Thomas Larkin

2014 Traverse City Tournament Preview

Posted by CBJProspects on September 04, 2014
Prospects / 1 Comment

Hockey season is right around the bend. The boards are going in at Nationwide and the Jackets prospects, along with your friendly neighborhood prospect geek, are off to Traverse City, Michigan for the annual NHL Prospects Tournament at the Centre Ice Arena.

Starting off with the how the tournament is set up, the eight teams are split into two divisions named after Red Wings legends Ted Lindsay and Gordie Howe. The Jackets will be in the Howe Division with the Minnesota Wild, St Louis Blues and the host/defending champs Detroit Red Wings. The Lindsay Division features Jackets division rivals the Carolina Hurricanes, New York Rangers along with the Dallas Stars and the Buffalo Sabres who should boast the highest pick playing in the draft in 2nd overall pick Sam Reinhart (Buffalo hasn’t released it’s roster as of this writing).

Each team will play the three teams in its division in a round robin and then face off against the team that finished in the same spot in the other division.

The Jackets are bringing probably their best roster ever and hope to improve on back to back second place finishes in their division (4th overall in the tournament both times). The team’s forward and goalies are probably the best in the tournament. I know I’m biased and our roster is loaded but I think this team will do well this year and it’s mainly because no other team in the tournament’s roster really impresses me. Let’s take a look:

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Quick Thoughts on CBJ 3-on-3 Prospect Tournament

Posted by CBJProspects on July 11, 2014
Columbus Blue Jackets, Prospects / No Comments

I was able to make it down to the Blue Jackets development camp and just wanted to offer some quick thoughts on certain players based on the 3-on-3 Prospect Tournament as well as what I may remember from the one day I went to camp.

#41 Alexander Wennberg

Alexander, just pick a locker now. Number 10 jersey right? He looked like a man amongst boys out there – scoring multiple ways either sniping past the goalies or picking up the garbage.

#48 TJ Tynan

TJ did what he is known for at Notre Dame – showing off his superb passing skills and setting up multiple goals.

#52 Kerby Rychel

Kerby showed off that shot he’s known for in the scrimmage scoring just seconds into the first game.

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Why I think the CBJ should focus on Defense at the NHL Entry Draft

Posted by CBJProspects on June 13, 2014
Draft, Prospects / No Comments

How do, all! As you know, I’ve been saying that the CBJ should focus on their defensive prospect depth in this year’s draft despite the fact that, from what I’ve gathered, the best player available in the first round will more than likely be a forward. As I pointed out in my preview, the CBJ have used 16 of their last 19 picks on forwards or goalies including six of last year’s seven picks (all six being forwards) with four of those picks being among the teams top prospects. But more importantly, I say this because of the organization’s overall lack of depth at the position.

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Falcons Fall in First Round of AHL Playoffs

Posted by CBJProspects on May 05, 2014
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The Falcons faced off against the Providence Bruins in the first round of the Calder Cup playoffs. Unforunately, the Bruins earned the 3-2 series win. Let’s take a look back at the one playoff series the baby Jackets played in this season.

Starting off in game one, with the Falcons trailing 1-0 in the second Michael Chaput, Marko Dano and JF Jacques had a three on two with Dano sending a cross rink pass to Jacques (even tho it looked like he didn’t put much on it) to get a shot past Svedberg to make it 1-1. Later in the second period, Ryan Craig tipped in a Patrick McNeill shot to make it 2-1. The Bruins tied the game just before the midway point of the third and thus sent the game to overtime. Andrew Joudrey started and finished the rush when he passed the puck and then received it back to snap a shot just above the circle to win the game. Mike McKenna made 35 saves in the win.

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March 31st-April 13 AHL/European Prospect Review

Posted by CBJProspects on April 13, 2014
Columbus Blue Jackets, Prospects / 1 Comment

Greetings all! Back again with the week in review for the Blue Jackets prospects, ok two weeks but the CBJ were so busy last week and it would have been a light update from me so my superiors said I could take some time off.

Starting off in Springfield, two weeks ago the AHL decided to make it “lets screw with the Falcons normal routine” week as the team opened with an 11AM game followed by a trip into THE FUTURE… or St John’s Newfoundland where it’s an hour and a half ahead of Eastern Standard Time. We begin in Bridgeport, CT for a game against the Sound Tigers. Anton Forsberg made his North American debut in net. In the first, the Tigers’ goalie tried to play the puck but he fired it right into Dana Tyrell who found Jake Hansen who beat Poulin back to the crease to make it 1-0. Three minutes later, Marko Dano struck for his first North American goal when he took a pass from Cody Goloubef and snapped off a shot to give the Falcons a 2-0 lead. Late in the third, the Sound Tigers spoiled Anton’s shutout bid before Cody Bass scored an empty netter. In the 3-1 win Anton Forsberg made 25 saves and was named second star with Dano being named first star.

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November 25-December 8 CBJ Prospect Week in Review-PART I

Posted by CBJProspects on December 09, 2013
Columbus Blue Jackets, Prospects / No Comments

Due to a road trip to Springfield and a busy week I’ll be recapping the past two weeks all together. For your reading pleasure, we’ve decided to break this into two halves – the first will be today – including our affiliate teams and European prospects and the North American update will run tomorrow. Let’s get to it!

Starting off on Friday night against Manchester, the Springfield Falcons rolled to a 3-1 lead but ultimately fell 4-3 in overtime breaking their six game win streak. The Monarchs took a 1-0 lead 9:05 into the first until late in the period Cody Bass sent a pass to a streaking Ryan Craig who scored before running into the Monarchs goalie. 25 seconds later, the Falcons would strike again when Frederic St Denis fired a shot that Jean Francois Berube would stop but the rebound would come out with Jonathan Marchessault (with some help from Tim Miller sitting on Berube) making it 2-1. Early in the second, the Falcons converted on a power play when Darryl Boyce and Sean Collins created havoc in front with a Monarchs player hand passing the puck to Boyce who passed the puck to Cody Goloubef who fired a blast to make it 3-1. After that it’d be all Monarchs. They scored three straight, including the tying goal, with just over five minutes left. The game winning goal came 1:19 into overtime. Jeremy Smith made 26 saves in the loss. Continue reading…

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November 18-24 CBJ Prospect Week in Review

Posted by CBJProspects on November 24, 2013
Prospects / No Comments

I’m back again with the week in review this time featuring some international competition. Let’s get right to it!

Starting off in Springfield the Falcons would go 3-0 last week. Starting off on Friday against Albany the Falcons picked up a 5-3 victory with Jonathan Marchessault scoring his first two goals since October 12 – a span of 12 games. Two minutes into the game Blake Parlett found Captain Ryan Craig in Gretzky’s office; he got the puck to Marchessault in the slot who promptly fired a shot to make it 1-0. Later in the first when the Devils goalie would try to play the puck, Alex Aleardi stole the puck and found tough guy Dalton Smith who shot into the empty net for his first of the year. 17 seconds into the second period, Jake Hansen found Craig in the slot for his second of the season – pushing him into fifth all time in Falcons goal scoring. The Devils scored two second period goals to make it 3-2; but 5:46 into the third, Marchessault struck again after taking a cross-rink pass from Blake Parlett for his second of the night. After another Devils goal, Frederic St. Denis shot from just over the blueline to make it 5-3 Falcons. Jeremy Smith made 19 saves to earn the win.

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November 4-10 CBJ Prospects Week in Review

Posted by CBJProspects on November 11, 2013
Columbus Blue Jackets, Prospects / No Comments

Hello all, back again with a fairly North American based review as the six European prospects were off for International tournaments, despite all but two taking part and one missing due to injury.

Starting off in Springfield as usual where the Falcons went 1-1 last week, starting of with a 3-0 loss to Adirondack. Mike McKenna made 16 saves in the loss. Sunday the Falcons would face off against the Baby Penguins with Jeremy Smith getting the start. The Falcons would bounce back picking up a 4-3 win. Late in the first period, a Penguins player would send the puck out but Tim Erixon would fire a slapshot for his third of the season. Three minutes later after some pretty passing Alex Aleardi would find Frederic St. Denis who’d fire a blast with Spencer Machacek deflecting it (even if you don’t see it in the highlight). After a Penguins goal, Aleardi would give the Pens fits in the zone with a Pens dman trying to clear it out but St. Denis blasting a shot to make it 3-1. After a kerfuffle and another two Penguin goals to tie the game at three, Tim Erixon would keep the puck in and get it to Darryl Boyce who got a whack at it with Ryan Craig getting two whacks at it to score the game winner, with less than three minutes left. Jeremy Smith would make 19 saves in the win, his fifth of the season. Continue reading…

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Quick Thoughts on CBJ Players in Traverse City

Posted by CBJProspects on September 11, 2013
Prospects / 1 Comment

Hello Jackets fans! I figured I’d give some thoughts on each player that played for the Jackets in Traverse City. Given the many players involved and differences in playing time, some of these thoughts will be brief, other a bit more. So, without further ado:

Alex Aleardi
(Invite Signed by Springfield) Stats 4GP 1-1-2 E 4PIM
I called Aleardi the Energizer Bunny. The guy is always moving and he scored a pretty shorthanded breakaway against Buffalo. I definitely saw him as one of the team’s top forwards. Alex’s strong tournament led to him being the only invite from Traverse City to earn an invite to the Jackets Main Camp.

Josh Anderson (2012 Draft) Stats 4GP 1-0-1 E 11PIM
Josh was a monster up in Traverse being physical as expected but also showing he has hands that can be used for more than punching.

Matej Beran (Invite) Stats 2GP 1-0-1 -1 0PIM
I cant say much about Matej, he only played two games and saw fourth line minutes. The lone positive point is he did score the Jackets only goal in the 7-1 loss to Dallas.

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Update from Traverse City: Jackets Answer the Bell Aganist the Rangers

Posted by CBJProspects on September 09, 2013
Columbus Blue Jackets / No Comments

The Jackets won a fight filled affair against the New York Rangers Sunday earning a spot in the third place game Monday against the Dallas Stars.

The Jackets opened the scoring just 2:25 into the game when Oliver Bjorkstrand and Boone Jenner entered the zone with Ryan Murray trailing the play. Ryan scored on his second whack at the puck for his second of the tournament. Just 28 seconds later, Austin Madaisky scored his second off a faceoff won by Jeremy Langlois.

A few minutes later, the rough stuff began when Josh Anderson leveled a Ranger with Connor Allen stepping up for his teammate and, well, “he chose poorly” with Josh earning the takedown and the win.

Compared to the first period, the second period was a snoozefest with play moving back and forth until Dalton Smith would take on Paxton Leroux in a marathon bout that ended in a draw. Ten seconds later, Oliver Bjorkstrand would drive to the net snapping a laser of a shot over the Rangers goalie’s shoulder to make it 3-0. Another Jackets lead brought a quick response from the Rangers as just 13 seconds later, Oscar Lindberg would score to make it 3-1 (Oscar on Oscar crime terrible thing).

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