Who do you want to know more about?

Before I get to the promised blog about the developmental camp the Thrashers will have next week – July 10-15 – let me do a little housekeeping.

1. I apologize to Jason(Darkhorse). I did indeed change the main blog a couple of times yesterday – it started with the Thorburn signing before the Antropov move went down. So, he was indeed talking about Thorburn as a 4th-liner. Didn’t mean to make you look like “one of the looney posters on the Thrashers message boards” Darkhorse.

2. Waddell is the one that told us about the text message from Kovy (Tim, I had it on this blog first, read my comments). I was asking Waddell about how the Antropov signing would affect the negotiations with Kovy. It came up a little bit into the conversation. I don’t think it was a plant, he was simply answering a question.

Now, I need your help. I will post the roster for the developmental camp below. Take a look at it and let me know who you would like to know more about. I plan to do a story on Evander Kane, Carl Klinsberg, Jeremy Morin, Angelo Esposito and Vinny Saponari.

Let me know what other players you would like to hear about and I’ll try to get to them.

Also, let me say how well I think this blog is going. It’s a new media for me, but I think we have a lot to talk about and for the most part (yeah, we’re talking about Joey again) your comments have been very insightful – about the Thrashers and the NHL. I’m no Rawhide, but I’m working on it. Let’s see how we do in August (I have more vacation planned ), but so far, so good.

Thanks everybody.

Development Camp Roster

FORWARDS (21)
John Albert, Spencer Anderson *, Jimmy Bubnick, Cody Crichton *, Angelo Esposito, Mike Forney, Riley Holzapfel, Doug Jones*, Evander Kane, Carl Klingberg, Daultan Leveille, Levko Koper, Andrew Kozek, Spencer Machacek, Jeremy Morin, Eric O’Dell, Danick Paquette, Kyle Reed*,  Jordan Samuels, Vinny Saponari , Victor Saponari *

DEFENSEMEN (8)
Ben Chiarot, Jay Gilbert*, Mike Looby*, Will O’Neill, Drew Paris*, Paul Postma, Cody Sol, Zach Redmond

GOALTENDERS (4)
Chris Carrozzi, Chris Kamal*, Taylor Nelson*, Ed Pasquale

* – Invitee who is not property of the Thrashers

136 comments Add your comment

Sara

July 3rd, 2009
11:12 am

Daultan Leveille please. Maybe Eric O’Dell as well. Oh and Riley Holzapfel…real curious to see if he makes the team this year.

Hey – just looked back at that list…where’s Lasu?? He was here last year for camp IIRC.

GTthrashfan

July 3rd, 2009
11:38 am

Just because the entire list is Offense so far…. how about I throw out the names of Postma, Sol and Pasquale.

MB

July 3rd, 2009
11:45 am

Agree with Sara on Leveille and Holzapfel, and would like to hear from Machacek as well.

Alan

July 3rd, 2009
11:49 am

O’Neill and Postma would be nice to hear about.

Also, I have to echo Sara’s sentiments: Where’s Nicklas Lasu in that list?

Tim

July 3rd, 2009
11:50 am

No problem Chris. I was just simply replying to the post above me that ask for confirmation about Kovy being happy with Antropov signing ;)

Thrashers27

July 3rd, 2009
11:51 am

I’ll second Postma. If he can put up numbers even close to what he was doing in juniors, he’ll be a sweet addition to our defense. O’Dell too. Don’t know much about him, other than he is supposed to be a decent picup.

Nikita

July 3rd, 2009
12:03 pm

Spencer Machacek. Maybe Paul Postma, as well — he performed out of lin with expectations last year.

ranallo10 (in AT)

July 3rd, 2009
12:05 pm

I’d be interested in hearing from O’Dell, Holzapfel and Macacek about what type of skill they feel they bring to the table (i.e., what type of player they are and how they could contribute at the NHL level).

Thrashers27

July 3rd, 2009
12:20 pm

I just looked on the Thrashers web-site and there’s no mention of Lasu on the official list either. Wonder what gives with him.

Darkhorse

July 3rd, 2009
12:58 pm

No worries Chris…thanks.

I would also like to hear more about Postma and where Esposito is at in development after the broken leg. We don’t have a plethora of legit looking top 6 forwards in our system it seems, so where does management and he(Espo) think he’s at? Also, guys like Lasu and other European prospects not named Nukilin are of interest too. Not too many of us saw Enstrom bursting onto the scene like he did. Is there another guy from across the pond that may do so this season? What is up with the Zubarev kid? Will we even ever see him?

Really, let’s hear about them all :) How about an in-depth story a week starting after development camp going until right before training camp? That would give us something to blog/read about during the NHL graveyard period.

Brendan

July 3rd, 2009
1:01 pm

I’m very much in agreement with the names already listed. But I’ll list them again, Riley Holzapfel, Daultan Leveille (29th overall pick, 2008, Michigan State), Spencer Machacek, and Eric O’Dell (Christen trade from Anaheim, former 2nd round pick from 2008). I’d like to add Paul Postma, Andrew Kozek, Zach Redmond (7th round pick, 2008), and goalie Chris Carrozzi. Just some random quotes would be good. Doesn’t have to be a feature story.

If you’ll indulge me, Chris, I have a specific question I’d like posed to Will O’Neill. Here, now, the question, “How does it feel to know you are the last remnant of the Thrashers 1st ever draft pick, Patrik Stefan?” My guess … is that he has no idea that’s the case, and it’s never occurred to him that his acquisition had any ties whatsoever to the Inaugural season of the franchise. But on June 24, 2006, Will O’Neill was drafted by Atlanta in the 7th round of the 2006 draft with the pick formerly held by Dallas, as part of a trade that sent Niko Kapanen to Atlanta in exchange for Jaroslav “Slowdry” Modry and former 1st overall selection, from 1999, Patrik Stefan. So, the pressure’s on, right? He BETTER SUCCEED! Chuckling. Otherwise, the 1st overall pick of the 1999 Draft was a total bust. Anywho, I appreciate the job you’re doing, Chris Vivlamore. There’s nothing wrong with taking some vacation time in August. There won’t be anything going on here then, unless Kovalchuk up and re-signs at that time. Someone has to text Kovalchuk not to re-sign during Vivlamore’s next vacation. Otherwise, certain bloggers will never let him forget that he was away when it happened. Likewise, if the organization has some epiphany, and fires Waddell or suddenly promotes Dudley to GM, it will stir the masses for a fresh blog.

Why is N. Lasu pulling a Houdini?

World Be Free

July 3rd, 2009
1:01 pm

Still looking for another free agent signing. Development is good, but we need more vetran depth to win this coming season.

Jimbo

July 3rd, 2009
1:03 pm

O’dell, Postma and tough guy Dan Paquette.

Sean

July 3rd, 2009
1:06 pm

In order:

Machacek
Holzapfel
Postma
Leveille
Paquette

Chris Vivlamore

July 3rd, 2009
2:17 pm

Thanks to Tim and Darkhorse for understanding!

I will look into Lasu. I double-checked my list and he is not on it. Could be a miss or he won’t be there. I’ll get on it Monday. I have to finish a story on the Braves and cover the Dream game tonight.

Thanks very much all on input. We are starting to get quite a list. I think I know the answer to this already, but maybe you guys would like to see occasional updates on prospects during the season? Might be a way to get to some of those I won’t be able to talk to next week. I will get to as many as I can. Also I trust the names you are mentioning are in addition to those I had named?

Keep ‘em coming.

Spud Webb

July 3rd, 2009
2:53 pm

Chris, where is the developmental camp held at?

Sara

July 3rd, 2009
2:54 pm

Chris I asked Ben about Lasu and he said it isn’t uncommon for the Europeans to not come over for prospect camp, particularly if they are still under contract to their current team. I gather he’s talking in generals but that’s likely the explanation for Lasu.

Hockey Biltong

July 3rd, 2009
2:55 pm

Did we let go of Hoffman??? He kept breaking his wrists fighting or something like that?

Supes

July 3rd, 2009
3:08 pm

More on Evander Kane please.

Thrashers27

July 3rd, 2009
3:16 pm

Hockey Biltong: I just looked on the roster and Hoffman is no longer listed as “In the System”.

Chris: I’m almost certain he won’t be at the development camp, but I woulnd’t mind learning more about Stapler and if, when and where he’ll come into the mix here in Atlanta. He’s put up some decent numbers throughout his career. He could be a surprise, or he could be another Sterling.

ranallo10 (in AT)

July 3rd, 2009
3:19 pm

Vivlamore — Your audience is relatively hardcore Thrasher fans…of course we’d appreciate constant updates on our prospects. I think that’d be a cool ongoing feature for you to give a brief on one prospect per week, or bi-weekly. It definitely gives us something to ingest and direct quotes is always nice to hear from players within the system (how they feel about their own development, what their coaches are helping them work on, what their immediate goals are for their own development, etc).

Obviously questions like “how do you feel about being drafted by Atlanta” are a waste of time, but sometimes it’s nice to see how the player perceives himself in relation to the big team, and how he feels the team would benefit from the addition of him to the roster. Playing style, strengths, areas for improvement…all are great to hear firsthand so to speak.

ranallo10 (in AT)

July 3rd, 2009
3:28 pm

Vivlamore — Can you give us any insight into the players who have not been re-signed as of yet, such as Oystrick or Crabb?

R. Stroz

July 3rd, 2009
4:27 pm

From a human interest/conversation starter, I have a few questions.

Since Carl Klingberg has come across as a player with a good sense of humor, ask him the best practical joke he has ever played on someone.

In regards to Jeremy Morin. he is known as a sniper with less than steller skating ability. Would you ask him if his friends have ever refered to him as “Happy Gilmore?”

Well that should get a conversation started.

R. Stroz

July 3rd, 2009
4:34 pm

My questions should have been prefaced for Chris Vivlamore to ask at prospect camp. OOPS!

Get The Puck Out

July 3rd, 2009
5:18 pm

I wonder if the two Saponari’s are brothers?

ranallo10 (in AT)

July 3rd, 2009
5:25 pm

They are, and are from Georgia (Powder Springs I think).

hoff-less

July 3rd, 2009
5:29 pm

I would also like to know about Hoffman’s future. Or just tell DW to please re-sign him, use your ajc clout, buy him a taco or something. We need the Hoff.

World Be Free

July 3rd, 2009
6:03 pm

Are we going to sign any more free agents? The list of good players is dwindling.

Tim

July 3rd, 2009
7:01 pm

Get the puck out: yes, both Saponaris are sibbling. :)

Jimbo

July 3rd, 2009
7:47 pm

The older Saponari is grandfather to the younger Saponari.

MB

July 3rd, 2009
8:10 pm

I wouldn’t count on anything too big, WBF, based upon D-Wadd’s earlier comments to Vivlamore. He basically said maybe a depth guy or two, but the big signings are over. Check Viv’s earlier stories/blogs for the actual quotes.

UpperDeck4Life

July 3rd, 2009
9:41 pm

Chris I would like to know a little more about Albert, the Center from Ohio State. What kind of minutes he will see this year at Ohio State. Which special team unit he will be on. Will he be on the top line or second line on 5 v 5, etc.

As far as defenseman, I wouldn’t mind knowing more about Postma.

Thanks

Hockey Biltong

July 3rd, 2009
9:51 pm

Where in the hell is Brett Favre ??? He was supposed to be in camp???

World Be Free

July 3rd, 2009
11:18 pm

MB-I agree and there are plenty of depth guys out there and we could use one or two character guys

Sara

July 3rd, 2009
11:30 pm

WBF – when we say depth at this point, think AHLers who are available for call-ups. Don specifically talked about how Chicago has gotten somewhat depleted and that we were fortunate not to run into too many injuries last season. Unless they decide to replace Perrin straight up (versus letting Kane or another prospect fill that hole), I do not really expect to see anyone signed for the roster next season. Anyone else will be on two-way contracts.

li'l help....

July 4th, 2009
12:28 am

Forgive me, but what are the names of some of the other Thrasher forums/message boards? One used to be atlthrahsers.com but that was moved (or something along those lines). I thank you all in advance for any responses.

Sadtoseeitthisway

July 4th, 2009
12:46 am

To those of you asking why not Hoffman on this list? The mission here is to evaluate. Bringing in a healthy Hoffman or someone of his MO is counterproductive. These “prospects” want to walk away from this camp with all their marbles intact. They want to have it all together when they are at a for real camp,trying to make a regular season roster come September.

muttonsourdough

July 4th, 2009
1:09 am

Chris Vivlamore – My Firefox-search-this-page-for-this-text feature didnt find anyone requesting you take a look into Levko Koper. Ive seen a few places where they called him Levko the Lionheart, and Id be interested to know more about the kid. Stats-wise, his GP, G, A, Pts, and PIMs increased significantly over his 3 years in juniors (PIMs not as significantly though) so he seems to be something of a late bloomer with good heart. NHL’s prospect page on him shows him at 6-0 and 180, and the things Ive heard/read about him make a pretty strong case for him as captain material. I also seem to recall he wore a letter for his team this past season.

I found a page (written 30 May 2009) that assessed him over at blogspot, something like “NHL Draft Notes” or something, but I find it difficult to believe what was written because they pegged Levko to go in the 2nd round, maybe late 1st. Said hes a great playoff performer who may cruise sometimes but the more important the game the better he plays. Again, hard to accept it unconditionally because they said theyd be “totally shocked” if he was taken as late as Central Scouting said (which was a few rounds earlier than we got him) but its there.

All that mumbo-jumbo to say that Id like to know a little more about this kid with such a badass name.

Hockey Biltong

July 4th, 2009
2:44 am

Thanks Thrashers27, for the info. Hoffman had a bit of a buzz surrounding him last year, but injury kept him below the radar. Not sure if he was let go or just moved on. I’ll get Chris or Bill to chime in, unless Sara or Ranallo in Austria knows….WBFREE??? Russian???

Sharon

July 4th, 2009
5:30 am

I’d like to hear about Vinny Saponari and Chris Carrozzi.

Thrashers27

July 4th, 2009
6:49 am

Yeah, I wanted to see him here in Atlanta for his size and grit. Looked like a fun piece to have in the few pre-season gamews I was able to see him in.

World Be Free

July 4th, 2009
8:16 am

You know Sara, I am looking for a signing of a player that comes from a winner. Travis Moen and Todd Marchant come to mind, not that Samuellson is in Vancouver.

These are the guys you need to add to the roster. Players that have gone deep into the playoffs and know how to inject winning into a franchise.

We still need more guys that are winning to take a hit to make a play. You know, Rick Dudley type players. Add Mike Grier to this list.

Don, the work is not done yet. Don’t stop now!

World Be Free

July 4th, 2009
8:38 am

Interesting piece on the Thrashers out of Canada-

Am interested to see if the additions of two ex-Leafs, Nikolai Antropov and Pavel Kubina, can finally lift the Atlanta Thrashers out of their decade-long funk. The Thrashers were one of those teams, badly out of the playoff hunt at the all-star break, that showed a pulse down the stretch, under coach John Anderson. These surges, in a no-pressure situation, tend to be mirages usually, although the Thrashers do finally have a couple of interesting young pieces on defence in Zach Bogosian, who was excellent down the stretch, and Tobias Enstrom, only two years removed from all-rookie status. If the goaltending sorts itself out, maybe the Thrashers compete

ThrashDawg

July 4th, 2009
8:42 am

Why is Kulda not going to be there? He was at the camp last year.

Chris Vivlamore

July 4th, 2009
9:35 am

Spud Webb: Development Camp is held at the Thrashers practice facility – the Duluth IceForum. All practices are free and open to the public.

ranallo10 (in AT): Shoot me if I ever ask a question like “how do you feel about being drafted by Atlanta!” Also, I will be pursuing the status of those players offered qualifying offers and the likes of Oystrick and Crabb.

World Be Free: Another free agent signing may be coming, but it won’t be big. Waddell said he is just looking for depth now.

World Be Free

July 4th, 2009
10:18 am

Thanks Chris-quality, character depth is a very good thing!

Nouah

July 4th, 2009
12:28 pm

Daultan Leveillé and Dannick Paquette

Alan

July 4th, 2009
12:34 pm

I understand your want to sign more players “from a winner” WBF; however, ask yourself: Where do we put them? Who do we dump? It’s not like last year, where we had players like Klee and Larsen taking up space. The fourth line is the fourth line, and as badly as I didn’t want to see Thorburn re-signed, he’s here. Boulton is the tough guy, and Slater is, well, Slater. Third line is pretty much solid – Kane or no Kane. Second and First lines are untouchable.

So, who do we get rid of?

Rockem Sockem Thrasher

July 4th, 2009
12:43 pm

Is Angelo Esposito really ready? I’ve heard that he isn’t even skating yet.

World Be Free

July 4th, 2009
12:46 pm

Alan-dump Slater. He’s like Ex, he’s a reminder of our sorry past. Dump Slater, bring in Todd Marchant.

Marchant is a better penalty killer, faceoff man and scorer. He has scored Game 7 winners (in OT no less). Slater is a novelty; Marchant is a winner.

Washington has an explosive power play, Tampa has just become better, quick. Let’s not get too giddy about what’s gone on this week.

Injuried happen too-quality, experienced, proven depth is what we need.