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.

 

HF’s Interview with St. Michael’s Major Kevin Klein

by Brad Coccimiglio
on

Kevin Klein
Team: Toronto St. Michael’s Majors
Position: Defenseman
Birthdate: Dec. 13, 1984
Hometown: Kitchener, Ontario
Height: 6’1
Weight: 185 lbs

·Was St. Michael’s 2nd round pick in the 2000 OHL draft
·Klein is considered to be a top prospect for the 2003 NHL draft Read more»

Silver hard to accept for Stoll

by Jeff Bromley
on

For every dark cloud, there’s a silver lining, goes the old saying. After a bittersweet silver medal performance at the World Junior Championships three weeks ago, Jarrett Stoll’s silver lining isn’t much compensation for what he considers a dark cloud of losing the gold medal game to Russia. Even being named both WHL player of the week (Jan. 13-19) and a WHL Western Conference All-Star selection was little solace for the still simmering emotions.

Improving on the bronze medal performance a year earlier by Canada in Moscow, the captain of the 2002 national junior squad had the unenviable assignment of accepting the silver for his teammates. As team leader, it was one of the more difficult duties he had to perform. “It’s probably the hardest thing I’ve ever had to deal with in hockey,” said Stoll after arriving back in Cranbrook after a week’s vacation at home in Saskatchewan.

Although an experience of a lifetime and the country’s best result in four years, the second place finish still leaves a bitter taste in Stoll’s mouth. So much so that some three weeks after the end of the tournament the Yorkton native still hadn’t seen the now infamous overhead T.V. shot of the Russian goaltender Serguei Mylnikov purposely pushing the net off it’s moorings with less than twenty seconds remaining as the Canadians buzzed around the net in a wild flurry looking for the tying goal. It’s an offense that should’ve warranted a penalty shot and could’ve turned silver into gold for Canada. “The Russians getting the medal and taunting us the way they did and the way the game ended Read more»

On The Horizon: Alexander Ovechkin

by Jake Dole
on
Many fans caught a glimpse of this 16-year old (Moscow) Dynamo at the recent U-17 challenge. Russian prospect Alexander Ovechkin is making a lot of noise in the scouting community, as many consider him to be the early favorite for the 2004 NHL draft.
Born on the 17th of September, 1985, Ovechkin missed 2003 eligibility by a thread (or a couple of days to be exact). His on-ice intelligence and pure game-breaking ability makes one question the validity of his birthdate. However, there is no mistake; this phenom will not be property of an NHL team for more than 2 years.
He has drawn comparisons to Ilya Kovalchuk, last year’s first overall pick in the 2001 NHL Entry Draft. And rightfully so, considering that Ovechkin is getting regular icetime with the Moscow Dynamo of the Russian Superleague (the top hockey league in the country).
So far in 10 games, Ovechkin has collected 2 goals, 3 points and has earned a first star honour in a recent match.
Alexander has fit in perfectly with his fellow ‘Dynamites’, playing on the line with Raviil Yakubov and Alexei Tereschenko. A right winger, Ovechkin has demonstrated maturity and poise beyond his years, earning praise from critics, fans and coaches alike.
Ovechkin’s 7 goal, 20 point performance (in 13 games) in the Russian 1st division earned him the call-up to the top club, where he has surprised many by consistently piling up the points.
Alexander is a big, balanced skater whose Read more»

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