Flames Prospect Update, January 15 2013

As Flames training camp roars on this week, thoughts drift to the players that aren’t here. Those are, generally, the players that are too young to be here – the prospects.

Here’s what they’ve been up to as of late.

AHL & ECHL

Sven Baertschi and T.J. Brodie disappeared from the Abbotsford Heat line-up this week, possibly forever. On one hand, other teams are losing bodies – the Oklahoma City Barons are likely losing everyone of value from their roster – but it still stings. The Heat dropped both of their games this weekend in a two-game series with the Chicago Wolves, AHL affiliate of the dastardly Vancouver Canucks.

The Heat lost 3-1 on Friday off a trio of goals on Leland Irving in the span of just over eight minutes. On Saturday, the Heat couldn’t get on the board at all, missing eight regulars who had been called up to Calgary for training camp. Wolves goaltender Matt Climie was excellent, and was the big difference on Saturday.

The Heat (17-12-3-4) continue to drop down the AHL’s Western Conference standings and sit eighth.

In the ECHL, the Utah Grizzlies – now without Mitch Wahl, who was recalled to Abbotsford – lost both of their games against Las Vegas by a combined 10-3 score.

JUNIOR

Edmonton’s Laurent Brossoit started twice as the Oil Kings won all three of their weekend games. Brossoit allowed a single goal on the weekend and won both of his starts. Since getting cut from the World Junior team in mid-December, Brossoit is 7-1-0 with 2 shutouts, 1.00 goals against average and a .966 save percentage. He’s been every bit as good recently as he was bad last summer.

Over in Portland, Tyler Wotherspoon continues to be a great plus/minus player. H was +3 in a pair of weekend games and is +42 on the year, just behind teammate Nic Petan (despite having missed nearly a dozen games).

Red Deer captain Turner Elson remains as his team’s leading scorer. He had a goal and two assists in two weekend contests. Despite being an overager, though, his points production is basically the same as last year’s.

Coda Gordon continues his strong play of late with the Swift Current Broncos, with three assists over two weekend games. He’s scoring at just under a point-per-game pace this season, with 44 points in 46 games.

Vancouver’s Brett Kulak only played once and only had one point. But it was a big one, the overtime game-winning goal.

Saskatoon’s Michael Ferland, Quebec’s Ryan Culkin and Windsor’s Patrick Sieloff all played twice and all had no points.

COLLEGE

As expected, Johnny Gaudreau returned to college and was good. He had three points in a Boston College win over New Hampshire on Friday night (including his conference-leading sixth game-winning goal of the year) but was held off the score-sheet in a tight 2-1 loss the following evening. Bill Arnold had a goal and an assist of his own on Friday night.

Mark Jankowski returned to the Providence College line-up and had an assist. Jon Gillies brought his World Junior gold medal back to his crease and continued his strong rookie season – with a pair of wins and his second shutout of the year. He made 68 saves over two games.

John Ramage of the Wisconsin Badgers has an offensive explosion this weekend. In a pair of games against Minnesota State, Ramage had three points – two of them goals in overtime.

Michigan State’s Matthew Deblouw had two points in a pair of games with Notre Dame. Nick Larson, of Notre Dame, was held pointless.

EUROPE

The KHL was off this weekend for the All-Star game, so Karri Ramo had a bit of a rest.

HIFK Helinski won their single weekend game, with Markus Granlund getting an assist and Joni Ortio holding the opposition to a single goal.

  • T&A4Flames

    Thanks Ryan! Ask and you shall receive. I’m so glad to hear that Brosoit has used the disappointment of being cut from the WJC team as motivation; kids on fire!

    Love the video of Gaudreau at the top of the page. I thought Johnny G was the best US forward through out the tourney, even when he wasn’t getting on the board. I think Grimaldi was hurting that line in the 1st few games.

    Looks like we have 3 young goalies progressing well, 2 steady D in Wotherspoon & Sieloff (3 if you include Kulak) and 1 unstoppable forward in Gaudreau.

    I was hoping that the Giants might trade Kulak to a better team to see how he does in a winning environement that a good team would bring.

    Still hoping for a bit more out of Granund after his stellar WJC and Janko. Maybe with Gillies gold medal it may motivate Janko to push for a spot in next years Canada team.

    • T&A4Flames

      “Maybe with Gillies gold medal it may motivate Janko to push for a spot in next years Canada team.”

      Feaster said last month that he fully expects for Jankowski to follow the path of Gaudreau in the sense of him not making the world juniors this year, but being a key piece next year.

      If he doesn’t make the team next year, in one role or another, I think Flames management will be extremely disappointed.

      • SmellOfVictory

        They did mention that he’s a longer-term project. They might prefer that he make the WJC at some point, but if he misses his window I don’t think it’s a hueg deal.

    • T&A4Flames

      Yea, i was thinking about how bad that team is. Gillies is aesome for them but I really hope that they are able to attract some more offensively minded guys to play with Janko next year.

      Obviously it would be nice to say that Janko carries his line and makes them better but I really think he needs more help.

    • seve927

      Glad to hear you say that Kent. I’m beginning to think it’s not going to happen for him this year, and I was willing to give him a pass. Missed some time due to injury as well. He could still turn it around in the second half. He’s not all that far behind where Gaudreau was at this point in his rookie season.

  • seve927

    I watched Ferland play for the Blades the other night on the Sportsnet game. He was pretty invisible except for one big hit in the first period, and I was about to turn it off with about 8 minutes left – then he showed some more of the stuff I’d seen from him in development camp. For a big guy, he’s got some special skills. He faked a defender into thinking he was banging the puck around the boards, then in one motion passed it back for a wide open shot from the bottom of the circle. Then made another great pass on the same shift. I remember another play at development camp where someone made a hard pass at him at the blue line. It was in an awkward position for him to pick up – he started to move his stick to try to pick it up, realized he couldn’t and in a blink of an eye, moved his skate to deflect it onto the tape of the teammate behind him, who now had a step on the defenseman, who had moved up.

    Little things, but they make me think he can be a good NHLer. It’ll be good to be able to see him in the Memorial Cup