Wednesday, September 30, 2009

A Strange Day

There really was prospect hockey on Wednesday evening instead of turning this into Prospect Doctor, Prospect 90210 or Prospect Law and Order.

Ethan Werek (2009 2nd) and his Kingston Frontenacs have taken an early lead in the Eastern Conference after a hard fought 4-3 road win over the Belleville Bulls in the first of a "home and home". For the Frontenacs a 4-2 record after 6 games is a welcome change from last season's last place finish where they only won 18 games the entire season.

Werek did not score in this game and had a very quiet game but Werek has been a factor in this season's turnaround. Werek has points in 3 out of the 5 games he has played putting up a 3-2-5 record.

The 2 teams will meet up in Kingston on Friday for the 2nd half of this mini series. If form hold then Werek will score one and assist on one.

Medical Report

Ryan Bourque (2009 3rd) sat out again as his Quebec Remparts tried their best to give away a win blowing a 3 goal 3rd period lead before scoring in overtime for a 5-4 win over the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies.

The Remparts are now returning to Quebec where Bourque will be re-evaluated but we expect that he will not be in the Rempart lineup on Friday.

Police Blotter

Chris Doyle (2008 5th) was in the lineup for the Prince Edward Island Rockets as they traveled to face the Montreal Juniors, a trip that the Rockets might as well just mailed in after getting doubled up 6-3 by the Juniors. Actually the Rockets did have a 2-1 lead for a while in the 2nd period but the Juniors scored 4 straight goals and did not look back.

Doyle was quiet, no points, 2 shots, 2 hits and a minor that led to the Junior's 3rd goal. Understandable if Doyle's mind was not really into hockey with the criminal charges hanging over his head.

We won't rehash it here so if you want to know then check out the Guardian where our friend Charles Reid has it well covered. However while we are not going to rush to judgment and decide the guilt or innocence of Doyle's other than to say this is nothing like the prospect we have covered for the last 2 years.

What we will say is that it is a disappointment that Doyle for whatever reasons has run into trouble for the 2nd time this season. The prospect we talked with last season was a quiet kid who we thought was too nice, almost too willing to sit in the shadows rather than be in front.

This almost radical 180 is causing us to wonder what if something else is going on. Even if Doyle is innocent there is the question of how he wound up in a situation like this as a young lady has a broken nose.

We also understand why the Rocket decided to keep Doyle on the active roster and with the team. Suspend him before he has had his day in court (Oct 22) means the kid sits, stews and has nobody watching him so if he is getting into trouble then this would open the door for more.

As The Kundratek Turns

The Medicine Hat Tigers did not have Tomas Kundratek (2008 3rd) in their lineup on Wednesday as they got whipped by the Edmonton Oil Kings 5-0. The drama that has been going on since the Rangers first tried to return Kundratek on September 17th to the Tigers.

Kundratek did not report amid Ranger fears that the 20 year old defenseman would not report to the Tigers but instead return to play in the Czech Republic. It was a very confusing situation as on one hand Kundratek has a Ranger contract but if the Rangers send Kundratek back to the WHL the contract is no in effect.

The Rangers were so concerned that Kundratek would head back to Europe that they sent him to Hartford training camp where he stayed until Monday when the Rangers assigned Kundratek again to the Tigers in the WHL. All is well and done right? Nope not just yet.

Kundratek reported to the Tigers on Wednesday and practiced with the team but as we already mentioned did not play. The new problem is that Kundratek has not been cleared to play in the WHL by the Czech Hockey Federation.

It is an interesting situation as now the Tigers via the WHL and CHL have to file the paperwork to allow Kundratek to play in Medicine Hat where the argument from the European Federations is that young players cut by NHL teams should be returned back to Europe not the minor leagues or CHL.

Kundratek says that he is going to give the Tigers his very best and if he does then it helps the Tigers drastically improve their defense. Adding a 20 year old who has professional potential does not happen every day but hockey politics might rear their ugly head here.

Stay tuned for the next chapter

(Werek courtesy of the Kingston Frontenacs)


Amos said...

man you weren't kidding that is a STRANGE evening of prospect news... definitely spanning just scores and stats...
i hate to see chris doyle experience something like this, innocent or not, when this year focusing exclusively on hockey would definitely benefit his future. i don't have much information about the incident, but for doyle's sake i'd love to see charges dropped and the cloud cover to part so he can showcase his skillset, not his "extracurricular activities"...
also wishing the best to ryan borque for a speedy recovery.
i think ethan werek is this year's derek stepan, as in a subtle yet solid pick that will surprise people as possibly being better than the first rounder that everyone was talking about.

Denver said...

Hey Jess, did you catch the Guardian article that stated he signed a three year entry level contract with the Rangers this summer? I hadn't heard that, or was that a mistake?

Colorado Mark

Jess Rubenstein said...


I think you are right about Werek being this year's Stepan as very few have said word 1 about him.


That too is a confusing situation, the NYR say that they do not have a contract with Doyle but the Rocket say he does.

I tend to side with the Rangers on this one because I never got a PR on his signing and the person with the Rangers who takes care of me is a first rate guy

Amos said...

i'm not sure if i asked you this before, but who's got the post draft blues this season? and in an unrelated question, has antoine lafleur landed anywhere? it'd be nice to see him put it all together somewhere...

Jess Rubenstein said...


Too early to say who has the Draft Hangover as I wait until the end of October before saying anything.

As for Lafleur, I have no clue where he disappeared to but I will look

Eternal Pessimist said...

That's too bad about Doyle... I spent a lot of time watching him at the game against the Juniors and he didn't seem to be doing too well...(I'll be honest, I can't complain too much about him being in the box when my team scored. They're my team afterall XD)

And Ryan Bourque better recover in time for the Quebec/Montreal matchup 'cause I'll be there.