Ken's blog

Scrimmage Day 2 Observations

Lack of eyewitness accounts from yesterday drove me over there. Decent crowd showed. I doubt as many as yesterday. The prospect camp featured much more physical play and was more enjoyable to watch. From what I saw, nobody should have suffered more than a scratch. Playoff intensity it was not. Fast paced it was, particularly the Red/White game. I got to see some prospects I've never seen before and I enjoyed that aspect of the trip. I'll do this by team. Red: Tarnasky - He played as physical as anyone today. He hanging in there in his quest to make the big club. Milley - I'm not sure what puts him ahead of some of the others for this spot. I would think we would look for some toughness here, especially if this is the spot that will split time with Delmore. I didn't see his goal, the assist was on an empty netter.

Prospect Camp Wrap-Up: Organizational Forwards

This will wrap-up my final coverage of the prospects camp and probably any journalistic efforts for a while. I have to go back to work tomorrow. The Blue Birds are firng up and the kiidies will be back to school next week. Volleyball will be starting up shortly and I'll be knee deep in evalauating my own suspects... I mean prospects. Forwards are far more difficult to project than the others. We're deeply riveted by those that can fill the scoring line holes every team seems to crave. Also, despite needing outstanding skills, I think heart and passion for the game is more evident in NHL scorers. Many have gotten nowhere with an upper level skillset. But you rarely see an upper tier scorer without a special look in his eye.

Prospect Camp Wrap-Up: Defensemen

We seem to be pretty well stacked here. I projest that we have 5 above average defensemen in this group plus a couple of others that could fill 3rd pair roles. Top 2 pair players: Matt Smaby - There's nothing spectacular about his game. It all scores at average or above. He's sound, smart tough, hard-working and he can move a little. Probably would benefit from and interim step through Springfield, then be here by the 1st of the year to stay. Vladimir Mihalik - He was the 3rd youngest player on the ice (4th counting Bartanus). #1 asset - good feet. Guys with good feet have the ability to develop their entire game. He shows excellent mobility, a decent shot and if he only sets a pick on you, you get hit hard. Needs to get better defensively in front of the net. 2 years away.

Prospect Camp Wrap-Up: Goaltenders

The first job of a scout is to analyze the talent, the second is to predict it into the future and the final is determine if and how that fits into one's organization. I recapped their play enough, now I'll attempt to project their future & determine their role with the Lightning organization. The bad news is, I likely won't have conclusive knowledge of the true outcomes for 8 - 10 years perhaps. The good news is, the rest of you likely won't have access to review this in 8 - 10 years. The caveat: in shopping for talent for the lightning organization doesn't just require looking for guys who'll play in the NHL. We're looking for players integral to helping this club make cup runs year-after-year. Our system should be at that point now.

Day 5 Prospect Camp

White Wins series with a 2 - 0 victory over the Black The puppies were tired today and the goaltenders were at their best in a sloppily played game. 0 - 0 at the intermission and then: 1. White: Hrdel (Lascek, Collins) collins down low slips it to Lascek quickly to Hrdel who smacks it by Pearce from the lefthand side of the low slot. Wasn't exactly soft,nice shot, but any of the other three goalies might have had that today. 2. White: Hrdel (Oullette, Czuy) Czuy made the play by dishing the puck of as Rogers tied to take him out along the center boards. Czuy took Rogers out instead slipping it to Oullette who skated past the two and creted a 2-on-1 with Hrdel. Oullette drew the defender, slid the puck to Hrdel who smoked it from near the same spot as his first one. Also against Pearce.
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