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2001-02 Season Previews: The Other Guys.

by Kirk Pedersen
on

The final installment of the 2001-02 previews, for unranked prospects.

Fedor Fedorovthe former Port Huron Border Cat was selected by the Canucks in the third round of this year’s draft. He re-entered the draft, after failing to come to terms with his original team, the Tampa Bay Lightning. Let me first start out by saying that all Fedorov’s are not created equal. Fedor doesn’t have the talent of his older brother, Sergei, but that doesn’t mean that he’s not a talented player in his own right. Fedor is big (6’4″) and 217 pounds, and uses his size to his advantage. He had a great season in Sudbury, leading the Wolves in scoring, after being relegated to a checking role the season before. A fast skater with great balance, Fedor can open up the ice with his skating ability, much like his older brother, Sergei. He has good basic offensive skills, but nothing to suggest that he’ll be much more than an average offensive contributor at the NHL level. Fedor could possibly become a part of the Canucks future, he’s one of the few solid wingers in the system. He’s already played one season of minor-pro, and has worked hard at improving his game in Sudbury. He might make an impact if he goes to Manitoba this season. He remains unsigned as of today.

Will: Play hard, no matter where he ends up.
Can’t: Shake the shadow of Sergei.
Expect: Hard work, and good results, hopefully in the AHL.
Don’t Expect: An NHL promotion right away. Read more »

Belleville Bulls Season Preview

by Bill Thompson
on

Well, here we are again at the beginning of another OHL season. I love this time of year, so much to look forward to on ice rinks around the world. Before I get going on the outlook for the Belleville Bulls this season, I would just like to congratulate Canada’s under-18 team on bringing home the gold medal, proving that we still have great talent in this country and the resources to develop it. I would also like to extend my deepest sympathies to all those affected, in whatever way, by the tragic events this past week.

I see that The Hockey News has picked the Bulls to finish last in the division for the second straight year. Pin it up in the locker room next to the division title won by last year’s team. I have contended in the past that it is a futile exercise to rank junior league teams because of the high turnover of players and the steep improvement some players make from one season to the next. Examples on last years team alone can be sited to make this point. Kyle Wellwood went from a promising young player to one of the best players in the league. Randy Rowe began his career in Belleville as a 4th line checker and ended up as the leagues top sniper. If prognosticators last year would have known these two players would have turned out that kind of season, I’m sure they would not have been picked last. So any way, let’s see what surprises the Bulls have in store for the league this year.

OFFENSIVE LINE-UP
Mike Renzi Kyle Wellwood Nate Robinson
David Silverstone Matt Stajan Cody McCormick
Marc Rancourt Andre Read more »

HF talks with Kristian Huselius and Marcus Nilson

by Mark Fischel
on


Hockey’s Future Conversation with Marcus Nilson and Kristian Huselius

Taking a break from their hectic training camp schedule, Hockey’s Future recently had the chance to have a conversation with Panthers sophomore left wing Marcus Nilson, and highly regarded rookie, Kristian Huselius. Nilson ended last season playing the part as the defensive and physical conscience for Pavel Bure, and completed his season as one of the best of his career on any level.

Kristian Huselius is not only coming off a career year numbers-wise for himself, but a career year for all of the Swedish Elite League, where he swept 6 offensive categories and had what is considered the finest season for any Swedish players ever. Both Marcus and Kristian were able to reflect on their past seasons, what the upcoming season will hold, and what challenges they face. They also deftly avoided my attempts to get them to start the pre-Olympic trash talking well before anyone else.

Hockey’s Future: How long have you two known each other, and how many times have you played against each other or together?

Marcus Nilson: I would say about 9 or 10 years, and against each other not too many times. Maybe like 6 or 7 times….

Kristian Huselius: We played together alot though.

HF: What kind of advice have you given Kristain about playing in the NHL?

MN: Nothing yet, just trying to help him out here and there, but he is doing fine by himself

HF: With Sweden and Finland be Read more »

Training Camp Review

by Megan Sexton
on

A Camp

The morning kicked off with a forty-minute scrimmage
between the Black and White teams.  Ben Clymer opened the scoring a few
minutes in, snapping a wrister past Kevin WeekesClymer made it
obvious through his performance and determination today, that he has no
intention of returning to the minor leagues.

Brad Richards, who did not seem to be affected at
all by the absence of close friend and former linemate, Vincent Lecavalier,
tied the score when he got the puck past Nikolai Khabibulin from in
close.  Richards centered Fredrik Modin and Martin St. Louis,
which will likely be the top line if Lecavalier is not signed soon.

The final goal was scored by prospect Nikita Alexeev,
after a scramble in front of Weekes.  Management stated going into camp,
that Alexeev had a roster spot to lose.  By watching the ex-Erie Otter
play, you would think he is hanging on for dear life.  He woed fans with his
speed and skill, as he showcased himself for the coaching staff.

Another prospect, Jimmie Olvestad, ended the day on
a positive note. Turning on his physical game, Olvestad had four hits
through the first 20 minutes of play, including two on hulking defenseman
Kristian Kudroc
, who towered over the 6’1 winger.

Defensive pairings on the white team were juggled to get Read more »

Habs’ camp (day 1)

by Chris Boucher
on
Although many people’s minds were elsewhere, the Canadiens opened their first day of training camp. The players skated in two different groups, during two separate on-ice sessions prior to playing a scrimmage. The lines remained fixed throughout the scrimmage. With some interesting pairings considering it’s so early in training camp.

Forward lines of note(LW, C, RW)

Brian Savage, Yannick Perreault, Oleg Petrov
Martin Rucinsky, Jan Bulis, Richard Zednick
Chad Kilger, Joé Juneau, Andreas Dackell
Benoit Brunet, Benoit Gratton, Gino Odjick
Patrick Poulin, Mike Ribeiro, Marcel Hossa
Éric Chouinard, Craig Darby, Josef Balej
Éric Landry, Xavier Delisle, Jason Ward

Defensive pairings of note(LD, RD)

Stéphane Quintal, Patrice Brisebois
Sheldon Souray, Craig Rivet
Karl Dykhuis, Stéphane Robidas
Francis Bouillon, Patrick Traverse
Ron Hainsey, Martti Jarventie
Andrei Markov, Mathieu Descoteaux

Box Score (Or reasonable facsimile thereof)

(RED) Mike Ribeiro (penalty shot) ** 1-0
(RED) Mike Ribeiro (Stéphane Robidas) ** 2-0
(RED) Patrick Poulin (Karl Dykhuis) ** 3-0
(RED) Patrick Traverse (Jan Bulis, Richard Zednick) ** 4-0
(RED) Martin Rucinsky (penalty shot) ** 5-0
(WHITE) Oleg Petrov (Brian Savage) ** 5-1 Read more »

Boston Bruins: Rookie Recap

by Shane Walsh
on

What does it really take to make it in the NHL? Heart? Determination? Skill? Patience?

Examining the Bruins young core of top prospects at the annual rookie tournament in Kitchener, Ontario last weekend, one gets an early impression of just how
hard these young guns are willing to work to fulfill their dreams of playing in the NHL.

The problem however, is that most of the Bruins young guns are shooting blanks!

“Nobody is really impressing me,” said Brad Davis a scout for the Edmonton Oilers. “Zdenek Kutlak is by far the best player on the ice for Boston, and he played a handful of games with the big club last year. That has to tell you of the caliber of players that are on the ice.”

Not all of Boston’s top prospects and invites were disappointing to watch all weekend. Carl Corazzini, a recent signing out of Boston University, impressed with his intense level of play.

“Carl’s
a guy who plays with heart,” said a Bruins scout who wished to remain anonymous.
“He shows up to play every night, and doesn’t take any shifts off. He’s a
great two-way forward who could be a big surprise at our main camp this fall.”

Invites
Ed Hill and Colton Orr both impressed with their high energy level of play.

“They don’t
come any more physical than Colton Orr,” said Davis. “Here’s a guy that transitioned
his game from defense to forward and did it successfully. Orr is the kind
of player that every team would love to have, but unfortunately because of
his skating, he may not get an opportunity to display what he Read more »

Kings Mourn With the United States

by Tony Calfo
on

Kings Director of Professional Scouting Ace Bailey and scout Mark Bavis were among the thousands of victims from Tuesday’s cowardly acts of terrorism.

Ace Bailey was a two-time Stanley Cup winner in Boston and a highly regarded scout in Los Angeles. His off-season input lead to the signings of Steve Heinze and Ken Belanger. He leaves his wife and son.

Mark Bavis, 31, was instrumental in the Kings’ off-season. He played a major role in the drafting of David Steckel. Bavis has a twin brother who coaches at Boston University.

The entire LA Kings Hockeys Future staff extends their deepest sympathies and condolences.

Top 25 Defenseman Prospects posted

by HF Staff
on

To continue our coverage of the “Big List” week, Hockey’s Future is glad to announce the unveiling of our top 25 defenseman.

Head to the link “2001 top 50 Prospects” link in our top features section to see the list!

Mark Fischel
Managing Editor
Hockey’s Future

Boston Bruins Training Camp Preview

by Michael Karlstrom
on
A very quick breakdown of the few NHL roster spots that will be up for grabs this camp and the main contenders for each spot.
The Boston Bruin situation is a little interesting this season, for the first time in recent memory the biggest news of the off-season wasn’t the deep pockets and short arms of team owner Jeremy Jacobs. Sure, the off-season is turning into camp-time now with the high-profile Jason Allison holdout dominating the news on the team, but in-between the decision not to meet contract demands on 1999 draftees Kyle Wanvig, Martin Grenier, and Seamus Koytk, and the current troubles finding a happy meeting ground to ink a deal with Mr. Allison, the Bruins signed some fairly high-profile and pricey unrestricted free agent help.
Five of Boston’s top six forward spots should be accounted for. This leaves one spot open and no real proven talent locked into taking the spot. Here is the first possible rookie battle to keep an eye on.
If Jason Allison is signed, the spot is his, but if he isn’t the two most likely rookies to compete for the spot will be 2001 Hobey Baker finalist Andy Hilbert, and 2002 NCAA goal scoring leader Lee Goren. Of the two players, Hilbert’s game seems more NHL polished. His combination of grit and skill should serve him well in his attempt to step straight into the NHL without having to serve an AHL apprenticeship. Compared favorably in some circles in style to the way that Chris Drury plays the game, Hilbert may end up resembling Drury in that he could get shifted around in positions and ro Read more »

Red Wings Camp Report, Day 1

by Jessica Haskin
on

Life still goes on despite the attacks yesterday, the most tragic day in
American history. The Detroit Red Wings took to the ice for their first
day of training camp in Traverse City, MI.

“We’re here and we’re working out, but everybody’s heart and soul in
our organization are with the families of those who were lost yesterday”
said the Red Wings General Manager Ken Holland.

Holland also said that there was much discussion the night before to
decide whether or not to hold training camp as scheduled. The final
decision was to hold camp as planned to offer a little happiness to
those who had planned on coming and give them the opportunity to take
their minds off of the attacks for awhile.

The fans got their first glimpse of Dominik Hasek, Luc Robitaille, and
Brett Hull practicing as a team with the Detroit Red Wings.

Darren McCarty brought a smile to a young boys face as he gave a playful
punch to the glass where the boy was leaning his chin on the boards.

The veteran Igor Larionov and prospect Paul Ballantyne battled along the
boards this morning in a drill in Team C’s practice. Ballantyne defended
Larionov amazingly well, keeping Larionov from passing the puck out from
behind the net. The 19 year old Ballantyne will most likely be seen as a
regular on the Detroit blue line in coming years.

When Team C’s practice was over teams A and B came onto the ice for two
scrimmage games. Each scrimmage consisting of one twenty minute period.

The crowd cheered as the players skated onto the ice recognizing their
favorite Read more »

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