The Kings left Calgary with more questions than answers last week after taking a serious blow in the loss of Sean O’Donnell and the rumours about Eric Lindros coming to Los Angeles. Where do the Kings go from here, and just how did they do in Calgary?
The weekend didn’t exactly get off to the best start when the Kings lost Steve McKenna and Sean O’Donnell to the expansion Minnesota Wild on Friday. The Kings went through some painful growing pains with Sean O’Donnell to see him become a solid defenseman. Now another team, almost certainly a contender by year’s end, will enjoy the fruits of the Kings labors. On paper, the King lost their #3 defenseman who is in his prime, was a feared fighter, and was a leader in the clubhouse. They also lost a fringe enforcer in McKenna. The biggest losses will be felt in the locker room where Mac and Odie were well liked and looked to as leaders. McKenna will be a hit with Minnesota because of his size and personality, and I personally saw some improvement in his skills this season. On a team with other enforcers, McKenna could grow into a contributor. O’Donnell has become a physical, stay at home defender who could either be a captain or great trade bait to a contending team. Either way, it leaves the Kings already softening lineup with no enforcer and no blue liner who will drop the gloves. With Galley, Odie and a likely Berg holdout, the Kings are in trouble where they were once strongest.
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If the 2000 NHL Entry Draft did anything, for the Lightning, it added
depth to a young talented pool of prospects. The Bolts went in with three
goals: add a goaltender that will contribute immediately, add some
goaltending depth, and add a group of talented forwards to the system. All
of these goals appear to be accomplished. By trading the number five
selection (plus a fourth and seventh round picks), the Lightning added
goaltender Kevin Weekes and defenseman Kristian Kudroc from the New York
Islanders. Instead of adding a veteran to mentor Dan Cloutier, the lightning
added another kid to push Cloutier. The throw in to the deal is Kudroc. He
simply adds to the already ample defense core of the Bolts. He does.
However, bring a big body (6’6” 230 lbs.), more physical style of play, and
the ability to put up some points.
Once the Lightning were done playing the trading game, they were able to
draft an entire line of Russian forwards. With the eight overall selection
GM Rick Dudley chose Nikita Alexeev. Alexeev is big and fast, and hopefully
able to generate some offense. He will score most of his points from in
close, but also has the speed to create his own offense. He will need to
improve his puck handling before he is able to blow by opponents. He is
compared to Calgary Flames winger, and ex-bolt, Andrei Nazarov but with
better hands. In the second round, Dudley took solid 6’2” 202lbs. Winger Read more »
IHL PLAYER PROFILE
Birthdate: January 7, 1975
Hometown: Turku, Finalnd
Weight: 185 lbs
Season Team League GP W L T GAA
1992-93 TPS Turku Finn-Jr. 12 4.22
1993-94 TPS Turku Finland 1 0
1993-94 Kiekko-67 Finland 2 3 2.21
1993-94 Kiekko-67 Finn-Jr. 18 3.16
1994-95 Kiekko-67 Finn-Jr. 2 2.41
1994-95 Kiekko-67 Finn-Jr. 9 5.22
1995-96 TPS Turku Finland 16 2.16
1995-96 Kiekko-67 Finland 2 16 2.42
1995-96 TPS Turku Finn-Jr. 13 2.63
1996-97 TPS Turku Finland 48 31 11 6 2.08
1997-98 Detroit IHL 6 2 2 2 4.13
1997-98 Indianapolis IHL 29 11 11 3 3.30
1998-99 Detroit IHL 12 7 3 1 2.43
1998-99 Cincinnati IHL 26 14 9 2 3.40
1999-00 Grand Rapids IHL 52 29 15 4 2.18
1999-00 Ottawa NHL 0 0 0 0 0.00
Assigned by the Ottawa Senators to the Griffins on October 11, 1999.
First season as a Griffin. Fifth year as a pro. Jani is in his third pro season
in North America. Ottawa resigned Jani to a multi-year deal on August 19,
1999 which runs through the 2000-01 season.
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Here is a quick look at three of the four BCHL players picked in this years draft.
- 6’2″ forward is a natural goal scorer…. deadly from twenty feet or closer.
- A native of the Czech Republic, he has played the last two seasons for the Langley Hornets of the BCHL.
- Needs to improve his quickness, has decent, not great flat out speed.
- Does not like the tough going, and struggled in the playoffs because of this.
- 6’2″ 170lb forward has played the last three seasons for his hometown Chilliwack Chiefs of the BCHL Junior A Hockey League.
-Finished third in league scoring this past season with 35 goals and 110 points in 59 games.
-Has accepted a full four year scholarship with the New Hampshire Wildcats.
- Has great on ice vision, sees the complete ice very well.
- Needs to improve his skating and upper body strength
- Great showing at the Viking Cup tournament over the Christmas holidays solidified his draft ranking.
- Was named Team Playoff MVP this season after tallying 48 points in 25 games, leading the Chiefs to a berth in the National Championship tournament.
- Very safe fifth round pick by the Rangers, should develop very nicely over the next four years, playing for the Wildcats, former team of another Chilliwack Chief alumni, and Hobey Baker winner Jason Krog.
- Nathan Marsters is a 6’4″ butterfly style goaltender Read more »
Mikael Tellqvist Update
Mikael Tellqvist (Djurgarden, Sweden) – The Leafs clearly felt a need to replenish the goaltending ranks during this draft and actually selected two of them in Round 3 (see J-F Racine below). The selection of Tellqvist was a major surprise in that he was completely overlooked in the final CSB rankings. This much is known about him; he missed the World Junior Tourney because of injury, he is already 20 years old and he played sparingly yet strongly in the Swedish Elite League during this past season. Given Toronto’s recent ability to uncover unknown gems in Europe (Markov, Kaberle, Berezin, Antropov etc.), I wouldn’t bet against this guy.
Mr. Tellqvist’s representative, Mr. Michael Deutch, was kind enough to supply me with the following facts that will be of great interest to all Maple Leaf fans.
· Mikael did miss the 1999 WJC due to a fractured skull but he recovered quite quickly and now feels no ill side effects from the injury.
· This past season Mikael became the number one netminder in Djurgarden, supplanting former NHLer Tommy Soderstrom. Djurgarden won the Swedish championship, due in no small part to Mikael’s performance in goal. He played every game.
· Following the end of the Swedish season, Mikael was selected to back-up Tommy Salo of the Oilers’ at the World Championship Tournament in St. Petersburg, where he played in one game.
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Day two saw the Flames still thinking BIG, three of their six picks on Sunday were a massive 6’2″, 6’3″, and 6’4″. “I had a plan. I wanted us to get bigger” says Mckenzie. And did they ever. Think back to the glory days in Calgary, size does matter. Mckenzie also stole another gem of a netminder in Levente Szuper of the Ottawa 67′s, taking Ottawa to the memorial cup in 99.
116th overall , Calgary selected Ottawa 67′s netminder Levente Szuper. This 5’11″ 20 year old has sensational speed, and is excellent on his feet. At 187 lbs Szuper has tremendous endurance, logging over 50 games last season. His 2.56 GAA gave him 3rd overall in the OHL , also boasting a .918 save percentage tying him for the league lead. With Szuper playing two full seasons with Ottawa we’ll most likely see him in Saint John playing for the baby Flames next season.
In the fifth round Calgary added to their list of WHL prospects choosing Wade Davis of the Calgary Hitmen, and Travis Moen of the Kelowna Rockets. Davis is a solid defensive defenseman recording 3g-15a and an impressive +32 rating last season for the Hitmen. Central Scouting ranked Davis 51st before saturdays draft. At only 18 this 6’4″ giant has some time to progress and develop into a major force on the blueline.
Travis Moen was selected 155th overall, Calgary’s fourth WHL prospect. Playing for the Kelowna Rockets last season Moen tallied 9g-6a in 66 games. At 6’2″ and 198lbs Moen loves the physical play. Look for Moen to continue developing with the Rockets squad next season.
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The United States Hockey League had 15 players selected in the 2000 NHL Entry Draft over the
weekend. More than any other Tier 2 Junior A league in North America. Proving once again that
the USHL is the premiere league for scholarships with over 100 this year and also a great league
to get noticed by NHL scouts. These players will try to follow former USHL players now NHL
players Gary Suter, Phil Housley, Greg & Ryan Johnson, Peter & Chris Ferraro, Trent Klatt and
Leading the USHL draft crop was David Hale a defenceman from Sioux City who was selected 22nd
overall by the New Jersey Devils. Hale will attend the University of North Dakota next year.
Other selections where
Team Round Pick Player Pos Team 2000-01 Team
Dallas 2nd 60 Dan Ellis G Omaha Nebraska-Omaha
Ottawa 4th 122 Derrick Byfuglien D Fargo North Dakota
St. Louis 4th 129 Troy Riddle F Des Moines Minnesota
Nashville 5th 154 Matt Koulska C Twin Cities Minnesota
Ottawa 5th 157 Grant Potulny C Lincoln Minnesota
Chicago 6th 177 Michael Ayers G Dubuque New Hampshire
Carolina 6th 181 Justin Forrest D US U-18
Florida 6th 190 John Olson LW Omaha North Dakota
Chicago 6th 193 Joey Martin D Omaha Minnesota Read more »
With most of the hockey world expecting the Habs to choose a European with both of their first round picks, Rejean Houle again went with his infamous, “Rejean Logic.” The Habs were unable to pick up a European playing in Europe until the fourth round, passing on such players as Martin Samuelsson, Vaclav Nedorost, and Alexander Frolov. Here are the Habs first 4 picks of the 2000 NHL Entry Draft. Picks 5 through 11 will follow shortly.
Hainsey is a very good skater, and a confident puckhandler. He has all the tools necessary to become an NHL caliber defenseman; He’s poised. He has good hockey sense, and he anticipates plays very well. He has good size, but must improve his physical strength in order to compete with the big boys in the NHL. He was ranked 9th in North America by the CSS.
POS HT/WT DOB DRAFTED
Ron Hainsey (D) 6'3"/187 Lbs March 24/81 D-Mtl00 (1-13)
99-00 Stats GP G A PTS +/- PIM PP SH
(U-Mass Lowell) 30 3 8 11 +1 - - -
(WJHC) 7 1 1 2 +1 - - -
#1 Strength- Some offensive skill
#1 Weakness- Physical strength
POS HT/WT DOB DRAFTED
Marcel Hossa (C) 6'1"/200 Lbs Oct 12/81 D-Mtl00 (1-16)
99-00 Stats GP G A PTS +/- PIM PP SH Read more »
While the Sharks didn’t have a 1st round pick in this year’s draft for the first time, that didn’t stop them from staying aggressive as has been the trademark of Tim Burke and Dean Lombardi drafts. This was Lombardi’s 5th draft that he was in charge of, and this is the 4th year he has made a deal on draft day for a player he wants.
In 1996 the Sharks traded up to acquire Marco Sturm, in 1997 they traded up to pick Scott Hannan, in 1998 they traded down to pick Brad Stuart and got Jonathan Cheechoo in the process, and this year they traded their 2nd and 3rd round picks to acquire Tero Maatta. So far, all of the draft day deals the Sharks have made have paid off very well. If this is a sign of things to come, Maatta may some day turn into a very solid NHL player like the others have (or are prospected to become).
In the 2nd round, with the 41st pick, the Sharks chose defenseman, Tero Maatta from Finland. Playing last year for Jokerit of the junior league in Finland, he played 31 games, scoring 4 goals and 4 assists, with 53 penalty minutes. He also played major parts in the Under-18, Viking, and Five-Nation’s tournaments.
Maatta fits the mold of many Sharks draftees, as he is a player who has improved his stock a great deal in the last year. At the midseason report, he was ranked 30th by the CSB, and soared 17 spots to finish 13th in the final rankings. At 6’1″ and 205lbs, he has grown into his frame, and as the year progressed, began to use his body more. Read more »
Never let it be said that the Buffalo Sabres are predictable at the draft table, at least when it comes to making their 1st round picks.
Back in 1983, they chose high school goaltender Tom Barrasso with the 5th pick overall, which at the time was the highest a
goaltender had been chosen. In 1997, the Sabres called Finnish goaltender Mika Noronen’s name, a choice that was met with a
resounding chorus of “Who?”
Buffalo this year continued their tradition of risk-taking in the draft’s 1st round with the selection of Russian center Artem
Kriukov [6’3", 180lbs., Yaroslavl (RUS)]. There is certainly a lot to like about Artem- he is a well-rounded package of
offensive skills, as he possesses above-average speed, good size, sharp playmaking skills and a good shot. The major knock against
Kriukov has to do with his health, specifically his susceptibility to concussions. Artem suffered a major blow to the head early in the
99-00 season, causing him to miss a good portion of the schedule. The Sabres claim that this is the only concussion Kriukov has
suffered, and that they are comfortable with using the 15th pick overall to draft him. There are conflicting reports, however, that
indicate that this may not be Artem’s first concussion, so the Sabres could well be whistling past the graveyard with this pick. To
sum up, Kriukov will either be a major find for the Sabres scouting staff, or he will be a black mark on a drafting record that has
otherwise been good in recent seasons.
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