The London Knights are currently in their second year of management by the Hunter family and the last year playing at the IceHouse. A number of excellent players have donned the Knights uniform in the old barn, and we may be seeing the best of the bunch this year in Rick Nash. Pretty strong statement considering Jason Allison and Brendan Shanahan among others are alumni.
Nash stands six foot four inches and weighs in at 180 pounds. He shoots left and plays left wing. He is a probable top 5 pick for the 2002 entry draft and will challenge for the top spot. He will face great scrutiny this year, as numerous scouts pick apart his game, looking for flaws real and imagined, comparing him to the other elite players around the globe. Toss in going to school, dealing with teen age problems, and oh yeah, being the go to guy on an OHL team for the second year in a row and there will be a lot of pressure on his shoulders.
Nash has a number of things going for him, and lets start with his size. He is already a big man and one can imagine what he may look like in a few years when he is done filling out. But the amazing part is that he is totally comfortable with his body and shows no signs of the awkwardness that other teenagers do when they have grown rapidly. He is a magician with the puck and uses his long reach to his total advantage. He can stickhandle laterally with ease, and loves to pull the puck back to his body, leaving opponents lunging futilely in search of the puck. With his size he can turn a corner and shield the puck with one arm off his stick Read more »
Just ask Henrik Bergfors, or anyone else in the Tampa Bay Lightning’s B Camp, for that matter. Nearly all of them have felt the effects of Aaron Lobb’s wrath.
It’s funny: The guy who was highly criticized for his lack of physical play at draft time is by far the most aggressive player in the Lightning’s B Camp. That knock—lack of physical play—was probably a considerable factor in his dropping to the forth round in the draft, though his consistency was also questioned. Whatever the reason, this kid appears to be the complete package, and he was a steal in the late fourth round.
Lobb opened camp with a bang, getting into a scrum with Swedish defenseman Bergfors just minutes into the first scrimmage. Though no punches were thrown before Lobb lost his balance and pulled Berfgors to the ice with him, it showed Lobb’s willingness and ability to handle the rougher side of the game.
Since then, he has thrown his body around at every opportunity—which at 6’4”, 198 is a lot of body to throw around. But, as Lobb says, “It’s just a part of the game.” When a ruckus arises, Lobb is one of the first ones on the scene. “I try to play the power forward role. By being that type of player, it comes with it.”
There is more to Lobb than his punishing hits. He has also impressed with his offensive skills and tremendous attitude, and he has been working hard while in Tampa Bay.
“We have really hard workouts, but the harder it is, the better it is,” he says. Hard does not even begin to describe the regimen that Brad Shaw, who will se Read more »
The New York Rangers assigned 37 players to Hartford of the AHL on Saturday. Brad Smyth, who netted 50 goals with the Wolf Pack, and P.J. Stock who split time with the Rangers and Philadelphia were among the 20 forwards sent down to Hartford. The Rangers also sent four goalies and 13 defencemen to Hartford. The first cuts trimmed the roster to 31 players, leading into the first pre-season game tonight in Detroit.
The Edmonton Oilers have assigned 15 players to the Hamilton Bulldogs. Assigned to the Bulldogs were goaltenders Alex Fomitchev, Eric Heffler and Jeff Salajko; defencemen Ryan Bast, Chad Hamilton and Darren Tiemstra; forwards Kevin Brown, Chad Hinz, J.J. Hunter, Sean McAslan, Kevin McDonald, Fernando Pisani, Sean Selmser, Jared Smyth and Max Spiridonov.
The Edmonton Oilers training camp roster now stands at 44, with the reassignment of 15 players to Hamilton.
The Bulldogs training camp begins Friday at 10 a.m. at the Morgan Firestone Arena in Ancaster. Hamilton’s first exhibition game is Sunday at 7:30 p.m. against the Syracuse Crunch at the Central Arena in Burlington.
The Toronto Maple Leafs assigned 10 players to the St. John’s Maple Leafs. The list includes: goaltenders Sebastien Centomo and Jamie Hodson, defencemen Christian Chartier, Tyler Harlton, Allan Rourke and Jonathan Zion, and forwards Bobby House, Don MacLean, Craig Mills and Michal Travnicek.
The estimated 2000 fans who showed up tonight expecting to get their first glimpses of Bure, Nilson and Kozlov might have been a little bit surprised to see some unexpected changes in the lineup. Instead of those proven talents weaving their magic and producing points, the trio of Marcus Nilson, Olli Jokinen and Kristian Huselius took their place instead, and didn’t dissapoint.
Tonight’s intra-squad scrimmage was set up with three referees, and the game was played with two periods of 30 minutes each. Teams were composed of 10 forwards and 5 5 defenseman, and the teams were “coached” by Panthers scouts Tim Murray and Joe Patterson. In the beginning, it looked like really talented shinny with no action for the first half of the 1st period, until bruising right winger opened up the scoring with a blast from the right circle that beat Wade Flaherty under the near side post.
Once the first goal was on the board, both teams started to up the ante a little bit with the physical play. Defenseman Lance Ward took Eric Godard into the open door at the bench and caused some emotion to rise. Soon after, Pete Worrell and John Jakopin started trading some shoves after the whistle. Jakopin’s little bout with Worrell served notice to the red team to get into the game, and they didn’t dissapoint.
The Scandinavian Connection of Jokinen, Hagman, and Huselius at this point started to take over the game. The reds were able to go up two goals when Jokinen found Huselius streaking in over the line on a two on one. With the defensive coverage not know Read more »
As I sit down at my computer trying to think of something to write about, I find it hard to think about hockey. On a normal weekend I would write about an Islanders prospect, training camp, or the status of the team. But this weekend is obviously not a normal one.
This weekend in New York no one cares about sports. Almost all sporting events in New York have been cancelled, from Major League Baseball to Little League. When some said grieving Americans might want some sports diversion this weekend, Coach Herman Edwards of the New York Jets said, “If they want diversion, go to church, go pray.”
I am sorry to the readers of Hockey’s Future that I can’t give an Islanders report this weekend. But, at times like this, people must realize that there are more important things than hockey.
Hockey’s Future once again sends out its condolences to everyone who has lost someone in this tragedy.
Greyhounds Host Eventful Training Camp
On August 27th the Soo Greyhounds opened up their 2001 training camp and set out to erase last seasons disaster. With a number of new faces reporting to camp like Dean Byvelds, who was acquired from Barrie in a trade for defenseman Jeremy Swanson, as well as Greg Mizzi, who was picked up after being let go by Barrie, the Greyhounds looked to get back on track after a number of problems last season.
On the first day of on-ice workouts new head coach Craig Hartsburg sent a message to rookies and veterans alike that off-ice discipline problems would not be tolerated as 3rd year goaltender Ray Emery was sent home after arriving to the rink 15 minutes late for the team’s pre-practice stretching exercise. Emery said he slept through his alarm.
Prior to the team’s annual Red/White game draft pick Derek MacKay, the Greyhounds 3rd round pick in the 2000 draft, and 17-year-old invite Joey Coccimiglio informed team management that they were leaving camp in order to protect their college eligibility. Goaltender Shane Bellini, who was having a great camp and was another camp invite, also left to protect his college eligibility.
The Red/White game was the last chance for players to impress management before any cuts were made. In the Red/White game rookie Rob Hisey put on a show for the 1,200 or so in attendance. Hisey scored 2 goals and assisted on another in leading Team White to a 5-3 victory. Overage candidate Brent Sullivan also scored 2 goals while Brett Trudell added anoth Read more »
It’s the final day of training camp and also the day of the championship
game. Teams A and C prepare to face off against each other before
boarding their buses and heading back to Detroit.
The opening line up is impressive. Team A’s starting line up consists of
Brett Hull and Yuri Butsayev, centered by the captain Steve Yzerman. On
defense for Team A is Mathieu Dandenault and Maxim Kuznetsov with Manny
Legace starting in net.
Team B’s starting line up is centered by Igor Larionov with Luc
Robitaille and Darren McCarty as the wingers. Nicklas Lidstrom and
Fredrik Olausson man the blue line with Domink Hasek in goal.
They played two twenty minute periods for the championship scrimmage.
The first ten minutes in each period were played as a regular game. The
next five minutes were played with the buzzer being sounded every fifty
seconds for line changes. The final five minutes played with exciting
Jason Williams was the first to score, notching a goal seven minutes and
thirty-five seconds into the first period for Team A.
A few minutes later Ryan Barnes was battling for the puck along the
boards and suddenly realized the puck was no longer between himself and
the boards. Turning around quickly and glancing to the left and right
for where the puck hand gone he seemed a bit confused until he heard it
hit the glass directly behind his head as someone shot it high trying to
clear it out of the zone.
With three minutes remaining in the first period, Barnes came around
behind the net and tried Read more »
How Buoyant is Boyes?
It was just over a year ago that the Leafs drafting 24th overall in the first round, through good fortune and in some cases miscalculation on behalf of other teams scouting staffs, found themselves calling out the name of Brad Boyes with their selection. Going into the draft the Erie pivot had been labelled as too small and too slow despite 82 points in his first campaign out from under the shadow of Tim Connolly. His follow-up season netted him OHL MVP honours and a place on the WJC team, not to mention 90 points evenly split amongst goals and assists.
This comes as no surprise to Erie Coach Dave MacQueen. “He wants the puck when the game is on the line.” His offensive number are also nothing out of the ordinary according to his coach as he has a “great release on the snapper (and his) passes are very accurate and timely.” While the benchboss concedes that Boyes “needs to improve first step” he also maintains that his “overall speed is average.” Further, he goes on to point out that his center is “very shifty at close quarters” and this ability enables him to excel at deking defensemen or goaltenders. That same quality “reduces chances for opponents to get him in trouble physically” although they will find even when standing still the Erie forward “rarely gets knocked off the puck (due to a ) great stance.”
Still, though he “does the job well” when in front of the net, MacQueen acknowledges that this “isn’t his game.” Rather Brad Boyes is a motion player, one who needs to be moving to be most effective. To that end the coach Read more »
The Ottawa 67’s started their 2001-2002 season in Belleville, Ontario. The two teams are expected to have competitive seasons, as the rivalry between the two has been at it’s outmost the past 5+ years. Last year, the Belleville Bulls won the division title, breaking the 67’s 5-year streak as #1.
Both teams underwent significant changes to their respective rosters. The Senators witnessed players such as Jonathan Zion, Vadim Sozinov, Jeremy Van Hoof, Lance Galbraith, among others, leave, and newbies such as Lane Moodie, Mark Mancari and Yaroslav Sklenar enter the picture. The Bulls have started their season with a lot of question marks. Gone are the top-liners Branco Radivojevic (Phoenix training camp), and Randy Rowe (Worchester), which leaves Kyle Wellwood as the remaining member of the Bulls’ former first line.
The 67’s were missing two significant members of their team. Sebastien Savage suffered a hairline fracture of the jaw, and does not yet look close to returning to action. He was seen skating a little bit, but has not participated in scrimmages yet. Carter Trevisani is currently at the Carolina Hurricanes training camp, and is expected to eventually return.
The new captain of the Ottawa 67’s this year is Zenon Konopka, with Brendan Bell and Miguel Delisle the assistant captains. Right now, it is expected that Konopka and Delisle will be the main offensive contributors, with Brendan Bell as the main puck handler. Brian Kilrea, the coach of the Ottawa 67’s has mentioned that he expects Delisle to be a 50-goal, 125-point produc Read more »