While the New Jersey Devils are entering their final stretch of the season with only 11 games left to play, many of the New Jersey Devils' non-professional prospects have already finished their regular season. Here's a quick overview of which Devils prospects are in the postseason.
HV71, Mattias Tedenby's team, finished the Elitserien season in first place and have already begun their postseason against eighth-place Timra. Djurgardens, Jacob Josefson's team, finished second and are facing Brynas in the first round. After today's games, HV71 is up 2-1 on Timra and Djurgardens is also up 2-1 Brynas. While not on the chart, Josefson picked up an assist against Brynas in the third game.
Brandon Burlon and David Wohlberg both continue to play hockey for Michigan. The Wolverines won the CCHA tournament for an automatic bid to the Frozen Four by beating T.J. Miller and the Northern Michigan Wildcats in the final. All three will go to the Frozen Four tourney, however. Michigan will play Bejmidi State in the first round; and Northern Michigan will take on St. Cloud State. By the way, there is a SBN blog for college hockey: Western College Hockey Blog.
In the OHL, Adam Henrique, Harry Young, and the rest of the Windsor Spitfires are taking their first steps in defending their OHL championship as well as their Memorial Cup against Erie in the first round. Windsor is up 2-0 in the series already.
Over in the QMJHL, Jean-Sebastian Berube and the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies are tied with Val d'Or in the first round at one game each. Ashton Bernard and the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles are on the wrong end of a 2-0 series against the Moncton Wildcats. Eric Gelinas and the Chicoutimi Sagueneens are also down 2-0 to the Rimouski Oceanic, but at least Gelinas has been productive with 3 assists.
Meanwhile, in the WHL, the Brandon Wheat Kings are assured of a Memorial Cup spot by being the hosts. That doesn't mean a thing to them because they rolled through the regular season and want to win the WHL title. Alexander Urbom and company are up 2-0 on the Swift Current Broncos. Matt Delhaney was traded from Regina to the Chilliwack Bruins, who did make the playoffs. However, Chilliwack are the lowest seed in the West and currently being handled nicely by the first-seeded Tri-City Americans.
Down in Junior-A, Derek Rodwell and the Okotoks Oilers are battling it out with the Fort McMurray Oil Barons in the South Division final. Winner goes on to play in the AJHL final, and it's currently 1-1. Curtis Gedig and the Vernon Vipers are also in their conference final round. The Vipers are up 2-0 on the Penticton Vees.
Expect this list to get larger. The Lowell Devils are currently third in the Atlantic Division with 80 points. While it's not a lock, they are in a good position for the AHL affiliate to finally make the playoffs after a long drought. Very impressive considering Lowell has had a rookie head coach, John MacLean, saw a number of key players brought up throughout their season to fill in for injuries on New Jersey (e.g. Vladimir Zharkov), and injuries within the team (e.g. Jeff Frazee, Matt Halischuk). The Trenton Devils, on the other hand, are eleventh in a twelve-team American Conference in the ECHL. The playoffs aren't likely going to happen for the AA-league team.
Why highlight it? Well, it is more experience for the prospects, which is always good. It also gives the scouts some evidence to see how the players show up in important, pressure-filled games. That they were part of a successful team when younger might - emphasis on might - translate to knowing what it takes to succeed at a higher level.
After the jump, I've compiled the individual stats for all of the Devils prospects on Hockey Future's top 20 prospect list as well as a few other notable minor-league prospects and the rest of the 2009 draft class.Here's the stats for the top 20 prospects on HF's list for the Devils:
Here's the stats for other notable prospects:
A few quick thoughts:
- Congratulations to David McIntyre. He finished second on his team in scoring, eighth in the ECAC, and given that it was his senior season at Colgate, Lowell has offered him an amateur try-out contract. I wish McIntyre the very best of luck in impressing the Lowell management.
- Also, congratulations to Michael Swift for being named the AHL Player of the Week with 5 goals and 2 assists last week.
- The Minnesota Golden Gophers didn't have a good season in the WCHA. At least Devils fans can be pleased that Mike Hoeffel led the team in goals with 14 (7 from the power play). Likewise, the Providence Friars didn't do so well, but Mark Fayne's 22 points was good enough to finish third on the team in scoring. Not bad for a defenseman.
- Alexander Urbom's +45 is tied with Radko Gudas of Everett for the fourth highest plus-minus in the WHL as well as tied for the lead among all rookies.
- I honestly didn't know that Brandon Burlon's 3 goals all came on the power play. Now you know too.
- One of the more surprising stats on Lowell is that 11 players have at least 100 shots on net and 9 have at least 10 goals. Talk about scoring by committee.
- Your Lowell leading scorers on the power play: Matt Taormina, Ben Walter, Michael Swift, and Nathan Perkovich each have 8 power play goals.
- Tedenby was mostly relegated to HV71's third line with only an average of 10:42 of ice time per night. Josefson got at least 15 minutes per game, specifically an average of 15:17.
Let me know what you think in the comments. If you have seen any of these players play, please, by all means, tell us how you think so we all know what's out there.