Sunday, January 10, 2010

Doyles is Doing It

Today's Star Chris Doyle

There are times when a trade can help a player restart a season that has been stalling and that is appearing to be the case for Chris Doyle (2008 5th). Doyle who was traded from the Prince Edward Island Rocket to the Victoriaville Tigre during the recent QMJHL trading period has found his scoring touch as of late.

On Sunday against the Rimouski Oceanic, Doyle had 3 assists while being named the game's second star as the Tigre doubled up on the Oceanic 6-3.

The assists were 2 primary and 1 secondary but for Doyle it gives him back to back games for 1-4-5 and his season needed this. Doyle who was 30-42-72 last season in 59 games is just 17-22-39 in 39 games this season.

Between a suspension and off-ice legal issues this was not the kind of season Doyle was needing to earn a contract from the Rangers. It is going to take a monster 2nd half as well as clearing up the off-ice issues for Doyle to earn even a Hartford contract but at least he appearing to be getting his game in gear.

Rest of the Prospects

Ethan Werek (2009 2nd) scored at 2:02 of the 3rd period to tie the game at 3-3 as Werek and his Kingston Frontenacs rallying from down 3-1 went on to defeat the Ottawa 67's 5-4 in overtime. Werek set up the overtime game winner at 2:40 of the overtime period.

2 clutch points for the Ranger prospect who in our eyes is making the strongest of cases for Ranger Prospect of the year. The goal was Werek's 21st and his assist was his 23rd to give Werek 44 points on the season tops among Ranger draft picks.

Daniel Maggio (2009 6th) had an assist on the game's first goal and wound up a +3 for the game as his Sudbury Wolves jumped out to a 6-1 lead and then cruised to a 7-4 win over the Oshawa Generals. For Maggio it was his 12th assist of the season and 21st point which set a new career high for the young defender in points.

Tomas Kundratek got his Medicine Hat Tigers going when he set up Emerson Etem for a shorthanded goal at 11:30 of the first period and the Tigers just whipped the Vancouver Giants 5-1. It was Kundratek's 23rd point equaling what he did for the Tigers last season but in 11 fewer games.

Speaking of Kundratek, we got tipped off to a clip of his recent fight with Michael Strickland of the Swift Current Broncos. Got to admit that Kundratek really improved his fighting skills from last season and think if you listen to the Tiger announcers even they were surprised by his performance.

Roman Horak (2009 5th) and his Chilliwack Bruins traveled to Tri-City and were rewarded with a 5-0 spanking from their hosts the Tri-City Americans. This one was just one bad game as the Bruins playing their 3rd game in 3 nights were road weary.

Whoever set up this schedule was dooming the Bruins as they had to travel by bus for this trip over 1300 miles round trip. That is not including playing 3 games and without stopping about 22 hours on a bus in the middle of winter.

Totally wrong to do to any team as a fair schedule would had them go Spokane to Tri-City to Portland then home which cuts off 5 hours and 300 plus miles of driving.

Strange watching Barry Melrose covering a college hockey game but there he was doing the color for Danny Hobb's (2007 7th) UMass Minutemen as they played a nationally televised game on ESPNU against Northeastern. Hobbs was scoreless but his Minutemen defeated the Huskies 4-1.

As for Hobbs, it is frustrating to see a talented kid just not have confidence in his own game. Hobbs has good skill and strong skating but someone needs to light a fire under him to help him get the most out of his talent.

Ryan Bourque was a healthy scratch again (we believe to give him some rest nothing more) as his Quebec Remparts were shut out 4-0 by the Shawinigan Cataractes. Bourque should be back in the Rempart lineup this week when the Remparts return home.


Tomorrow will be the final trade deadline of the 3 CHL leagues as the OHL holds their final day for making trades. So far it appears other than Chris Doyle no other Ranger prospect appears to be on the move unlike last year when Michael Del Zotto was traded.

In both the Del Zotto and Doyle trades we felt it was good moves to help both prospects and their careers. Thankfully no other Ranger prospect is on a team that we do not feel comfortable with their progress but will revisit the issue after the season.

(Doyle courtesy of Katherine Ep)

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