Now that the World Junior Championships have completed and most leagues are at the halfway point of the season, it’s time to readjust the Top 20 prospect list for the Pens prospects. And because of a graduation prospect, we have a new #1. First off, because of time played in the NHL, this prospects have been moving off the list to graduated status:
Kris Beech, C Pittsburgh Penguins (NHL)
41 games, 5 goals, 12 assists, 17 points
Josef Melichar, D Pittsburgh Penguins (NHL)
41 games, 0 goals, 3 assists, 3 points
Toby Peterson, C Pittsburgh Penguins (NHL)
41 games, 6 goals, 7 assists, 13 points
And now for the newly updated Pens prospect list:
1) Brooks Orpik, D Wilkes-Barre (AHL)
Season: 40 games, 1 goal, 11 assists, 12 points, -8, 50 PIM
Moves up to the first spot with the graduation of Kris Beech. Played well early in the season, was one of the only players on the team with a positive +/-. Play has slipped a bit lately, but still playing well for during his first professional season. Will be a candidate for a spot on the NHL team next season or a possible late season callup.
2) Michal Sivek, C Slava Praha (Czech)
Season: 25 games, 4 goals, 8 assists, 12 points, -12, 30 PIM (WBS)
Read more »
Toronto – The Ontario Hockey League today announced that Oshawa Generals
centre Jamie Johnson has been named to the Eastern Conference All-Star Team
that will compete in the first game of the 2002 Hershey Cup CHL All-Star
Series January 16, 2002 at the Ottawa Civic Centre. Johnson replaces injured
forward Cory Stillman of the Kingston Frontenacs.
Johnson, a 19-year-old native of Port Franks, ON, leads the Generals in
scoring this season with 12 goals and 39 assists for 51 points in 40 games.
He was a fifth round pick of the Ottawa 67’s in the 1999 OHL Priority
2002 MASTERCARD MEMORIAL CUP ANNOUNCEMENT TO BE MADE WEEK OF JANUARY 21
The Ontario Hockey League will announce the site of the 2002 MasterCard
Memorial Cup the week of Monday, January 21, the league announced Thursday.
OHL Commissioner and CHL President David Branch also advised all four of the
franchises bidding for the tournament of the decision time frame Thursday.
The four teams bidding are the Barrie Colts, the Erie Otters, the Guelph
Storm and the Ottawa 67’s.
The OHL’s trading deadline is Thursday at 6 p.m. The league advised all
teams prior to the selection process that the winning bid would be announced
after the OHL’s trading deadline and the announcement timing was determined
“The quality of the four bids was without question outstanding,” Branch
said. “We are confident that no matter where the 2002 MasterCard Memorial
Cup winds up, the teams, fans and media involved will be treated to an
outstandi Read more »
HF: Sweden just finished the game vs Slovakia 2-2 after being down 2-0 later in the third period. What is your view on the match?
Jonsson: We had most of the play but couldn’t score. I’m glad that in the end we could finally convert the many power plays we had.
HF: What about the remainder of the tournament for Team Sweden?
Jonsson: Well with the knockout system there in the quarter finals you have to take it game by game there. My hopes are for a medal, but one bad game and you’re out of contention. First though we face the Czech Republic in our final group match and that will be an important game for us.
HF: What are your personal goals at this WJC?
Jonsson: I try to play as good as I can of course. I know there are a lot of scouts here, but I am here to perform with Sweden, not just for myself. I want to help the team as much as possible.
HF: How do you see your future? Will you move to North America soon?
Jonsson: I don’t know. I take it year by year and see how things go. I don’t think about it too much really.
HF: Your club team, Leksands, has many players in this WJC squad. How come they always have such good young players?
Jonsson: Hard to tell. Leksands is a popular place to go to for kids. They take good care of you with school as well.
HF: Leksands is currently playing in the 2nd league. Will you promote to the Elitserien this year?
Jonsson: That is our big goal for sure. I really hope we succeed.
HF: However if Leksands won’t promote, will the playe Read more »
It’s no secret that Duncan Milroy was surprised to find himself traded to the Kootenay ICE last month. It’s also no secret that Milroy is considered something of a dominant offensive force in the WHL. Being a 2001 second round NHL draft pick (37th overall) of the Montreal Canadiens will do that for you. Then for a player walk into a new town for a new team and pick up where he left off on his old club wouldn’t be too far out of the realm of possibility, would it? Perhaps, at least, at first. Filling the shoes of a popular team leader would be daunting by any means but one that actually brought some young fans to tears at the news of the trade? Talk about being behind the eightball.
Period of adjustment, new surroundings, post-trade slump – call it what you will – Milroy was experiencing it, and then some. No pressure or anything. Just replace a player that was not only captain but a tireless worker, played in almost every situation and was viewed upon, rightly or wrongly, as almost never making a mistake.
Duncan Milroy had his work cut out for him.
A month after the trade, Milroy is starting to not only feel more comfortable in the colors of the Kootenay ICE but look more comfortable on the ice too. After last weekend’s three-game set which saw the Edmonton native amass five points and be a factor in every contest, the contribution requested of Milroy is becoming somewhat more clear. And Milroy is eager to respond. “I think I’ve just been playing my game, being myself,” said Milroy after Saturday’s 6-3 win over the Hitmen. “I think I fit in with the tea Read more »
If the sign on the door clearly says ‘not for sale’, then the fence around the place is always in need of some fixin’.
That, in a nutshell, is the prevalent attitude emitting from the offices of the Kootenay ICE as the club heeds the WHL’s trading deadline January 14. Like a child drawing up his letter to St. Nick, ICE G.M. has a list of players that could help his hockey club that he’s checked twice. But then again, so does every other G.M. in the WHL.
“If I had a wish list like everyone else in this league I’d like to get another defensemen,” said Chynoweth before he and his club left on a weekend road trip to the Prairies. “But we’re not alone. You can ask anyone in our league, they’re always looking for a defensemen but that would be our first choice.” Chynoweth also added that possibly a forward would be a nice addition but then again, so would most clubs.
Save for a one or two weaker members of the league and the expansion Vancouver Giants, the theme of parity among almost all WHL clubs is paramount this season. With parity comes hope, hope that any of the playoff bound clubs can make some noise in the post-season.
It also makes for a somewhat dull trading deadline segue way with transactions between teams kept at a premium.
“I think there’s a lot of parity in this league,” said Chynoweth. “That’s the word – parity – and that means there’s a lot of good hockey teams.”
“I don’t think that there’s any one good hockey team like last year where Red Deer was the best team and stuck out so far ahead of everybody. This year there’s Read more »
Top 3 players
As selected by the tournament directorate:
GK: Kari Lehtonen (FIN)
D: Igor Knyazev (RUS)
F: Mike Cammalleri (CAN)
Media All-Star Team
GK: Pascal Leclaire (CAN)
D: Jay Bouwmeester (CAN)
D: Igor Knyazev (RUS)
F: Mike Cammalleri (CAN)
F: Marek Svatos (SVK)
F: Stanislav Chistov (RUS)
G: Kari Letonen (FIN)
D: Magnus Hedlund (SWE)
D: Anton Volchenkov (RUS)
F: Toni Koivisto (FIN)
F: Brad Boyes (CAN)
F: Aleksandr Frolov (RUS)
The three best players of each team
BLR: Andrei Kastsitsyn, Aleksandr Kulakov, Sergey Rachovsky
CAN: Mike Cammalleri, Brian Sutherby, Steve Ott
CZE: Lukas Hronek, Tomas Plekanec, Jiri Novotny
FIN: Kari Lehtonen, Olli Malmivaara, Jussi Jokinen
FRA: Landry Macrez, Wilfried Molmy, Aram Kevorkiam
RUS: Aleksandr Polishin, Aleksandr Frolov, Yuri Trubachev
SVK: Peter Budaj, Tomas Malec, Marek Svatos
SWE: Magnus Hedlund, Daniel Widing, Pär Bäcker
SWI: Beat Gerber, Thibaut Monnet, Andreas Camenzind
USA: Ben Eaves, Ryan Hollweg, Christopher Higgins
The 2002 World Junior Championships have come and gone, with the Russian team taking home the gold medal as a result of their 5-4 victory over Canada in the WJC finale. While the Russians can bask in the fleeting feeling of glory days gone by, another former Eastern Bloc nation, the WJC host and defending champ Czech Republic, were left to ponder a disappointing 7th place finish.
As luck would have it, the Buffalo Sabres sported just 2 prospects participating in the WJC, with both of those players playing for the Czech squad. C Jiri Novotny and LW Michal Vondrka were both 2001 draft choices for Buffalo, with Novotny being the more high profile of the two due to his status as a 1st round pick. Both players also play for the same organization, Budejovice, with Novotny playing in the top Czech league and Vondrka splitting his time between the elite and junior squads.
If one were to judge strictly by statistics, it could be said that neither player had a particularly good showing at the WJC. Both players notched just 2 points in 7 games, with Novotny logging 2 assists, and Vondrka netting 1 while adding a helper. Both players were a minus for the tournament (Novotny –3, Vondrka –2), while also sporting nearly identical shots-on-goal numbers (Novotny 12, Vondrka 11).
In the case of Vondrka, at least, the statistics didn’t lie. As reported to me by Robert Neuhauser, the Czech Editor for Hockey’s Future, Michal’s performance was largely disappointing, mainly due to the fact that he didn’t see a Read more »
WHEELING NAILERS WEEK IN REVIEW
Monday, December 31 Roanoke 3 @ Wheeling 4
This was the second meeting of the season between the Express and the Nailers with the Express winning the first game 4-1 in Wheeling on October 27. In this game the Express opened up a 1-0 lead on a Mike Peron goal at 5:43 of the first period. Wheeling tied the score at 1-1 at 7:13 on a Mark Major goal with Dylan Gyori and Mike Hurley assisting. Roanoke would score two more times in the first period and lead 3-1 through the first 20 minutes. In the second period the Nailers would get back to within one on a Ken Tasker goal at 8:21. Derek Ernest and Doug Schmidt assisted of the goal. The Nailers tied the game 3-3 at 13:14 of the second period on Major’s second goal of the game with Hurley and Kurt Drummond assisting. The Nailers took their first lead of the game at 4-3 just :40 into the third period on a Hurley goal. Major and Gyori assisted on the game winning goal. Tyler MacKay made 32 saves on 35 shots for the win.
Friday, January 4 Peoria 1 @ Wheeling 3
In the season series with the Rivermen, the Nailers were 1-3-0 entering this contest. Jeremy Brown gave the Nailers a 1-0 lead in the first period with a power play goal at 11:31. Chris Wells and Mike Hurley picked up the assists on the only goal scored in the first period. Dmitri Doulebenets increased the Nailers lead to 2-0 at 2:45 of the second period with Bruce Watson and Arpad Mihaly assisting. Peoria scored their only goal of the game at 7:16 of the second period to make it a 2-1 game. B Read more »
Heading into the 2001-02 NHL season, Thrasher fans had two reasons to be both excited and concerned. Those two reasons were Dany Heatley (#2 in 2000 NHL draft) and Ilya Kovalchuk (#1 in 2001). Both were highly touted by scouts and management as potential superstar caliber players. For an offensively challenged team like Atlanta this was welcome news. On the other hand, fans had reasons to be concerned about each player’s development. The club’s other first round pick Patrick Stefan (#1 overall in 1999) had shown limited offensive flair in his first two injury plagued seasons. Some wondered whether the 18 year-old Kovalchuk might be better off returning to Spartak for another year before submitting himself to the rigors of a NHL season. In addition, Thrasher’s GM Don Waddell tried to keep expectations low by saying that each would need to work hard to score 20 goals in his rookie season.
Fast-forward forty-one NHL games later and it is clear that the club made the right decision to play both of these top prospects this year. Both players lead the NHL rookie scoring race and were named co-rookies of the month for December. Heatley (16-18-34) and Kovalchuk (17-16-33) also lead the team in scoring by a considerable margin, given the slow start of veterans Ferraro and Hrkac. The two rookies have produced have produced 34% of the team’s goals at the halfway point. Even more impressive is the fact that their numbers put them in the company of established star players such as Elias, Fedorov, Hossa, Nolan and Guerin. GM Waddell and Coach Fraser have repea Read more »