Austin Smith was one of the three "Hobey Hat Trick" finalists this year after a sensational season in which he led the nation in goal scoring with 36 and finishing third with 57 points (36 goals, 21 assists) in 39 games with the Colgate Raiders. Smith's excellent senior campaign earned him numerous honors, including the ECAC Player of the Year and a selection to the All-America East First team.
Team Depth Chart of NHL Prospects
- Tremendous amount of overall depth.
- Copious amounts of sizeable, defensive defensemen.
- Upper-echelon forwards are progressing nicely.
- Goaltending depth is limited in quantity and quality.
- Recent grabs for offensive d-men came up short.
- Few prospects expected to reach "elite" or "gamebreaker" status.
Legend of Players' Leagues
- Playing in N.A. Pro (NHL, AHL, ECHL, etc.)
- Playing in CHL (OHL, QMJHL, WHL)
- Playing in NCAA
- Playing in Europe
- Playing in Junior 'A' (USHL, BCHL, AJHL, etc.)
- Not Categorized Yet
If the Dallas Stars are looking to add a little fire to their lineup, they could do worse than to keep their 2000 1st round pick, LW Steve Ott, in their lineup next season. Ott has starred for the Windsor Spitfires of the OHL for the past 3 seasons, providing equal parts skill and toughness on a consistent basis.
Ott led the Spitfires in scoring this season, notching 88 points (43G, 45A) in 53 games. In addition to his fine offensive work, Steve also cemented his image as a tough player, picking up 178 PIMs during the 2001-02 season. In his 3 seasons with Windsor, Steve accumulated 237 points, as well as 473 PIMs.
Steve’s good work this season did not go unnoticed, as he was named an OHL 2nd Team All Star. In addition to this award, Ott was also a member of Team Canada’s entry at the World Junior Championships, where he and his teammates earned silver medals. This was Steve’s 2nd appearance at the WJC.
This past season will in all likelihood be the last of Ott’s junior career. He has already signed a contract with Dallas, and will most likely get his pro career started with the Stars’ farm club in Utah.
I interviewed Steve prior to a recent playoff game, with the transcript of that conversation being presented below.
HF: Let’s talk about the playoffs first, I guess. You guys are down 2-0 in this series (vs. Erie, which the Otters eventually won), but other than that, you’ve had some success up to this point. What do you need to do to get past Erie in this Read more»
relationship with longstanding minor league affiliate, the Michigan
K-Wings, and began a 2 (optionally up to 4 year) deal with the Utah Grizzlies —
another IHL team from Salt Lake City. The next day Stars fans everywhere
read the headline, shrugged, told themselves “one IHL team is as good as
another”, and immediately turned over to the box scores. Few fans considered
how an interleague affiliation change could have much ramification on the development
of Stars future talent. But, though at first the
wisdom of this new relationship with the Grizzlies was not apparent in
most circles, it is definitely an improvement and a step in the right
direction for the Stars future. Here are a couple of reasons Stars fans
can look positively forward to this new affiliate:
# 1) Cold, Hard Cash
K-Wings no longer had the funds to support an NHL affiliate team. The IHL
began largely as a “bus league” for the Midwestern United States. In the league’s
infancy, IHL teams popped up in smaller towns and players were bussed from location to
location. As time went on, IHL began moving to bigger cities (i.e.
Chicago, Detroit) and profits began skyrocketing.
The Dallas Stars 2000 draft consisted of ten picks, with eight of the ten being European. Dallas selected an overage prospect later in the draft. Below is a detailed look at the Stars’ 2000 draft day.
#25 Steve Ott, C
Must gain weight to be effective in the NHL, but already has the necessary skills. Has speed, good puck control, and good passing ability, while also maintaining a distinct edge to his game. Proof of his skills lie in the fact that he led his team in scoring as a rookie, and was MVP for Team Cherry in the ’00 CHL Prospect Game.
Solid pick with good upside, and should develop into a nice two-way player
Regular Season gp-66 g-23 a-39 pts-62 pim-131
A butterfly goalie that played last season in the weaker USHL, and will attend college next season. Possesses good quickness, rebound control, and focus, but must translate his game to the higher levels of competition.
A reach made because of need, but his progress has been encouraging.
gp-55 w-34 l-16 t-4 so-11 gaa-2.25
He has played well in recent international tournaments, while showing Read more»
-Like to select two-way forwards, hulking defenseman, players from the WHL, and recently forwards with plus skating ability.
-Since the Stars have been in Dallas they have not selected a goaltender in the first two rounds, and almost never select Slovakian, Czech, or QMJHL players.
-Goal scoring forwards with size and speed
Picks held: (as of 6/16/00)
#25, #55, #62 (from Min.), #85, #115, #145, #175, #205, #245, #275
What to expect in this year’s draft:
First four picks
-Maybe one goaltender, and at least one defenseman.
-Look for one or more “reaches” by the Stars, as a weak draft and vastly varying opinions could make for some interesting picks.
Late Round Picks
-Look for at least one player 20 or older to be selected.
-Look for a majority of Europeans to be selected here, as they are a
-Will select a goaltender here if they pass on one in the earlier rounds.
-They have traded out of the first round the last two years, and they might again, but anticipate them making a selection this year.
-Could conceivably put together a package of picks and/or players to obtain a veteran goal-scorer on draft day.
Possible picks at #25:
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