Well folks the Blue Jackets organization’s season is over, every player either under contract or drafted by the Blue Jackets are done. The last two players were two prospects one auditioning for a contract the other wanting to finish on a high note in the MasterCard Memorial Cup.
Mathieu Corbeil-Saint John Sea Dogs(QMJHL)
Tournament Stats 4GP 2-2 .881Sv% 3.51GAA
Mathieu and the Sea Dogs entered the tournament as the defending champs and the best teams in Canada playing only 17 playoff games going 16-0-1. It was announced before the tournament that this is what would help the Jackets decide if they were gonna sign the big goalie and well Mathieu didn’t have the tournament he hoped he would. Starting off against London Mathieu made 19 saves in a 5-3 loss and at least according to my Saint John source he looked good and bailed the Dogs out a few times. The next game was against the Edmonton Oil Kings a 5-2 win making 25 saves in the win to give Mathieu his first Memorial Cup win in three tries. To close out the round robin it was the grudge match everyone in Saint John and Shawinigan wanted, as I’ve said before the teams both put in bids with Saint John thinking it had it locked but Shawinigan of course winning it. As for the game Corbeil was solid allowing only one goal on 31 shots. After a day off for the Dogs faced the Cats for the second time in the tournament this time with a title shot on the line. Mathieu wasnt his best allowing six goals on 36 shots in a 7-4 loss even allowing a goal just 48 seconds after Shawinigan scored an empty net goal. Now for the bad news…wait nevermind as I said in my state of the prospect pool awhile back Mathieu was one of nine prospects the CBJ have to make a decision on and while I thought with our goalie depth being as bad as it is he’d be a lock but the CBJ decided to use the Memorial Cup as the final viewing to settle things and well it appears Mathieu wont be signed as the team probably decided it was the team he was playing on as the basis for his success and not his play. As with all the prospects not being signed I wish him all the best in the future and I will still wear my Sea Dogs jersey whenever I want to get odd looks in Nationwide.
I know it spoils the suprise but if you follow me you know how this is gonna end plus I really wanted to use this pic :) (had to screen cap only way I could post) As the host team the Cataractes got to play in the tournament opening game and what has become normal lately the host team wore a special jersey(Michael’s profile pic in the jersey) to honor a local Army regiment. Facing off against the WHL champions the Edmonton Oil Kings the Cats ended up losing the game but not without Chaput saying this tournament is gonna be my show scoring two goals. Chaput ‘s goal was actually started with him passing it to Brandon Gormley whose blast was shot back out for Chaput to bang home a juicy rebound. On Chaput’s second goal Oil Kings Dman Keegan Lowe should have earned a assist as Chaput pressured him as he went for a spin move for some reason with Chaput barely having to do anything but flip the puck over the Edmonton goalie’s shoulder along with almost taking out the referee with his celebration(knew I liked the kid for some reason), in the loss Michael won 16 of 27 faceoffs. Now while the Cataractes may have been rusty against Edmonton(month off will do that) the rust was gone against OHL champ London as they rolled over the Knights 6-2. In the win Michael had a goal and two assists and both assists showed why we should be excited for him with Shawinigan trailing 1-0 Chaput battled along the boards got to Dman Brandon Gormley whose point shot was tipped by Michael Bournival in front. For his second assist it was kinda goofy as it looks like he mishandled a pass but got it out to Gormley(sensing a pattern here) for a blast from the point. Michael’s goal was an empty netter with the Cats up 5-2(who pulls a goalie at 5-2?), in the win Michael was his normal dominant self at the dot winning 25 of 32. In the last game of the round robin it was Cats vs Dogs(not living together we know what that means) and the game went with Saint John winning 4-1 with Michael having a assist on Shawinigan’s only goal but won 22 of 34 faceoffs. So in the last two games Michael won 47 of 66 faceoffs or 71%…just let that settle for a second.
With Shawinigan going 1-2 in round robin it would (a) have to play three in three and (b) it’d have to redo the round robin playing all three teams again. Starting off with the tiebreaker against Edmonton Michael had two assists. The first assist came when he curled around and got the puck to Gormley who passed it to Morgan Ellis for a blast. The second one is when he led the rush and caught a trailer to make it 3-0, in the win Michael won 13 of 23 at the dot. The next day to finish the three in three was a rematch against the Sea Dogs this time being the opposite result as the Catractes winning 7-4 with Chaput again having a dominating performance scoring two goals and adding a assist. His first assist was after a scramble in front first Anton Zlobin(who the Jackets should draft by the way) chipped it to Chaput who got it out to Gormley who scored on a rocket. Michael’s first goal was the result of a pretty passing play started by team captain Michael Bournival and Zlobin and when Michael got the puck he had a wide open net to shoot into(sigh Mathieu). Michael’s second goal was another one that a opponent’s dman should have had an assist as Michael on what I guess you would call a dump Canadians first round pick Nathan Beaulieu passed it right to Chaput who was off to the races following the advice of Chubbs Peterson he just “tapped it in” with a backhand. Michael was named first star in the win also winning 18 of 30 faceoffs. Finally after a day off between the semifinals and finals the Cataractes took on the London Knights again and in what was a tight game with only three power plays called ended going to overtime. Michael Chaput started the play with a faceoff win(shocking huh-actually had kind of a rough night winning 17 of 41) after chipping it into the corner he tipped it to Bournival who found Zlobin in front for his second of the night and biggest goal of his career(probably) clinching the Cats its First Memorial Cup in the franchise’s 43 years. So with 12 points in 6 games including four multi point games, being one of only four players with 10 points(Gilbert Brule, Justin Azevedo and somehow a girl only way i can explain Sydney) what does that earn you well THIS!
Thats right Jackets fans because of his performance Michael won the Stafford Smythe Memorial Trophy for being tournament MVP, the Ed Chynoweth Trophy as the tournament’s leading scorer and was named a all-star. Michael’s next step is more than likely as one of Springfield’s top three centers next season but he could go back for one more year as one of Shawinigan’s three 20 year olds but I don’t see it happening. Last but not least here’s the Cats Championship photo that s Michael in front pointing.
Well folks that’s it for the prospect reviews folks the only thing left until after the draft is the Annual CBJ prospect awards!!!