Hockey Is Back: 2013 YoungStars Tournament

Ryan Pike
September 05 2013 11:35AM

 

 

After a long, arduous, summer, September is once again upon us and that means meaningful hockey is just around the corner. For your Calgary Flames, the road to the regular season begins with the annual Youngstars Tournament in beautiful Penticton, BC. The folks of JetsNation are in attendance this week and will be sending us regular interviews and scouting reports first hand.

Anyways, four western Canadian teams, and San Jose, gather to see whose rookies reign supreme. Here's a look at the five teams and what fans can expect beginning later this week.

THE SCHEDULE

Thursday, Sept. 5: Flames vs. Oilers (5pm MT), Canucks vs. Sharks (8:30pm MT)
Friday, Sept. 6: Jets vs. Sharks (5pm MT), Flames vs. Canucks (8:30pm MT)
Saturday, Sept. 7: Alumni Game (6pm MT), Jets vs. Oilers (8:30pm MT)
Sunday, Sept. 8: Canucks vs. Oilers (5pm MT), Flames vs. Sharks (8:30pm MT)
Monday, Sept. 9: Jets vs. Canucks (1pm MT)

All the Flames games are streamed on the Flames site. Other teams are streaming their games as well.

THE FLAMES

Oldest Player: C Andy Taranto (6/23/1988)
Youngest Player: F Morgan Klimchuk (3/2/1995)
First Round Picks: F Sean Monahan (2013), F Emile Poirier (2013), F Morgan Klimchuk (2013), F Sven Baertschi (2011)
Second Round Picks: D Patrick Sieloff (2012), D Tyler Wotherspoon (2011), F Markus Granlund (2011)
NHL Experience: F Sven Baertschi, F Ben Hanowski, F Max Reinhart

Calgary is dressing one of their better prospect camp rosters in almost a decade. From goalie Laurent Brossoit to the blueline and their forwards, Calgary's Youngstars roster boasts many high-end draft picks as well as guys who saw success in junior or college.

Outside of the usual suspects – like Corban Knight and the three 2013 first rounders – keep an eye out for Ryan Culkin, who could earn an NHL deal with a good camp, and Turner Elson, who was an absolute work-horse at July's development camp.

THE OILERS

Oldest Player: F Chase Schaber (1/3/1991)
Youngest Player: G Phillipe Cadorette (4/7/1995)
First Round Picks: D Darnell Nurse (2013), D Oscar Klembom (2011)
Second Round Picks: F Marco Roy (2013), F Mitch Moroz (2012), D David Musil (2011), D Martin Marincin (2010)
Calgary Connections: Joey Leach was drafted by Calgary but not signed. David Musil's dad played for Calgary. Greg Chase plays for the Hitmen.

NHL Experience: Nobody

These aren't your momma's Oilers – you know, the ones that drafted first overall three years in a row. The group that Edmonton's taking to Penticton is full of guys auditioning for role player positions on the team, not guys aspiring to be the next Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. As such, the roster is almost entirely devoid of “stars,” but full of guys like David Musil and Mitch Moroz – guys you've probably never heard of, but guys that you shouldn't ignore.

THE CANUCKS

Oldest: G Joacim Eriksson (4/9/1990)
Youngest: D Miles Liberati (5/3/1995)
Firsts: F Bo Horvat (2013), F Hunter Shinkaruk (2013), F Brendan Gaunce (2012), F Nicklas Jensen (2011)
Seconds: F Alexandre Mallet (2012)
Calgary Connections: Shinkaruk is from Calgary; Cole Cassels' dad is former Flame Andrew Ference Andrew Cassels
NHL Experience: D Frankie Corrado

The Canucks have a very young group here, but most of the name-brand talent is in the forward ranks, which boasts all their high draft choices. The defensive group and the goaltenders are a bit of a step down, so perhaps their strategy is to win through sheer offensive talent. Their defense may be a bit underrated, anchored by Frankie Corrado and Jordan Subban.

THE JETS

Oldest: G Juho Olkinuora (11/4/1990)
Youngest: G Eric Comrie (7/5/1995)
Firsts: D Josh Morrissey (2013), D Jacob Trouba (2012), F Mark Scheifele (2011)
Seconds: F Nic Petan (2013), G Eric Comrie (2013), F Lukas Sutter (2012)
Calgary Connections: Morrissey and Adam Lowry are from Calgary. Lukas's dad is Rich Sutter, who neither played in Calgary (Ron) or ever worked for Calgary (Ron, Brent, Duane, Darryl, Brian).
NHL Experience: F Mark Scheifele

The Jets have a pretty solid group from top-to-bottom, albeit quite heavy with WHL players. In goalie, you have Eric Comrie. On the blueline, Josh Morrissey and Jacob Trouba. Up front, Mark Scheifele anchors a pretty strong group. There aren't any glaring weaknesses in the Jets line-up.

THE SHARKS

Oldest: F Eriah Hayes (7/7/1988)
Youngest: D Spenser Jensen (7/2/1995)
Firsts: D Mirco Mueller (2013), F Tomas Hertl (2012)
Seconds: F Gabryel Boudreau (2013), F Chris Tierney (2012), F Matthew Nieto (2011)
Calgary Connections: Several players have played in or visited Calgary, but no real strong connections.
NHL Experience: Nobody

The Sharks have a handful of “name” talents on their roster, including Mirco Mueller and Tomas Hertl. Beyond these guys, this is a group – much like Edmonton's – full of secondary talents and complementary players. They're all decent players, but they rely more on steak than on sizzle.

Around the Nation

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Now in his third full season covering the Calgary Flames and the NHL, Ryan Pike is a Calgary native and FlamesNation's managing editor. He's trying to keep his head up, his stick on the ice and is giving it 110% every shift. You can also find his work at The Hockey Writers, the Wrestling Observer and Tough Talk MMA.
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#1 piscera.infada
September 05 2013, 11:40AM
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Can I just say for the record, that outside of the Burke news, this is best day ever - Young Stars kicks off the slow build-up to the NHL season, and the NFL starts! This day kicks off the 5 month period where watching sports becomes a massive addiction.

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#2 Gange
September 05 2013, 12:01PM
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Just thought I should say that Cole Cassels is Andrew CASSEL's son, Not Andrew Ference. :)

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#4 JayD54
September 05 2013, 12:29PM
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Am looking forward to attending this afternoon's tilt between the kids from each the Flames and the Oilers.

Do think that there is more potential NHL material in the Flames group than a lot of the talking heads might think. I also attended the first scrimmage of the development camp, so will be interested to see if my positive impressions from there on players like Kanzig, Ramage and Elson carryover. The team needs a "surprise", someone who comes out of no where. I was impressed by the hustle and the physicality of Elson, the calm demeanor of Ramage and the mobility of Kanzig at the development event. Maybe one of these guys will be that "surprise".

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#5 SmellOfVictory
September 05 2013, 12:47PM
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Wotherspoon and Granlund were 2011 draftees, rather than 2012.

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#6 Captain Ron
September 05 2013, 01:20PM
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Gange wrote:

Just thought I should say that Cole Cassels is Andrew CASSEL's son, Not Andrew Ference. :)

Just got off the phone with Ference. He was ready to skip town quickly with that news. Said it was a huge mistake to sign with the Oilers anyway and this gives him the reason he was looking for to run away :)

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#7 beloch
September 05 2013, 02:58PM
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God I wish a HD sports channel would broadcast these games instead of golf and Nascar! Still, I'm strangely looking forward to watching a bunch of pixelated blurs in red trounce a bunch of macroblocking blue and white splotches!

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#8 LanderW
September 05 2013, 03:21PM
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Gange wrote:

Just thought I should say that Cole Cassels is Andrew CASSEL's son, Not Andrew Ference. :)

I was thinking the same thing, particularly since Ference is only 34!

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#9 everton fc
September 05 2013, 03:53PM
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It'll be interesting to see how Ferland does in this tournament. At least for me.

Taranto's the oldest guy in the tourney. For what it's worth!

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#10 JayD54
September 05 2013, 08:25PM
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Witnessed the game between the Flames and Oilers kids this afternoon.

The three Flames youngsters that, to me, stood out were Granlund and Elson up front and John Ramage on the blueline. Brossoit was rarely tested, but did stop one breakaway by one of the three best Oiler youngsters, Marco Roy (he`s fast). The others that stood out were Jujhar Khaira (not afraid of traffic) and Martin Gernat (the best D).

I indicated in the post I made before the game that I thought the calm demeanor of Ramage put him in good stead. He demonstrated that in this game, in my opinion, along with being solid and determined in his own end. A couple of other, non-performance related items spoke to me for his leadership qualities. He was always speaking (not yelling) to the officials, picked the puck up and passed it to them more than once. And when Ryan Culkin swooped the puck into his own net, it was Ramage that went to him to provide encouragement.

Granlund was excellent in the faceoff circle and showed solid awareness in the offensive end. The goal that he scored off the great effort by Michael Ferland showed excellent finish.

Turner Elson finished checks, was the buzz saw kind of player every time he was on the ice. And he saw every type of situation. Hes not big, nor is he the best skater, but he is definitely someone you want on your team. Figure that he will be a valuable member of the Heat for at least this season, perhaps earning a look see if the Flames in the final few games of the season.

Honorable mention has to be given to Max Reinhart. He was playing with Jooris and Taranto, won a lot of face offs and was in great position in both ends of the ice. Sven did okay, was in good position but appeared rusty finish wise. Corban Knight and Sean Monahan were good in a game where the team dominated the opposition. Knights wingers, Coda Gordon and Sven, need to learn quickly that they best go to the front of the net as #10 got the puck there frequently. Monahan was teamed with Poirier and Elson and showed flashes of smooth skating and solid decision making in both ends.

As for the Oilers, its been said that their up and comers are best on the back end. In this game and acknowledging its the first competition of the fall, it certainly did not show. Darnell Nurse played quite a bit. I would suggest he needs to bulk up strength-wise as he was outmuscled both along the wall and in front.

In summary, I thought that the Flames kids were full measure for the win. As well, if they perform like this in their next games here, the organization will have served notice and there is solid inventory in the proverbial prospect cupboard.

I am disappointed that I have to leave this beautiful part of the world without witnessing the balance of the tournament, but am headed back from vacation looking forward to main camp, the pre-season and the competition for jobs there.

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#11 Brownblazer
September 05 2013, 11:45PM
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At the games today as well. Kanzig did very well. Very impressed with Granlund - that ahl line showed some excellent chemistry. After seeing Monahan live I think he'll be a very smart center but definately needs time outside of the bigs to develop. sven dissappointed but mostly how he doesn't protect himself with his play. I have a feeling he'll be an oft injured player.

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