Sunday, May 19
The 2013 Memorial Cup is underway, and there are many top prospects participating, including the three top-ranked prospects for the upcoming draft. Portland’s Seth Jones and Nathan McKinnon and Jonathan Drouin of the Halifax Mooseheads will be displaying their talents at the round-robin tournament. The three faced off in an opening game, with McKinnon coming away as the star of the game with four points. Jones scored a goal and Drouin was pointless. The rankings are unlikely to change as a result of anything that happens at the tournament.
One prospect who could help himself with a good Cup is Seth Griffith of the London Knights. Griffith was selected by the Bruins in the 5th round of last summer’s draft and is not mentioned among Boston’s top prospects despite back-to-back seasons of more than 80 points. Neither big nor fast, Griffith has not had an opportunity to participate in the WJC so this is an opportunity to show what he can do against better competition.
On paper at least, Portland, with it’s star-studded roster, was considered a favorite heading into the tournament and it will be interesting to see how they respond to the 7-4 thrashing at the hands of Halifax mentioned earlier. Along with Jones, the Winter Hawks have Ty Rattie (STL), Derrick Pouliot (PIT), Tyler Wotherspoon (CGY), Taylor Peters (DAL), and a prospect I feelis underrated, Troy Rutkowski (OTT). Rutkowski is a very good all-around defenseman who goes unnoticed because he lacks flash and he rarely makes mistakes. In other words, he doesn’t stand out. Despite not being flashy, the Portland captain scored 20 goals and had 66 points in 72 games this season. This kid can play the game and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him suit up in Ottawa sooner than later.
Halifax, with McKinnon, Drouin and Martin Frk (DET) boast the most potent line. The Mooseheads will lean heavily on that line as the other teams plan their strategy to stop it. Besides Griffith, London is led by Scott Harrington (PIT), Olli Maata (PIT), Chris Tierney (SJ), Alex Broadhurst (CHI), goalie Anthony Stolarz (PHI) and potential 1st-rounders Max Domi and Nikita Zadorov.
As you can see, there will be no shortage of prospects to follow at this year’s Memorial Cup, and our staff here at Dobberprospects.com will be watching each one for you. We will give our thoughts and observations at the conclusion of the tournament.
Jonathan Briggins gives you a real good lowdown on the Memorial Cup over at DobberHockey.
Thanks for reading.
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