Detroit Hopefuls

Discussion in 'HFNHL Talk' started by HFNHL Red Wings, Sep 20, 2005.

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  1. Before progressing to the most elite of leagues, the HFNHL, all rookies must prove themselves in that ‘B’ league known as the NHL.
    This year the HFNHL Red Wings have an unprecedented number of up and comers with a reasonable probability of making the NHL. In all the team has 20 players in 14 different NHL organizations that will likely spend all or part of the season at the NHL level.
    Here is a quick look at those challengers and the role they may play.

    Anaheim
    LW/C Chris Kunitz (95% probability) – Kunitz is more fortunate than most in that he has been penciled in on the 3rd line LW slot by most prognosticators. It’s his job to lose.
    Kunitz had received a callup in the 2003/04 season and made a strong showing on the 4th line and followed it up with a strong campaign on the farm team in 2004/05.
    Kunitz’s likely teammates are Ryan Getzlaf and one of Samuel Phlsson or Andy MacDonald.

    Atlanta
    LW/RW Ramzi Abid (90% probability) – While too old to be considered a rookie, Abid has a strong shot at landing a full time job. While a natural LW’er, the Thrashers have been trying him out as the 2nd line RW with mixed results. At the very least Abid should be playing 3rd line LW this year.
    Many speculate that Red Wing management considers this Abid’s last chance. Should he not establish himself the team will likely move him.
    At this time there is no clear picture as to who Abid’s linemates may be.

    Boston
    C Brad Boyes (75% probability) – Brad Boyes appears to be the victim of the numbers game yet again this year. While Boyes has nothing left to prove at the AHL level after putting up a point per game for 3 consecutive seasons and demonstrating great vision and 2way play there are no obvious openings at center.
    Signed to a one way deal Boyes will open the season with the team who may, while not ideal for his style of play, try him at wing.

    RW Colton Orr (30% probability) – While far from being a lock to open the season, should the rule changes not be enforced effectively the team may choose to insert Orr on the 4th line RW for his physical play.

    Buffalo
    LW Milan Bartovic (85% probability) – Bartovic’s projection and status is very similar to that of Kunitz and Abid. Bartovic has already enjoyed some time at the NHL level and he too is entering his ‘last chance’ year to make his mark.
    With Bartovic projecting out as a 3rd line LW for the coming season (again like Kunitz and Abid) the team has been shopping his rights around to fill needs at other positions.
    Bartovic’s likely linemates are Derek Roy, with whom Bartovic developed a good chemistry in part of the 2003/04 season, and Maxim Afinogenov.

    Chicago
    LW Matt Ellison (30% probability) – Despite having played a handful of games at the NHL level in 2003/04 the Blackhawks brought in a number of free agents this offseason and there is some question as to whether there will be an opening for the feisty winger.

    Dallas
    With Detroit holding the rights to 5 good prospects in the Dallas organization it is simply a question of which players make it.

    LW/RW Antti Miettinen (99% probability) – While Miettinen’s first taste of North American hockey was a tough one he has adapted well and has made a strong showing at camp.
    While he has often been projected as the next Jere Lehtinen his defensive game is not on the same level. On the upside, however, he has shown a lot greater offensive creativity that Dallas will be counting on his season.
    It is expected that Miettinen will play on the 2nd line.

    LW/RW Mathias Tjarnqvist (60% probability) – His probability of making the team is based more on seniority and experience than skill level. He has shown flashes of his potential at camp and has been tried at both wings. Expectation is that he will play on one of the 4th line wings but has an outside shot at the 3rd line RW position.

    RW Junior Lessard (40% probability) – His fate is tied to that of Mathias Tjarnqvists, one of the two will make it but it is unlikely both will.

    LW Vojtech Polak (40% probability) – Entering camp it was assumed Polak would at least spend the first half of the year down on the farm but Polak came to camp ready to play and has dazzled the fans with his offensive prowess. Most recently Polak had a 3 point game (1G, 2A) against the Oilers in an exhibition match and in the shootout scored the winning goal.
    If the new rule changes are effective than it is likely Polak will get a chance to play on a team still built around defence.

    LW/C Jussie Jokinen (25% probability) – While some prognosticators have him penciled in at the 4th line C position the team hopes he is demoted to the AHL to learn the NA game and get lots of ice time.

    Detroit
    RW Daryl Bootland (50% probablity) - With the trade of Darren McCarty, Bootland is the obvious candidate to fill his role. Bootland had a brief callup in 2003/04 due to injuries and played well.
    Bootland however is no lock to make the team. Detroit has brought in a number of free agents and has some skill players fighting for spots as well. Like Colton Orr, Daryl Bootland's fate will be determined by the effectiveness of the rule changes.

    Edmonton
    LW/C Brad Winchester (40% probability and declining) – Last year in the AHL Winchester finally demonstrated the level of 2way play that had been expected of him and many penciled him in on the Oiler’s 3rd line. Unfortunately Winchester has had a mediocre camp so far while a few others have exceeded expectations. Winchester may have to start on the farm and earn a mid season callup.

    New York Rangers
    G Henrik Lundqvist (65% probability) – While many believe that Lundqvist’s experience in the SEL makes him the most logical candidate to fill the vacant backup roll, he has shown in camp that he needs some time to adjust to NA hockey. The only question is whether he will be adapting to it at the AHL or NHL level.

    D Maxim Kondratiev (75% probability) – Kondratiev is the only Detroit defenceman expected to make the jump this season. Barring a trade it is possible he will be playing on the Rangers 2nd pairing with Tomas Pock.

    Philadelphia
    G Antero Niitymaki (95% probability) – Niitymaki has nothing left to prove at the AHL level. The backup goaltender position is his to loose.

    St. Louis
    C Jay McClement (50% probability) – The Wings 2001 first round selection is ready to make the jump to the NHL level but a flurry of late summer signings by the Blues has limited the number of positions available to one or two. While the defensively oriented McClement could fill the 3rd line center position it is more likely he will start on the 4th line where he will look to prove himself in the hopes of getting increased ice time as the season progresses.

    San Jose
    RW Ryan Clowe (50% probability) – The feisty hard working Clowe is enjoying a good camp this year while coming off two consecutive strong seasons at the AHL level. Clowe brings a lot of energy and some offence which has not gone unnoticed. Unfortunately for Ryan, Marcel Goc is making a strong bid to make the team as well and there may be only one position available. If Clowe does make the team look for him to start out on the 4th line and get some PK duty.

    Vancouver
    Fedor Fedorov (30% probability) - Federov has been included here not b/c the team expects him to make the Canucks but more based on the probability that the Canucks will trade his rights. Wings management is confident that Fedorov would benefit from a change of organization and could prove himself as a legitimate HFNHL talent.
     
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  2. Ohio Jones

    Ohio Jones Game on...

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    Wow, Drew - that blows me out of the... er, ice.

    I've got a number of prospects at various camps, but not nearly so many, and few with as good a chance as yours of making the starting roster of their NHL clubs.

    In the East...

    Blueliners Andy Wozniewski and Steven Later are competing in Toronto, Woz is likely to start with the Marlies, and given the Leafs' prospect depth at D, Later will be in tough to avoid starting the year in Pensacola.

    Forward Jeremy Colliton and goalie Tuomas Tarrki are at Isles camp. Colliton is impressing, and has an outside shot of starting on the island, but he's likely to start his pro career in Bridgeport. I haven't heard a report yet on Tarkki.

    Center Grant Potulny and defenceman Tomas Malec are still at Ottawa's camp, but are definitely bound for Binghampton.

    Winger Darren Reid is still at Tampa's main camp, but is a longshot at best.

    Former first-rounder Artem Kruikov appears not to have come over for Buffalo's camp this year (that I can confirm). This would suggest his window of opportunity with that club has finally closed. Same may be true for Philly's Alexander Drozdetsky...

    D Filip Novak is putting on a good show in Florida's camp, keeping the competition tight between himself and Lukas Krajicek for the Panthers' open spot on the main club. Krajicek likely has the inside track, however.

    No word yet as to how D Matt DeMarchi has acquitted himself thus far in Devils' camp, but until that team sorts out its salary situation, it's unclear how many spots there will be up for grabs. DeMarchi still has lots to learn at the AHL level, though, so expect to see him in Albany. Teemu Laine is playing this season in Finland.

    In the West...

    Huge LW Dustin Penner and (nearly as huge) D Nate Saunders are making an impression with the Mighty Ducks. Both are likely to start the year in the AHL, but there should be opportunities during the season for both to get some ice time with the big club, especially Penner, who has looked surprisingly capable for someone who came to the game late.

    Wingers Noah Clarke and Konstantin Pushkaryev are challenging with LA. Clarke may yet stick in a 4th-line role, but Push at least will start the year in the minors, continuing to adjust to the North American game. In the event both play for Manchester, look for that team to repeat its strong performance from the 2004/05 AHL season.

    OHL grad Dennis Wideman has already been sent down to Peoria, the St. Louis Blues' AHL camp, where the mobile defender will try to stick and establish himself as an odfensive threat from the backline.

    Power winger Steve Bernier has struggled with a minor injurythat has hampered his camp with San Jose. He is recovering, however, and is expected to get one or two game opportunities to prove himself before his immediate fate is decided. Defenceman Tim (don't call me Jon!) Conboy has been steady if unspectacular. Both are likely to play for the Barons, but may get a chance for a cup of coffee in the bigs this year if San Jose runs into injury trouble.

    Goalie Corey Crawford is playing well in Chicago's camp, but will split starts in Norfolk this season with whichever of Craig Anderson or (CBJ property) Mike Leighton loses the battle to back up Hawks starter Nikolai Khabibulin.

    2005 2nd-rounder James Neal is surprisingly sitll in camp with the Dallas Stars, but will shortly be returned to the OHL Plymouth Whalers. G Mike Smith will split time with (former CBJ prospect) Dan Ellis in Utah, leaving camp invitee (and CBJ FA signing) Steve Silverthorn earning the starter's job with the franchise's CHL affiliate.

    Did I miss some? Probably, but safe to say that overall I don't have anywhere near the number of prospects knocking on the door. Well done, Drew!
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2005
  3. Donga

    Donga Registered User

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    Are you sure its not Tim Conboy? Never heard of a Jon... :sarcasm:
     
  4. Ohio Jones

    Ohio Jones Game on...

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    There was a Jon Conboy once... http://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/stats/pdisplay.php3?pid[]=49599

    ... but you're quite right, the prospect at Jackets (Sharks) camp is Tim Conboy. No wonder he hasn't been responding to the coach's instructions... "Jon - get over here!". :shakehead
     
  5. Well with rosters pretty much set here's a look at those that are making the NHL and those that didn't (a couple really surprised me). Then again those that start day 1 may not be there long if they don't perform and vice versa I expect a few of those sent down will be called up at some point.

    Making the cut:
    Brad Boyes (BOS)
    Colton Orr (BOS) - Didn't think he'd stick to be honest.
    Milan Bartovic (BUF)
    Matt Ellison (CHI)
    Antti Miettinen (DAL)
    Jussi Jokinen (DAL)
    Brad Winchester (EDM)
    Henrik Lundqvist (NYR)
    Maxim Kondratiev (NYR)
    Antero Niitymaki (PHI)
    Ryan Clowe (SJS)

    Unknowns (Teams that still haven't made their final few cuts as of Sunday night)
    Erik Nystrom (CGY)
    Jay McClement (STL)
    Fedor Fedorov (VAN)

    Missing the cut:
    Chris Kunitz (ANA) - Huge surprise here but appears the Getzlaf took his spot. He'll be up when injuries arise
    Ramzi Abid (ATL) - A bit of a surprise but seems his camp was only mediocre
    Mathias Tjarnqvist (DAL) - Proof you can't believe anything you read. I didn't see a single source that didn't have him penciled in for Day 1
    Junior Lessard (DAL) - So much for the theory that if Tjarnqvist didn't make it Lessard would
    Vojtek Polak (DAL)
    Daryl Bootland (DET) - With Detroit making so many signings in the last couple of weeks there was no room left.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 3, 2005
  6. Ohio Jones

    Ohio Jones Game on...

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    Witho most of my prospects a year or two behind where yours were, Drew, (and quite frankly not having as many NHL-calibre prospects, period), I wasn't expecting many to make the NHL this seaosn. And, true to form, I wasn't disappointed - only a handful of Blue Jackets are getting their NHL debuts this season.

    In fact, to be honest, the only one I was really pulling for this year was Jaroslav Balastik in Columbus, and he has indeed made the team, althoug with the signing of 2005 first-rounder Gilbert Brule, there's some question as to where "Ballistic" Balastik will start. Early bets, however, have him at second-line RW, with Zherdev and Manny Malhotra. Should be an interesting line; if he establishes chemistry with the young Russian phenom, he could have a good year.

    After Balastik, however, it turns out there will a couple of other young Jackets getting a surprise first taste of the NHL.

    25-year-old D Andy Wozniewski, in just his second pro season after 4 years of college, starts Toronto's 05/06 season as the Leafs' #6 blueliner, making the cut ahead of Carlo Colaiacovo and Staffan Kronvall. When the Leafs' D is back to full strength (Klee, Berg and belak are all dealing with various minor injuries, so there's even a possibility he will be looked to as the #4-5 guy for the first game or two). Woz (as he has been dubbed by media and fans) was kept because head coach Pat Quinn considered him more steady defensively. The fact that he is 6-4 220+ and skates very well for a man his size probably didn't hurt.

    Speaking of size and skating making a difference, the other pleasant surprise for the HFNHL Jackets was seeing huge LW Dustin Penner survive the last round of cuts with NHL Anaheim (ahead of the HFNHL Red Wings' Chris Kunitz, among others... ;) ). Penner impressed throughout camp with his willingness and ability to impose his big frame in traffic on the forecheck, and he displayed better-than-expected touch with the puck in the process, leading to speculation he may start the season riding shotgun on what is arguably the team's top line with Sergei Fedorov and Joffrey Lupul, in place of hired thug Todd Fedoruk.

    Idle speculation (and I do mean idle) has GM Brian Burke looking at Penner wth stars in his eyes, imaging another hulking power-forward that came of age under Burke's management - Canucks giant (and loose cannon) Todd Bertuzzi. If Penner develops into a player even half as effective as Bert, no doubt the Columbus management will be thrilled.

    Whether it's 1st- or 4th-line minutes, however, Penner is definitely expected to play more games than he sits, at least until the team sees if he can rise to the challenge of regular NHL time. Burke and Head Coach Randy Carlyle will almost certainly send Penner down rather than have him sit too many games.

    Realistically, none of these three is going to make a significant impact in their first NHL season, but it's still encouraging news, and when you consider that many other Jackets survived until the very last round of cuts in their respective camps, Jackets fans have to be feeling a little better about the future of the organization.


    (***EDIT: One not-so-pleasant surprise was seeing Chicago put G Michael Leighton out to waivers in preparation for sending him down to Norfolk of the AHL. Craig Anderson edged him out in a closely-contested battle to back up incoming FA addition Nikolai Khabibulin. In the 03/04 seaosn, Leighton and Anderson split Chicago's starts in place of injured Jocelyn Thibault, and then split starts again last seaosn in Norfolk, jointly carrying the team to a strong finish. Leighton stumbled in the playoffs, however, and Anderson performed well in his place, which could well have been a factor in today's decision. While there's a chance Leighton will get picked up from the waiver wire, most NHL teams have already made their goaltending arrangements for the coming season, so it's most likely Leighton will have to share goaltending duties in Norfolk with incoming Jackets prospect Corey Crawford. ***)
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2005
  7. MatthewFlames

    MatthewFlames Registered User

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    A few Flames prospects are also making thier way onto NHL rosters

    David Hale already has 65 games under his belt and Paul Martin has over 70. Both made the opening day rosters for the New Jersey Devils again this season. edit David Hale was sent down to the minors

    Former AHL MVP Jason LaBarbera will be the back-up in Los Angeles to start the season.

    Andrew Alberts joins newly signed defenceman Kevin Dallman on the Boston Bruins blueline.

    Brandon Bochenski starts the season amongst Ottawa's top six forwards.

    Steve Eminger will add to his 58 NHL games on Wednesday night for the Washington Capitals.

    Defenceman Mark Streit suprised many by making the roster of the Montreal Canadiens.

    Martin Cibak remains on the Tampa Bay Lightening roster.

    edit: Zbynek Michalek played in Phoenix's opening night game.

    edit: Timo Helbling played for Tampa Bay on opening night.
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2005
  8. Ville Isopaa

    Ville Isopaa Registered User

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    Lead by Sidney Crosby and Rotislav Olesz , the Avalanche will have a group of prospects making the NHL rosters.

    After 3 seasons in AHL, Christoph Schubert finally made the Ottawa roster.

    Matt Murley has made it to the Pittsburgh roster to play with fellow AV Crosby.

    Nolan Yonkman has hopefully left his injuryproblems behind and is ready to play a central role on the Wasington D alongside fellow AV Shaone Morrisonn. Matt Pettinger will dress up as a bottom 6 forward for Washington.

    Dmitri Afanasenkov is moving up the depth chart in Tampa and is looking to break out offensively.

    Phillippe Sauve has secured the backup spot in Calgary behind Miika Kiprusoff. Eyes could be on Sauve if Kiprusoff isn't able to put up the numbers he did in 03-04.

    For long it looked like Greg Campbell would make it in Florida, but was among the last cuts and will start the season in AHL. He is expected to be the first call up in case of an injury.
     
  9. spintheblackcircle

    spintheblackcircle ...so that happened.

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    In Minnesota, 3 forward prospects will be making their debut with several others likely to see their 1st NHL action this year:

    Matt Foy will be starting the year on Minnesota's 3rd line on the right side. This big prospect out of the OHL has a style that will likely make him more effective than he was in the AHL last year where he underacheived.

    Alexander Perezhogin made the 23 man roster in Montreal, though his role is undefined as of now. While he has more talent than several forwards projected to skate in their opening night lineup, he may be an extra to start the year. It's a head scratcher to me, but guys like Sundstrom and Higgens will likely be ahead of him at the start. This very talented skater will make an impact before the year in through. (no Garrett Stafford jokes, please)

    Robert Nilsson will start the year on the 1st line on the Isle with Yashin and Satan. While he has been ripped since his selection for underperformance in Sweden, every time he is given top line time with the national team, he has led the team in scoring. Nilsson seems to be the type that when you give him a fair shot, he shines. When you demote him, he has appeared to sulk. He needs to get off to a fast start, and skating with 2 world class forward sure doesn't hurt.

    Clarke MacArthur in Buffalo, Kyle Brodziak in Edmonton, Doug Murray in San Jose, Richie Regehr in Calgary, Jakub Klepis in Washington, and Thomas Mojzis in Vancouver are likely to all make their NHL debut this year.

    And don't sleep on 2005 1st rounder Nicklas Bergfors. He will start the year in Albany, but word is he will play in New Jersey if he performs well. Some watchers in New Jersey said he very well could have made the big squad to start the year, and with Elias and Mogilny out to start the year, Lou may not wait long to call up this Swedish talent.
     
  10. HFNHL Commish

    HFNHL Commish Registered User

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    Ducks prospects that will start the season in the NHL...

    To the surprise of few, Mike Cammalleri will be starting out on a scoring line for the Kings, most likely on Jeremy Roenick's right wing.

    Dennis Seidenberg will begin the season as the Flyers #5 or #6 defenseman, depending on who you talk to. Once Derian Hatcher returns from suspension, Seidenberg will be fighting Chris Therien for the #6 spot.

    Much to my surprise, Petteri Nokelainen will start the season with the Islanders on their 4th line. Nokelainen beat out countryman Sean Bergenheim for a roster spot with the big club.

    Much to my chagrin, Niklas Kronwall will begin the season on the IR for the Red Wings. Prior to his knee injury, Kronwall figured to be the #3 or #4 defenseman for the Wings.

    Another defenseman beginning the season on the IR is Richard Petiot. Whether or not Petiot will see time with the Kings immediately after he returns from injury is debatable. However, he certainly figures to be at the top of the list for call-ups.

    Lastly, Tomas Plekanec will begin the season on 4th line for the Canadiens. Plekanec had a fantastic camp for the Habs and is least partly responsible for the trade of Marcel Hossa.
     
  11. Hossa

    Hossa Registered User

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    For the Canucks:

    Not surprisingly, Eric Staal, Antoine Vermette and Jeff Taffe, are all in the NHL, as they were most of the last season.

    Ilya Bryzgalov and Maxime Ouellet will finally be in the NHL all season as backups for Anaheim and Washington respectively.

    Andrej Meszaros, only 19 years old, forced his way onto the Senators team, and will start the season on the third pairing.

    Francois Beauchemin and newly-signed Rene Bourque have also made their clubs.

    Anthony Stewart, Patrick Eaves, Zenon Konopka, Nigel Dawes and Noah Welch are all starting the season in the minors, but were all very late cuts, and are almost guaranteed to be called up at one point. Jan Platil, Doug O'Brien, Kyle Quincey, Brooks Laich, Jon DiSalvatore and Ahren Nittel could also be called up as well.
     
  12. MatthewFlames

    MatthewFlames Registered User

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    Not to be too bitter - and nothing against Rene personally - but here's hoping he ends up in the UHL by seasons end!

    Matthew
    GM FLAMES
     
  13. Hossa

    Hossa Registered User

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    Now you've gone too far. You're never getting a Christmas card ever again. :p:
     
  14. HFNHL management was disappointed to hear today that Milan Bartovic's NHL rights had been traded from Buffalo to Chicago for HFNHL Columbus Blue Jacket property Michael Leighton.
    Both HFNHL GM's were utterly confused by this transaction as Leighton enters an already over crowded goaltender situation in Buffalo while Bartovic is equally out of place in Chicago where they were having trouble making decisions on final cuts for forwards (still at 15 fwds as of Tuesday).
    The most bizarre piece is that Bartovic, before the trade, was being sent down on waivers along with Derek Roy thereby reducing Buffalo's forward depth to 11?!
    The much wiser HFNHL GM's were only left to wonder what in the world their NHL counterparts were thinking when made this deal.
     
  15. spintheblackcircle

    spintheblackcircle ...so that happened.

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    Welcome to the NHL Jakub Klepis! Tallies his 1st NHL goal in his debut for the Capitals tonite. Brodziak has also played for the Oilers this year.
     
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