Wednesday on ice sessions have wrapped up as Calgary Flames development camp continues at the Saddledome. While it’s tough to get an accurate read watching drills and power skating, the FlamesNation crew continues to post their observations. I’ve got thoughts on Mitch Wahl, Greg Nemisz and Tim Erixon (pictured) after today’s sessions.
In the comments section of my development camp preview post, FN’s Kent made the point that Mitch Wahl was one of the top guys he’s excited about in the organization right now. I think I’m right there with him. The scouting reports on the former Spokane Chiefs captain are varied, but count me as a fan. From watching him on the ice this week, you’re not going to get a whole lot of a read…watching him today, he can skate, he’s got a good burst, and a fairly good shot.
However, talking to a few guys who watched Wahl in his brief time with the Abbotsford Heat this past season, they were very impressed. He’s one of those guys who doesn’t get fazed very often, he’s very easy going and is ready to step up and fill any role that’s asked of him. Heat Head Coach Jim Playfair was impressed with him during his time there, and Playfair certainly played him in varied roles. His final WHL season was strong, putting up 96 points, and I’m very excited to see a full AHL season from him this coming year.
Greg Nemisz is also expected to start the year with the Abbotsford Heat, and listening to the 2008 first round pick today, you can tell confidence is growing. After a 34 goal season with the Windsor Spitfires, you can tell Nemisz is growing into his frame more, and he’s added more strength to his game since June of ’08. But it’s the confidence and comfort level that I’ve noticed…it’s his third development camp, and he really felt like he had a lot to show this time around. Eventually, a first round pick is expected to make the big team, and that expectation will be there with Nemisz. I’m intrigued to see a full season with him in the Heat lineup, even though there is the very slim chance he could return to Windsor as a 20 year old. Although, with two Memorial Cups…there’s not a whole lot to do there.
Finally, I know a lot of people are intrigued by 2009 first round pick Tim Erixon, the blueliner who played the entire season in the Swedish Elite League last season. What’s really interesting about Erixon is just where his ceiling is at. The book on him seems to be a good, all round defenceman for where he is in his development…but what is the high end offensively for him? And what is the high end in his own zone? Director of Scouting Tod Button wasn’t necessarily sure in Montreal when they drafted him, and the team is still getting a read on him. From what I’ve seen, which is VERY limited, he seems to be a fairly smooth skater and he transitions well. He’ll play in Sweden again this coming season, so it’s going to take a little longer for us to get a real read on him.