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Rangers Make Some Changes

by Brandon LeBourveau
on
With injuries to Vladamir Malakhov and Eric Lacroix, the Rangers continued to make some more changes with their lineup. They have sent defenseman Tomas Kloucek back down to Hartford. This was a move that was made so Kloucek could get some ice time in Hartford instead of sitting in the press box as a 7th defenseman. It appears now that Bert Robertsson will be the press box occupier and will be the 7th defenseman.

Jason Doig, the gritty defender who started the season with the Rangers and then was sent back down to Hartford because he was making too many mental errors on the ice, is likely done for the season as he had surgery on Friday to repair a torn MCL (medial collateral ligament) in his right knee. This shortens the Rangers defensive depth, and some newspapers are saying the Rangers are shopping around for some defensive help, as Doig is now done for the year and possibly Malakhov as well.

Now for the top story, Manny Malhotra has been recalled by the Rangers and will play tonight against the Ottawa Senators! Yipeee! I’ve been waiting for this kid to get called up all season long. He was the second best forward in camp (Behind the almighty Michael York) and deserved to be on this team more than most of the other players. Malhotra has been learning to play Left Wing in Hartford, but he was told by head coach Ron Low that he will play center tonight. Speculation has it that Malhotra will center a line with Adam Graves, who has been slumping badly, and Michal Grosek as his wingers. That should be a very entertaining line. All Read more »

USHL Update – Waterloo Black Hawks

by Jason Shaner
on
The Waterloo Black Hawks, members of the United States Hockey League
have reached the Thanksgiving Break. So far the Hawks are 10-7 and are
in 2nd place in the Eastern Division with 20 points. The Hawks are 6th
in the league overall. So far this season has had its roller coaster
rides with Waterloo playing masterfully at times and at others times
their inability to stay focused for 60 minutes has hurt them. There has
been plenty of competition in net and the offense as advertised has been
producing. The area of concern is still the defense where the Hawks
have had some breakdowns that have ended up costing them goals and
sometimes games.

On the offensive side the three Black Hawks who are in their 3rd year
have produced as expected. Luke Fulghum (Denver University) has
displayed the ability to take control of a game when he wants to. So
far Luke has 5 goals and 6 assists for 11 points. Brian Canady (North
Dakota) has also produced. Brian has been like a field General for the
team. Brian has 9 goals and 7 assists for 16 points. Canady has thrown
his body all over the ice doing anything he can to help the team out.
John Grubb has also been playing well in his 3rd and final year. John
is a grinder for the Black Hawks and does more than just score. Grubb
has 6 goals and 4 assists for 10 points. The other returning Hawks
veterans have played well including Craig Falite who earned offensive
player of the week honors recently in the league.

A couple of rookies have been pleasant surprises so far. Ryan Connelly
(No Read more »

Avs Junior and College Prospects Update

by Brandon LeBourveau
on

Name            Team     League   GP   G   A   P  PIM  +/-
Jared Aulin   Kamloops    WHL     25  15  26  41   27   2

Notes: Aulin has been lighting it up this year with Kamloops. Impressed a lot
at training camp this year. Is a darkhorse to make the team next season.


Name                    Team     League   GP   G   A   P  PIM  +/-
Jordan Krestanovich    Calgary    WHL     24  16  19  35   10  23

Notes: Doesn’t get a lot of attention with the Hitmen as he is overshadowed
by Pavel Brendl, Kris Beech and Brent Krahn, however, it’s hard for
Krestanovich’s talents to go unnoticeable.


Name            Team     League   GP   G   A   P  PIM  +/-
Kurt Sauer     Spokane    WHL     23   1   4   5   33  12

Notes: A solid defensive defenseman, Sauer does not have much of an offensive
upside, but don’t boot him off the radar because of that.


Name              Team     League   GP   G   A   P  PIM  +/-
Agris Saviels  Owen Sound    OHL    24   2  11  13   10  -2

Notes: A steady two-way defenseman, Agris hasn’t been putting up the
offensive numbers like he should.


Name                    Team     League    GP   G   A   P  PIM  +/-
Branko Radivojevic   Belleville    OHL     22  10  24  34   19   19

Notes: This speedy Czech has great hockey sense and a knack for scoring.
Expect him to be a good NHLer in the near future.


Name               Team     League   GP   G   A   P  P Read more »

Tanguay and Skoula both making an impact

by Billy Gilliam
on
The Colorado Avalanche have eight starters out with injuries including Peter
Forsberg, Chris Drury, Adam Deadmarsh, Adam Foote, and Stephane Yelle.
Colorado still has the best record in the NHL mainly because of the emergence
of two young guns. Alex Tanguay and Martin Skoula. Both have made large
strides in their development from last year. Both have been counted on to
play on the top 2 forward and defensive lines for the Avs, and they have
looked stellar, not out of place like most 21 year olds would.

First lets take a look at the progression of Alex Tanguay. Ever since
Colorado took Tanguay with the 12th pick in the ’98 draft, they knew they had
a kid with star potential. They may have even more than that, as Tanguay is
dominating out on the ice with a vast array of plays such as perfect tape to
tape backhand saucer passes, blistering slapshots, and serious moves one on
one. Last season as a 20 year old, Alex put up very respectable numbers with
51 points and led the team in shooting percentage (23.0), and was also second
in rookie scoring to Scott Gomez. This season, Tanguay has 25 points in 23
games including an NHL best 11 game point streak. One reason for his success
is his improved skating. Last year, he didn’t have that breakaway speed that
is necessary in the NHL today. Now, his skating is much more fluid, and he
can really fly. Another reason Alex is on the verge of superstardom is his
hockey sense. Tanguay anticipates the play as well as anyone is in the NHL
right now. He has taken full advanta Read more »

Rangers Weekly Prospect Update

by Brandon LeBourveau
on

Week Of 11/19 to 11/24

Player         Team    League  GP   G   A   P  PIM  +/-
Pavel Brendl  Calgary   WHL    19  24  17  41   16   22

This Week: 2 GP, 3 G, 1 A, 4 P, 4 PIM, +4


Player           Team    League  GP   G   A   P  PIM  +/-
Jamie Lundmark  Seattle   WHL    13  11   9   20   18  17  Even

This Week: 3 GP, 1 G, 3 A, 4 P, 0 PIM, +1


Player         Team    League  GP   G   A   P  PIM  +/-
Filip Novak   Regina    WHL    25  10  19  29   30   13

This Week: 4 GP, 1 G, 3 A, 4 P, 13 PIM, +2


Player              Team    League  GP   G   A   P  PIM  +/-
Garret Bembridge  Saskatoon  WHL    25  18  15  33   12   -4

This Week: 4 GP, 5 G, 2 A, 7 P, 0 PIM, +2


Player            Team      League   GP   G   A   P  PIM  +/-
Evgeny Gusakov Baie-Comeau   QMJHL   24   6   12  18  60  -2

This Week: 1 GP, 0 G, 0 A, 0 P, 0 PIM, -1


Player            Team      League   GP   G   A   P  PIM  +/-
Premsyl Duben  Baie-Comeau   QMJHL   17   0   6   6  20  -6

This Week: 1 GP, 0 G, 1 A, 1 P, 0 PIM, Even


Player            Team      League  GP   G   A   P  PIM  +/-
Nathan Martz  New Hampshire  HE     10   1   3   4   6   -1

This Week: No Games Played


Player              Team    League  GP   G   A   P  PIM  +/-
Patrick Aufiero   Boston U.   HE    10   1   3   4   10   Read more »

Prospect news and notes

by Randy Nicholson
on

Antropov set to make 2000/01 debut: Nik Antropov has been cleared to play for approximately 10 days now but no formal date has yet been set for his return … unfortunately for Nik, the club has reeled of 3 straight impressive wins and Coach Quinn seems hesitant to disrupt the growing team chemistry at this juncture …

One defender short: Rookie blueliner Petr Svoboda is currently out of the Leafs’ line-up with a severe ankle bruise suffered against the Canadiens on November 18th … his injury leaves the team with only 6 healthy defenders at the NHL level … with the St. John’s Maple Leafs currently travelling in the Toronto vicinity, it might be a good chance to take a longer look at Nathan Dempsey who has perhaps been the best player in the entire AHL so far this year (see additional St. John’s coverage below) …

Tellqvist update: Following the National Team’s disastrous performance against Finland at the Karjala Cup, Tellqvist again struggled once back in the SEL – this time against AIK … despite outshooting the other Stockholm-based side by a wide margin, Djurgarden dropped a 4-3 decision … worse still for Mikael, rival goaltender Tim Thomas returned from injury for this match and was the far superior player on the night … things returned to normal later in the week, with Tellqvist back to standing on his head in twin 4-1 ins for Djurgarden over Bjorkloven and Brynas … at this stage in the season, Mikael still owns solid leads in every meaningful SEL goaltending category including a sparklin Read more »

Simon Gamache Nets a QMJHL Player of the Week Hat Trick

by pbadmin
on
Simon Gamache was named the QMJHL offensive Player of the Week for the Week of November 20th. , Gamache recorded three goals and six assists in three games, to lead the Val d’or Foreurs to a 3-0 record. Gamache is just 25 points shy of 300 in his QMJHL Career. Scouts and coaches say that Gamache is showing great strides, especially in his Defensive play. He leads the Foreurs with a +21 Rating after 28 Games. Simon was the Thrashers 9th round pick in the 2000 NHL Draft. The Thrashers are hoping that Gamache can follow Brad Richards, who led the QMJHL in scoring last season, and has been successful as a member of the Tampa Bay Lightning, in this, his rookie year.

Tomas Kloucek: Playing Solid On Broadway

by Brandon LeBourveau
on
Kloucek, a 6’3 220 lbs. defenseman from Prague, Czechoslovakia, was selected by the Rangers in the 5th round (131st overall) of the 1998 draft. The season after being drafted, Kloucek came over to North America and played with the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles for the ’98-’99 season, registering 4 goals and 17 assists (21 points) in 59 games, along with 162 penalty minutes. The next season, at 19 years old, Kloucek was playing outstanding as a rookie for the Hartford Wolf Pack of the AHL. He had 2 goals, 8 assists and 113 PIM in 73 games during the regular season, while chipping in 4 assists and 18 PIM in 23 playoff contests en route to a Calder Cup winning season for the Hartford Wolf Pack. Kloucek was a dominating presence on the Wolf Pack’s blue line, as he was voted the Wolf Pack’s most outstanding rookie and was also voted to the AHL’s all-rookie team. He came to training camp this season looking to make the team as a 20 year old, but after a long look was sent back down to Hartford to get some playing time. Through 11 games with the Wolf Pack this year, Kloucek had 1 assist and 28 PIMS. On Saturday, November 11th, when Defenseman Mike Mottau was sent down to Hartford for likely the rest of the season, Kloucek was recalled and got his first taste of NHL action.

He made his NHL debut the following day against the Phoenix Coyotes, a game in which the Rangers were shutout 2-0. Kloucek played a steady game, while not getting much ice time thanks to Brian Leetch who barely gets off the ice. Kloucek hasn’t made any highlight-reel plays, but that’s not his styl Read more »

Svatos’ Frustration Mounting

by Jeff Bromley
on
There are times when a hockey player has to sit on the sidelines instead of playing the game they love. Injuries, suspensions or the dreaded
‘healthy scratch’ keeping them out of the line-up are all the usual reasons for a player not in the game. Kootenay ICE European forward Marek
Svatos is experiencing that feeling, only not because of any of the aforementioned reasons.

The slick Slovakian center, who has only played in eleven of the twenty-six ICE contests so far this season and still occupies the seventh spot
on team scoring with sixteen points, is sitting on the sidelines for another reason, one he has little control over – bureaucratic hockey wrangling.
In order for any European hockey player to play in the North American junior leagues, a release from that players’ home country governing
hockey body or former hockey club must be obtained by the team he plays for. In Svatos’ case, the issue boils down to a contract he signed
with a Slovakian professional club before knowing he was coming to Canada and the Kootenay ICE. Svatos, who is eligible for the 2001 NHL
Draft in Sunrise, Florida is dying to get back on the ice. “I am frustrated by not being able to play,” said the native of Slovakia through teammate
Zdenek Blatny, who acted as interpreter for the interview. “I’m a little mad at my old team in Slovakia, but it’s my own fault too, I signed the
contract.” Marek is also concerned that the games missed might have somewhat of a negative affect in the possibility of being drafted by an
NHL club this June. “I’m not playing, the scouts can Read more »

Hartford`s Dietrich Impresses

by Evan Andriopoulos
on
Dietrich the 22 year old has lots of speed, but struggled at the AHL level until about the last two weeks when he put his game into high gear. Dietrich has been flanked by fellow rookies Stefan (hardly a rookie) Cherneski, Richard Scott and Boyd Kane.

The Dietrich-Cherneski and Kane line was one of Hartford`s best in a 3-1 victory over Worcester Sunday. Dietrich scored his first professional goal off a beautiful pass from Stefan Cherneski, who recorded his first point since November of 1998. Kane recorded his second assist on the play.

The line has been working together and moulding into a potent down low hard working unit. Dietrich, who has been a healthy scratch for five games and been used sparingly in most of the 13 he has played knows his units role, to create chances and perhaps draw a penalty.

Dietrich was quoted in the Hartford Courant “It’s tough not playing, but you can’t sit and pout. You have to make the most of your chances. There are a couple of other guys in the same situation who are going out and trying hard. Chipping in the odd goal helps out. It takes a little load off and makes you feel a little better.”

LEAGUE NOTES

The AHL appears to be anti-Hartford when it comes to dishing out awards. Brad Smyth who recorded 6 goals in 4 games was left out of player of the week consideration as was new to club goalie Vitali Yeremeyev who recorded a shut out in his first appearance and recorded a 3-0 record with a goals against of 0.92.