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Prospect Happenings in Hab-Land

by Chris Boucher
The Montréal press seems to be confused when it comes to Arron Asham’s performance this year in the AHL. Granted, he is playing well. He’s competing consistently and is leading the Citadelles in scoring with 23 points (9-14-23) in 24 games. But the reality of the situation is that Asham’s production is actually down this year compared to last season. He averaged 1.10 points per game through 15 AHL games last season.

The problem here isn’t with Asham or his game, but with the expectations this misunderstanding might bring. The 5’11”, 194-lbs Asham will likely never put up comparable numbers in the NHL. To assume so would be doing both he and the franchise an injustice. He wasn’t recalled based on his offensive production. Mainly it was due to injury problems combined with his increased competitiveness. Equally important is the fact that he’s a right-handed shot.

Lost in the Citadelles’ success, and more recently their lack of success has been the strong play of Marcel Hossa. He’s playing a solid overall game. The Slovakian is competing hard, and consistently putting his strong puck-protection skills on display. Although he’s not lighting it up offensively, he is getting his share of chances; he’s currently second on the team with 55 shots on goal. The adjustment to left wing has been relatively smooth, although his transition game (particularly along the half-boards in the defensive zone) could always use improvement.

The 20-year-old’s play comes into particular focus when we consider his relatively young age. If we look at w Read more »

Russia WJC 2002: Plyuschev Places High Hopes on Chistov and Svitov

by Eugene Belashchenko

Plyuschev Places High Hopes on Chistov and Svitov

According to a Russian hockey newspaper Ves Hokkei, the head Coach of the Russian National Junior team, Vadimir Plyuschev, places a lot of his hopes on the two forwards from Avangard: Stanislav Chistov and Alexander Svitov.

Plyuschev: I hope to see Chistov and Svitov with the team. I am not discouraged by the fact that both players are not currently on the Hawks roster [Avangard Omsk –EB]. In my opinion, both players will fit well into the team and will really help us. Regarding another Avangard player, defenseman Kiril Koltsov, he will not be joining the team. At the same time I hope for reinforcements from North America. If nothing unforeseen happens, the National team will be complemented with Tyutin, Sapozhnikov and Yakubov. In comparison to the 4 Nations Tournament in Finland, it is not likely that other chances will take place in the line up.

Familiar Faces and Former Foes in Kootenay

by Jeff Bromley

It could be called an ironic twist of fate. It will most certainly be called the blockbuster of the year. Call it what you want but Kootenay fans weren’t the only ones surprised at the monumental trade involving the Kootenay ICE and the Swift Current Broncos. B.J. Boxma and Duncan Milroy, the two guys coming the other way, weren’t exactly expecting it. “I couldn’t believe it,” said former and now current ICE goaltender B.J. Boxma. “I even said to them ‘is this a joke?’. I was absolutely shocked.”

Duncan Milroy, the high-scoring, second round pick (37th overall) of the Montreal Canadiens in last season’s NHL Draft didn’t exactly see it coming either. “My reaction was that I was very disappointed at the beginning, to be honest,” said Milroy. “I haven’t really had time to think about it. We had to pack our bags right away to play here last night so I still really hadn’t had a chance to think about it.”

Boxma, who experienced success in Speedy Creek in backstopping the Broncos to the Eastern Conference Final last season, was somewhat let down that the club would trade him. “I was kind of disappointed from Swift Current’s standpoint,” said Boxma. “I thought there would’ve a been a little more loyalty as we went to the third round last year, the furthest they’ve went in eight years. I thought I would’ve been the man this year but (Broncos’ goalie Todd) Ford is the up and comer and possible NHL Draft pick and I guess they thought they had to get him into more games.”

At the cusp of his four-year long WHL career, Boxma has now assumed the role of undisputed, Read more »

Big trade for Kootenay, but at what price?

by Jeff Bromley

You get what you pay for, goes the old consumer’s adage. If you want quality, you have to give up quality, goes an old hockey adage. When Kootenay G.M. Jeff Chynoweth traded team captain Jason Jaffray along with Aaron Rome, Jeff Harvey and the club’s first round pick in next year’s Bantam Draft to Swift Current for B.J. Boxma, Duncan Milroy and a fifth round pick in the 2004 Bantam Draft, immediately those truths could be applied to the deal. The biggest question now is that, did the club sell its soul in order to improve itself in the areas needed most – goaltending? Did the ICE give up too much? That’s the $64,000 question.

This trade could turn out to be the most significant trade in the history of the ICE franchise. The club just dealt arguably the most popular, hardest working, trench warfare fighting, durable, community-minded player in the club’s history in Jason Jaffray. Aaron Rome and Jeff Harvey were big parts of the Kootenay ICE – there is no denying that fact – but both were with the club less than fourteen months. Rome, a talented d-man that seemed to be on the cusp of a breakout season, who went about his business in contributing to one of the best defensive corps this club has ever had. How much of a contributor Rome was to the ICE blueline depends on who you ask. Nevertheless, we are about to find out.

Harvey, an enigmatic goalie who never quite seemed to be able to step out of the shadow of Dan Blackburn. Yes, they were some big shoes to fill but what Harvey was unable to do was live up to the expectations of both team management and its fan Read more »

Calder Corner for the Week Ending 12/3

by HF Staff
Calder Corner for the Week Ending 12/3

The Calder Corner

3 Games
Pothier: 1st NHL Goal, 1 Assist
Heatley: 1 Goal (8)
Tapper: 1 Assist
Kovalchuk: 1 Assist
Weaver: 1 Assist

3 Games
Boynton: 2 Assists

3 Games
Cole: 2 Goals (3, 4)

3 Games
Bell: 1 Assist
Peluso: 1 Goal (2)

3 Games
Vrbata: 1 Assist

3 Games
Nielsen: 2 Goals (1, 2)
Bellefeuille: 1 Assist

Detroit Red Wings
3 Games
Datsyuk: 1 Goal (2), 2 Assists

Edmonton Oilers
2 Games
Markkanen: NHL Debut, 27 Shots, 27 Saves (1-0-0)

Florida Panthers
3 Games
Huselius: 2 Goals (11,12) Read more »

Calder Corner: Handicapping the Field-November

by HF Staff
Calder Corner: Handicapping the Field-November

The Calder Corner: Handicapping the Field-November

It’s time again for Hockey’s Future to answer the question “If the Calder Trophy were awarded today, based on what you have seen so far this season, who would your Top 10 Rookie Finalists be?” We’ve recruited several of HF’s finest to take part this month and totalling up their votes, here is this month’s version of ‘Handicapping the Field':

Last Month This Month Team Player
6 1 Dany Heatley: The Thrashers’ 2nd overall pick in 2000 has finally caught up and at least for the moment surpassed his more celebrated counterpart picked 1st overall in 2001. It’s only a matter of time until his physical game catches up to his offensive one and then he’ll be a real handful. Read more »

Red Wings Prospects Update

by Zoran Manojlovic

Red Wings Prospects Update

The best prospect thus far into the season has been Stefan Liv of HV 71 in the Swedish Elite League. He had a great season last year but this year he has been outstanding. He is third in the league with a .917 save percentage and a 2.31 GAA and he also leads the league with 3 shutouts.

But he has not only been great with the Elite team he has also played terrific with the national team in two tournaments, the first in the Czech Republic in the start of the year where he only played one game and allowed only one goal and was the first star of the game. But the second tournament, the Sweden Hockey Games showed to be his best international performance so far, he started as back up but after poor play by Andreas Hadelöv he was allowed to start the second game. At this point, his sensational play led the team to the victory in the whole tournament, and the Swedish commentators were touting him as the best goalie of the tournament, but sadly the award went to a Russian goalie. So far this season in 4 games with the national team he has a 1.5 GAA and .944 save percentage.

It is not only his great performances in the rink that has given him many great compliments here in Sweden, it is also his great sense of humour and self confidence. For every interview you hear and see him, you can’t help but like him more and more, and that is why he is one of the most popular players in the league.

Unfortunately last week he broke his collar bone and the doctors say that he will be out up to six weeks but. In a recent interview, Liv Read more »

The ECHL Report

by Ron Valerino

Dayton rookie center Preston Mizzi is the InGlasCo Player of the Week.
The 20-year-old Mizzi scored five goals and eight points while helping the Bombers go 3-0-1 to remain atop the Northwest Division. The 5-11 and 194-pound Mizzi scored the game-winning goal in Dayton’s 4-1 win against Wheeling on Tuesday and had two goals and an assist in the Bombers’ 6-2 win at Toledo on Friday. He scored a power play goal and had an assist in a 5-4 shootout loss at Cincinnati on Saturday, and then scored the game-winning goal and had an assist in Sunday’s 3-1 win at Peoria. Mizzi, who has a four-game goal-scoring streak, has scored 13 points (9g-4a) in his last nine games and leads Dayton with 10 goals in 14 games.

Louisiana’s Frederic Cloutier is the East Coast Hockey League Goalie of the Week
Cloutier, who is under contract with the Minnesota Wild of the National Hockey League, was 2-0-0 with a 0.99 goals against average and a .973 save percentage in two games last week. The 20-year-old Cloutier made 31 saves while recording his team-record and ECHL-leading fourth shutout of the season in a 3-0 win against New Orleans on Tuesday. He then made 40 saves in a 3-2 overtime win at Arkansas, a victory that improved Louisiana to 17-1-2, the best start in ECHL history. Cloutier is 9-0-2 and leads the ECHL with a 1.41 goals against average, four shutouts and a .959 save percentage in 11 games.


WHEELING : Read more »

Canadian Hockey League News and Notes

by HF Staff

The Canadian Hockey League Player of the Month for November is forward
Pierre-Marc Bouchard of the Chicoutimi Sagueneens of the Quebec Major Junior
Hockey League.

Bouchard, a centre, turned in a spectacular month for Chicoutimi while
appearing in 11 games. Bouchard fired 12 goals and added 16 assists for a
total of 28 points in those 11 games, while also posting a plus 11. Bouchard
was also selected the QMJHL Offensive Player of the Month.

Bouchard becomes the second winner of the CHL Player of the Month Award.
October’s winner was forward Nathan Robinson of the Belleville Bulls of the
Ontario Hockey League. The three CHL leagues – the Quebec Major Junior
Hockey League, the Ontario Hockey League and the Western Hockey League – all
select Players of the Month and starting last month, the CHL then selects a
CHL Player of the Month from among the leagues’ nominees. The CHL also
selects a Player of the Week from among the three leagues’ nominees every

Goaltender Adam Russo of the Acadie-Bathurst Titian was the QMJHL Defensive
Player of the Month after winning all nine games he started in November
while posting a 2.32 goals against average and a .915 save percentage.

The OHL’s Molson Player of the Month was forward Darryl Bootland of the
Toronto St. Michael’s Majors. Bootland scored 12 goals and added 11 assists
for 23 points in 13 games to help the Majors post a 7-2-4-0 record for the
month. The OHL Goaltender of the Month was David Chant of the Barrie Colts.
He posted a 7-2-2 record, along with a 2.24 goals aga Read more »

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