NCAA Players to make impact on drafts first day
By Carl Tilleson
As this weekend’s NHL draft approaches, teams are busy finalizing who they will go after when they’re on the clock. More than ever before, these prospective draftees are coming from the college ranks. It wasn’t long ago that even the top college players were little more than an afterthought, not likely to be picked early on. These days however ,teams are looking more and more to the NCAAs for an impact player. Players such as Paul Kariya (Maine) and Chris Drury (Boston U) have starred as soon as they made the NHL. Other college players have provided teams the role players they needed to make a title run. New Jersey may never have won the Stanley Cup in 99-00 without the abilities of guys such as John Madden (Michigan), Jay Pandolfo (Boston U), and Brian Rafalski (Wisconsin). College hockey as a whole has provided the NHL with more talent than ever before. This year should be no different, as there are several players who could provide help to the teams drafting early on Saturday. The following is a quick look at the top 5 college players heading into this weekend’s draft. The numbers in the parantheses indicate the player’s CSS ranking.
Mike Komisarek Read more »
Expect to hear the names of OHL defencemen called early and often at this weekend’s NHL Entry Draft. This is a bumper crop of fleet-footed, skilled players, no lumbering oafs here. NHL central scouting has seven OHL defencemen rated among their top 30 North American prospects. Compare this total with three from the Western league and one each for the Q and the NCAA. Here’s a quick look at this bumper crop (in alpha order):
A classic European-trained player, skating and puck skills are his best assets. Straight-away speed keeps opposing fore-checkers honest and lets him cheat a little in the offensive zone much like Brian Leetch. Outstanding lateral mobility makes him tough to beat wide and tough to defend when quarterbacking the PP. He makes crisp tape-to-tape breakout passes and handles the puck with confidence whether on the rush or the PP. Not a heavyweight, he doesn’t intimidate the opposition physically but does finish his checks and battles hard in the trenches. This Czech could use more Petr Svoboda-style grit in his game.
Read more »
A look back at last year’s draft and then take a look at this year’s draft.
Last year’s draft was a good draft and could turn into a great draft if some of the players that didn’t make the NHL this year make the team in a few years.
In drafting Marian Gaborik and L. Sekeras it was a good draft already. Maxim Sushinsky was exciting as they come, but he couldn’t handle America and went back to Russia. Peter Bartos played well at times and should make the team next year. There 2nd round pick Nick Schultz is exciting and could turn out to be a top 4 defenesman. Mark Cavosie made the world juniors team, and has all the speed in the world. Eric Johansson scored 44 goals but is known more for his defense.
Doug Risebrough drafted 3 players that could play in the NHLin his first of drafting, how many will he draft this year? And that’s what I will look at now.
Doug Risebrough has many options that he can choose from:
Option 1- Taking a center with the number 6 pick in the draft, The draft is deep with centers and that’s the wild’s main need. The wild could take any of these players, Stephen Weiss, R.J. Umberger, Alexander Svitov, Mikko Koivu, and Tuomo Ruttu. My guess is Stitov, and Koivu will be gone, so Wiess would be the center of choice.
Option 2- A LW or RW, Stanislav Christov is the only worthy forward taking at this pick. and he should be taken by then.
Option 3- A goaltender, if they take a goaltender the man is Dan Blackburn, Doug Risebrough is in love with this guy, if he’s there he’s the Wild’s number one pick.
Opt Read more »
There are less than 48 hours until Ilja Kovalchuck will be selected 1st overall in the 2001 entry draft; the first ever Russian to be the top pick. It is clear by now that Kovalchuck is what interests the Thrashers most. “We’re certainly very high on the Russian player. We’re going to follow up this week, meet again with the top three or four players in the draft. Yeah, as I sit here today, you know, the Russian is very high on our list. We think he’s a dominant player. Could be a potential superstar.” Waddell says.
“This is probably the most important thing that’s happened to the franchise in its short three years.” (the 1st overall pick) ” How we deal with this pick could definitely be the biggest thing for the next five or six years that this franchise has to deal with.”
Most NHL Gm’s are currently in Florida at this moment. There has been many rumours on trading the pick to the Buffalo Sabres or the Montreal Canadiens. Waddell says he has spoken to Montreal GM, Andre Savard on his goaltenders and his draft picks. But says there “isn’t anything on the table” at the moment. Montreal GM Andre Savard says he is very interested in gaining the 1st overall pick to select Kovalchuck, but is not willing to let go of Theodore. Maybe Garon and the 7th overall pick.
Why are most trade rumours about goalies heading to Atlanta? It’s simple. The Thrashers need a good young goalie. They have veteran, Damian Rhodes who was injured for most of the last season. They also have Norm Maracle who was goaltender of the IHL this year. But they need a young goalie who c Read more »
Today’s events started with the obligitary “Meet the Prospects” event in Downtown Ft Lauderdale. At Riverfront, a local tourist shopping and dining complex, a small but eager crowd waited in the on again, off again rain for their opportunity to see the players they probably have only read about in the papers.
As Denis Potvin warmed the crowd up with stories of past drafts, a water-taxi quietly sailed up the adjecant New River bearing Stanley, the Panther mascot, and 12 of the top prospects.
Jason Spezza, Mikko Koivu, R.J. Umberger, Dan Hamhuis, Mike Komisarek, Lukas Krajicek, Pascal LeClaire, Dan Blackburn, Stanislav Chistov, Alexander Svitov, Ilya Kovalchuk, and Stephen Weiss no doubt enjoyed the solitude of the open water before being thrown into the media luncheon.
After being introduced to the crowd and signing some autographs, the players all headed into a local che-che bistro to meet the media. LeClaire and Blackburn met with some large crowds, while Spezza and Kovalchuk undoubtably had their share. Watching Spezza work the room was a pleasure, and it quickly reminded me that this kid has been doing this thing for the last 3 years. Whatever team selects him will definitely have a media and fanfriendly marquee-type player.
Chistov and Svitov seemed to be slightly uncomfortable among the media crush, and were basically left alone almost the whole time by the heavily slanted North American media. Svitov doesn’t speak English, and Chistov might not be so confident with his English. It made for a difficult interview.
One of the more a Read more »
By: Alexander Shapiro
By: Eugene Belashchenko ( http://www.russianprospects.com)
Chistov: Russian Karya? That title does not intrigue me
the last month Avangard forward Stanislav Chistov moved into second place
amongst the most promising juniors of the world and now gives way to only Ilja
Kovalchuk. Yesterday Chistov was
phoned in Florida by SE correspondent.Read more »
Well, it’s that time of year again. The most important time of the year for
an NHL franchise. No, not golf season (unless your Alexei Yashin). I mean
the draft. While the playoffs are the most high profile of all the events
that take place through out the season, the NHL Entry Draft is the place
where the future cornerstones of every NHL team -and even of the NHL itself-
are put into place. The following is the second annual mock draft done by
myself. Last year’s mock draft had a good/bad outcome. While most of the
players I selected to go in the first round did actually go in the first
round, I wasn’t as accurate in picking their final destination. This year, I
have decided to go to a two round mock draft, which will prove to be an even
bigger challenge, but one I feel up to. This should provide even more reason
for criticism, which I look forward too. Here is a list of the draft
selection order for the first two rounds including compensatory draft picks.
This has been updated as recently as June 20th and is supplied by the
2. NY Islanders
3. Tampa Bay
10. NY Rangers
13. Boston *
18. Los Angeles
19. Edmonton *
20. San Jose
24. New Jersey (from STL)
25. Montreal (from WSH)
28. New Jersey
29. Chicago (from DET)
30. Los Angeles (f Read more »
Days before the NHL Entry Draft, and many Canadiens’ fans are already sitting on their hands in anticipation. The next two weeks will be chalk full of big news, so let’s take this opportunity to re-cap the most recent happenings in Hab-land.
Vadim Tarasov (7th round, 1999) has reportedly signed a two-year contract with the Canadiens. However, Montreal management has yet to announce the signing. Tarasov was named top goalie in Russia during each of the last 3 years. He finished last season with a 16-13-4 record, a 2.10 GAA, and a .912 save percentage. He’ll likely make his first official appearance in North America during the Canadiens’ prospect camp to be held in August.
The Canadiens will receive a compensatory pick for the loss of Shayne Corson via free-agency. The pick will fall in the fourth round (109th overall). The Corson pick gives the Habs a total of 10 picks in this year’s draft. They will pick 7th, 25th, 37th, 71st, 104th, 109th, 171st, 203rd, 235th, and 266th.
Add Tyler Hanchuk (3rd round, 2000), and Petr Chvojka (6th round 2000) to the list of former Hab draft picks re-entering this year’s NHL Draft. Unlike Dusty Jamieson (5th round, 1999), and Sean Dixon (6th round, 1999) who can re-enter the draft because they were unable to come to terms on a contract before the June 1st deadline, the Habs only had to offer a contract to Hanchuk and Chvojka in order to retain their rights. Not doing so is known in NHL circles as renouncing rights.
In related news Matt Carkner (2nd round, 1999) has reportedly signed a deal with the Read more »
Here is a look at Bryan Allen, a well known Canucks prospect.
Bryan Allen was drafted by the Canucks in the 1998 NHL entry draft in the first round, #4 overall.
Allen is a big guy, listed at 6’4 weighing in at around 215 pounds. Allen has the potential to be a Chris Pronger like defenceman, if he hadn’t of run into all those injuries. Remember the locker room one? Where he slipped on a bar of soap in the shower, and broke a bone in his ankle. Injuries like that have made the road to recovery a hard one for Bryan. So many injuries, in such a short amount of time. He has fought through all of the tough injuries, but still has the scars.
Allen had a very solid junior career, for the Oshawa Generals of the OHL. In his first season with Oshawa, he recorded 6 points in 60 games played. Not very good if you ask me. Every year since that year back in 1996-1997 he has improved greatly. The next season for Oshawa, Allen recorded 19 points in 48 games played, including an incredible 126 penalty minutes. His best season with the Canucks organization was last year with the Kansas City Blades, the farm team for the Canucks. Allen played in 75 games, before being called up by the Canucks. He recorded 25 points, and 99 penalty minutes. Then he was called up by the Canucks, and appeared in 6 games, where he was solid.
Kansas-City Blades IHL GP 75 G 5 A 20 P 25 PIM 99
As for the future, I see Bryan Allen as a top 4 defenceman soon. He definitely has the tools to be a rock solid player. He just needs to gain NHL experience. Read more »
The big “day” is coming…
Draft day is coming in less than 3 days, will Atlanta GM, Don Wadell
trade the pick?
“There is now a 75% chance that I will keep the pick,” Waddell says.
“That’s based on the fact that when you have more time to do your
homework and review your options, this player begins to grow on you. It
just gets harder and harder to trade this pick.”
Wadell had about 1 or 2 tempting offers, to trade the 1st overall draft
The best offer he had received came from the Montreal Canadiens, who
2 draft picks in the first round and 3 goalies. (Jeff Hackett, Jose
Theodore and Mathieu Garon.)
The Thrashers would be most interested in Mathieu Garon.
Don Wadell says he had never discussed with the Sabres organization on
Mike Peca and a goalie.
Wadell has interviewed both Kovalchuck and Svitov, and is interested in
both of them.
But he is more likely to select Kovalchuck. Kovalchuck, 6’2 – 207
pounds, is an incredibly
skilled player with amazing puck handling and checking abilities. “He is
a high-skilled player who can go around players, but he can also go over
them,” Waddell says. “He’s a force. He can take the hit to make the
play, but he is also the guy who can give a hit”
Many compare Kovalchuck to Pavel Bure, except Kovalchuck plays a bit
” NHL Central Scouting described him as someone who already has “shown
the potential to be a franchise player.” “Ilja has all the physical and
technical qualities to become a top-class player, and he’s a strong
character,” s Read more »