As the 2001 NHL Entry Draft has now concluded, teams look at their
prospects to determine where they stand in depth, skill, and overall
strength of their prospects.
The requirement for being on this list is simple: 25 games played or
less at the NHL level. I rank the players on two categories: 75% of
their ranking is obviously based on skill and 25% based on how quickly
the player will make an impact on the roster. After the player review
is listed where the player will likely play in 2001, followed by when I
expect them to be a regular on the Sharks.
1st: Remaining atop the list of Sharks prospects is Jeff Jillson,
however, his lead is not as wide as it was last year. While Jillson has
done nothing to reduce his standing, others have improved theirs,
getting within arms reach of the top spot on the Sharks depth chart.
The winner of the CCHA Player of the Week for October 23rd, Jillson led
Michigan’s defense to second place with ten goals and 20 assists in 35
games, finishing the year on an impressive note in his offense. He
recorded a +17 on the season, and spent 74 minutes watching the game
from the penalty box.
While his offense has been down at times, the upside is that Jillson has
been playing a much smarter game than 99/00 and has been more
responsible defensively. He has refrained from committing the types of
penalties resulting of him not reading the play quick enough, then being
forced into a penalty to prevent a goal.
The main reason Jeff Jillson returned to Michigan last season was
toimprove his consistency an Read more »
The Blue and White Report Magazine is back and we have two exciting editions
for you this season!! Due to an overwhelming response which resulted from
last year’s magazine, we have produced a 2nd annual issue which reports
totally on the Maple Leafs’ future.
The 1st issue, due for release on July 15th, is The Blue and White Report:
Prospects Handbook. This magazine has profiles, photos, scouting reports,
interviews, and articles on the top 10 Maple Leafs prospects. We then have
a scouting report, profile and interviews on the next 16 Leafs’ prospects as
We have extensive profiles on the top 26 propsects in the organization!!
We have a report on St. John’s players, and scouting reports and profiles on
ALL of the 2001 Maple Leafs’ draft choices. As always we have included “A
Blast from the Past” and have feature articles on the Maple Leafs drafting
and prospects development philosophy.
This magazine sells for $4.99 US, $7.99 Canadian, which includes shipping
and handling (For orders outside North America, add $3 for shipping to the
US price). This magazine is not available on newsstands.
Our second issue this year, due for release on or about August 15th, is The
Blue and White Report: Preseason Issue. This magazine has extensive
profiles, photos, scouting reports, and statistical projections on all
Toronto Maple Leafs players (including all off-season acquistions up to
press-time) and in addition has feature articles on 1/2 of those players
also!!! There is a section on A Blast from the Past, a repor Read more »
Jeff Farkas-Prospect or Suspect?
The is a school of thought out there that is starting to have doubts about Baby Bud winger Jeff Farkas. Picked out of that NCAA hockey factory Boston College in the 3rd round of the 1997 draft with the first choice the Leafs had in that selection process (thanks Cliff, thanks a lot), the knock on him has always been his size. He is equally adept at finishing and dishing and skates like the wind, but many wonder why he hasn’t become a regular at the ACC as of yet. Those that do point to such players that, drafted in later years, are already mainstays with their teams. Some were picked lower in the draft than Farkas, but by and large most were top ten, top twenty picks. That said, Farkas will be 23 years old when training camp rolls around and therein his critics find their most tangible point. But take a look around the league, specifically at those teams who’s farm system is the envy of all others. Ville Nieminen, the latest in a long line of Colorado blue chippers, got his first taste of NHL action when he was, you guessed it, 23 years old. Chris Drury, another NCAA product and a Hobey Baker Award winner made the jump when he was 22 as did Czech product Milan Hejduk. All were 3rd or 4th round selections. The fly in this ointment, Alex Tanguay, who was playing with the Avs at the age of 20, was picked 12th overall in 1998. Or how about the New Jersey Devils? Pierre Dagenais, widely tipped to take Alexander Mogilny’s spot in the line-up will be 23 when he reports in September. If it isn’t him, then it will sure Read more »
Every NHL team’s main goal is to improve from season to season. This improvement usually comes through the maturing of young players, off-season trades, and a “fiscally responsible” dip into the free-agent waters. André Savard’s recent moves definitely fall into the above categories. The Canadiens have improved since last year. They have added 48 goals to the roster (Perreault-24, Dackell-13, Juneau-10, Quintal-1), without giving up a single player from last season’s squad.
The Habs have increased their depth; bringing in a trio of forwards who could possibly step in as the team’s number two line. In fact, these players would have been the Canadiens’ number one line for most of last season; given the team’s injury problems.
Yanic Perreault joins the team, and instantly becomes the top goal scorer on the roster (using last season’s numbers). He was the league’s top face-off man, with a winning percentage of 63%. This aspect of his game will immediately improve the Habs’ special teams; a part of the game where puck-control is tantamount to success.
His salary of under $3 Million per season allows Savard to keep the team’s salary structure in order. This is particularly important when it is considered that Saku Koivu and Brian Savage are restricted free-agents. If we accept the fact that Koivu should be the highest paid skater on the team, then signing a free-agent to more than $3 Million would send Koivu’s salary through the roof. Player’s salaries are affected as much by the team’s fiscal structure as they are by the league’s.
Per Read more »
Death by a Thousand Cuts for Killer?
This must be getting frustrating for Ottawa 67’s Coach Brian Kilrea. For the second year in a row, his first line center going into training camp, a draft pick of the Toronto Maple Leafs, looks like he won’t be playing in the OHL this year. Last year, a heart murmur detected in Luca Cereda wiped him out for the entire schedule after heart surgery. Up until that time, he was a serious pre-season candidate to be the OHL’s Player of the Year. Enter Vadim Sozinov. After a slow start to his initial campaign with the 67’s, he became an integral part of Kilrea’s attack and the coach had gone so far as to predict a breakout year from the second year junior. He may well have that breakout year, but it looks like it won’t be in Ottawa, rather in Novokuznetsk of the Russian Elite League. Make no mistake, if the Khazakh forward makes the big squad in Russia, he’ll be playing in a league that is just a step below the NHL and above anything he’d find in the OHL or on ‘The Rock’. But he also might end up playing for their junior team as well. In any case, with this decision, Brian Kilrea has got to be wondering how long he’s going to have Jaroslav Sklenar in the Black, White, and Red, who, you guessed it, was another Leaf pick that he chose in the import draft.
The Door Swings Open for Tellqvist
With the placing of Glenn Healy on waivers and the signing of Swedish goaltender Mikael Tellqvist to a 3 year deal it looks like one of the SEL’s most dominant players in the last two sea Read more »
Evan, Edge and I took the time to make new rankings for the Rangers section here at Hockeysfuture. We each made our own Top 30 list, and then we combined the three together and came up with the final list, which was kind of the average of the three lists. Each player ranked by each of us got a certain number of points. A player ranked 1st on a list received 30 points, and a player ranked 30th received 1 point. I totaled up all the points and then ranked the players from most points to least, and that’s how I got these rankings. If you do not agree with any of the rankings, that’s fine. Since the list was put together in part by the three of us, there are some players on this list that we each feel should be higher or lower, but overall this is a solid list, and I’m sure people will disagree with it, however that is your opinion. Anyway, on to the rankings and I hope you enjoy them! (Note: the comments for the players were contributed to by the three of us)
Read more »
Fredrik Sjostrom, drafted 11th Overall by the Coyotes in the 2001 Entry Draft, was drafted 39th Overall by the Calgary Hitmen of the WHL in last week’s CHL Import Draft. Sjostrom has signed a contract with the Hitmen and will skate for them in the WHL this upcoming season.
It is believed Coyotes 1st round pick in ’00, center Krys Kolanos, is close to signing a 3 year contract with the Coyotes. The deal should be completed before training camp. The Coyotes also came to terms with 6’4 Swiss defenseman Goran Bezina, an 8th round pick in 1999.
The Coyotes acquired 24 year old center Daymond Langkow from the Philadelphia Flyers in return for two future draft picks. Cliff Fletcher continues to change around this whole team.
Jeremy Roenick signed with the Philadelphia Flyers this week. The Coyotes should receive a 2nd round pick in the 2002 Draft as compensation for Roenick leaving the team via Free Agency.
SUNRISE, FL – Florida Panthers Assistant General Manager Chuck Fletcher announced today that the club has agreed in principle with its top two European prospects, Swedish left wing Kristian Huselius and Finnish left wing Niklas Hagman. Both players led their teams in goals last season and have represented their countries in numerous world tournaments.
Huselius, the Panthers’ second choice (47th overall) in the 1997 NHL Entry Draft, led the entire Swedish League last season in goals (32), assists (35), points (67), power play goals (10), shorthanded goals (5), and game-winning goals (9) in 49 games. It marked the first time a player swept all six categories in Swedish League history and it is believed to be a first in any major European league. Playing for Vastra Frolunda, the 22-year-old (11/10/78) tied for the team lead in plus/minus (+15) and added a team-leading nine points (4-5-9) in five playoff games. Born in Stockholm, Sweden, Huselius stands 6’ 1” and weighs 195 pounds. Huselius also participated in the World Championships in Germany this past year helping Sweden to a 3-2 bronze medal victory over the United States. He finished tied for seventh on his team in scoring with two goals and three assists in nine tournament games.
“Kristian is a gifted offensive player who adeptly combines excellent puck handling skills with tremendous speed,” stated Fletcher. “After an initial adjustment period to NHL-style hockey, we expect him to be a quality offensive player for our organization for years to come.”
Hagman, the Panthers’ thir Read more »
The first to go was Peter Lorentzen by the Tri City Americans with the 13th overall pick. Lorentzen played for Norwegian Elite Team Stjernen-Fredrikstad the last season and looks to make a splash in the Canadian Junior System following such Norwegians as Anders Myrvold(Laval) and Bård Sorlie(Plymouth) among others. Lorentzen a left wing is NHL Draft Eligible in 2002.
The other Norwegian taken was center Patrick Thoresen of Storhamar by Moncton with the 30th pick overall. Thoresen is also looking to make a big splash in the CHL and will be NHL Draft Eligible in 2002.
Norway making a big splash in the Canadian Juniors. Keep an eye on these kids as they may prove to be the next generation NHLers.
Nashville Predators 2nd pick in the 2001 NHL Entry Draft (33rd Overall).
Timofei Shishkanov’s 6’1 and 203lb frame is definitely more then sufficient for the rigors of the NHL. He is a very talented player. Timofei is an excellent skater, able to blow by his opponents with great moves and fast speed. He also possesses a solid shot, though he rarely uses it and does not really have a trademark shot that he is known for. Timofei Shishkanov is also a very good puck handler, able to work it in both zones of the ice.
According to a Finnish observer from the U18 2001 World Junior Championships, Timofei had a comprable skill set to that of Kovalchuk, but “the difference between Kovalchuk and Shishkanov is the hunger, Kovalchuk wants all the time desperately [to] score goals, but Shishkanov sometimes floats around.” The observer added further that Kovalchuk shot the puck a lot more then Shishkanov, while Shishkanov seemed “meaner, more unpredictable and stronger then Kovalchuk”. The main area where Shishkanov loses to players of Kovlachuk’s class is in his hockey sense. He still has not developed that knack for making split second decisions on the ice that players of Kovalchuk’s caliber possess.
Read more »