Saturday, June 14, 2008

More predraft buzz

With the 2008 NHL draft just a week away, current and future Terriers continue to draw attention.

Center Colin Wilson’s strong showing at the recent NHL Combine in Toronto has reinforced expectations that he’ll be an early first-round selection. The Hockey News ranked him 7th overall and, frankly, the “NHL-ready body” comments in the media have BU fans concerned. Wilson talked with the Vancouver Sun about the draft and his relationship with his father, Dartmouth and NHL forward Cary, the 67th choice in the 1980 draft. Another Vancouver Sun article provides NHL chief scout E.J. McGuire's take on Wilson:
"He's a boy playing against 18-year-old playing against guys, some who may be 25 years old in the NCAA," said McGuire. "He's an offensive threat and power forward playing against older players at Boston University. He'll be a single-digit draft, somewhere in the top nine and I think a nine-year NHL pro."
Delving further into Colin's hockey roots, it goes on to point out that his grandfather, Gerry, who played briefly in the NHL, "had a large hand in bringing Ulf Nilsson and Anders Hedberg to the WHA Winnipeg Jets in the 1970 when Wilson was the club's orthopedic specialist. "

2009 recruit Max Nicastro, (photo right) a Chicago Steel defenseman playing for former NHL blueliner Steve Poapst, was listed in a Hockey’s Future feature as one of the top five draft-eligibles from the USHL:

5. Max Nicastro, D, Chicago Steel, 18, 6’2, 189. The Southern
California native was selected by the Indiana Ice in the sixth round of the 2006 USHL Entry Draft with the 68th overall pick. Before joining the league for the 2007-08 season, the Ice traded his rights to the Chicago Steel.

Nicastro finished as one of one of the top rearguards for the team. He collected 20 points (4 goals, 16 assists), 78 penalty minutes and a plus-7 rating. He also was a member of Team USA at the 2007 World Junior A Challenge.The young defenseman has taken some big steps to play effectively with in the USHL. He plays a very good all-round game, but is first and foremost very responsible in his own end.

He’s good puckhandling blueliner, who can make a great first pass
or join the rush when needed. He makes good reads at both ends of the ice. He has showed that he is able to get on the right side of the opposing player and attack effectively, causing turnovers with his stick work. He’s good at closing up lanes and stealing passes. He was used in all situations for the Steel and played on top power play and penalty-kill units. Nicastro has good offensive upside, plays the puck well, has good vision and big shot.

Nicastro will return to Chicago in the USHL next season before joining Boston University in the fall of 2009.

2008 recruit Corey Trivino, whose stock has been steadily rising, received a pair of strong endorsements last week. In The Hockey News’ Bests of the Crop feature, Trivino was rated the top playmaker available and favorably compared to RPI and NHL centerman Adam Oates. And, in International Scouting Services’ final draft rankings, Trivino was ranked #26 overall with Wilson ranked #8.

Yesterday, our friend Paul Shaheen, who writes the Research on Ice e-mail newsletter and is a senior writer for Amateur Hockey Report, offered a Meet & Greet column on Trivino:

Call him one of this year's top wildcards.

When left shot center Corey Trivino committed to Boston University back in August of 2006, the Terriers knew they had someone special.
Trivino could wind up even better than that.

At 6-1, and 170 pounds, Trivino's had two strong seasons with the OPJHL's Stouffville Spirit, and scouts like what they've seen. He also did well this past spring, as his Canadian World Under 18 squad won gold versus the Russians in Kazan.

"He could be a home-run guy," said one scout to The Hockey News, which adds that he's a "far better playmaker than goal-scorer, his skills with the puck are something to behold."

Says Red Line, which has Trivino 40th overall: "He has the goal scoring ability teams covet....He has an array of shots he can unload quickly with accuracy."

If there's one area Trivino needs to improve on, it would be his strength. "He's pretty weak physically," one scout said to THN. And adds Red Line: "Slight build and doesn't initiate contact, but (he) isn't afraid to take hits to make plays."

Here's what we wrote about Trivino back in 2006:

Two years ago, Corey Trivino skated alongside phenoms Sam Gagner and John Tavares for the Toronto Bantam Marlies and was hardly out of place. Last season, he played 30 games for the Marlies' midget minor squad and scored 17 goals and 39 points.

This month, the 16-year-old centerman officially signed on to play next season for the Ontario Provincial Junior Hockey League's Stouffville Spirit, the circuit's playoff runner-up last year. Although he's property of the Ontario Hockey League's Barrie Colts – the franchise chose him with the 88th overall pick in last month's draft – Trivino, whose personality and work ethic transcends his age, is committed to taking the D-I route.

"He skated with us in our spring camp and it was amazing not only
what he did on the ice, but also what he did before and after," says Stouffville head coach Dan West. "Without even being asked, Corey was first to offer to fill the the water bottles and he could have easily played for my team last year. He's always been considered a special kid, and the spotlight's going to be on him next year. But he'll handle it, because he's very mature."

This weekend, examined the phenomenon of dwindling numbers of NHL prospects emerging from Massachusetts. Both Mike Eruzione and Shawn McEachern weighed in with opinions.

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