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.

 

Giants Make Changes Focused on Future

by Dave Donnelly
on


Giants Make Changes Focused on Future

In just over a month, the Giants have changed their look and it appears to be with a focus on the future. Of note, the club seems to be slowly stockpiling up on young netminders. The transactions go as follows:

October 11: Acquire 18-year old forward/defenceman Jack Redlick [6’3″, 215#], from the Kamloops Blazers for the Giants’ 5th round Bantam Draft Pick in either 2002 or 2003.

Week of October 22: Trade 20-year centre old Paul Deniset for Prince Alberts’ 5th round Bantam Draft Pick.

Week of October 22: Acquire former Regina Pat, 20-year old centre Ryan Thomas [5’10”, 200#], and former Swift Current Bronco, 20-year old defenceman Clay Thoring [5’11”, 175#], through Free Agency.

November 10: Trade right winger Joe Bitz to the Regina Pats for 17-year old Mark Sargent, a goaltending prospect.

November 10: Trade 18-year old local boy and Giants’ history-maker, centre Tyson Mulock to the Regina Pats for 18-year old centre Chad Bassen [6′, 187#].

November 10: Trade 20-year old, left winger Scott Henkelman to the Kamloops Blazers for 17-year old right winger Josh Bonar [6’2″, 175#], and 17-year old goalie Jordan McLaughlin.

—————————————————————————————————————-

For the Giants, a return to playing some successful hockey will come once they focus on their defensive (and physical) play at both ends of the rink. On occasion, there is a player whose prese Read more»

Sparta Praha after 20 rounds recap

by Ivana Paulova
on

This is the first recap from the officially declared best European hockey league which is the Czech Extraleague. One of the teams that has a pretty good chance of winning the title is Sparta Praha. Club with an excellent backround and enough money to buy good players with very perspective future. Sparta’s roster is loaded with stars this season, their names won’t say much to North American hockey fans but in the Czech Republic they are well known.

There are players that are included on the national team’s preliminary roaster such as Jaroslav Hlinka (no relation to the Pittsburgh ex-coach Ivan Hlinka), Onderj Kratena, Michal Bros, Jan Tomajko, Radek Belohlav, Libor Zabransky, Jan Srdinko or Radek Hamr. This young force is strengthened by experienced players such as Richard Zemlicka and Petr Briza who spent most of their career in Sparta but were also the key figures in the national selection few years ago. There is also young blood in the presence of Jan Hanzlik and Tomas Netik. Then there is a Slovak player Robert Tomik who brought a lot of freshness to the team.

Let me just briefly tell you about the changes that took place during the summer in Sparta’s roster and not only in it. Sparta didn’t win the Extraleague last season and ended up second. But considering the poor performance in the course of the year it can still be seen as success. Sparta played different hockey in the play-offs then in the regular season but assumingly they didn’t play by their heart as much as the team around Jiri Dopita did (meaning Vsetin). Still being secon Read more»

Oilers Pipeline Report

by Dean Belanger
on

Ales Hemsky seems to have re-adjusted to life back in the QMJHL, as he was named the player of the week on November 5th. Hemsky notched 4 goals and had 10 points in only 3 games during the week previous to his honor. He also posted a +4 rating, and now has 24 points in 15 games.

The Hamilton Bulldogs have gone on a nice roll, unbeaten in their last 6 games, and now sit second in the Canadian Division with an 8-4-2 record in 15 games. Marc Lamothe has 3 consecutive home shutouts, and may just be the next goalie that gets to open the gate for Tommy Salo. While Kevin Brown continues to lead the team in scoring, Jason Chimera and Brian Swanson are hot on his tail. Sven Butenschon may also find himself back in the “bigs” soon if his game continues to roll, posting 10 points in 15 games.

Boxma still haunting the ICE

by Jeff Bromley
on

Boxma still haunting the ICE

B.J. Boxma doesn’t have anything left to prove against the Kootenay ICE. The Edson, Alberta native accomplished that goal last April when he backstopped his Swift Current Broncos to a seventh game Eastern Conference Semifinal win over the ICE to unceremoniously boot his former mates from last year’s playoffs.

Now the former 1996 Kootenay ICE 4th round Bantam pick would love nothing more than to make it a habit of waltzing into the Cranbrook Rec/Plex and strutting out with a win. Unfortunately for him or perhaps more fortunate for the ICE, the Broncos won’t visit the Key City due to Kootenay’s change of conference last summer. Unless of course, another playoff match-up is in the cards.

It this winning habit over the ICE becoming an obsession?

“Nah,” said a humble Boxma. “I think that the boys just wanted to win it for me. It’s probably my last game here ever and I wanted to go out with a victory. The guys played really well in front of me tonight.”

Both Boxma and his Bronco teammates played well-enough to get past a lack-luster Kootenay ICE squad 4-3 Wednesday night. But in the third period with the Broncos clinging to a one goal lead and Kootenay peppering 17 shots on the Bronco netminder, it was Boxma that ensured none of those shots hit the twine. It was Boxma’s second consecutive win following a 1-0 win over the Prince Albert Raiders and surprisingly enough, it was Boxma’s first shutout in his 102 game WHL career.

With the sun setting on his junior hockey career, his club a force to b Read more»

God Bless Kim Gernack

by pbadmin
on

I bring terrible news to the Hockey’s Future family our Edmonton Oilers team Editor Kim Gernack passed away.

Known as Redtwilight on the message boards he brought a sense of common decency and mutual respect to our happy hockey-loving band of rogues. I will personally miss insight and passion for the game and the true appreciation he showed for everyone’s hard work.

I spoke to Kim late last week from his bed at the University Hospital in Edmonton and he was upbeat and looking forward to coming back to chat with his boys on the Edmonton page.

At this time I would like to pay our respects to his lovely wife Marilyn and his entire family.
Kim’s name will forever stay as the Editor of the Edmonton Oilers team page for the existence of this publication.

I would like to officially announce that the Hockey’s Future charity that is presently being built to help under privileged children play hockey will be named after Kim Gernack.

Please send all condolences to the Edmonton Oilers message board.

Respectfuly,

Shane Malloy

Asst. Managing Editor/Director of Media Relations

Hockey’s Future

www.hockeysfuture.com

(403) 802-0007

smalloy@hockeysfuture.com

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