“He’ll be scary good in a couple of years”…Those are the words of Atlanta Thrashers team captain Ilya Kovalchuk talking about his teammate Zach Bogosian last spring. That’s a fairly powerful assesment given the fact that it comes from a player who’s “scary good” himself.
Indeed Bogey’s 6′-2″, 200 pound frame supplies the “scary” part… especially if you’re a winger caught in his sights for an open-ice check…or a defender who is charged with de-pucking the native of Massena, New York as he smoothly yet powerfully motors his way through center ice.
Who would you like to see Bogosian paired with this season?
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There was little doubt that Bogosian would suit up in Atlanta to begin last season. He had the build and skill to play at this level and the Thrashers defense was in desperate need of what he brings to the ice. Sure, he’d have to play through some rookie mistakes…but as I reflect back on the previous season, there aren’t too many that really stand out in my mind. And in his debut on opening night, he thrilled the Thrasherville masses by dropping the gloves Washington Capitals’ tough-guy Donald Brashear.
His rookie season was shortened due to a leg injury suffered from a check against the boards by Darrell Powe of the Flyers. And as if seeing Bogisian limp from the ice wasn’t “scary” enough…the Thrashers were then spanked by Philly 7-0 in that game which was played during the week of Halloween. However, in 47 games he managed to net 9 goals and 10 assist. Projected over the course of 82 games, that would be something like 16 goals and 33 points. His +11 rating tied centerman Marty Reasoner for third best on the team.
That’s a pretty good rookie season.
Once his leg had healed, he took little time getting his game on track after returning to the lineup on New Years Eve. He scored his first ever NHL goal during a 7-2 routing of Nashville on January 17 and a month later…in a game labeled as “Armenian Heritage Night” in L.A.’s Staples Arena…he contributed three assists in a 7-6 shootout win against the Kings.
Zach displayed excellent abilities on the defensive side of the ice during his rookie campaign, but his ability to step into the play on the attacking end is a huge benefit to this squad and this plays right into John Anderson’s style. Few doubted whether or not Bogosian could contribute in this type of system, but as winter gave way to spring it became clear he was thriving in it.
There’s no reason to believe this will not continue to be the case as Bogosian moves into his second season with the Thrashers and he continues to become the good…no, “scary good”…player that many believe he’ll be.
Thrashers Oh-fer Two In Traverse City
The Thrashers prospects fell to those of the New York Rangers 4-1 Monday night in the second game of the 2009 Traverse City Prospects Tournament. As he did the night before, Evander Kane scored for Atlanta with Darryl Smith and Drew Paris being credited with the assists.
Josh Unice was in goal for the Thrashers as New York outshot Atlanta 35-29 and both teams failed to score on the six power play chances they each had in the game.
Kane has two goals and is a -3 with four PIM in the two games played so far while Andrew Kozek, Paris and Smith each have a goal and an assist.
Atlanta has been outscored 10-5 so far in the tournament as they head into their third game on Wednesday against the Carolina Hurricanes. The Canes are 2-0 after having beaten the Rangers 5-3 on Sunday and the Red Wings on Monday by the same score.
Also Monday night in Traverse City…the Wild down Dallas 2-1 in a shootout and Columbus beat St. Louis 5-4.