Through the years, the Philadelphia Flyers have had a few homegrown players– including current Flyer Chris Therien and one-time rookie free agent Dave Poulin– who were U.S. college standouts before turning professional. However, the vast majority of Flyer-drafted and signed players originally honed their skills in the Canadian major junior ranks.
Times have changed. Today, the Flyers have only one affiliated prospect (2001 first round draft pick Jeff Woywitka) playing in the CHL, while five youngsters are playing for teams in the NCAA.
The Flyers current crop of collegiate players represents an intriguing collection of sleeper prospects. An update on their current progress.
Colin Shields : Shields had to sit out last season after he was declared ineligible by the NCAA. In order to retain his visa status, the Scottish forward signed up for classes that he never attended. When the University of Maine learned what had happened, they had no choice but to report the violation to the NCAA.
So far this season, Shields has been making up for lost time. He’s displayed the soft hands and offensive instincts that made him a standout at every level of hockey that he has played. He’s also a pretty good skater.
Shields has exploded out of the gates for Maine with 5 goals in his first 4 games, including 3 powerplay tallies. He has no reticence about shooting the puck; as his 13 shots on goal attest.
Bernd Bruckler : The Austrian goaltender was a highly sought recruit by many U.S. college programs. He finally opted for the Read more »
The Calder Corner
Jukka Hentunen: Assist, +1, 2 Shots
Vaclav Nedorost: Goal (2nd), +1, 1 Shot
Niko Kapanen: Assist, 2 Shots, Even
Ty Conklin: 23 Saves, 2 GA, 1st NHL Win
Martin Erat: Assist, 1 Shot, Even
Radek Martinek: Assist, 3 Shots, Even
Dan Blackburn: Played the 3rd Period, 6 Saves, 0 GA
Krys Kolanos: Goal (2nd), +3, 3 Shots
Mikko Kiprusoff: 38 Saves, 2 GA, Win
Read more »
TWO LOSSES BUT TWO POINTS AGAINST TWO KINDS OF CATS
Thursday night, two of the three second place teams in general standings teams met as the Victoriaville Tigres came to Baie-Comeau. It was a two phase game. At first the home team seemed to take control of the game with a two goals lead; an almost end to end goal by captain Lehoux and a wrap around by league scoring leader Linglet.
But after a wicked wrist shot goal by Matthew Lombardi (2000 7th round draft of the Edmonton Oilers) things seemed to turn around. With two power play goals in third period, the Tigres had the game in control. But, as the game was coming to an end, fans were beginning to leave the premises and, bingo, one lone second before the buzzer went on, Yannick Lehoux put the fun back in the place by scoring the equalizer.
Unfortunately for the fans still present, overtime was to be fatal for the Drakkar as Victoriaville Mathieu Brunelle score the winning goal (his forth points of the night) at 1:50 of the 5 minute period.
Prospect-wise in this game all four hopeful draft players of the Drakkar were undressed and for Victoriaville none of the dressed 2002 prospects seems to rise out from the lot.
It was a veteran and an almost playoff type of game with eight players drafted by NHL teams in hands: the five ones of the Drakkar and Victoriaville lw Lombardi, g Jean François Nogues (L.A. Kings 5th pick of 1999) right wing Carl Mallette (Atlanta Trashers 4th pick of of 2000). Unfortunately left wing Antoine Vermette (Ottawa Senators 2nd pick of 2000) with a concussion, is stil Read more »
The happenings and goings on (statistically, anyway) on the Vancouver Canucks prospects thus far in 2001-02.
2001 Draftees Thus Far… Team GP G A PTS PIM
Umberger, R.J. Ohio State 1 0 2 2 0
Fedorov, Fedor Manitoba 1 1 0 1 0
Gladskikh, Evgeny Magnitogorsk – – – – –
Bieska, Kevin Bowling Green 2 0 0 0 6
King, Jason Halifax 11 13 8 21 6 *
Mikhailov, Konstantin Nizhnekamsk – – – – –
2000 Draftees Currently… Team GP G A PTS PIM
Smith, Nathan Swift Current 7 4 6 10 8
Bell, Thatcher Rimouski 10 6 9 15 15
Branham, Tim Guelph 11 0 3 3 18
Duma, Pavel Nizhny Novgorod – – – – –
Reid, Brandon Manitoba 3 0 0 0 0
Barrett, Nathan Lethbridge 11 12 11 23 14
Smith, Tim Swift Current 12 7 11 18 16
GP W L T GAA
1999 Draftees as of now.. Team GP G A P PIM
Sedin, Daniel Vancouver 7 2 2 4 0 Read more »
Giant Growing Pains
Like most newborns, the Vancouver Giants are also susceptible to growing pains. These pains were most evident over the last three-game homestand, winding up Saturday, October 13th, in what will become a divisional rivalry with the Portland Winter Hawks. The Giants, hoping to push their record over the .500 mark and perhaps thinking they could take advantage of the Winter Hawks who have been struggling on the road, never did seem to get organized. From obvious communication problems on the bench, to teammates running into each other on the ice, the Giants never came close to finding the disciplined, hard-working and physical groove they displayed just one night earlier in the first period against the offensive Lethbridge Hurricanes.
Being a young team, this erratic display of hockey is not unusual. Coach Dragicevic was saying all the right things to the players between periods and after the game, emphasizing the need to play a rugged, grinding style of hockey, and to shy not from the body. Yet it seemed to land on deaf ears against the Winter Hawks. There really is no explanation for it other than the proverbial ‘growing pains’ of a young team coming together.
Players at both ends of the ice were turning away from what appeared to be sure checks, and the defence were often beat on the outside along the half-boards due to ill-timed turns to play the man. In short, they were getting caught flat-footed. They looked surprisingly tired — something a fan would not expect this early in the sea Read more »
The Calder Corner
Ilya Kovalchuk: 3rd NHL Goal, +1, 4 Shots
Brian Pothier: Assist, +1, 3 Shots
Daniel Tjarnqvist: Assist, -1, 1 Shot
Dany Heatley: 1st NHL Goal, +1, 4 Shots
Rostislav Klesla: Assist, +1
Peter Smrek: Assist, +2, 1 Shot
Dan Blackburn: 32 Saves, 3 GA, 2nd NHL Win
As a general rule, I will always list goals and assists and other noteworthy stats.
Ottawa (5-2-2) vs Sarnia (6-6-1)
The Ottawa 67’s, fresh off a 4-4 tie with the Kingston Frontenacs, faced off against the Sarnia Sting on Friday, October the 19th. The 67’s welcomed back captain Zenon Konopka, coming off a 2-game suspension, for being the instigator in a scuffle in the October 7th match against the Barrie Colts. Read more »
The Calder Corner
Hentunen: First Professional Goal, 1 Shot
Novoseltsev: 1 Goal (2), 1 Shot
Dagenais: 1 Goal (1), 4 Shots
Martinek: 1st Professional Goal (GW), +2, 4 Shots
Beech: 1 Assist, +1, 1 Shot
Kariya: 1 Assist, +1
As a general rule, I will always list goals and assists and other noteworthy stats. If there is more to be noted, HF encourages our readers to talk about them below!
I’m talking about the New York Rangers management and their handling of Dan Blackburn. I do not ever remember the Rangers management bringing along a player this young and actually doing it right. There have been players that have impressed their way on to the line-up but most of them have usually been 20 years old or older. Here we have an 18 year old kid, who just turned 18 in late May, that impressed so much during camp and the pre-season games it forced the Rangers to keep him around.The great thing about Sather’s decision to keep Blackburn up with the big club is that he has not given them any reason whatsoever to doubt themselves or second-guess themselves. Through the first 6 games of the year, Blackburn has played in 2 games. A 5-3 loss to Washington where the Rangers sieve-like Penalty Killing Unit left him out to dry and a 2-1 win over Montreal where he didn’t have to work too much for long stretches during the game.The reason that the 5-3 loss was not indicative of his play is because the Washington Capitals scored 4 PP Goals. On three of the goals Danny was being harassed and screened without much help from the Rangers porous defence. There was one PP goal that could be attributed to Dan not making the save but the rest of the evening was a terrific night. Aside from the 5 goals that were scored, Blackburn was still able to make 37 saves and, had he had a bad game, the score could have and should have been worse.The win over Montreal was impressive in that Montreal started off the season on a bit of an impressive str Read more »
Moral victory comes at a high cost
It wasn’t a win, but it sure felt like one. Both players and fans alike came away from Wednesday’s 1-1 tie game with Red Deer feeling like it was a moral victory in that it provided some pluses for a club sorely in need of good things to build on. It also proved to be very costly.
A couple of weeks ago in an interview with Rob Vanstone for The Hockey News, Jarrett Stoll lamented the bout of bad luck he’d suffered over the summer and into the beginning of the season. Referring the wrist surgery, a case of strep throat before the Calgary Flames training camp and the freak kitchen knife accident that sliced the hand of the Yorkton, Sask. native that will see him sidelined for at least another month, his mother had always told him that things happen in threes. Being prophetic about her son is one thing, being clairvoyant about predicting the early season mis-fortunes of the Kootenay ICE is quite another.
But you could use any cliche here. Bad things always happen in threes, when it rains it pours, pick one, in the recent fortunes of the Kootenay ICE, almost any apply.
Marek Svatos, the club’s leading scorer and offensive catalyst in the absence of Stoll received the worst possible news when the slick Slovak suffered a dislocated shoulder that will sideline the Colorado Avalanche draft pick indefinitely. Adding to bad news of Stoll cutting himself and Dan Blackburn sticking with the New York Rangers, losing Svatos was not a possibility that the club wanted to ponder.
Coach Ryan Mc Read more »