13

2.81

.910

37

411

1

OHL

Mark
Flood
,
D
(2003, 188th overall) Flood was offered a contract this
summer but decided to go back to the OHL as an overager this year. The NHL
lockout sent a number of defensemen to Hamilton, which would have cut into his
ice time if he made the team.  After
a career year last season where Flood was one of the top scoring defensemen in
the league, management will likely hope that Flood continues to progress his
game and develop more physically.  After
breaking a thumb in preseason, Flood did miss a few weeks, but since returning
he has been putting up over a point a game, leading the Petes power play and is
one of the top scorers on the team.



Team

Games

Goals

Assists

Points

PIMs

+/-

Peterborough

11

1

11

12

2

-6

Greg
Stewart
, RW (2004,
246th overall) Stewart didn’t find much offensive production in his
rookie season with the Petes last season, but the Habs scouting staff saw
something in him they liked.  After a solid showing at the development camp, Stewart has
worked his way onto the top lines this season, and he has already improved his
offensive production by a wide margin.  After
getting only four goals all of last season, and only 10 points, Stewart has
already surpassed these numbers in about a quarter of the time. 


Team

Games

Goals

Assists

Points

PIMs

+/-

Peterborough

19

6

5

11

40

-5

NCAA

Ryan
O’Byrne
, D (2003,
79th overall) The Habs took Ryan O’Byrne high in what was
considered a deep draft. He had a solid year playing for the Clippers of the
BCHL and was headed to Cornell of the ECAC, a program well known for their
defensive play and high academic standards, but wasn’t highly touted. 
After a solid freshman season, where he was able to dress in every game
but one due to a league suspension for fighting, O’Byrne showed an impressive
physical game but was not able to find much offensive success. 
With Cornell being an Ivy League school, they play less games then the
rest of the NCAA, starting their season later than others. 
So far this year, O’Byrne has matched his season point totals in only
four games. 

Team

Games

Goals

Assists

Points

PIMs

Cornell

4

1

1

2

10

Jon
Gleed
,
D
(2004, 212th overall) Another surprise pick by the Habs,
Gleed was passed over in the last draft, after an unsuccessful freshman season
where he saw limited ice time on a deep defensive core. 
Last year Gleed played a much bigger role with the team and in the second
half of the season he started to find more confidence in his game and offensive
production.  This year Gleed picked
up where he left off last season, getting three points in his first game of the
season which is half of all the points he scored last year. 




Team

Games

Goals

Assists

Points

PIMs

Cornell

4

1

2

3

17

James
Wyman
, RW (2004,
100th overall) J T Wyman was another surprise pick of the Habs, as
the team rarely dips into the USHS to select prospects. After having a great
senior year at the Blake school, Wyman has started his NCAA career with
Dartmouth of the ECAC, another Ivy League team. As a freshman Wyman has his work
cut out for him. Dartmouth has most of the team returning from last year, and
they added two other drafted forward freshman, which will make ice time hard to
come by.  So far this year Wyman has not been able to produce, but he
has played in every game and is getting a regular shift.


Team

Games

Goals

Assists

Points

PIMs

Dartmouth

4

0

0

0

0

 

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