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.

 

Norway Attacks then Ties At Junior B`s, Other Notes…

by Evan Andriopoulos
on
The Norwegian Team had the better of the play to start with Norway tallying the first goal,(Chr.Thyggesen) just one minute in vs Austria. Austria rallied later and tied the match at 1. Norway`s Anders Frediksen was sandwiched in between two goals by Thyggesen as Norway held on for a 3-3 tie. Norway will play Ukrainia in their most crucial match as of yet.


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Canadian Team Prepares For World Junior Tournament

by Brad Coccimiglio
on
Once again the Canadian Hockey League will play a big part in the
success/failure of the Canadian entry in the World Junior Hockey
Championships. The selection camp is set for Dec. 13-18 at the Beatrice
Ice Gardens in North York, Ontario.

31 of the 34 players that were originally selected were from CHL teams.
Out of the 34 players, 22 will be selected to represent Canada at the
2001 World Junior Tournament in Russia.

Seven of the CHL players selected were members of Canada’s bronze medal
winning team from the 2000 tournament. One player, Brian Finley of the
Barrie Colts, was a member of the silver medal winning team from the
1999 tournament in Winnipeg. Finley will be unable to play in the
tournament though due to the fact that he re-aggravated a groin injury.

At this years tournament the Canadian team will be looking for some
form of redemption after falling short of the gold medal the last 2
years. The Canadian entry has not won a gold medal at the World Junior
Tournament since 1997.

In goal, with Finley out of the fold, the starting job is Maxime
Oullet’s to lose. Oullet will likely be the starter throughout the
tournament. Rob Zepp, Pascal Leclaire and Alex Auld would all make
capable backups for Oullet. The Canadian goaltending will be a strong
point as it almost always is.

With 3 players returning the defence is shaping up to be solid. Steve
McCarthy, Jay Bouwmeester and Barret Jackman will anchor this years
defensive corps. There will be a great deal of size on the Team Canada
blueline no Read more»

Caps notes: Sutherby and Beech injured

by pbadmin
on
Brian Sutherby had abdominal surgery and will be out of action until after
the WHL’s winter break. He will also miss this month’s World junior
tournament in Russia. Brian was expected to be a key role player for team
canada.

Nolan Yonkman was given a boarding major and game misconduct for his hit from
behind on fellow Caps prospect Kris Beech. There was no suspension as the
league felt Beech turned his back at the last second. This is the second
time since being drafted that Yonkman has had a run-in with a fellow
prospect. Last season he fought Ross Lupaschuk after Lupaschuk came in to
defend a teammate that had been boarded by Yonkman. Both players claim they
are friends now and they joke about that fight.

One of the Caps weaknesses last season was toughness. Richard Zednik and
Sergei Gonchar were injured late in the season from cheapshots. In the
offseason, the Caps acquired Craig Berube, Remi Royer, and Stephen Peat in
seperate deals. Royer has played well lately, earning alot of ice time and
doing very well in his fights. Peat has won both of his fights last week,
before reinjuring his groin. He may play this weekend. In the games I’ve
seen he’s made the transition to forward much faster than I expected. He and
Royer could be called up this season if they can stay healthy and continue to
play well.

Trading Tampa’s third round pick to Toronto for Dmitri Khristich suprised me.
I expected the Caps to try to stockpile picks in the coming draft. In
essence, the Caps traded Yogi Svejkovsky for Khristich. I Read more»

Czech NHL rookies – Petr Svoboda

by Robert Neuhauser
on
When you see the Toronto Maple Leafs hit the ice, some players can’t be overseen due to their size. One of them is Petr Svoboda, the 20-year old rookie hailing from the Czech Republic. How difficult was his way into the world’s best league?

It was almost sure that Petr will be hockey player someday. He was born 06-20-1980 as a son of one of the top deensemen in Czechoslovakia, Radoslav Svoboda. In the early 80′s was Radoslav Svoboda a regular with the National team and played a solid defensive game. On that day Petr couldn’t know, but as time passed by, he realized this fact and began to watch his father playing games. Petr loved hockey since he was born. He loved it even more in the spring of 1985, when the Czechoslovakian squad won the World Championship in front of the excited Czechoslovakian people in Prague. There he could see his father with a gold medal around his neck. He could be proud, but it was time to start a hockey career of his own. The little Petr was brought to the team of HC Dukla Jihlava, where he took his first strides. The coaches decided that the tall Petr will be playing defense and Petr wanted to be just like his dad, so everything was OK. Dad taught Petr all the basic skills and gave him all the tips how to improve his game. Quite good to get tips from a world champion, eh? This payed immediate dividends as Petr developed into one of the most feared defensemen among the Czech kids. The now retired dad followed his practices and Petr was willing to listen to the advices. Besides, he always worked on to be in a good physical shape and ha Read more»

Rangers News on Malhotra, Novak and More!

by Brandon LeBourveau
on

Novak Not Going to WJC: Rangers defensive prospect Filip Novak will not be playing for the Czech Republic at this years World Junior Championships, as he is having problems with his former Czech team. According to what is being said, when Novak first left the Czech Republic for the Regina Pats last year, he left without permission and that has caused a problem with his former Czech team, which in some way they are not letting him play in the WJC. I suppose Rangers’ assistant GM Don Maloney didn’t know of the situation as he said on TV earlier in the year that Novak will be playing ;) . However, Pavel Brendl will be on the Czech team and will look to make a name for himself, if he hasn’t done so already.

The Sophomores: How good have Mike York, Jan Hlavac and Kim Johnsson been for the Rangers this season? They have all been playing key roles on the team this year. Johnsson is the 3rd/4th defenseman, York the 3rd line center, but has been playing on the 1st PP and PK units, and Jan Hlavac has been playing 2nd line LW with Petr Nedved and Radek Dvorak. York has been a superb player for the Rangers, as his name has always come up in the press. Mark Messier, Theo Fleury, Ron Low and everyone else on the Rangers have said nothing but great things about York. He should continue to be a great two way center. Hlavac is on pace to score about 25 goals this year, and he will be a consistent 30 goal scorer in the NHL. While many Rangers fans have proposed trade offers with his name included, I don’t see any way Sather can trade Hlavac. He is not only g Read more»