Obviously there are some exceptions to this rule. Martin Havlat, last years 26th pick over all appears to have some defensive awareness. Although Havlat turns heads with his offence there is a well-rounded game underneath the flash. Occasionally Havlat appears to
lose focus and it is the back of his game that most suffers then. At 6’1″, 178 lbs. he’s got good size which should make defensive play easier, but to make the jump to the North American game Havlat must get used to the physical grind. Second behind Havlat on the
depth chart is Russian winger Petr Schastlivy. Many people got their first glimpse of Schastlivy at the ’98 World Junior Championships in Winnipeg. He is graced with good natural speed, balance and the sort of scoring touch you can’t teach. Mid season play with
Grand Rapids had fans calling for his promotion to the big league team. During the all-star break Ottawa coach Jacques Martin traveled to the mid west to scout. It was only a week later Schastlivy was playing in the NHL. One thing that most strikes people about him is the creativity he shows in front of the net. He can score from the slot, from the bullion and even from behind the net. The lack of size is a concern though. Schastlivy was not able to make Ottawa a permanent home in part because of timidness. It didn’t take long before opposing teams noticed he wouldn’t plant himself around the net if punished. Though it seemed during
last sortie in Ottawa Schastlivy had learnt his lesson only time will tell if he can fully adapt to a smaller ice surface and a more physical game. The experience of the Turner Cup finals should do wonders in this regard.
not join the National team. He proved relatively responsible in his own zone and seemed eager to learn from the coaching staff. Unfortunately Fisher went down with a leg injury mid way through the season, but not before making himself a permanent home with the Sens.
defense Bala is ready to star in the IHL.