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.

 

The 20/20 Hindsight Panther Draft History Analysis

by Mark Fischel
on

It’s always fun to go back and look at a team’s drafts and see if they glaringly over-looked a player or made the right choice.

By no means is this ever a total indictment upon a teams scouting department, since most of the time teams will draft for specific needs, and having a near perfect 20/20 hindsight is another disservice to the pressures of being on the clock during the draft.

Below is an analysis of the Panthers history at the draft table, to see how the team could have been different if the scouts had the amazing clarity that time affords. To keep things somewhat realistic, the analysis will be limited to the 5 picks after the original pick. A player like Adam Deadmarsh went 14th overall in ’93, and if the draft was redone with the hindsight, he probably would have gone in the top 5, but in 93, 13 teams passed over him since he wasn’t rated that high back then.

In this exercise for entertainment purposes only, comment are only made on a pick if it turned out a better player could be had. Another thing to consider is that a passed over player might not have developed unless he was in the right situation as well. There will be instances where the pick was exactly dead-on correct. Again, this is for entertainment purposes mainly and is the total benefit of 20/20 hindsight.

1993 Draft

5th – Robbie Neidermayer

Players taken in the next 5 spots are as follows: Kozlov, Arnott, Sundstrom, Harvey and Thibault. While Robbie hasn’t lived up to his expectations to be a scorer, he is a physical and defensive minded pre Read more»

Phoenix Signs Martin Grenier

by Brandon LeBourveau
on

The Phoenix Coyotes have signed defenseman Martin Grenier to a mulit year contract. Grenier became an unrestricted free agent after he failed to sign with Boston before the June 1st deadline for all 1999 draftees. The 20 year old Grenier, selected in the 2nd round of the 1999 draft by the Colorado Avalanche and dealt to the Bruins in the Ray Bourque deal, just completed his 4th season of junior hockey.

The 6’5 245 pound Grenier played 26 games for the Quebec Ramparts and 28 for the Victoriaville Tigres this past year. He is now one of the biggest players in the Coyotes’ organization, and they are glad to have him. He will likely see time next season in the AHL but it is possible he could crack the Coyotes’ defense during camp.

Other News: As expected the Phoenix Coyotes failed to sign Scott Kelman, the club’s 1st choice in ’99, 15th overall. Since they did not sign him, they will receive the 45th overall pick in this year’s draft as compensation. Also, Preston Mizzi was not signed as well.

Connolly and Spezza on Long Island: Perfect Together

by Bill Bennett
on
In the last few weeks Islander fans in cyberspace have been treated to every possible rumor regarding who they will draft, or who they will trade the pick for.

Even the chance at moving up to draft first has been in the headlines. Mike Milbury has openly talked about what the pick could bring and has even hinted that next year’s pick could be traded as well in an interview on Wfan.

What Mike Milbury, the Islanders Owners, and the Scouting Staff should do is take a step back in the remaining time before June 23rd and look at all the players on other teams that have been drafted by this organization and understand it’s time to keep the core group of players here that began with the 1999 draft and let them finish what they started even if it means some Unrestricted Free Agents decide not to come here. NHL General Managers always talk about using the Devils as models as to how to put together a winning franchise long term, the Islanders now can do just that.

Some credit to the New Islanders owners has to be given because very quietly among the criticism for keeping Mike Milbury they have signed many of their drafted prospects in: Rick DiPietro, Juraj Kolnik, Taylor Pyatt, Raffi Torres, Branislav Mezei and now Justin Mapletoft to go with their brand new AHL franchise in Bridgeport.

I can only speak for myself in this article, but from what I have read from many fans what they want is for the franchise to stick to a plan, keep the kids and close down the Mad Mike Show on draft day. It’s old, tired, and it’s not working. It’s time for Read more»

2001 Draft Profile : Mike Komisarek

by Jonathan Litterine
on
They don’t come much bigger. They don’t come much stronger. And most
of all, they don’t have any worse tempers. Those 3 attributes will make Mike
Komisarek a high high selection in this years draft. There is a chance he
will be the first defensemen taken. It looks like he will be battling Dan
Hamhuis for that honor. Komisarek will remind you of any big big hard hitting
defenseman. Chris Pronger and Derian Hatcher come to mind. Maybe even a
bigger Scott Stevens. At 6’4, 225, Komisarek led a Michigan Wolverines team
that featured other top prospects like Andy Hilbert and Mike Cammalleri to
the NCAA Frozen Four.

Komisarek is also a average offensive player. Not great
or anything, but chances are he won’t hurt your team. Yet NHL teams will be
attracted to his strength and grit. Always willing to standup for teammates
and mix it up with the other teams top tough guys. What makes Komisarek a
special find, is that he has other tools besides his strength. You can get
goons anywhere. But to find a talented one is a task. He’d certainly be a
good look for a NHL team who needs a solid defensemen. We all know how many
of them are out there. His offensive game is good enough to get by. Yet his
grit, size, strength and desire is what will put him over the top.

Look for
him to possibly slide into the top 10 on draft day. Last year there wasn’t
really a player in the early first round like Komisarek. All the defenseman
last year like Klesla, were solid solid offensive players. Komisarek is a
little different. But different is Read more»

Manitoba Moose Announce Affiliation With Vancouver and Unveil New Coach

by Andrew Bourgeois
on

IHL NEWS

The Manitoba Moose unveiled Stan Smyl as their new head coach Tuesday, a day after joining the American Hockey League from the defunct International Hockey League.
The Moose also made official that their NHL affiliation would be the Vancouver Canucks.

“When looking at affiliation, it was important for us to be associated with a Canadian-based franchise and the Canucks are a quality, first-class organization,” said Moose owner Mark Chipman.

The teams agreed to a five-year partnership deal.
Randy Carlyle stays on as general manager for the Moose, who were among six former IHL teams to move to the AHL.
Smyl, has been with the Canucks organization since he was drafted as a player in 1978. He led the Kansas City Blades to a 37-42-3 record in the IHL last season.

“While our organization’s number one goal is to develop the future stars of the Vancouver Canucks, it is equally important to put a competitive team on the ice that Manitobans can be proud of,” said Smyl. “I look forward to working with Randy and taking a run at a Calder Cup championship.”

The Moose also re-styled their team jerseys. The new look features a Canucks shoulder patch with the colour scheme switching from purple, green and black, to a forest green, bronze and black.

“With the new affiliation with the Vancouver Canucks, and our entry into a new league, we thought it would be fitting to give our hockey club a new and more modern look,” said Moose vice-president Tim Scott. “We feel these new uniforms combine many of hockey’s traditions with an exciting look Read more»

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