Hello all during last week’s fire the cannon podcast(episode 116) Eric Smith thought he’d challenge me by asking me to do some CBJ prospect awards – well he must not have read my awards blog from last year . So with combining last year’s awards with some of Eric’s ideas, I give you the second annual CBJ prospect awards!!!! so put on your best Tuxedo T-shirt and lets go.
PROSPECT LEADING SCORER
Mile Reilly-Penticton Vees(BCHL)
TOP FORWARD PROSPECT
Michael Chaput-Shawinigan Cataractes(QMJHL) 57GP 21-42-63 +42 50PIM
This one I fought with myself over between Chaput and Cam Atkinson, but I decided on Chaput with the help of the selection committee (me and one person on twitter). Chaput wins because he’s still a prospect where Cam is on the fence between prospect and NHL player, perhaps jumping that fence next season(with a boost from someone-I’m sorry I had to). Chaput was second in scoring on a new team after Lewiston folded, plus he put the team on his back for the Memorial Cup winning MVP.
TOP DEFENSEMAN PROSPECT
Austin Madaisky-Kamloops Blazers (WHL) 70GP 13-37-50 +20 87PIM
Now I about gave it to Mike Reilly, but for some reason, all season I’ve had a hard time comparing Reilly in the BCHL with the rest of the Jackets prospects be they playing in the CHL or NCAA. As for Austin, he led the Blazers in scoring with a career year – almost doubling his previous career totals. Now I know people hate the +/- stat, but Austin was a plus player for the first time since his rookie season being a +20 (though playing on a very good Blazers team also helped). As for next season, Austin could return to Kamloops for his final junior season or he could join the Falcons already crowded blueline.
TOP GOALIE PROSPECT
Mathieu Corbeil-Saint John Sea Dogs (QMJHL) 48GP 37-10-0 .911Sv% 2.38GAA 6SO
This is awkward like getting your championship ring when you’re playing for the other team. I say this because Mathieu is, as of this writing, not a Blue Jackets prospect anymore. Despite going 50-11-1 over the last two seasons in Saint John, the Jackets decided not to sign him. Now why is a goalie the team didn’t even sign the top goalie prospect? Because he had little competition. The competition was Anton Forsberg who was a backup in Sweden, being loaned to a team in a lower league next season; and, Martin Ouelette who was supposed to challenge fellow sophomore Dan Sullivan but ended up serving as his back up for most of the second half and only playing in 9 games period.
BEST AHL PROSPECT
Cam Atkinson 51GP 29-15-44 +5 31PIM
I know just a few awards ago I didn’t give him one because he’s on the fence of becoming a pro, well here’s a question for you…who was better in the AHL for the Falcons last season among CBJ prospects? I know Matt Calvert had a good year, but he got hurt and Brent Regner had a breakout year, but Atkinson was among the rookie leaders in scoring and goals all season long. While he’s not guaranteed a spot next year I wouldn’t doubt that he’s playing in Columbus next season.
TOP NCAA PROSPECT
TJ Tynan-Notre Dame (CCHA) 39GP 13-28-41 -6 38PIM
This was another tough one as Tynan’s only real challenge was from Jake Hansen and his breakout season. Tynan led the Irish in scoring for the second year in a row and is closing in on 100 for his career, (needing only five) meaning he’ll probably have it by the end of October. Tynan will return to South Bend for his junior season probably playing in the world juniors again.
MOST IMPROVED PROSPECT
Jake Hansen-Minnesota (WCHA) 43GP 16-22-38 +19 58PIM
Jake Hansen wins this award due to almost doubling his career totals in a season. In his first three years in St Paul, Jake only had 39 points, and then scored 38 in his senior year, adding a half point to his point per game total. I said it numerous times if you asked me in training camp if Jake would be signed, I’d have laughed at you. Really the only other choice might’ve been Sean Collins who scored 26 points this year after only scoring 31 in his first three years at Cornell.
MOST DISAPPOINTING PROSPECT
Martin Ouelette-Maine (Hockey East) 9GP 1-3-0 .871Sv% 3.42GAA
Maine’s goaltending was Ouelette, fellow sophomore Dan Sullivan, and Senior Josh Seeley who hadn’t played since the 2008-09 season. Martin played in seven of his nine games in October and November with his last start being November 5th – a loss to New Hampshire -his fifth game of the season. In his last four appearances he only played a total of 37 minutes. Martin will return to Maine next year again splitting time with Sullivan.
MOST LIKELY TO PLAY IN COLUMBUS NEXT YEAR
Outside of whoever we pick 2nd in the draft I don’t know of any rookies making their debut on opening night next year; but as for prospects that we could see in Columbus next year, I wouldnt be surprised to see Michael Chaput or Will Weber in Columbus if injuries happen (writer knocks on wood, throws salt over shoulder).
BEST PROSPECT HIT
Boone Jenner on Olli Maata at the World Juniors
Ok, like I said last year I obviously didn’t see every prospect hit, but much like last year, our winner is a Jackets prospect demolishing a Scandinavian top defensive draft prospect. This years winner is Boone Jenner’s hit on top 2012 draft prospect Olli Maata
BEST PROSPECT FIGHT
Dalton Smith Vs Ty Blicke-December 2nd 2011
TALE OF THE TAPE
Dalton Smith Name Ty Bilcke
Ottawa 67s Team Winsdsor Spitfires
6’2 205 Size 6’2 217
67 PIM 221 (led league)
As voted on by the users on theUnionblue.com forum, your top CBJ prospect fight, Dalton Smith facing off against OHL rookie Ty Bilcke in a marathon bout.
There you have it folks the annual CBJ prospect awards, I’ll be back around draft time and, as long as there is one, I’ll be blogging about the Traverse City Tournament, and I thank you for reading.