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DL44

2014 Young Stars Classic : Flames-Canucks-Jets-Oilers

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I havnt watched every second I'll admit, but so far I've taken two things away from this tournament one good and one bad. The good: the flames have a ton of skill in their pipeline and the bad: their D and specifically depth on D is not very good at all.

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@cross16

 

Fair assessment.  Other than Kulak (ok from a limited view), Ramage (hard to say yet) and T-Spoon, we have very few that are close to NHL ready.  Seilof hasn't got his timing back yet, so it's hard to say with him. 

 

At forward, we seem to have guys ready to step up:

- Granlund looks like he is ready now

- Johnny will make it to the NHL on skill and desire

- Jooris may just be a career AHL player, but he still could be an effective 4th liner

- Ferland plays near the edge but has grown up somewhat; he could be ready by 2015

- Arnold plays an effective 2-way game and could excel in the NHL soon enough

- Klimchuk and Bennett both need another year at junior, but will be ready soon enough

 

Haven't included Baertschi, Poirier or Monahan, but all are strong prospects.

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I am in Penticton and watching all the Flames games. So far, I've seen both games and going tomorrow night too.

 

From what I saw the first night.

 

Gaudreau played a better game that night, and our defense was quite slow and that could be rust. They let a lot of guys walk into the slot and The Flames took about half the game to get going.

 

Bennett is good, but can use a bit of maturity in his game as he tended to try and do things himself a lot, killing some plays and the flow coming into the zone was hindered due to it. He obviously has the skill though, and once he learns to use his linemates better, he will benefit from it and add to his game.

 

Another thing I noticed was that the Flames passes weren't as crisp as the other Jets or Oilers. As well, the team, for the most part would skate 3 up the ice without any movement and thus doing a lot of dump and chase. The Jets and Oilers were criss-crossing through the neutral zone and making plays to enter the zone. That frustrated me a lot.  

 

In the 2nd game, the puck kept fanning off Gaudreau's stick to start the game with it happening in the 2nd too.  Bennett, Gaudreau and Ferlund didn't really use each other to their potential. They played well enough to get points, but I think they could have been better. Maybe my expectations were too high. Gaudreau looked a bit off most of the game and forced a few passes here and there and one led to a goal. But still, I liked what I saw when they had time to do something with the puck, when they set up shop. Gaudreau got right up after a bunch of hits that game too. He looked fine in that regard and didn't really shy away from any areas of the ice.

 

Smith is going to be awesome from what I saw against the Oilers. He brought it that game. I haven't looked at the game sheet or other advanced stats, but he was hitting everything out there. One shift Smith had 3 or 4 big hits, one resulting in a lame charging penalty which shouldn't have been called. When his penalty was done, he got out and lined his check up so good, it was the best hit of the game and the tournament. It led to his fight. I was tickled watching him most of the game. It's someone and something the Flames have been missing for a long time; a forward who can throw his body around. I hope his offense can develop along with his game, but he was great at hitting people.

 

The Flames definitely set the tone that game and went to hit everything in site. It was awesome.

 

Pedakin looked a bit slowish. But he did okay at killing a few penalties. Hathaway and him looked very similar.

 

Klimchuk looked like a checker. I think he needs a few more years to develop.

 

Ortio looked really rusty in the first game and went down too early on a few of the goals. As the game progressed he started to get better. I thought they were going to pull him. Although, the team also let a bunch of the Jets to skate to the slot and shoot on him, which for I think 3 of the goals he let in was the case. Although, on a few he overly challenged putting himself way out of position.

 

McDonald looked good aside from a few team defensive breakdowns.

 

It was hard to assess a lot of the players because a lot of the play was quite even on both sides for both games. I liked Ferlunds game in the 2nd game. Ramage played well too.

 

I didn't really know the numbers so it was hard to point guys out to my dad. Smith was quite noticeable though and I found myself repeating myself. At the end of the game, my dad kept saying how much he liked Smith. The names weren't fully familiar as well.

 

I see Arnold and Agostino a lot as they're players I know. They looked okay too. It's hard for them to stand out as almost every player on the ice is at a similar skill level.

 

Culkin, Kulak, Ramage, Kanzig, were all names that came up a lot with being in the backend. A lot of passes were at the forwards skates and they just weren't crisp. I guess that shows why our quality of defensive prospects are considered to be pretty low.

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Standouts for me:

  • Granlund: Best forward I have seen in the tournament so far.  His experience really shows. 
  • Bennett:Strutted his stuff in game 2 in all zones.
  • Gaudreau: Lot of skill.  Showing he can take a hit.  

I had positive impressions from:

  • Agostino: Depth guy, but good in that role
  • Arnold: Really solid defensive centre
  • Elson: He surprised me.  Was a really good depth player this tourney.
  • Ferland: Better in game one than two.  But overall solid performance.  
  • Hathaway: Another strong depth guy
  • Jooris: Really solid play 
  • Klimchuk: Hasn't shown much offensively, but showing some really good defensive play. 
  • Padakin: I liked what I saw in game 2. 
  • Ramage: Probably our best offensive D man.  Especially in game 1. 
  • Ortio: Stats aren't good, but looked good in game 1 despite some obvious rust.  

I had negative impressions from:

  • Smith: Couldn't keep up in game 1.  Got carried away trying to be tough in game 2. Couple of great hits though.   
  • Kanzig: Strong game 1, but dreadful game 2.  Complete liability in the penalty department. 
  • Sieloff: Looks like he hasn't played in a year, which is fair. 
  • McDonald: Lots of special team play made his life difficult, but didn't look comfortable. 

I haven't seen enough or I am neutral on Bell, Magee, Gedig, Fram, Roy, Neil, Carroll, Mancina, Van Brabant, Culkin, and Kulak.   

 

All comments are based on choppy views of pre preseason games so take them for what they are worth. 

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Overall, for a inter-squad tourney, the Flames have played decent enough.  Some of the players got caught up in the BOA rivalry, which resulted in way too many penalties.  Kanzig was the worst offender, and let his emotions get away from him.  It's hard to believe that the guy is still only 19.  He needs to get a season in with Addy (next year) to balance out his skills.  I think he may have NHL upside, but he is still way too young to project.  Right now, he is a mean version of Breen.  Really mean.  If he can work on his skating, he could be a 3rd pairing guy in the future.

 

The unfortunate thing was we didn't get to see some of our other prospects, due to injuries (T-Spoon/Poirier), # of games played (Baertschi/Reinhart/Knight), or age (Wolf).  In a tourney like this, it is hard to compare prospects with vets and those that may make the jump.

 

Back to this series:

 

Gaudreau - has been one of the best on the ice.  Plays at a higher level than his linemates or makes them better. Expect that he may get scratched against Van.  This has been hinted at by coach.

Bennett - one OK game and one very good game.  Needs to trust his linemates more.  Saw some feistlyness in game 2.

Granlund - one of my faves.  Think he has another gear, as he raises his game when it is needed.

Jooris - old by prospect standards, but this could be a breakout year for him.  He may earn a callup with his solid play. 

Ferland - out of game shape so far.  Needs a few months getting the rhythm back.

Ramage - has shown some improvement over last year in the AHL; but I think he was good in the same tourney last year.

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Lines for today's game.

Ferland-Granlund-Jooris

Gaudreau-Bennett-Carroll

Klimchuk-Arnold-Van Brabant

Hathaway-Elson-Smith

Cedig-Ramage

Kanzig-Kulak

Sieloff-Culkin

McDonald

Our depth at C and LW on display. So is our lack of depth at RW and D.

Bennett and Gaudreau together again (really need a RW). So is the Granlund line that was so dominant. I love Klimchuk and Arnold together in a shut down role.

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Lines for today's game.

Ferland-Granlund-Jooris

Gaudreau-Bennett-Carroll

Klimchuk-Arnold-Van Brabant

Hathaway-Elson-Smith

Cedig-Ramage

Kanzig-Kulak

Sieloff-Culkin

McDonald

Our depth at C and LW on display. So is our lack of depth at RW and D.

Bennett and Gaudreau together again (really need a RW). So is the Granlund line that was so dominant. I love Klimchuk and Arnold together in a shut down role.

 

Would liked to have seen Jooris play with Johnny/Bennett, and Carroll with Granlund.  I think Granlund can carry a player better than the Johnny/Bennett line (just too much skill to throw another 1st year prospect with - Jooris adds some experience and muscle to the line).

 

The D would be a bit better if they played Ramage with Kanzig; true shutdown line with limited offense.

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YST-2014FinalResults_zpsa6463901.jpg

 

The Oil emerge as victors....

The Oiler's farm team rebuild is over!

Now the NHL Oilers can start theirs. :P

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YST-2014FinalResults_zpsa6463901.jpg

The Oil emerge as victors....

The Oiler's farm team rebuild is over!

Now the NHL Oilers can start theirs. :P

Flames were the best team as the GF and GA columns show. Undisciplined play against Edmonton cost us that game. Hopefully guys like Kanzig learn from that.

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Although an offseason prospect tourney, it felt good to see the Flames stamp a 6-1 loss into the Canuckleheads' forheads.  Also to see the Flames' kids keep the score as close as they did in the 1 goal loss to the Oilers in a very undiciplined game.

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