It is very refreshing to see more and more future NHLer’s and hockey prospects playing for College and University programs. NHL franchises and their scouts are looking towards the NCAA as a source of fresh, new, young potential talent. In due time, the NCAA will be to American skaters as what the CHL is to Canadian prospects. And, who else to pave the way for this eventual event is none other than the one and only Lou Lamoriello. He, himself, basically made the jump to the NHL through the collegiate ranks, first as a coach, then Athletic Director at Providence College. Also, during his tenure with the Friars, he was one of the founders and first elected commissioner of what is now considered the best conference in college, Hockey East.
Here are seven prospects in the Devils organizations currently enrolled in a collegiate program. And who else better to start with then the teams that meet in the Frozen Four Championship, Boston College and University of North Dakota.
Coach Jerry York has a lot on his plate for the upcoming year. Or maybe had. The defending champs lost speedy sniper Brian Gionta and improving starting netminder Scott Clemmensen to graduation and the Devils. But it also looks like he lost Underclassmen standouts Chuck Kobasew, Brooks Orpik and Krys Kolanos so that they could make a jump to the CHL and the NHL. So that leaves us with 1999 late round selection Justin Dziama. He is entering his sophomore year after only posting one goal, one assist and 36 penalty minutes in 28 games. The 6’3” 220 pound forward hopes he will get more i Read more»
Name: Pierre-Marc Bouchard
RN: At what age did you start playing hockey?
RN: Where did you start playing hockey?
RN: What is your favorite NHL team?
RN: Your favorite NHL player?
RN: Do you have a special team you would like to be drafted?
RN: The biggest success in your previous hockey career?
RN: How does it feel to win the tournament?
RN: Thank you
Talk to anyone about goaltending and the Leafs’ draft of 2000 and the first name that is bound to pop out is the aforementioned Mikael Tellqvist. However, 20 selections later the Blue and White nabbed a second puckstopper out of Drummondville by the name of Jean-Francois Racine with much less fanfare. At 6’3″ and now 188 pounds the Voltigeurs netminder is, like many that come out of the Q, a large butterfly style goalie, in the mold of Patrick Roy. He skates well for a big man and his Coach, Daniel Bissonnette, points out that while his charge “is at times too fast to go down he is very good at regaining his feet (once he has done so)”. Not that Racine is helpless once on the ice. The 19 year old is quite accomplished at following the puck in a scramble and keeping his body between the rubber and the mesh. In addition to that he is quick to cover anything near him and has a short pokecheck he uses to good effect when the situation warrants it.
While he has a snappy glovehand, he can be had backing up on the rush at this time. Bissonnette states that “most of the time he’s good but when a player comes in the zone on an angle, he has to improve.” That said, “bad goals don’t stick with him” and although it is true that he sometimes has problems holding onto a third period lead, “he holds up well (in games with) heavy shot counts.” Not a risky player like St. Patrick, he doesn’t get caught wandering often and when he does leave his net he tends to use the forehand to get the puck out of danger. At times he is capable of the outlet pass Read more»
Owners: Philip F. Anschutz and Edward P. Roski Jr.
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