Greeting all! Live from your phone or PC, the entertainment capital of your office, it’s time for my fourth annual edition of The Prospect Awards so put on your best tuxedo shirt and let’s get going. Continue reading…
The Blue Jackets had three prospects play in the OHL and WHL’s Western Conference Finals – two moved on while the other’s season came to an end.
Oscar Dansk-Erie Otters (Lost OHL Western Conference Final to Guelph 4-1)
Conference Finals Stats 2GP 0-1 6.93GAA .795Sv%
Final Playoff Stats 3GP 0-1 6.79GAA .797Sv%
Regular Season Stats 42GP 29-9-1 2.39GAA .909Sv% 6SO
Oscar and the Otters faced off against the Guelph Storm in the OHL Western Conference Final that ended with the Storm picking up a 4-1 series win. Oscar played all of game two because, despite nine days off and playing in only one game, Erie coach Kris Knoblauch thought Devin Williams needed “rest”. In the 7-2 loss, Oscar stopped 23 of 30 shots in the loss. Erie beat writer Victor Fernandes opined that the Otters’ D abandoned him that night. In game three, Williams returned to the crease and made it into the third period but after allowing five goals on 27 shots, Oscar entered the game and…allowed a goal on the first shot he faced, (but it was to Kerby Rychel!) In the 7-1 loss Oscar stopped 12 of 14 in the third period – Fernandes again pointed out it wasn’t all the Otters’ goalies fault. The Otters would win game four but lost game five and thus the series.
I asked Victor for his thoughts on Oscar during the season and playoffs along with if his play at the World Juniors had any bearing on his struggles.
Hello all – time to recap how our CHL prospects did last round. Overall we had five prospects playing in the conference semifinals with three moving on which will provide another prospect matchup in the OHL Western Conference Final.
Oscar Dansk didn’t play in any game of the Otters four game sweep of Sault Ste. Marie and, unless Devin Williams falters, I didn’t see Oscar making an appearance in the Western Conference Finals against Guelph (Editor’s note: Oscar did start the game last night with not so great results – we’ll have more on that in our next update)
Kerby Rychel-Guelph Storm (OHL Western Conference)-Won Series 4-1
Round Stats 5GP 1-5-6 +4 2PIM
Playoff Stats 10GP 2-11-13 +7 8PIM
Kerby and the Storm faced off against the London Knights and picked up a 4-1 series win. In game one Kerby put the icing on the cake of a 6-4 win when he scored an empty net goal with only 10 seconds remaining. The goal came when London’s mammoth Russian Nikita Zadorov played the puck and cleared it…right to Storm forward Jason Dickinson who skated in drawing the attention of two Knights. This allowed him to find a wide open Kerby who scored for his second of the playoffs. Kerby was held scoreless in game two – a 7-2 Storm loss. The Storm is 1-2 in the playoffs when Kerby is held off the scoresheet.
Hello all! With the CHL playoffs second round getting under way this weekend it’s time to recap how our eight CHL prospects did in the first round.
Oscar Dansk-Erie Otters (OHL Western Conference)-Won Series 4-1
Series Stats 1GP 0-0 .800Sv% 6.56GAA
Oscar and the Otters opened the playoffs against the Saginaw Spirit in a 3-6 matchup. Otters coach Kris Knoblauch decided to go with backup (1B?) Devin Williams who is a native of Saginaw but you hope a coach wouldn’t start the local boy for that reason only in the playoffs. Luckily, the move worked. The Otters got off to a 2-0 lead before letting Oscar start game three. Oscar got that start and, well, it wasn’t his best night. He was pulled for the third time in four games after allowing five goals on 25 shots. Williams entered the game but unlike the other times, the Otters couldn’t come back and lost game three 7-6 in overtime. Here are coach Knoblauch’s postgame comments on Oscar along with a quick comment from Oscar on his recent struggles. The Otters won games four and five and advanced to face the West Division champs – the Sault Ste Marie Greyhounds. These teams have met twice in the regular season with Erie winning 3-0 with Williams in net and then getting blown out later in the season.
Kerby Rychel-Guelph Storm (OHL Western Conference)-Won Series 4-1
Series Stats 5GP 1-6-7 +3 6PIM
Kerby and the Storm faced off against the Plymouth Whalers and fellow CBJ prospect Gianluca Curcuruto in the 1-8 matchup. Kerby didn’t earn any points in the game one win but collected his first career playoff multi-point game in game two – a 3-0 victory. In the first, Kerby took a pass from Zack Mitchell to start a bang bang passing play with Matt Finn finishing the play. Kerby’s second point was an odd one as a Guelph player kept the puck in, Kerby stopped it allowing Nick Ebert to pick it up and fire a shot that went off a Whalers skate to make it 2-0. After being held scoreless in a game three loss, Kerby got back on the scoresheet in game four. In the second, Kerby started a rush up ice getting the puck to Justin Auger with Auger finishing it in a 7-2 win. Game five was a big one for Kerby – he pretty much put the team on his back and collected four points in a 8-3 win. Kerby’s first point came late in the first. It’s hard to tell if he was trying to do the between the leg shot or a pass but whatever it was, he got the puck to Ebert who banged a shot past the Whalers goalie. Kerby’s three point third period started when after a board battle the puck went to Kerby who tapped it to Zac Leslie. Leslie passed it back to Kerby who unleashed a howitzer to make it 5-2. 1:31 later, Kerby worked a give and go with Ryan Horvat that Horvat finished. Later in the third Kerby curled to the point and made a pass to Scott Kosmachuk who seny a crosscrease pass to Nick Ebert whose slapshot made it 8-3. Up next for the Storm is a matchup with the London Knights. The teams met six times in the regular season splitting the series.
Late last week the Jackets announced the signing of 2012 3rd round draft pick Joonas Korpisalo. This is a bit of a surprise as Korpisalo had a up and down season that included missing time with injury. This signing also got the little hamster wheel in my head spinning because the Jackets goalie depth will be an interesting development this summer. I say this because after the top cop in Columbus, the Jackets only have two goalies under contract for next season whose only experience on North American size rinks is in international competition. Those two are Anton Forsberg who could see a game in Springfield before the playoffs and the just signed Korpisalo. Columbus backup Curtis McElhinney and Springfield 20 game winner (so far) Mike McKenna are unrestricted free agents while Jeremy Smith is a restricted free agent.
I and others originally thought Smith would push McKenna and earn an extension to serve as a mentor to either Forsberg or Oscar Dansk who, as of this writing, is still unsigned. I was surprised that Korpisalo was signed before Dansk but Korpisalo’s season ended before Oscar’s. I don’t see McElhinney being brought back and that means the CBJ will be going after a backup either by trade or signing a UFA.
Hello all! Back again with the week in review – with a bit of delay as a team had a game rescheduled due to the Terry Trafford tragedy. Let’s look at how our players finished up the regular season after visiting the baby birds in the AHL.
Starting off in Springfield as we usually do, the Falcons had another light week going 2-0 with both games requiring third period comebacks. On Friday night against Albany, the Falcons opened the scoring when Jean Francois Jacques sent a backhand shot past the Devils goalie after intercepting a pass. The Falcons allowed two goals in 2:37 to close out the period, but then 2:56 into the second period, Matt Taormina scored his first with the team when he potted one off the rebound of Ryan Craig‘s shot. Midway through the second well…the Devils would again score two goals again in a little under five minutes to make it 4-2 Devils. The Falcons rallied in the third thankfully when Patrick McNeill opened the scoring on a power play when, after some passing, he fired a shot. It appeared Sean Collins scored but McNeill got credit for his seventh of the season. Five minutes later, Trent Vogelhuber scored his first of the season when he deflected a Denny Urban point shot to tie it at four. A few minutes later the Falcons scored for the third time on the power play (team went 3 for 3 in this game) when Carter Camper got the puck down low and sent a cross crease pass to Jean Francois Jacques who had a wide open net to shoot into for his second of the night. Patrick McNeill picked up his third point of the night sending Michael Chaput and Ryan Craig off on a two on one with Craig finishing it for his 13th of the season. Mike McKenna made 19 saves for his 18th win of the season.
Hello all! Back again with another week in the world of Blue Jackets prospects. Was an interesting week that included the trade deadline and three prospects’ regular seasons coming to an end along with another young Jacket appearing to be on his way to Springfield.
As we normally do we start off in Springfield which was affected by the NHL trade deadline with the trade of Dalton Smith and Jonathan Marchessault to Tampa Bay for forward Dana Tyrell and defenseman Matt Taormina. Trading Smith somewhat surprised me because he seemed to fit the team’s style as “Boll 2.0”, whereas Marchessault wasn’t as much of a match.
Starting off last week against Hartford, the Falcons allowed a goal 1:45 in before Ryan Craig scored nine minutes later, the assist went to Tyrell who picked up his first point with Falcons. The Pack scored again before Craig tied it with only 55 seconds remaining in the period. The Wolfpack scored four more to make it 6-2. Jeremy Smith made 24 saves in the loss.
Up next was a game in Adirondack. Ryan Craig again opened the scoring. 2:06 into the second, Nick Cousins got the Phantoms on the board but Nate Thompson scored 30 seconds later to make it 3-2 and then Cody Bass made it 4-2 later. Cody Bass notched a shorthanded goal 7:12 into the third to make it 5-2 with the Phantoms scoring with 1:11 remaining to make it 5-3. Mike McKenna made 26 saves in the win. To close out the weekend, the Falcons took on the Portland Pirates and hoo boy it would be ugly – for the Pirates at least. The Falcons had a 3-0 lead before the 10 minute mark of the first period when Patrick McNeill and Sean Collins scored 32 seconds apart – Matt Taormina picked up his first point with the Falcons with an assist on Collins goal. Dana Tyrell scored his first with Springfield three minutes later. Darryl Boyce made it 4-0 with just a little over three minutes left in the first. In the second period, with the Pirates changing goalies, the Pirates potted one three minutes in before the Falcons would again score two quick goals with Michael Chaput scoring his team leading 16th goal and Andrew Joudrey scoring his franchise record fifth shorthanded goal just 36 seconds later. Four and a half minutes later Austin Madaisky scored his fourth goal of the season to make it 7-1 Falcons. Jack Skille scored two goals in 26 seconds early in the third to end Louis Domingue’s night meaning the Pirates went back to starter Mark Visentin who would finish the game. In the 9-3 win Mike McKenna made 27 saves for his 17th win of the season.
We’re coming to the end of the road for some teams so without further ado, let’s get going.
Last week was a very light week for the Falcons as they only played two games. Starting off against Providence on Saturday, after the Bruins scored early to make it 1-0, Ryan Craig scored off a deflection in front to make it 1-1. In the second, the baby Bruins scored again before Sean Collins notched the tying goal off a deflection in the third forcing overtime and then a shootout. In the eight round shootout, Carter Camper scored in the second round of his debut to keep the game alive, though the Falcons would ultimately lose in the eighth round. Mike McKenna made 27 saves and stopped six of eight in the loss.
The next night against Worchester all the scoring happened in the second period. Jack Skille started it off 3:29 into the period. Five minutes after the Sharks tied it, Jean-Francois Jacques scored the game winner and Skille picked up an assist. Jeremy Smith made 28 saves for his 18th win of the season – the Falcons only took 11 shots in the game.
Greetings all – This post covers the past TWO weeks for our prospects. I’m sorry for the delay – it just means there’s a lot to cover, so let’s get rolling.
Starting off in Springfi…wait no we don’t, we’re going for a change in venue as we start in St John’s Newfoundland at Mile One Centre. We head there for the AHL All Star Game. Unlike normal years, where it’s either the standard East-West or the older Canada-PlanetUSA format, this year the All Star Game was a team of AHL All Stars versus Farjestads of the Swedish Hockey League. Jackets Dmen Frederic St. Denis and Cody Goloubef represented the Falcons in the game with St. Denis serving as an alternate captain.
Starting on Tuesday with the Skills Competition, Cody and Frederic took part in the first event – the puck control relay – with both skating second of their trios. Brett Connolly gave the AHL a slight lead that Frederic then lost with Cody also finishing behind the Swedish skater. St. Denis’ group would lose but local boy Brenden Kichton, with the help of the Farjestads player falling, led to the AHL winning Cody’s heat. Cody and Frederic got the next four events off before taking part in the “Pass and Score” teaming up with Cam Atkinson’s college linemate, and current Albany forward, Joe Whitney. The group faced off against goaltender Frederik Pettersson-Wentzel. In the event all three players have to touch the puck before shooting within 30 seconds. Cody scored on the first attempt with a snapshot from the slot and St. Denis scored on the third when Wentzel went for the double pad stack but he didn’t leave them on the ice allowing the puck to trickle past. In the final event, “the breakaway relay,” every player took part in a group of five. Cody was part of the second AHL group, shooting fourth. He fired a shot into Pekka Tuokkola’s glove. St. Denis was part of the third AHL group, shooting third on Frederik Pettersson-Wentzel. He tried some fancy stickhandling but was stopped. The score was tied after all four groups so the competition went to a sudden death shootout with IceCaps captain Jason Jaffrey clinching the victory in the third round thus giving the AHL a 17-18 victory in the Skills Competition.
Greetings all! Back again with the week in review. It seems like a light week in prospect land but anyhoo away we go!
Starting off in Springfield as we usually do – the Falcons recent struggles continue as the team went 0-2. Starting off in a game against Worchester – after allowing the Sharks a 2-0 lead the Falcons worked a three on two with Michael Chaput firing on net and Sean Collins putting in the rebound for his eighth goal of the season. After another Sharks goal and a Dalton Smith fight, the Energizer Bunny Alex Aleardi skated in and found Lukas Sedlak who scored his seventh of the season to make it 3-2. The Falcons would allow two late second period goals to make it 5-2(can’t get direct link to highlights but the game date was 1/31 if you’re searching for them) with Mike McKenna making 35 saves in the loss.
Up next was a game against Bridgeport – a game the Falcons lost 3-0 marking their second shutout loss in the month. Jeremy Smith had 20 saves in the loss. To add insult to injury, Sean Collins left the game after a check to the head from Sound Tigers defenseman Mike Cantin which earned him a match penalty and a (later announced) four game suspension.
Oscar Dansk-Erie Otters (OHL)
Season Stats 30GP 22-6-1 2.15GAA .919Sv% 6SO
Oscar played in two of the Otters’ three games last week missing out on a blowout win over Niagara. Oscar played in the Otters two games against Owen Sound and in the 4-3 win Oscar made 24 saves marking his 22nd win of the season (after winning only 11 last season). After getting the night off against Niagara, Oscar was back in the Otters crease in a 2-1 loss to Owen Sound with Oscar making 23 saves.