Sunday, March 21, 2010

Selection Sunday

The NCAA announced their 16 invitees to the annual hockey tournament and as expected 3 Ranger prospects are heading to the party. In checking nobody can recall an instance when this many Ranger prospects got invited in the same year.

We start with Chris Kreider and his Hockey East Champion Boston College Eagles who were given not only a 1 seed but a short trip to their regional site in Worcester Mass.

Derek Stepan and Ryan McDonagh along with their Wisconsin Badgers also earned a 1 seed even though they did not win their conference championships but they are also headed close by as they get to go to St. Paul Minnesota where they are not very popular.

Carl Hagelin and his Michigan Wolverines after becoming the first team ever seeded 7th to win the CCHA Championship and as a reward they were seeded 3rd where they will be headed to Ft. Wayne Indiana for their regional.

The nice thing that we can say is that the way things are set up that it is very possible for all 3 to earn a trip to the Frozen Four which this year is being held in Michigan's backyard at Ford Field in Detroit. The other nice thing to say is that it is possible for 2 of the 3 teams to meet in the championship game.

Other than that we confess that we do not understand the logic that the NCAAs use in seeding this tournament and wonder if attendance not whether a matchup is the right thing to do is the way they decide things. Michigan is seeded 3rd in the same region where Miami of Ohio was given a 1 seed.

The same Miami of Ohio team that Michigan defeated in the CCHA semi-finals. Wisconsin gets a 1 seed in a regional where the team that shut them out in the WCHA Final Five got a 2nd seed.

To us it makes little sense since Boston College was the only 1 seed who actually earned the automatic bid by winning the conference title.

Prospect Action

Sunday was a rather bad day for the Ranger prospects as only Sam Klassen (2009 UFA) and his Saskatoon Blades won their game over the Red Deer Rebels 4-0. This game was over in the first 4:36 as the Blades scored 3 goals on their first 4 shots.

Klassen was a +2 but his number one role in this season is to shut down Red Deer's Willie Coetzee who was 29-52-81 this season. So far he has nothing thanks to Klassen.

However the coffers of the WHL are expected to receive some donations from both the Red Deer and Saskatoon franchises due to some fighting that saw Saskatoon coach Lorne Molleken receive a game misconduct after sending out 4 heavyweights (who received 3 instigators) after his goalie was run over.

The story on this one is a good one so check this one out

Ethan Werek (2009 2nd) and his Kingston Frontenacs are finding out the hard way that a Stan Butler coached team is a dangerous one in the playoffs as the Fronteancs dropped Game 2 of their series 5-1 to the Brampton Battalion. Werek has been held to just one assist which he got on the Frontenac's only goal of the game.

The Battalion lead the series 2-0 and the Frontenacs just can not figure out how to beat them.

Mitch Gaulton (2008 6th) and his Erie Otters put up a game effort but they are no match for the Windsor Spitfires as they dropped Game 2 3-1 and trail in the series 2-0. The Otters simply do not have anyone who can either stop Taylor Hall or score themselves.

Daniel Maggio (2009 6th) and his Sudbury Colts are one loss away from seeing their season come to a close as they lost Game 3 of their series to the Barrie Colts 6-2. Maggio though we can say is not playing all that bad but his team is facing the top team in the OHL.

Maggio has 2 assists in this series which we expect to end on Tuesday in game 4.


So since there is a "Tanking for Taylor" blog, a Sinking for Seguin chant, Prospect Park has decided that "New York Needs a Neiderreiter" as our choice for who the Rangers should pick when they fail to make the playoffs.

Right now if the draft was to be held today the best the Rangers could pick would be 6th but more likely 8th which puts them right in Neiderreiter's expected number. Nino Neiderreiter is a player perfect for New York, he has all the tools, he does not bad down and can play any role.

But more importantly Nino can be used on the right side which would give the Rangers options that they are currently lacking within the prospect pipeline. So in keeping in the spirit of the impending Ranger elimination from the playoffs we would rather think positive.

Make Ours NINO

We also would like to introduce a new photographer who's work we used today in Dinur Blum. Dinur took some very good shots of Boston College's win over Vermont that we are happy that he let us use.

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