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.

 

Belleville Bulls Recap

by Bill Thompson
on

Welcome to the inaugural article on the Belleville Bulls of the Ontario Hockey League. I will be writing an article twice a month, one on the 15th and one on the 30th. I will include a brief summary of the games since the previous article along with some ongoing stats and rankings of Bulls players. I’m going to have some fun with this, but I am quit serious in my conclusions and beliefs. I hope some scouts look up this page once and while and maybe some injustices can be avoided, such as Kyle Wellwood being ranked behind numerous players with less hope of making the NHL than I do. Enough with the niceties let’s analyze some hockey.

PETERBOROUGH at BELLEVILLE (Feb. 14)-

About 2700 fans trekked through blizzard like conditions to witness a rather uninspired game by both teams. The Bulls looked bored out there and the Petes lack of offensive talent made for some lengthy neutral zone play. When the Petes did come up with some chances, Paulo Colaiacovo was there to shut them down. Colaiacovo faced 28 shots, stopping a 3 on 1 and a 2 on 1 on his way to the victory. At the other end, Joey MacDonald was solid for the Petes, but a 5 on 3 power play for the Bulls to start the 3rd period would prove to be too much for him as Randy Rowe put home 2 quick goals. Rowe ended the night with a hat trick and an assist. His third goal gave him 50 on the year in his 47th game, making him the fastest to reach 50 in Bulls history, topping Dave MacLean’s record by 7 games. The Bulls also received an excellent game from Read more»

Boston Bruins’ Prospect Update- The Defense

by Vincent Fusaro
on
Player “report cards” are largely a subjective matter. The task becomes even trickier when dealing with prospects, because improvement from previous seasons is as important, if not more so, than actual play or sky-high statistics. So, instead, this is a general run-down on some of Boston’s prospects currently playing for the Providence Bruins. No grade, no ranking, just an update- how current play compares to past, how they’ve contributed , and what they need to improve.

Elias Abrahamsson

Little has changed with Elias. In fact, many were surprised when Boston renewed his contract this summer. Abrahamsson is still an inconsistent physical defender prone to taking bad penalties. With Martin Grenier waiting in the wings, Elias could find himself out of a job next October.

Jon Aitken

No longer a member of the Boston Bruins’ organization, Aitken’s contract was bought out shortly after training camp. What was most surprising about this situation is that Jon actually finished out last season with three rather successful games in Boston. He also had an impressive AHL playoffs, even providing some offense by putting his booming slapshot to good use.

We’ll never know if Aitken could have had an impact in Providence or Boston, because he was not dressed for any P-bruins games, even prior to his buyout. Currently, Aitken is trying to further his career by playing in various European leagues. From all reports, he has thus far been less than spectacular. Jon’s future in the NHL is highly questiona Read more»

Islanders Back in QMJHL

by pbadmin
on
The Islanders recently signed two of Baie-Comeau’s top players, Marco Charpentier and David St. Germaine. Both players attended Islanders’ training camp last fall, but returned to juniors as free agents. Previous to these signings the Islanders had no prospects in the QMJHL, but now have two king-pins off the first place Drakkar.

Marco Charpentier is a 6’0″ 200lbs, slick right winger who is second on the team in scoring. He just reached the 50 goal and 100 point plateaus, and was recently named Runner-Up for QMJHL Offensive Player of the Month, during which he scored 14 goals and 27 points in 10 games. Marco is currently 6th in the league in scoring with an even 100 points, and third in goals with 51, in only 58 games. He also has 74 PIM, a testament to his gritty play. Earlier in the year, Charpentier had a 5 game goal scoring streak, which ties for 10th longest in the league this year, as well as a separate 11 game point scoring streak. Charpentier is a great addition to the Islanders family and brings speed and scoring to the table.

Teammate David St. Germaine has been the backbone for Baie-Comeau’s division leading campaign. He is second in the QMJHL in wins and has been solid for Le Drakkar all season long. His .898 save percentage is 7th best in the league and his 3 shutouts are tied for third best among QMJHL goalies. At 5’11″ and 175lbs St. Germaine is on the smallish side, but his quick reflexes allow him to cover the net effectively.

Both Charpentier and St. Germaine are 20 year olds in their final year of juniors. Read more»

Czech Republic Under-20 team at Five Nations Tournament

by Robert Neuhauser
on
The glory days are over. Everything was said and done about the last WJC, the players celebrated
the victories and now play in their respective leagues in the Czech Republic or Canada. Rostislav
Klesla said his statement about the Canadian play at the WJC, Don Cherry replied, but that was
yesterday. By this time it’s time for the Under-20 teams to start over. 1981 born guys are gone
and those born 1982 or later took their place. The first test for those teams took place in
Fussen, Germany, the city where the 1999 Under-18 WJC was played, in the first week of February.

Jaroslav Holik, head coach of the Czech Under-20 team, selected a whole new team, which
consisted of top Czech junior hockey league players with minimum of playing experience in the
Czech Extraleague. It was the first meeting between the 18-year old players and the charismatic
head coach, who wanted to get to know something about the players. For this reason were 2000
World champions Vaclav Nedorost and Tomas Plekanec left at home. They’re proven enough and they
have their roster spots ensured in the Under-20 team. They both play important roles for their
Extraleague teams and the Extraleague games will give them more than those against the players
of their own age in Fussen. By the way, Vaclav Nedorost was selected to perform for the Czech
senior national team at the Sweden hockey games, but he suffered a shoulder injury during his
practice with HC Ceske Budejovice and the injury prevented him from participating at the event.

A brand new team, using four complete lines, Read more»