Michael Neal

Hometown:

Whitby Ontario

Currently Playing In:

Pro

Birthday:

1989-04-03

Position:

LW

Eligible for draft:

2007

Shoots:

Left

Drafted:

2007

Height:

6-2

Acquired:

5th round (149th overall), 2007

Weight:

187 lbs.

Probability of Success
  • B

History

The younger brother of Stars prospect James Neal, Michael Neal possesses some of the same attributes as his older brother.

2006-07: He did not post great numbers in his second OHL season, scoring only four goals on his way to eight points in 52 games played. Part of the lack of production by Neal is a result of playing on a very talented and deep Belleville Bulls team.

2007-08: Missed the entire regular season with a knee injury.  Returned for the playoffs, but went pointless in seven games.

2008-09: Neal split time between the Belleville Bulls(OHL) and Sarnia Sting(OHL). He went pointless in 3 games with the Bulls, but scored 9 goals and added 12 assists in 63 games with Sarnia.

2009-10: Neal turned pro, splitting time with the Idaho Steelheads(ECHL) and Texas Stars(AHL). In 6 games with the Stars, Neal went pointless. In 57 games with Idaho, Neal scored 5 goals and added 10 assists.

2010-11: For the second straight season, Neal spent most of his time in the ECHL.  He tied his previous year’s total of 15 points in 2010-11.  He did notch his first career AHL point during his 16 games in the AHL – totaling three goals in all.  He was held scoreless in eight ECHL postseason games.

 

Talent Analysis

Neal is a physically imposing forward like his older brother, James.  His skating is above average for a player his size and he does his best work along the boards.  Plays a clean and fairly industrious game.  Craves physical play.  Has a tremendous off-ice work ethic and keeps himself in tiptop shape.  Doesn’t possess any sort of mesmerizing talent and is still very raw.  Lost a crucial year of development due to a knee injury that sidelined him for an entire season.  Will have to overcome a lot to be considered a legitimate NHL prospect.  Needs to find a niche and become exceptional at it in order to become a valuable asset to his team.

 

Future

Appears to be a fringe AHL player at this point and may spend another year in the ECHL while competing for AHL call-ups.

 

Prospect Faceoff: Two great AHL stories go head-to-head, other top prospects matchup from around the globe

by David Hahn
on

Stanislav Galiev - Hershey Bears; Matt Murray - Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins - Prospect Faceoff 3-11

Photo: Hershey Bears forward Stanislav Galiev and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins goaltender Matt Murray go head-to-head in an AHL Eat Division showdown this weekend (courtesy of Corey Silvia/Jeanine Leech/Icon Sportswire)

 

In the AHL, one player who is ascending back to top prospect status goes head-to-head against a record-setting goaltender. In NCAA action, the Big Ten may be decided this weekend as the two top teams and their leaders clash. The battle for the last playoff spot in the OHL’s Western Conference heats up with a pivotal game between two of the teams fighting to get in. Two solid games in the QMJHL and WHL complete this week’s Prospect Faceoff. Read more»

San Jose Sharks Top 20 a group of quality depth

by Craig Fischer
on

Rourke Chartier - San Jose Sharks

Photo: Kelowna’s Rourke Chartier is one of several San Jose Sharks prospects having a great season in the CHL. (courtesy of Marissa Baecker/Getty Images)

 

The San Jose Sharks prospect pool has improved greatly over the past season, quietly becoming one of the more respectable collections of prospects in the league. This surge is due in large part to the organizational desire to get younger, the 2014 NHL draft class, and the aggressive free agent signings of Barclay Goodrow and Nikita Jevpalovs.

Read more»

Saros, Husso the top NHL-drafted goaltenders competing in Finland

by Tony Piscotta
on

Juuse Saros - Team Finland

Photo: HPK Hameenlinna goaltender and Nashville Predators prospect Juuse Saros has appeared in 39 international contests for Finland over the past five seasons (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

 

Finland has consistently produced NHL-caliber goalies in recent years. While some were never drafted and signed after establishing themselves in the domestic Liiiga — such as Chicago’s Antti Raanta or Antti Niemi of San Jose — there have also been some high profile draft picks like Tuukka Rask and Pekka Rinne who are enjoying great NHL careers. Read more»

Montreal Canadiens prospects run deep at defense

by Pat Paeplow
on

Charles Hudon - Montreal Canadiens

Photo: When Charles Hudon finally gets his shot with the Canadiens, he will join a long list of Quebec-born players to play for the team. (Courtesy of Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire)

 

The Montreal Canadiens prospect pool continues to grow more experienced every season. Because General Manager Marc Bergevin is intent on bringing his youngsters along slowly, the Canadiens have promoted just a single prospect into their roster. Several players among the Top 20 would be regulars in other organizations.

Read more»

Prospect Impressions: Two record-setting efforts, individual skill on display, more NHL prospect highlights

by David Hahn
on

Christian Fischer - U.S. NTDP

Photo: U.S. NTDP forward and 2015 prospect Christian Fischer (#21) has produced 20 goals and 20 assists in 48 games for the USA’s U18 National squad (courtesy of Richard T. Gagnon/Getty Images)

 

In this week’s Prospect Impressions, take a look as a Notre Dame goaltender breaks an all-time NCAA hockey record. In addition, a future Fighting Irish recruit snagged a record of his own in the USHL. Also, a trio of players rewarded their teams with tremendous individuals efforts. Finally, a look at one WHL veteran who has become more than just a fighter. Read more»

Related Articles