Born: July 26, 1979
Hometown: Toronto, Ontario
Weight: 187 lbs
When a junior hockey player wins one scoring championship, it’s pretty impressive, but when a player wins back-to-back championships, it’s almost unheard of. This season Peter Sarno of the Sarnia Sting became the second player in OHL history, and first since 1970-71, to do so. The last player to win back-to-back scoring titles was Marcel Dionne with St. Catharines (1969-70, 1970-71).
Sarno has had a pretty illustrious OHL career. Sarno was drafted by the Windsor Spitfires in the fifth round of the 1996 OHL midget draft. His totals in Tier 2 Junior A with North York were impressive. He scored 39 goals and 96 points in 52 games with North York.
In Sarno’s 3 seasons in the OHL he has looked more like a first round draft pick then a fifth round pick. His playmaking skills make watching him fun. Adding a great scoring touch to his playmaking skills make him a threat every time he comes onto the ice. In his rookie season (1996-97), Sarno won the Emms Family Award as the OHL rookie-of-the-year. His rookie season was very successful as the creative centreman scored 20 goals and 83 points in 66 games. The 63 assists that Sarno picked up were the fifth highest total in the league.
Guide: 1 star – awful
2 stars – dissapointing
3 stars – did what was supposed to do, nothing more nothing less
4 stars- exceeded expectations
5 stars – created new expectations
1- Michel Riesen
After a rocky start with the Hamilton Bulldogs in which Riesen recorded only 13 points in 45 games Riesen has begun to pick up the pace. In his past nine games Riesen has recorded seven points, not much to get excited about however at the start of the year Riesen was playing with fear. His fear has dissipated and he now looks as though he has regained the confidence that he once had. He no longer shies away from contact and the corners are a place he will venture to. It appears as though the fear that he played with may have been brought on by his vast amount of injuries in the past year. He seems to be getting over that and the Oilers organization is very glad. They are looking for him to step up to the team next season as either Pat Falloon, Rem Murray or Alex Selivanov will be claimed by the expansion Atlanta Thrashers. He will be looked upon to make the team and possibly be the second line right winger, and maybe even fill in the first line left wing spot that for the most part of this season has been a revolving door of players.
LEA GP G A PTS PIM PP SH GWG
AHL 54 5 15 20 6 3 0 1
WJC 6 0 4 4 4
Season Rating- 2 out of 5 stars
2- Micheal Henrich
When Steve Passmore, the native of Thunder Bay Ontario, was drafted he was considered a longshot prospect at the time. He was selected in the ninth round by the Quebec Nordiques, 196th overall, in the 1992 entry draft. His size and lack of technique had been his downfall throughut his junior career. Despite his lack of size and technique, however, Passmore played spectacular and was named a first team All-Star in the WHL the next two seasons (1992-93, 1993-94). In the 1993-94 campaign he led his Kamloops Blazers team to the Memorial Cup. Before ever playing in an NHL game Passmore was involved in a trade deadline deal on March 21st, 1994 which saw Brad Werenka go to Quebec from Edmonton. Passmore was now Edmonton Oiler property, but still the consensus was he would need grooming in the AHL.
After nearly four seasons of arguing, pleading and frustration, Oilers GM Glen Sather finally pulled the trigger on the highest draft pick, and biggest bust, in Edmonton history, Jason Bonsignore, trading him to Tampa Bay.
There’s no denying the fact that Bonsignore is one of the most talented young hockey players out there, when he wants to be, and if he ever gets his act together, the Oilers could be kicking themselves for not giving him one more year. The Blackhawks gave up on a young goalie some years ago because it seemed he had an attitude problem and couldn’t hack it in the big leagues, despite tremendous talent. That goalie went on to be last year’s winner of the Hart, Vezina and Pearson trophies and was an integral part of the Northeast Division champion Buffalo Sabres.
It’s tough seeing such potential go to waste. Bonsignore has been compared to Mario Lemieux when he’s playing with heart. As one scout put it, Jason has all the tools but no tool box. Another said he had the makings of a Cadillac but the heart of less pricey model. There are no glaring deficiencies in his play and his finesse game includes brilliant playmaking and vision, terrific hockey sense and boy, can he skate like the wind! He has also silenced criticism that he has no physical game, getting involved in traffic and in the corners and adding a gritty factor to his play while in Hamilton. The one thing, however, that has earned him the most criticism, a demotion to the IHL and, ultimately, his permanent removal from the Oilers’ future plans is his lack of heart and desire to succee Read more»