Isles GM Mike Milbury regardless of the injury is standing behind his comments through most of the summer: “It’s a tough break for the kid, but it
doesn’t eliminate his chances of making the team. He’ll still get a look from us. If it happens for Rick right away, it happens. We all think it’s
going to happen sooner or later, but there is no urgency. It would be fun and it’s exciting. He’s a first overall pick. But if the timing isn’t
right, it’s not right.”
If Rick DiPietro is ready to play the only realistic chances he will get are against the Rangers or New Jersey in the final two preseason games in early October.
DiPietro will be sent to the IHL if he does not make the team.
The Islanders began the preseason Thursday and Friday against Philadelphia.
Both games were typical early preseason with lots of penalties called so the NHL can send the politically correct message that it never follows up on once November rolls around. The Islanders lost both games by scores of 4-2 in Trenton, and 2-1 in Philadelphia.
A few notable items that fans should like from the first two games:
Oleg Kvasha: Has been impressive. Got big minutes for an early preseason game on Thursday, and
deflected in the Isles only goal on Friday before a spearing penalty ended his night. Looked lost playing the point on the power play.
Mark Parrish: Had lots of chances and played well in Trenton.
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Notables relieved from camp include Julian Vauclair, Alexandre Giroux, Jason Maleyko, Layne Ulmer and Antoine Vermette. Vauclair was sent back to Europe while the others will most likely be playing in the CHL this year. Giroux has a shot with Grand Rapids.
John Gruden suffered a bruised tailbone but is expected to continue training camp. John has been fingered as a possibility on this years blue line. In last year’s camp Gruden was also injured. Chris Phillips suffered a minor groin pull and most likely will wait out the exhibition games.
After looking timid in the rookie camp Martin Havlat has bloomed into a budding star. This weekend against the Oilers Havlat had a spin-a-rama and a goal scorer’s missile. At this point Havlat will make the regular season roster and depending on how he performs in the first 10 games has an outside chance to stay with the big team. You should expect Havlat to be playing somewhere in the CHL this season.
In the first exhibition game of the season Chris Neil found himself on line with Alexi Yashin and dropped the gloves with Florida heavyweight Paul Laus. The former Centennial has turned more then a few heads in camp. For a team looking to add toughness Neil is just sort of player needed. Probably a mid-season call up with an outside chance of catching on. Next year is his year
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This game was absolutely NHL class. Djurgarden scored the first goal and put
up a strong defense without loosing their famous offensive game. The
referees stopped the play too often.
Last season Djurgarden let in the fewest goals and scored the most in the
Elitserien season and won the playoff finals against Modo (my favorite team),
then they lost a couple of players (Espen Knutsen C -Columbus, Tommy
Soderstrom G, retires) but hav gained some new ones.
In the first period Djurgarden showed much better skating and better passing
and a good powerplay. Vancouver was more physical. In the second period
Vancouver showed that they have better endurance and can hold better in a 60
min game. They had many powerplays and were close to scoring a goal several times.
This turned in the third period where DIF often got the man advantage and
had several scoring chances. Vancouver skated much better in the final parts of
the game, although the shot stats are favoring DIF.
Felix Potvin had a good game.
Both Sedin brothers got hit several times that resulted in powerplays for
Vancouver. This didn’t affect their game in the least as they still played the same
not allowing themselves to becoming careful and hesitant. They don’t tackle too much but they won’t be beaten by hard
Stats Van - DIF:
0-1 14.10 F Bouchard (N Kronwall) Five on three
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Glen Sather selected Filip Novak in the 2nd Round of the 2000 Entry
Draft, the Rangers first selection of the day and also Sather’s first draft
pick with the Rangers. When drafted, the scouts said Novak was an offensively
gifted defenseman who can rush the puck up the ice. They also said he wasn’t
very good defensively, and his size (6’0 174) would hold him back a bit.
However, they felt confident enough in selecting the Czech native, and what a
selection it has turned out to be.
At 18 years old, all indications said Novak would not be with the team
when they left training camp in Burlington, Vermont to New York to start the
exhibition games, but Novak has played so well in camp that Rangers’ Head
Coach Ron Low said it’s “Scary”, referring to how well Novak looked in the
scrimmages and practices. Novak’s chances of making the team are still slim,
as other defensemen such as Tomas Kloucek and Dale Purinton have played great
as well, but he will be given every chance to make the team. All 3 defenseman
could make the team, but that would mean the Rangers would have to trade away
a couple of their defenders to make room. It’s more likely only 2 of
Purinton, Novak and Kloucek will make the team.
Filip didn’t play in the Rangers 5-1 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers in
their first exhibition game yesterday, but he should play this Tuesday when
the Rangers host the Flyers at the Garden. The rest of the upcoming preseason Read more »
Another in a series of weekly articles summarizing activity in Leafland during the previous 7 days – with some personal observations, commentary, prospect updates and fun thrown in for good measure.
Pivotal season for Sundin: 2000 / 2001 will be a very important year for Maple Leafs’ team captain and perennial leading scorer, Mat Sundin … he will surely be determined to prove that he can take the club to greater play-off glory and has never had such a strong supporting cast during his time in Toronto … Sundin will also be playing for his next contract as his existing multi-year pact concludes at the end of this season … for what its worth, both sides have already indicated a strong desire to extend their association for the long haul … an appropriate annual stipend remains the only detail yet to be worked out … don’t be too surprised if the terms on Sundin’s next contract are dictated more by the team’s overall success this season rather than by his own personal accomplishments … although questions concerning Mats’ determination and leadership are constantly being raised by many “experts” covering the team, these same doubts stuck to Steve Yzerman and Mike Modano as well until they eventually became Stanley Cup champions …
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The Detroit Red Wings had their final practice this morning at 10:00
a.m. Steve Duchense suited up for the first time this week and
practiced with the team, although he wont be able to play any games for
2 more weeks.
Chris Chelios who didn’t practice yesterday due to a sore back was back
skating today and said that he was fine for tonight’s game.
An intrasquad scrimmage at 7:00 this evening at the Van Andel Arena in
Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Manny Legace was very relaxed this morning, as were most of the players,
Legace was standing by the boards waiting for his turn in net. He
decided that while he was waiting he’d “practice” throwing his stick
down in disgust. The more people laughed at his actions the more
animated he became. He had to stop though when it was his turn to
really practice, stopping the pucks. But when he let one in all his
“practice” had paid off and he threw his stick up in the air in disgust.
After practice was over management, volunteers, and about half the
players had a group photo on the ice. The other half of the players
were coming but got off the other rink too late.
Ken Wregget stopped and signed autographs as he was going to the locker
room, giving a young boy his stick. The young boy was elated and Ken
Wregget mad a new friend, and fan.
As the players got ready to go there were all the good-bye’s until next Read more »
The Buffalo Sabres 2000 training camp is now a week old, with the team wrapping up their “group hug” road trip in that well-known hockey hotbed, South Carolina. As usual, the annual embargo on training camp news is in place, but there have been some rumblings regarding the play of a couple prospects that are making a push to start the season in Buffalo.
One of those prospects, RW J.P. Dumont, is turning heads with his offensive play. Dumont was acquired in the seemingly one-sided trade with the Blackhawks that also brought Doug Gilmour to Buffalo. Rather than simply being a trade throw-in, however, J.P. has looked like the offensively gifted forward many scouts felt he would become, as he tore up the AHL last season in the late regular season and playoffs. Dumont has continued his strong play in training camp, displaying the nifty moves and quick release needed to become a scorer in the NHL. According to the Buffalo News, Dumont has been used on the LW due to the glut of veteran RWs on Buffalo’s roster, but this move has not affected J.P.’s game so far. Dumont has the coaching staff grinning from ear-to-ear, not just because of his offensive play, but also because he has shown the toughness and desire needed to be an impact player in the NHL.
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Remember this name: Kyle Wanvig. You may be very glad you did. Here’s a few reasons why: 1) at 6′ 2″, 200 lbs, he’s pretty big for a 19 year old. 2) he loves gritty, crash-and-bang hockey, but possesses a good deal of offensive skill. 3) he’ll drop the gloves in defense of himself or a teammate, and, most importantly, 4) he models himself after Cam Neely. ‘Nuff said, right? Wrong. Unfortunately, uncertainty has followed the young right wing’s career thus far. This year may be the deciding one for Wanvig- is he the heir to the great Neely or is he the next Landon Wilson?
A solid, well-balanced, but unspectacular skater, Kyle Wanvig is not a flashy player. In the mold of forwards like Bill Guerin and his childhood hero, Neely, Wanvig drives to the net using brute force. Many of his goals come off rebounds, as he uses his frame to clear the front of opposing nets. He also possesses a rocket of a shot- a trait that, combined with his love of the rough stuff, could make him a Beantown favorite in no time.
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Some of the top players in the CCHA have departed for the professional ranks over the summer, but there are still plenty of players to watch in 2000, including an exciting crop of recruits. Despite the departure of Mike Comrie to the WHL and the loss of seniors like Shawn Horcoff, Brian McCullough, Roger Trudeau and J.P. Vigier, there will be no shortage of talent in the CCHA this season. In this first installment of the CCHA Player Watch, we will focus on several players at the University of Michigan who will be worth following this season.
Among the returning players this season is standout Michigan defenseman Jeff Jillson. Jillson was drafted in the first round by the San Jose Sharks in 1999 and had a chance to leave school and sign with the Sharks this summer, but he chose to stay at Michigan for his junior year. He is 6-3 220 pounds and is perhaps the toughest and most intimidating defenseman in college hockey. But what separates him from other defensemen is his offensive ability. He led all CCHA defensemen in scoring last season and become one of the best two-way blueline prospects in all of hockey. Jillson might be good enough for the NHL already, but the Sharks are currently loaded with young talent on the blueline and there is no need to rush him. Jillson will be the leader of a Wolverine defense that should be much improved over last season, when the team was short on depth after the unexpected departure of Mike Van Ryn to the OHL.
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While there is still no guarantee as to who will be with the Detroit Vipers Come October 6, but all ready the Vipers coaching staff has an idea who will be at training camp as their parent club the Tampa Bay Lightning cut 17 players from their camp.
Familiar faces from last year’s team heading back to the motor city include defencemen Kyle Kos, Mikko Kuparinen, and Mark Thompson, right wingers Dale Rominski, Samuel St. Pierre, and Jan Sulc.
In his first season of professional play, Kos, split his time last season between the Vipers and the Utah Grizzlies playing a total of 66 IHL-games, netting four points (1G-3A) with 101 penalty minutes.
Kuparinen played the majority of last season (28 games) in Finland for the
HIFK Helsinki team during which he posted a pair of assists with 29 penalty minutes. Kuparinen played 9 ganes in the IHL with Detroit and Long Beach.
The four-year University of Michigan star Dale Rominski had a good breakout year playing in his first professional season. In 78 games with Detroit and 3 with the Lightning, Rominski recorded 14 goals and 16 assists while only being assessed 70 penalty minutes.
Samuel St. Pierre will look to get back on the scoring track as he enters his second professional season. In 47 games with Detroit in 1999-2000, the St. Pierre had 15 points (11G-4A) and 25 PIM.
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