Thrashers Prospects Fall To Red Wings 6-4 In Traverse City

The Thrashers prospects began their play in Traverse City, Michigan with a 6-4 loss to the Detroit Red Wings’ prospects. After trailing 1-0 after the first period, the Thrashers outscored Detroit 3-0 in the second. Andrew Kozek’s unassisted power play goal tied it at 4:13…then Evander Kane gave Atlanta’s prospects the lead at 15:59 with assists from Eric O’Dell and Jeremy Morin. Drew Paris then added another unassisted goal with just 26 seconds before the second break.

Do you think Evander Kane will earn a spot on the Thrashers roster this season?

  • Yes: He's got what it takes and we need him. (54%, 59 Votes)
  • No: He needs another year in Vancouver. (46%, 51 Votes)

Total Voters: 110

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Just 1:43 seconds into the third period the Thrashers power play struck again to put the team up 4-1. This time it was Darryl Smith from Patrick Galivan and Kozek.

However, that’s when it all went downhill.

Travis Ehrhardt tallied a shorthanded goal just two-minutes and five seconds after that for the Wings…then Tomas Tartar pulled Detroit to within a goal with his second of the match at 7:24. Cory Emmerton tied it up at 15:25…and Andrej Nestrasil won the game for the Wings with just 1:19 seconds left.

Detroit added an empty netter for good measure…Brent Raedeke with the honors.

Chris Carozzi was in the net for the Thrashers tonight, making 23 saves on 28 shots. Detroit outshot Atlanta 29-28.

Kozek finished with a goal and an assist… Kane, Smith and Paris each with a goal…O’Dell, Morin and Galivan each added an assist.

O’Dell lead the team in shots taken with seven…Kane, Morin and Paris each had 4 while Kozak had 3. The only Thrasher to finish with a positive +/- rating was Danick Paquette, (+1).

Atlanta was 2 for 4 on the power play and killed off all three penalty kills they faced.

Tomorrow afternoon the Thrashers will take on the New York Ranger’s prospects.

In other prospect games, Minnesota beat the Columbus Blue Jackets 2-1 with a pair of goals in the third period by Kevin King and Brandon Buck. The Rangers fell to Carolina 5-3 and St. Louis outscored Dallas 5-2…in the third period…as the Blues bested the Stars 9-6. There were 76 shots taken in that game.

41 comments Add your comment

R. Stroz

September 6th, 2009
9:25 pm

FIRST, OR GOLD

Bob

September 6th, 2009
9:28 pm

Smoothie

September 6th, 2009
9:52 pm

Thanx Bill for keeping us apprised of the events there in TC, MI. Sorry to hear they lost like that, but certainly nice to see Kane, Morin and Kozek all over the scoresheet. Kozek seems like a possible diamond in the rough!

Wayne stuck in AL

September 6th, 2009
10:47 pm

Be they prospects or the regulars, we STILL get outshot by Detroit…

Brendan

September 6th, 2009
10:50 pm

How close is Traverse City to Kalamazoo, Michigan? I feel that we don’t talk nearly about about WESTERN Michigan. I hear it’s lovely, especially THIS TIME of year (TM, Glenn Beck, all rights reserved).

Sara

September 6th, 2009
11:40 pm

Never any shame in losing to the Wings. ;) Their prospect depth amazes even me still. You know what’s really classic though – by and large the development of those prospects will be entrusted to none other than our former inaugural coach Curt Fraser. Interesting that the Detroit organization has a habit of picking up our “sloppy seconds” as it were. :p

Brendan

September 7th, 2009
12:04 am

Careful, Sara. Or you’ll stir the Elisha Cuthbert mafia! And then, Commissioner Bettman will have to get involved. Seriously, I’m happy for Curt Fraser. He’s a good guy who inherited a terrible franchise, and not surprisingly, couldn’t do much with it while he was here. I thought he was coaching in Belarus?

World Be Free

September 7th, 2009
7:54 am

I believe Fraser has been there for some time. Some guys are not right for coaching at the NHL level, their talents are better suited for working at the lower levels. In this regard, pro hockey is no diferent than football.

TomBull

September 7th, 2009
9:15 am

What’s the take on Drew Paris, scored a goal last night. ECHL or does anyone expect him to earn an AHL contract?

Sara

September 7th, 2009
10:24 am

He was coaching there Brendan. And actually WBF, last year was his first season coaching the Griffins. My biggest problem with Fraser was that when he was here, the team never seemed motivated. They’d get behind by a goal or two and would just give up on the game. Very different from the Hartley and Anderson teams that would battle back from those kinds of deficits. I’ve always said that you can do a lot with a little when you’re willing to bust your tail every shift. That’s how teams like Nashville, Carolina, and Minnesota have managed to achieve varying degrees of success. It’s a big part of why Detroit has been so successful for all these years. Good old fashioned blue-collar work ethic.

[...] The Thrashers rookies lost to the Red Wings rookies at Traverse City, Michigan and talks turns to whether or not Evander Kane will make the squad. [...]

Brendan

September 7th, 2009
11:00 am

People used to ask me, “Why does Curt Fraser have to scowl like that?” I don’t know that there is a single, solitary answer to that question. With an $11 million budget, I’d be scowling, too! Here was Don Waddell’s “offer” to Curt Fraser. “Can you LOSE for a few years, while we stockpile high-end draft picks, for an NHL paycheck?” I suppose the proper response to that is, “I guess I could. For YOU.” Followed up by, “But, ya know, at some point … we’re gonna TRY to win, right? RIGHT???” I have sympathy for Curt Fraser.

Oh, here it comes. “Brendan said he wants Curt Fraser back! Brendan feels Curt Fraser wasn’t given a fair chance.” Aye, aye, aye. I said no such things. I’m pleased with John Anderson. I don’t want John Anderson fired. Give the guy, a chance. Atlanta’s just starting to put together a roster capable of competing for the playoffs.

Actually, this might be a fun exercise. Compare and contrast the 2005-06 Thrashers (Hossa, Bondra, Modry, Sutton, Kaberle) with the 2009-10 Thrasers (Little, Enstrom, Antropov, Bogosian, White, Hainsey, Kubina, Valabik). I think the checking line back then was J.P. Vigier/Serge Aubin, Patrick Stefan, and Ronald Petrovicky compared to Armstrong, Reasoner, and potentially Kane or maybe Chris Thorburn. Goalies back then were Kari Lehtonen and Mike Dunham, (Steve Shields, Adam Berkhoel, and Michael Garnett, Pasi Nurminen suffered a career-ending injury with his Finnish National team) compared to Kari Lehtonen, Johan Hedberg, and Ondrej Pavelec. I suspect the blueline is better now than it was then, and the goaltending is essentially a “wash.” Do you like Dunham over Moose? Some people will say yes. Statistically, if I recall correctly, Dunham actually had the highest win percentage among Thrasher goalies in the year after the lockout. The bottom six forwards might be better now than they were then.

World Be Free

September 7th, 2009
11:08 am

Sara-where was he before last year? I believe he was somewhere in the Wings’ system.

I like Fraser as a player. His big negative as a player was being traded for Tony Tanti. Fraser was a grinder, while Tanti turned into a goal scorer for a few seasona. That stuff sticks with you.

As a coach, I just never thought he was NHL material. NHL coaches don’t do their motivatibg during games. The early Thrasher teams could not deal with adversity, because the coach was not prepared to deal with changes in the game. I think you need an established NHL coach to start a franchise. Jacques LeMaire had alotta success in Minnesota. I am sure there were better choices available, but management went with Fraser.

Brad

September 7th, 2009
11:13 am

Kozek not Kozak.

Brendan

September 7th, 2009
11:43 am

I have a ton of respect of Jacques LeMaire, WBF. If the Thrashers could have procured him, I’d have done cartwheels. Look what he did in three short seasons, in Minnesota. It is STUNNING to think the Wild were in the CF, on a $22 million budget. (Pre-Lockout market place.) And not at seed #8. The Wild were seeded sixth. And, perhaps, even more STUNNINGLY … wound up HOSTING the Conference Finals, as the seventh-seeded Anaheim Mighty Ducks plowed through #2 Detroit and #1 Dallas to get there. Remember, it was former Thrasher Andrew Brunette whose Game Seven overtime goal RETIRED the great Patrick Roy, enroute to completing a 3-1 series comeback for the Wild over the Avalanche. Richard Park had the OT winner for Minnesota in Game Six, forcing that Seventh Game in Denver. So, the Wild, who finished 3rd in their division in 2003, advanced 4-3 over Colorado. In the next round, the Wild didn’t fare so well in overtimes, losing two of them to Vancouver. Normally, losing two games in OT spells the end for a team, in the playoffs. But Minnesota rallied again, from down 3-1, to defeat Vancouver, 4-3, to HOST the CF. Now, I hear ya. “But Brendan, they only managed one (1) measely goal in the CF.” That’s true. They got swept, 4-0, by the Conn Smythe Winning goalie, J.S. Giguere, and his Mighty Ducks, as they were known back then. Still, they managed 8 playoff wins in their postseason DEBUT, on a $22 million budget.

So, then what happened? Hurricane Gaborik happened. Mister “holdout” derailed the franchise. They missed the postseason dance for the next two seasons. They finally got back to the playoffs in 2007, but lost to Anaheim, 4-1. In 2008, they won their division, second expansion team to do so, got the #3 seed, but lost to #6 Colorado, 4-2. Disappointment probably doesn’t capture what Wild fans were feeling that year.

Still, in the big picture, from a club that began in 2000-01, they’re 2-3 in playoff series, with a trip to the CF. That’s not too shabby. With a new GM and new Head Coach, let’s keep an eye out on the Minnesota Wild, a franchise that believes in “accountability.” Even when the departing names are the caliber of Doug Risebrough and Jacques LeMaire.

Brendan

September 7th, 2009
11:51 am

Brad, back in the 1970’s, there was a member of the L.A. Kings named Don Kozak. Every time I see the name Andrew Kozek, I want to spell it Kozak.

Rawhide

September 7th, 2009
12:12 pm

Brad, back in the 1970’s, there was a member of the L.A. Kings named Don Kozak. Every time I see the name Andrew Kozek, I want to spell it Kozak.

Brendan – Good point, I hadn’t even thought about Don Kozak though. Regardless, if I’m Andrew Kozek…I’d like to have my name spelled correctly. So, Brad, thanks for the correction…the post has been updated.

What’s the take on Drew Paris, scored a goal last night. ECHL or does anyone expect him to earn an AHL contract?

TomBull – He’s here on an amateur tryout to showcase what he has to offer. Personally, I’ve only seen a little of him during prospect camp last month.

Sara

September 7th, 2009
12:17 pm

WBF, nope Fraser was, as Brendan noted, with the Belarus National teams through 2008. Last season was his first foray into the Red Wings organization (imagine the backflips going on in that household when *that* phone call came in).

Brendan, I gotta be honest. I’m not sure I could make the trade off of having some success like Minnesota at the expense of having to watch boring trap hockey from my team for 82+ games per season. As much as I always want for my team to win (a lot), I watch hockey because of the thrill of the game itself….and I can’t stand watching trap teams. It sucks all the enjoyment of the sport right out of me.

As for what Fraser had to work with when he was here….well, welcome to expansion hockey. While I would have preferred to have seen some of those early budgets a bit higher, really the concept wasn’t a bad one. It’s better to start off gawd-awful for a few years to get those high-end picks than try to make a run for success from the get-go. That, essentially, is the difference between Nashville and Atlanta. Poile wanted his team to hit the ice skating (to re-paraphrase the old saying). He picked up better players in the expansion draft and through some trades and FA. Not tons better, but somewhat better. And they started winning faster. The “problem” with his approach is that the only time they drafted in the top 5 was their expansion year. Which means they missed out on acquiring players like Kovy and Heatley. And in my opinion, it is the lack of players of that calibre on that roster that has kept them in the middle of the pack every single year. They only get that high because they work their tails off. It also means Poile can allocate his money differently. Where Waddell would invest $12M in two players like Hossa and Kovy, Poile would allocate it over three $4M players like Allison, Legwand, and Erat. Now maybe that’s Poile’s game plan. It gives them more depth that way by not having to pay the salary of an elite player. But not having that elite player that can change a game all by himself can hurt too.

Carolina went a different way with it, as did Minnesota. They sunk their money into one premier talent (Staal and Gaborik respectively), then spread the wealth as it were amongst the rest of the roster for depth. Both teams have managed to achieve a lot more success with that. If we could hold to Kovy being our only truly high-priced player, we could possibly follow the same mold. In many ways we have. Look how much more depth we have this season on our roster now that Kovy is our only player making over $6M ($7.5M to be exact in terms of actual cash flows). It doesn’t hurt that we’ve got a few really talented players making League minimum.

Waddell last came out of the Red Wings organization and he said himself even in 1998 and early 1999 that’s the kind of team he wanted to build here. Problem is, it takes a lot of money to have a franchise like that, salary cap notwithstanding. I guarantee they have the top-paid management, coaching staff (Gretzky aside), and scouting staff. They certainly can afford to max cap every year. Heck, they have their own friggin’ airplane. Those types of resources have never been and are not available in Atlanta. They may never be – hard to predict the future. So essentially Waddell tried to stock up early on talent that he could not possibly have afforded over the long-term. Better now to, as I said, stick with one truly elite talent then spread out the rest in depth. And if this team can start making money and the owners will eventually spend up to the cap, we’ve got the room to retain pretty much all of our players. That will also be crucial. The more of this roster we can keep over the next 4-7 seasons, the better.

Krust

September 7th, 2009
1:49 pm

Sara

The Thrashers and Hawks have their own jet.

Krust

September 7th, 2009
1:54 pm

Rawhide confirm Jet

Sara

September 7th, 2009
2:05 pm

Krust I thought I remembered a video the team did a little while back that showed the Thrashers on a Delta charter. Course since the Hawks/Thrashers seasons overlap they might have to share and each charter some flights. I sent Ben Wright a tweet asking him about it. I’ll let you know what he responds (if Rawhide doesn’t answer first).

Sara

September 7th, 2009
2:15 pm

Krust – Ben’s response:

BenThrashers: Very few teams own their own plane. Thrashers and Hawks fly charter.

kracker

September 7th, 2009
2:36 pm

Do airplane charter companies offer any sort of custom interior layouts catering to athelitic teams? Like larger seats that perhaps more fully recline, certainly they would prefer more legroom. Larger galleys for self-serve refreshments, enhanced entertainment options, groups of four or six seats facing a table for card playing, eating, stuff like that. Table hockey lol!

The Thrash can’t afford their own plane but it would be good business to try to make those repetitive flights as comfortable as possible, especially for the teams in the Western Conference.

kracker

September 7th, 2009
2:38 pm

Spelling, ugh!

Dwayne

September 7th, 2009
3:38 pm

“Never any shame in losing to the Wings.” losing is unacceptable. Remember, if you aint first, your last.

Glovesave29

September 7th, 2009
3:42 pm

Vegas has set the odds on the Thrash winning the Cup at 50 to 1. Only teams with longer odds are Edmonton (same odds), Los Angeles, Toronto, Phoenix, Colorado, NY Islanders and Tampa.

Time to drop the puck! Tired of listening/reading to the Canadian know-it-alls predicting last overall for us and the imminent departure of Kovy. I’d like to start firing up that grill in late March for some BBQ’d crow to serve to the so-called “experts”. Today, they are not even saying the USA won the gold in Hockey Canada Cup, but that Canada lost it. Sheesh! What poor sports.

Brendan

September 7th, 2009
3:58 pm

One of the things Commissioner Bettman stressed post-lockout, was that the salary cap would limit the teams’ (plural possesive) ability to stockpile Tier I talent on a select few clubs’ rosters. In Detroit, they’ve cultivated such a winning climate, that guys are willing to sign 10-13 year deals, at a reduced cap expense, so that they can remain as a nucleus of players. No doubt, their contracts are FRONT LOADED. That’s the “effect” of committed ownership. Detroit, and the Ilitch Family, are to be commended, along with Red Wing fans, who shell out top bucks to ensure their team always has the ability to finance maxed cap rosters. It doesn’t hurt that they’re an “Original Six,” traditional market. There are many generations of Red Wing fans.

When Paul Kariya signed with Nashville, post-Lockout, the Commissioner popped the champagne and declared, “This is EXACTLY what the salary cap was designed to do.” As in, without it, the Avalanche would have Sakic, Forsberg, Kariya, Rob Blake, etc. Nashville, for example, wasn’t a market to which many people thought a coveted UFA might be drawn. So, the idea of each team having one, or possibly two, Superstar players was sort of Commissioner’s Bettman’s dream. And, I suppose, it would work really well if it actually happened that way. Had the cap hovered between $39 and $44 million from 2005-2009, it probably would have worked out that way. Instead, the cap grew too fast, and the smaller markets were left there, trying to “break-even” with revenue-sharing dollars.

Hopefully, Kovalchuk will realize that Atlanta does intend to build its club around him, if he’d agree to stay. The flip side of that coin is that the ownership would have to AGREE to TRY every year to compete for, and win, the Stanley Cup. It’s a DUAL committment. Player to owner. And owner to player. If it cannot be, that’s disappointing. But I don’t think it’s the end of hockey of Atlanta. A depth strategy isn’t a terrible strategy. But part of the DEPTH strategy is getting players who score 20 goals-a-year to commit to Atlanta for 5-6 year deals. Otherwise, two or three players defect off the roster, they’ve got to be replaced by guys who, likewise, must ‘buy into’ the global team strategy ‘concept.’ In theory, it works. In reality, it sometimes doesn’t. It takes committed ownership, coupled with ACCOUNTABILITY over results. There’s got to be an IDENTITY for the team.

R. Stroz

September 7th, 2009
4:08 pm

Glovesave29 – If you’re going to Vegas any time soon, I’ll take ten dollars of that 50 to 1 action. Memories of the 1991 Atlanta Braves still rattle around in my brain. The Braves odds that year: 500 to 1.

World Be Free

September 7th, 2009
4:20 pm

Rawhide, was that THE Don Kozak the little guy who could fight? I can’t remember if it was Don Kozak or Don Bozak? I just remember one of them beating Jim Scoenfeld pretty good, a feat that rarely happened in Schony’s day.

The problem in Minnesota has been trading draft choices and poor drafting. Their minor system is short on prospects. Chuck Fletcher is trying to change the nature of the team, away from defense first to speed and offense. Now the Rangers are stuck with Gaborik. Gabby is just like Heatley-me first.

I don’t like the trap either, but it was the only sytle LeMaire knew well and it worked for him in New Jersey. LeMaire was an excellent 2-way player in Montreal, I am sure he would have thrived in the trap. I think the days of the trap are over, time to open it up. Let’s see some skating!

Glovesave-looking to prove the prognosticators wrong. I still think getting Kovy under contract before the season would go a long way to getting the team off to a good start.

Tony C.

September 7th, 2009
4:21 pm

Anybody find a video link for traverse city tourney???

Hijacker

September 7th, 2009
4:25 pm

Hi Rawhide, did you actually watch the game? Just curious.

Sara…it’s not so much about Detroit prospect depth. It’s their combo of great hockey management/ operations (incl. Holland, Nill) and scouting staff (incl. Andersson) which allows them to properly develop their players.

Notes:
- a McKeen’s scout once eluded to me that he saw a 3rd liner in Kozek
- I’m pissed that the Thrashers didn’t have their 3rd or failed to acquire a 3rd rounder. I wanted Nestrasil in Thrasher blue

Lee

September 7th, 2009
5:19 pm

Well this is a argument from different sides. U can say that Kane is so ready to play and he was great on the first prospects game. U can also say that the thrashers should wait to see if kane really is good enough to make the roster,cuz it’s not easy to make the roster unless u r like REALLY good. How bout Paul postma? Think he will make the roster. I wouldn’t be suprised if they both went together.

Sry guys I’m a little lost so help me out with this one. Um how many prospect games will the thrashers play and who and when is the next one?

I’m going to opening game!!!! Who else is going?

Thrashers27

September 7th, 2009
6:24 pm

Rangers beat Thrashers 4-1 in today’s game…Kane scoring Atlanta’s only goal.

Thrashers27

September 7th, 2009
6:25 pm

Rawhide

September 7th, 2009
6:38 pm

Hi Rawhide, did you actually watch the game?

Hijacker – Nope…NHL Network isn’t airing the games this year…why, it’s not even found on ESPN 8, The “OCHO”!

Nate

September 7th, 2009
7:28 pm

Hey Rawhide – “Usually you pay double for that kind of action.”

Hockey Biltong

September 7th, 2009
7:46 pm

Charters are the same jets you fly on. Braves got a bump by Delta [737 - L1011] when they went to World Series in Minneesotah.

Rawhide

September 7th, 2009
7:52 pm

Nate – Nice one!

kracker

September 7th, 2009
9:06 pm

…Kane scoring Atlanta’s only goal….

Well, that’s the guy we would expect to be scoring.

It’s a short tourney where individual excellence will likely stand out more than cohesive team play. Most of these guys barely know each other.

DWTOO

September 8th, 2009
12:34 pm

Glovesave/Stroz – Spent the weekend in Vegas with a NN bunch. The odds on the Thrash are 175/1. We’re 30 of 30 according to the oddsmakers. So my $10 ticket (I’m not much of a gambler or Vegas person) will turn into $1,750.00 next June.

Michael Martinez

September 10th, 2009
9:46 pm

Hey… I noticed Darryl Smith put up 3 points (1 goal and 2 assists)… so how do you like him… I hope he makes the main camp. He played with the Laredo Bucks in the CHL and on his first game as a rookie (he was Rookie of the Year by the way) he scored a hat-trick! Big hopes for this kid!