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AJHL Playoffs (March 9th)

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[ Exclusive 2000 Draft Eligible Player Profiles and brief Scouting Reports. Click Here!!! ]
St. Albert 1 at Grande Prairie 2
In a defensive struggle, the Saints dropped their first game of the series to the Grande Prairie Storm as all the scoring in the game fell within a three minute period.
With 5:26 left in the second, Shane Mudryk put the puck behind surprise starter Kirby Millar of the Saints, assisted by Rob Kimble and Clint Lehune. 23 seconds later, the Storm made it a 2-0 lead as Mark Grumetza took a pass from Lonnie DeHaan. On the powerplay, several minutes later former Edmonton Ice Joey Bastien scored, assisted by Pavel Beranek and Jeebo Manah and the Saints pulled to within a goal.

In the third period, the Saints threw everything they could at Grande Prairie netminder Chad Rycroft, but Rycroft turned aside all 15 shots and the Storm guaranteed they’d be playing back at Akinsdale Arena in St. Albert for at least one more game.

Olds 3 at Calgary Royals 7
This game was about as close to must-win as the Royals could get this early in the playoffs and they definitely rose to the occasion. Billed as possibly the only team in the South who could upset cross-town rivals Calgary Canucks, it looked for awhile like they would not get that chance. However, after tonight’s win they are without a doubt back in it.
Jamie Iwamoto was a surprise start in goal for Calgary as starter Peter Dobrowolski, who played almost 75% of the team’s games this season, allowed 15 goals in the first two games.
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Dallas Stars Top 10 Prospects

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With the Stars system graduating such players as Lehtinen, Langenbrunner, Mativchuk, and Hatcher, along with trades involving Iginla and Harvey, the cupboard was quickly emptied. However, in the past couple of years the Stars have had some solid drafts, and seem to have begun the restocking process. Following the “lower risk” philosophy of drafting, the best role player available has helped the Stars accumulate good defensive depth, and has given them a glut of feisty, two-way forwards. What this philosophy has not done however is provide them with true snipers and game-breakers, thus resulting in their need for high priced free agents to compensate. With this depth the Stars system has been ranked in the upper middle of NHL teams for the last two years, and will continue to be given much time and patience for further development.

Below are the Stars top ten prospects, with comments.

TOP 10 PROSPECTS

1. Brenden Morrow-LW 5-11 195lbs
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AJHL Quarter Finals (March 8th)

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[ Exclusive 2000 Draft Eligible Player Profiles and brief Scouting Reports. Click Here!!! ]
Camrose 0 at Calgary Canucks 5
The Calgary Canucks continued on their regular season role as they became the last AJHL club to commence their playoff run. After a record-breaking 104 point season, there were probably a few people expecting a bit of a letdown as the playoffs began against fourth-place Camrose.
However, there were others who expected the Canucks to keep on rolling and that they did just that Monday night at Max Bell Centre in Calgary. It didn’t take long for the Canucks to break the ice, so to speak as Roger Leonard took a Neil McCann pass and rifled the puck past Camrose netminder Wes Schneider from the left faceoff circle.

In the second period it didn’t take Leonard long to double his playoff goal totals as he scored again just a shade under two minutes into the period. On the powerplay, with 3:28 left in the second, ’99 draft eligible and future Wisconsin Badger Dany Heatley gave the Canucks a 3-0 lead as he took a pass from Ryan Manitowich in the slot and picked Schneider’s five-hole.

Defenceman Neil McCann figured on the scoring while shorthanded in the third period. After a save by Mike Gilhooly, Heatley fed McCann who went on a breakaway. McCann didn’t squander the opportunity as he buried the puck in the net to give Calgary a 4-0 adavantage. Steve Albrecht added another in the dying seconds as Calgary took the opener handily.
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Montreal Canadiens Prospect Report

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POS HT WT AGE DRAFTED
Jose Theodore G 5-10 180 22 D-Mtl94(2/44)

GP W L T AVG Sav%
98-99 Stats 19 9 9 1 2.44 .927 (AHL)
98-99 Stats 13 3 10 0 3.35 .887 (NHL)

#1 Strength- Winner’s attitude.
#1 Weakness- Inconsistency.
With the trade of Thibeault and the arrival of Hackett, Theodore was surprised and angered by his demotion to Fredericton. The main reason for his demotion was his inconsistent play. He has recently come to accept his demotion and is playing exceptionally well. He was just named the AHL’s player of the week and is proving himself too good for the AHL. Fredericton will go as far in the playoffs as Theodore (and his reputation as a good pressure goaltender) takes them.

Theodore finished the week a dismal 0-3, with a GAA of 3.66. he stopped 25 shots in a 3-1 loss to Rochester, stopped 31 shots in a 3-1 loss to Springfield, did not play in a 3-3 tie with Philadelphia, and stopped 23 shots in a 5-4 loss to Providence.(Week ending 3/7/99)

Projection for NHL Level- Star.
Current stock status- Stagnant.

POS HT WT AGE DRAFTED
Mathieu Garon G 6-1 175 21 D-Mtl96(2/44)

GP W L T AVG Sav%
98-99 Stats 34 10 21 1 3.21 .897 (AHL)

#1 Strength- Lateral Movement.
#1 Weakness- Goes down too early. Read more »

Manny Malhotra: Rangers Catch a Steal

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After spending $44 million last year and failing to make the playoffs, things could not be looking worse for the Rangers. When the media is talking draft in March, something went wrong. What went wrong was the Rangers were just too darn old. Although possessing a few solid prospects, most were from resent drafts and thus were only 18 and 19 years old and most were not under contract. As the draft grew closer the Rangers had their sights set on a center, a big center with allot of upside. Unfortunately their top choices David Legwand and Manny Malhotra were ranked second and sixth respectively. Most experts actually expected them to go second and third. The Rangers chance to draft a big time center was slim. But something happened on that hot June day, somehow to the Rangers surprise Malhotra fell into their laps.

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AJHL Quarter Finals (March 7th)

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[ Exclusive 2000 Draft Eligible Player Profiles and brief Scouting Reports. Click Here!!! ]
Lloydminster 2 at Fort Saskatchewan 5
Nick Boucher is turning out to be the story in this series and quite possibly the AJHL playoffs to this point. At the start there was very little to choose between the two clubs aside from the fact that Lloydminster was on an incredible run to close out the season. Now, it appears, Fort Saskatchewan goaltender Nick Boucher is turning out to be the clincher in the Traders’ favour.
He was not as busy as last game – when he made 48 saves – but he was solid when he needed to be, especially in the third period. Sean Day opened the scoring tonight on a powerplay 13 minutes into the first period but just over a minute later John Davidson answered back for the Blazers and the two teams went to intermission deadlocked at one.

Fifty seconds into the second, Traders leading scorer Matt Gorman surprised Lloydminster goalie Ray Fraser to put the Traders ahead once again. Lloydminster’s leading scorer in the playoffs Jamie Weiss then tied it up once again as he converted Chris Dallyn’s feed on the powerplay. Trevor Baker, who may have played his best game of the year overall for the Traders, put the Fort ahead for good only several minutes later and Ryan Campbell doubled their lead on the powerplay three minutes after that.
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AJHL Quarter Finals (March 6th)

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[ Exclusive 2000 Draft Eligible Player Profiles and brief Scouting Reports. Click Here!!! ]

[ 1998-99 AJHL Playoff Preview ]

[ 1998-99 AJHL Playoff Quarterfinal Day 1 ]
Calgary Royals 7 at Olds 8 (OT)
The Olds Grizzlys pulled off a big upset for the second night in a row as they increased their lead in the best-of-seven quarterfinal to two games in yet another high scoring match-up.
Oddly enough, in this game where fifteen goals were ultimately scored, there was no scoring in the first period. It didn’t take Moose Jaw prospect and 2000 draft eligible Ben Knopp long to score in the second, however, as he scored a powerplay goal 21 seconds into the period. The Grizzlys’ David Erickson then scored his first goal of the postseason on the powerplay to tie the game up. The Royals then added to quick tallys – from Ryan Joseph and David Evans – to take a 3-1 lead. Olds would tie it up before the end of the period, however, as Greg Davis and Matt Brunner scored. The goal by Davis was two minutes after the Royals moved in front by two and the goal by Brunner was two minutes later.
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AJHL Quarter Finals (March 5th)

by Marc Ciampa
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[ Exclusive 2000 Draft Eligible Player Profiles and brief Scouting Reports. Click Here!!! ]

[ 1998-99 AJHL Playoff Preview ]


Olds 7 at Calgary Royals 6

The Olds Grizzlys surprised the Calgary Royals 7-6 at Father David Bauer Arena in Calgary Friday. Centre Colen Pappas drew first blood in the series scoring four and a half minutes into the period on a goal assisted by Ryan Melbourne and John Wegenast. Calgary’s David Evans then coverted a Cam Laing feed on the powerplay five minutes later to even it up. Read more »

AJHL Quarter-Final Preview

by Marc Ciampa
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[ Exclusive 2000 Draft Eligible Player Profiles and brief Scouting Reports. Click Here!!! ]

AJHL Quarter-Final Preview

The AJHL Playoffs are set to kick off on Friday with the quarterfinals.
The Grande Prairie Storm and the Camrose Kodiaks swept their
best-of-three mini-series respectively to earn the right to face the
division leader in the next round. The Bonnyville Pontiacs were the
first team to get eliminated. It took them until the last five minutes
of the last game in the regular season to score the goal that put them
into the playoffs but once they got their it seemed they had very little
spark left. Having to travel all the way to Grande Prairie from St.
Albert – the site of their last game – was a big factor in them losing
to the Storm 6-3 in Game One.

The Storm jumped on Bonnyville late in the first but poured it on from
there. 19-year-old Lane Letendre scored with 42 seconds left in the
first period. The Storm then broke out to a 3-0 lead. Bonnyville made it
3-2 before the Storm scored a few more times to put it away.

In Game Two, Grande Prairie broke out to a 3-0 lead again by the first
minute of the second period. Bonnyville again scored two quick goals to
close the gap, but the Storm scored again in the third period and never
looked back. It was the second game in a row that all-star Tyson Read more »

Steve won’t get Passed by Anymore

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When Steve Passmore, the native of Thunder Bay Ontario, was drafted he was considered a longshot prospect at the time. He was selected in the ninth round by the Quebec Nordiques, 196th overall, in the 1992 entry draft. His size and lack of technique had been his downfall throughut his junior career. Despite his lack of size and technique, however, Passmore played spectacular and was named a first team All-Star in the WHL the next two seasons (1992-93, 1993-94). In the 1993-94 campaign he led his Kamloops Blazers team to the Memorial Cup. Before ever playing in an NHL game Passmore was involved in a trade deadline deal on March 21st, 1994 which saw Brad Werenka go to Quebec from Edmonton. Passmore was now Edmonton Oiler property, but still the consensus was he would need grooming in the AHL.
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