Prospect camp underway

My last day of filling in for the boss is almost over. Now we can devote 100 percent to prospect camp. I did make it over for the first two days of camp. Good to see some familiar faces on Thursday.

I did a story on Patrice Cormier. You can read it here if you missed it. He seems to have put the past behind him. Interesting to see him assigned to rounding up the pucks and taking them off the ice following the first two practices. Maybe Evander Kane won’t have to do that next year.

I just finished a story on Paul Postma. That will be online a little later and in Saturday’s paper. I also talked to Carl Klingberg for a story to run Sunday. I’m also planning on doing stories on Akim Aliu, Julian Melchiori and the three goalies in camp. I will touch base with as many of the other prospects as possible. Let me know if there is someone in particular you would like to read about.

On the goalie front, GM Rick Dudley gets a big smile on his face when asked about Chris Carrozzi, Ed Pasquale and Alex Kangas. Here’s part of a quote from Dudley about them to foreshadow the story: ” I don’t even know how we can discern between the three of them but we feel pretty comfortable that one of them is going to turn out to be a dandy.”

Speaking of goaltending, I wanted to pass on this quote from new associate head coach John Torchetti about new Thrashers goalie Chris Mason. They were together in AHL San Antonio. “I love him. One of my favorite players. The best thing I can tell you about him as a player was when we were in San Antonio … I asked players to put up quotes (on a board) to identify themselves. Chris put a quote up that said ‘When times get tough, I roll up my sleeves higher.’ That’s what I can tell you about him. That’s what his work ethic is like.”

Ran into Angelo Esposito this morning. He is continuing the rehab on his knee. He skated by himself for awhile after the first session. I will try to catch up with him near August when camp gets closer for an update.

I’m told an announcement on the final assistant coach could be coming soon. Stay tuned.

Say hello if you are at prospect camp this weekend.

30 comments Add your comment

Smoothie

July 9th, 2010
3:37 pm

Thanks Chris! Look forward to the stories on Postie and Klingy.

Can you please ask Dudley if you get the chance if Max’s agent, Don Meehan, has been in touch with him again…reconsidering I hope?

Toby

July 9th, 2010
4:00 pm

Good stuff! Two non-prospect questions…No. 1 Same as Smoothie’s question. Wondering about Max. No. 2 How is Little’s off-season training going. He’s admitted last year was a setback and I’m curious as to how he’s getting ready for next season.

See ya there on Sunday!

Darkhorse

July 9th, 2010
4:10 pm

Thanks for all the effort Chris!

Any word on how the RFA negotiations are going and how soon they might be resolved?

Lee

July 9th, 2010
4:28 pm

Nice! Excited for the season to start….

Viking

July 9th, 2010
4:49 pm

Cviv, you are quoting Cormier in your article:

“It’s unfortunate,” said Cormier, who characterized the hit as an accident. “I don’t forget it quick, but you have to. Life is too short to dwell on the past.”

However, Sean Avery could be an angel in comparison to what we have on our hands. Unless Cormier’s head is unscrewed and properly retwisted we have a problem. Cormier is a repeat (elbow) offender. Even more telling is the elbow he gave the unsuspecting Swedish player Anton Rödin during a shift change in a pre WJHC game Dec 2020. 2009. For some reason videos of that terrible attack (I do not want to call it an incident, which is a diminishing term), seems to have been blocked out of “term violations” on the internet. But believe me, the result of that elbow is less harmful than the convulsions of Michael Tam, but the intent to injure is even more obvious on the elbow to Anton Rödin.

Game On

July 9th, 2010
5:07 pm

So we have a new enforcer on the team. Avery beware!!

JR

July 9th, 2010
6:29 pm

for cripes sake dudley, re-sign max and schubert.

fart

July 9th, 2010
6:43 pm

I think Viking would be in therapy if he watched hockey in the 70’s and 80’s. You paint Cormier out to be a psychopath. Hardlly the case, he’s just not Ron “I will stand there while a teammate is killed” Hainsey. If Cormier decides to elbow Crosby, I’m gonna cheer, drink a beer and be glad I’m a man, watching a man’s sport. Cut the kid some slack, you act like he is the only player to ever try to injure someone, did you happen to catch Jimmy Slater get elbowed to the head by Tim Connolly a couple of seasons back? No one acts like Connolly has rabies. It’s hockey, it happens.

jack

July 9th, 2010
7:15 pm

I take it Viking did not like the Foil brothers. :)
I agree with you I do not think I will be shedding any tear if a Cormier elbow meets Crosby Pansies head. Actually he may deserve the star of the game. :)

Brendan

July 9th, 2010
7:27 pm

I loved watching hockey in the 70’s and 80’s. In fact, everyone should be watching the “Raising the Cup” special now running nightly at 8PM on the NHL Network (NHL TV). Tonight, I think it’s Montreal vs. Boston from 1979, the last in the run of 4-straight Cups for Montreal. I particularly like watching those virgin white boards. I miss that. I’m not a fan of the advertising, but I know it’s necessary, and so forth. I loved the dimensions of the rink, and where the nets were place. The style was so wide open. That’s my favorite brand of hockey. Wide open and hard hitting.

Re: Cormier, he’s got to get it controlled, but he’ll be fine. If other players feel like he’s a loose cannon, so much the better. We want our players to be intimidating. But also skilled. And Cormier will need to be both.

I’m interested in knowing the progress of prospect Daultan Leveille, our 2nd selection in the 1st round of 2008, who was part of the Hossa trade. People say he’s the second coming of Jim Slater. But I am hoping he can be more than that. I see Will O’Neil is still part of the organization. He’s the answer to the trivia question, “What’s left of the Patrick Stefan trade.” O’Neil was the 7th rounder Atlanta got from Dallas, along with Niko Kapanen, for Stefan and Jaroslav (Slowdry) Modry. It’d be funny to see both Stefan and Lehtonen as Dallas Stars. Sadly, Stefan’s career was cut short by injury. He’s a player’s agent now, I believe, somewhere in the Czech Republic.

Waddell’s positive legacy may be his ability to find 7th round blueliners. First Exelby, then Enstrom, and finally Zach Redmond. Segue, I’m curious as to how far away Zach Redmond might really be. If he becomes a 5/6 defender one day, then that was a good draft pick.

Alan R.

July 10th, 2010
2:23 am

He’s a player’s agent now, I believe, somewhere in the Czech Republic.

Which is nowhere near his actual location of Laguna Beach, CA. ;)

World Be Free

July 10th, 2010
8:21 am

I hope Cormier gets a chance to make the big club, to me he’s old school. As a player, I have no real issue with how he has played the game in the past-that’s hockey, how the game should be played on the ice. If he does that stuff in the NHL, he will have to defend himself. If he can’t do that, he will learnt to keep his elbows down. That is what I love about hockey-this game is truly self-policing, maybe not as much as it used to be becuase of the instegator rule. If you get a rep in hockey, you will spend your time defending it.

Let the kid play then sit back and enjoy his game. We don’t have enough old school these days anyhow.

Karly

July 10th, 2010
10:29 am

Hey- I am wondering how John Albert looks???

Viking

July 10th, 2010
11:26 am

Physical play is fine with me. However, it appears that some of you think brutal cheap shots cowardly delivered to unsuspecting recipients is OK.

I just hope Cormier does not continue that crap he refers to as an accident. And it was not an isolated incident.

Alan R.

July 10th, 2010
11:41 am

Physical play is fine with me. However, it appears that some of you think brutal cheap shots cowardly delivered to unsuspecting recipients is OK.

No. Just most of us believe that people can change when given the opportunity to do so. He sat down for a very lengthy suspension last year, and has also been brought up on charges. If that doesn’t scare him straight, then there’s other problems.

Thrashers27

July 10th, 2010
12:14 pm

I was willing to give Cormier the benefit of the doubt until I saw that shot on the Swedish player. That was as deliberate as they come, which is unacceptable.

I do agree however, that Patrice has a chance to prove he has matured and that those kind of shenanigans are no longer part of his game. Now, would I love to see him play with a sharp edge? Absolutely, but let’s stay away from the cheap shots. That’s not part of the hockey.

Let’s go Thrashers!

World Be Free

July 10th, 2010
1:25 pm

I am not condoning the act in Cormier’s case. It was bad act that was disciplined by the league. If Cormier becomes a cheap punk, I’ll call him out. If he comes a player with an edge that plays within the rules, I celebrate him.

Adam

July 10th, 2010
1:36 pm

As a cheap shot repeat offender I don’t have a lot of confidence that we’ve seen the last of that type of play from Cormier. I will say that from what I’ve seen of him in the camp vid and other interviews he seems to be one of the rare talents. If he really is that good he at least deserves the chance to prove it. I just feel that what ever snaps in his head that causes him into questionable actions is bound to pop up again. If it does the leagues new policy for head shots will take care of the problem for him.

I just hope no one gets really hurt if/when it happens.

EB

July 10th, 2010
6:57 pm

Hate to hear Klingberg probably isn’t going to be on the team this year which to me means Cormier has to make it. In hockey hits like the one Cormier was involved in happen quite a lot and Cormier will learn from it imo. He has just the type of game we desperately need and with so many of our other young talent apparently still not ready for the NHL, Cormier has to be the first to make the jump. Hopefully we won’t have to wait much longer for Klingberg and Aliu (and their size) to join him. Instead of resigning smaller guys like Slater or keeping White, I’m ready for some of our bigger youth to replace them, and help add even more physical play to our roster like we did with Dustin, Eager, and Ladd.

Alan R.

July 10th, 2010
10:56 pm

Hate to hear Klingberg probably isn’t going to be on the team this year which to me means Cormier has to make it.

Even Klingberg doesn’t think he’s ready, as he stated after signing his entry level contract that he intend on playing at least one more year in Sweden to transition to the NHL.

He knows he has areas he needs to work on. He would prefer to work on them in his native country, rather than in the AHL, I imagine.

kracker

July 11th, 2010
10:27 am

Chris’ article on Klingberg says Carl plans to play next season for his Frolunda team in the SEL. But he also expects and will demand more playing time. Last season he played 4th line minutes, less than 10 per game, and scored 6 goals with 7 assists.

I know not much about his Frolunda team but perhaps in the natural order of progression Carl will move to the 3rd line or maybe into the top six. Do players typically stay on an SEL team for several years or do they change teams and provide openings to be filled? I don’t know the answers.

Klingberg says if he does not get sufficient playing time, the Thrashers will bring him over to play in North America, most likely in the AHL. So, one way or another, Carl will play more – and develop more – in the upcoming season. If he gets his minutes on his Frolunda team, Carl will play out the season there and then come over to play the remainder of the Wolves AHL season.

All in all, Klingberg looks to be challenging for a Thrashers forward position in next year’s camp.

Tim

July 12th, 2010
12:07 am

I hope Cormier can change. He’s a repeat offender so I’m skeptical.

Hockey is a game, it’s not a fight for survival… it’s not the law of the jungle. Well, it shouldn’t be anyway. Intentionally trying to injure another player is unacceptable. BTW, I hated “hockey” in the 70’s. There are reasons that style of play is no longer tolerated.

Again, I hope he can change… but I’d have him on a short leash.

dbluez

July 12th, 2010
6:44 am

Cromier is exactly what we need, we have enough non hitters on this team.

Dwayne

July 12th, 2010
8:02 am

Seen a picture of Cromier, looks like he would beat the living crap out of you if you pissed him off. Never meet him, talked to him, but he looks mean. And he was smiling in the picture. scary

tp

July 12th, 2010
8:15 am

Respected coaches and GM … good prospects … compelling trades combined with the dumping of a few bad-apple-type players …

Are we REALLY talking about the Thrashers here? Have I been shuttled to an alternative universe? What the heck is in my coffee!!

Curious

July 12th, 2010
9:50 am

Well I read all the comments and there’s no mention of Paquette, is he not in the Thrasher plans??? Is he not a physically engaged forward?? Was he not paired up with Cormier this weekend? Did he not do well? I saw his stats from last year, are they not impressive?? Could anyone inform me on his progress please!! Thanks! MAine-iacs fan!

jack

July 12th, 2010
9:51 am

db, I agree wih you. When Cormier makes the team will be very refreshing.

World Be Free

July 12th, 2010
12:26 pm

db and Jack, totally agree. He’ll keep opposing players from skating around with their heads down

Jo-Bu

July 12th, 2010
4:05 pm

Chris,

How about Vinny Saponari? We not heard much of him since he (and his brother) got canned by BU afew months ago.

Thanks.

Jo-Bu

July 12th, 2010
4:07 pm

On Cormier:

Ths Thrahser seem way more of a fit for him this season. Good gritty team (just like the Braves).