Jackets Rumor Mill
Who’s In And Who’s Out?
There’s a lot of speculation going around the National Hockey League. As always, many try to pre-determine trade deadline activity. This year, there’s a lot of speculation over a couple of Blue Jackets. While I can see a number of players switching uniforms, I think that it will most likely be a strong possibility for Lyle Odelein and Ron Tugnutt.
Let’s start with Odelein, the senior of the Blue Jackets Blueline. It’s not impossible to concieve a number of places where Lyle could be dealt. Odelein is making $2.4 Million, which is payroll that GM Doug MacLean may want to clear out for offseason acquisitions. Odelein, the captain in Columbus, would immediately bring leadership into any dressing room, and a solid presence in his own end. His offensive numbers this season have been up slightly, registering 14 points(2-12-14) in 53 games this season, as compared to 17 points in 81 games in 2000-2001. However, Odelein is -20 thus far this season, the worst Odelein has been in his career. I do not think teams will be overly discouraged by this, though, considering the team which surrounds him.
Where are some possible locations that Odelein could be shipped? Pretty much any organization who wants to take over his salary, is a decent contender, and wouldn’t mind adding a rough and tumble blueliner for the stretch drive. Detroit seems like the most obvious fit, and I’m sure the Wings would give up a player like Maxim Kuznetsov to pick up Odelein. Th Read more »
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U20 WJC 2002 TEAM RUSSIA PLAYER REVIEW
PART I: Goalies and Defensemen
By: Eugene Belashchenko (Special thanks to Robert Neuhauser and a Finnish
observer for their assistance in preparing this article.)
Starting: Andrei Medv Read more »
This is the second part of the mid-season Top 20 prospects update.
12. Miroslav Blatak
Team: Zlin, CZE
Draft: 2001 draft, 4th round, 129th overall
Previous rank: 16
Miroslav is having a very good rookie year with one of the best teams in Czech Republic, Zlin. In the last 20 games of the season Miroslav has received increased ice-time, and that has led to increased offensive numbers. Blatak has 4 goals and 5 assists in 34 games in his rookie season in the Czech Extra League. He also had a great WJC and was the top scoring defenseman with 3 goals and 4 assists in 7 games.
Plus: Smart, skating, shot, passing, hard worker.
Minus: Size?, lack of physical presence.
Potential: Two-way top 6 defenseman
13. Drew MacIntyre
Team: Sherbrooke, QJMHL
Draft: 2001 draft, 4th round, 121st overall
Grade: 6.5 Read more »
With all the WHL Western Conference teams having twenty games or less on their schedules, heres some speculation on how the season will finish and playoffs will play out. These are solely the thoughts and ponderings of this writer and may not be accurate, however with the stretch run just underway, thought it would be fun to put my choices out to provoke some debate. Here goes!
While the Cougars will likely play better in the playoffs, I’m not sure Thompson or Stanton are handling the pressure of a stretch run very well. Thompson was great against Kamloops in the recent loss, but I’m not sold. Hamhuis really is the glue that holds the entire Cougar back end together and he at some point this year is going to start slowing down and having some off nights, which appears is beginning to happen. He was brilliant in the first game against Kamloops last weekend, but in the second game was average by his standards, coughing up the puck, not as effective moving the puck and not as physical. When caught out of position didn’t appear to have a lot of gas to get back either IMO. They need scoring and I’m not sure even the addition of Foster will remedy that problem. Likely to finish third in B.C. Division and could slide as low as fourth with a first round exit IMO.
Kelowna will go as far as Bendera can take them and his return to the line up this weekend will be a tonic for a lot the Rockets current ailments. When on his game, Bendera can win games on his own which might be what the Rockets need to gain some confidence. If Shane can backstop the Rockets to a couple wins Read more »
Maxime Ouellet, Goaltender, Philadelphia(AHL)
Stats: 30 GP, 2.65 GAA, .912 SV%
Pavel Brendl, Right Wing, Philadelphia(AHL)
Stats: 37 GP, 10 G, 16 A, 26 P, +1, 10 PIM
Bruno St. Jacques, Defenseman, Philadelphia(AHL)
Stats: 29 GP, 3 G, 8 A, 11 P, +11, 39 PIM
Tomas Divisek, Center, Philadelphia(AHL)
Stats: 48 GP, 10 G, 15 A, 25 P, -9, 32 PIM
Vaclav Pletka, Left Wing, Philadelphia(AHL)
Stats: 45 GP, 17 G, 17 A, 34 P, -4, 33 PIM
Francis Lessard, Defenseman, Philadelphia(AHL)
Stats: 47 GP, 0 G, 5 A, 5 P, -8, 193 PIM
Jim Vandermeer, Defenseman, Philadelphia(AHL)
Stats: 48 GP 1 G, 7 A, 8 P, -10, 52 PIM
Joe DiPenta, Defenseman, Philadelphia(AHL)
Stats: 50 GP, 1 G, 2 A, 3 P, +10, 65 PIM
Jesse Boulerice, Left Wing, Philadelphia(AHL) Read more »
Sergio Momesso has returned to Shawinigan and the team he played his entire junior career with in the early 80’s. He was hired as an assistant coach and is replacing Benoit Groulx who was hired as the new head coach of the Hull Olympics. Momesso,who played his first season with the Montreal Canadiens in 1986,was a fan favorite when he played with the Cataractes during his days as a junior.
On the ice, the Cataractes have had some difficulties. After being almost unbeatable on home ice, they’ve only played for .500 since the trades they made at the trade deadline. They had their best showing against Oshawa where they posted a 7-0 win.
The new players have shown good things,especially Charles Gauthier who is playing with the teams top two scorers Pomminville and Bellemare. He’s fast and plays with a lot of heart. Hunter LaHache made his physical presence felt and is playing his style of hockey. J-M Boisvert had a slow start and needs to put more effort into his play. Now that all the players are back from the different all star games and tournaments we’ll now be able to get a good look at the team that can make a run for the President’s Cup.
In the League
Drumondville headcoach Daniel Bissonnette was fired and replaced by Jos Canale. Canale now has a great challenge in front of him with this very hard-headed team.
The Hull Olympics are on a roll. After their last losing streak head coach Guy Lalonde was let go and replaced with Benoit Groulx an assistant coach with the Cataractes. Since the change Hull has been the best team in Read more »
the Saskatoon Blades who recently enjoyed a four game winning streak,
including 3 in a row at home slipped a notch recently this past weekend and
were in danger of falling into the east division basement. The Blades were
winless in a three game in three night Alberta road trip. On Friday, the
Blades fell behind early to the Medicine Hat Tigers by a score of 4-0 and
could never really get back into the game. The Blades got to within 2 goals
on a pair of tallies by WHL eastern conference player of the month Justin
Kelly but that would be as close as the Blades would come losing 5-3 to the
Saturday night the Blades were in Lethbridge to play a Canes team
who has really beaten up on the Blades so far this year outscoring them 20-8
in three previous meetings. This time the Blades were able to stay close
but not close enough losing 4-2. Jeremy Jackson salted the game away with
his 26th of the season with 1:13 remaining in the game. With a 2 game
losing streak going entering Red Deer, the Blades could have easily folded
with a pair of home games on the horizon but that wasn’t the case.
the Blades looked past the fact the Rebels had won 11 in row and looked past
the fact they are defending Memorial Cup champs. The Blades stayed close
all night long and forced OT but lost 3-2 in overtime. The trip wasn’t
exactly a success for the Blades but they faired pretty well on the road
against some very tough teams. The Blades still only have 1 win vs Central
Division teams this season.
Last nights game vs Read more »
Coming into the 2001-02 season, defenseman Henrik Tallinder was touted as being one of the Buffalo Sabres’ better prospects. He had just finished a championship season with TPS Turku in Finland’s top league, an accomplishment that only added to his reputation, and which served to add to the anticipation of his arrival in North America.
Henrik’s debut was somewhat delayed due to a knee injury suffered early in Buffalo’s training camp, but he has not disappointed since joining the Rochester Americans’ roster. The smiling Swede seems to have adapted quickly to the style of play favored on these shores, to the point where he has logged as much as 25+ minutes a game. Tallinder does, indeed, look like a very promising prospect.
I caught up with Henrik following a recent practice, where we briefly discussed his career and his approach to the game. The following is a transcript of that conversation, with "HF" designating my questions and "HT" being Henrik’s answers.
: Last year, you played in Turku, Finland. What differences have you noticed between playing in Turku, and playing in the AHL?
: It’s a pretty big difference. Over here, it’s more hitting, and the play goes more, like- the transition game is much more forwards-and-backwards, and offense and defense is much faster than it is back home. Back home, it’s more sideways-to-sideways instead of up-and-down, if you know what I mean.
: You guys won the championship last year. That must have been exciting f Read more »
Washington Capitals 2000 Entry Draft selection Igor Schadilov could be ready to jump into the AHL next season, but is General Manager George McPhee ready to convince Igor to make the jump?
Igor was drafted by the Capitals in 1999. He was selected in the 9th round (249th overall) and is considered to have the ability of being a great two-way defenseman. When Igor Schadilov was originally drafted, he was left towards the bottom of the depth chart for his Russian Super League team. But the Caps liked what they saw, and decided to take the chance. Low and behold having been previouisly stuck behind such Russian defensive prospects such as Andrei Markov(Montreal), Alex Proshkin and Alexander Khavanov(St. Louis)…Igor has emerged this season on the number one defensive pairing for his squad.
In 2000, Igor played on the Russian Junior National Team at the Five Nations and Four Nations tournaments. After his strong performance at the Four Nations tournament, where he registered a +2 rating in 3 games, Igor was invited to take part in the training camp for the World Junior Championships. He helped the his team to win the Silver medal at the 2000 U20 WJC with his goal and an impressive +8 rating.
Currently with Severstal Cherpovets of the Russian Super League, Schadilov has scored 5 goals and 2 assists. In a game on December 2nd, Igor scored 2 goals and was named the number one star for the game. RussianProspects.com recently nominated Igor for player of the week honors.
Despite being drafted late, Igor should be offered Read more »
WHL WEST STARS WIN, SO OHL CLAIMS THE HERSHEY CUP
RIMOUSKI – The Western Hockey League’s Western Conference All-Stars defeated
the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League’s Dilio Conference All-Stars 9-4
Wednesday night in the final game of the 2002 Hershey Cup CHL All-Star
As a result the WHL, the Ontario Hockey League and the QMJHL all finish the
series with identical 1-1 records, but the OHL was awarded the Hershey Cup
on goal differential. The inaugural Hershey Cup was won last year by the
QMJHL’s two all-star teams.
Jared Aulin of the Kamloops Blazers and Paul Gaustad of the Portland Winter
Hawks both scored twice for the WHL stars, while Joe Balej (Portland),
Brandin Cote (Spokane), Joey Hope (Portland), Eric Johannsen (Tri-City) and
Dustin Johner (Seattle) added singles.
Karl Fournier (Acadie-Bathurst Titan), Yanick Lehoux (Baie-Comeau Drakkar),
Michel Outlet (Rimouski) and Olivier Fillion (Acadie-Bathurst) replied for
the QMJHL Dilio Conference All-Stars, which became the first Quebec team to
lose at the Hershey Cup.
The WHL East led 3-2 after one period of play and the QMJHL Dilio Conference
All-Stars tied the game early in the second period. But six consecutive
goals by the WHL East All-Stars gave the WHL its first win at the Hershey
The OHL wound up the 2002 Hershey Cup CHL All-Star Series with a 1-1 record
with a plus three goals differential, the WHL was 1-1 and even while the
QMJHL was 1-1 and minus three. The QMJHL Dilio Conference All-Stars out-shot
the WHL East All-Stars 42-25 before 4,76 Read more »