The split personality that is Antoine Lafleur showed their good sides on Friday evening as the 2007 second round pick of the Rangers played a very solid game in earning his 8th win of the season.
Lafleur stopped 26 out of 27 to help his Rouyn-Noranda Huskies to a 5-1 win over the Lewiston MAINEaics in QMJHL action. It would be nice to say that this is the goalie we have wanted to see but every single time we have said so then the dark side of Lafleur shows up.
Against the MAINEaics, Lafleur gave up an early first period goal and then nothing else the rest of the way. If anything Lafleur is the most frustrating Ranger prospect we have ever covered as you can see the talent that Lafleur has.
Now the question is how long will Lafleur play well before his "dark" side decides to show up? It seems that with Lafleur the most he can play is 3 good games in a row so if he can finally get past 3 then the hope for his potential will become real.
The Rest of the Prospects
Chris Doyle (2008 5th) tied Evgeny Grachev for most goals by a prospect with his 17th goal of the season but his Prince Edward Island Rocket lost in overtime to the Moncton Wildcats 3-2. Doyle's goal was his 10th power play which alone is half of the entire Ranger season total.
Tysen Dowzak (2008 UFA) was scoreless as his Kelowna Rockets lost to the Swift Current Broncos 3-1.
Memo to Tomas Kundratek (2008 3rd) do not watch the Ranger defenders on TV and think that is what you need to do to make it to the NHL. Somehow Kundratek was the only member of the Medicine Hat Tigers to wind up with a minus as the Tigers doubled up the Everett Silvertips 6-3.
Weather permitting we are hoping to catch up with Kundratek for a chat tomorrow in Portland as we are excited about finally getting to talk to a prospect who actually plays defense.
Evgeny Grachev (2008 3rd) was back at center but was scoreless for the second straight game as his very shorthanded Brampton Battalion lost for the 4th time in their last 5 games, this time to the Sudbury Wolves 3-2.
Grachev has very much missed his center Matt Duchene over the last couple of games but with one more game remaining until Grachev himself takes off for the Russian Junior Team.
We saved Michael Del Zotto's (2008 1st)'s results for last because this was one that we will not bother to try to explain. Final score the Ottawa 67's 10, Del Zotto's Oshawa Generals 0.
We pray for Del Zotto being traded as the Generals without John Tavares are not even an OHL quality team. The stat sheet says that Del Zotto was -6 which the jokes will say make him an equal to Wade Redden and Dmitri Kalinin as defenders.
Danny Hobbs missed his second straight game for UMass who shut out American International 4-0. When it comes to college teams, trying to find out why a player missed a game is worse than pulling teeth.
Teams use the Federal Laws regarding privacy to not disclose injury news. It is a frustrating way to not say something as simple as "He is hurt".
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(Antoine Lafleur courtesy of Michael Fortin/QMJHL)