Friday, December 19, 2014

Looking Back: 25 Questions For Patrick Roy

Back in late May of 2013, Patrick Roy was set to be introduced as the new head coach and vice president of hockey operations of the Colorado Avalanche.  The timing of the change was great. The organization was just wrapping up an awful season and was seemingly spinning its tires in essentially every aspect, from top to bottom.

But, the hiring didn’t come without questions. Roy had never been a head coach at the NHL level, let alone someone who would be given a bucket full of authority when it came to roster decisions. 

Right before he was introduced I wrote a quick piece on “25 Questions For Patrick Roy”. 

I recently stumbled across the piece when looking back in my blog archive and found that many of the questions are yet to be answered at this point in time.  With that in mind, I’ve decided to review the piece and see if we can grade how Roy (and Joe Sakic, to some degree) has addressed the issues that were very apparent before the 2013 NHL offseason.

1. How much say do you have in team's NHL drafting process?

- Quite a bit, as it turns out. Roy was apparently not pleased that the Avalanche scouting staff didn’t see Nathan MacKinnon as the top player on their draft board for 2013. Roy seemingly put his foot down and Colorado didn’t waste any time in taking the Cole Harbour kid 1st overall.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

WHL Lines - Dec. 18


These lines provide an outline of each team’s depth chart through player usage.  




They are not projections. They are based on the actual lines used in the team’s last game played.  










Note that the * signifies a repeated trend. If the star is located at the top of a team’s header it signifies

an identical lineup has been used for at least two games in a row. A star beside a specific line


or defensive pairing means the group has been together for at least two consecutive games, with the

number beside the star saying exactly how many games it’s been.




“Others” are players who were not in the lineup last game due to being injured, scratched or recently traded.
Questions and comments are greatly appreciated. Reach me at cnickolet@gmail.com.























BRANDON (Last updated Dec. 17)  















Forwards















#13 Bukarts (95) #23 McGauley (95) #28 Lisoway (95) *2




#17 Quenneville (96) #27 Duke (96) #15 Quenneville (94) *5




#25 Campbell (96) #19 Patrick (98) #21 Coulter (96) *2




#14 Lewis (98) #16 Kaspick (98) #22 Shmyr (97) *2












Other F: 
#12 Gabrielle (97) #8 Hawryluk (96)















Defence
















#9 Provorov (97) #6 Pilon (96) *15





#5 Waltz (95) #7 Roy (94) *15





#29 Matsuba (97) #20 Erkamps (95)













Other D:
#10 Clague (98) #3 Taraschuk (97)















Goalies
















#33 Papirny (96)







#35 Moodie (95)














Notes:  Only change from last game was 29 coming in for 3.





12 missed his second consecutive game.
















HC: Kelly McCrimmon







GM: Kelly McCrimmon







Wednesday, December 17, 2014

WHL Lines - Dec. 17


These lines provide an outline of each team’s depth chart through player usage.  




They are not projections. They are based on the actual lines used in the team’s last game played.  










Note that the * signifies a repeated trend. If the star is located at the top of a team’s header it signifies

an identical lineup has been used for at least two games in a row. A star beside a specific line


or defensive pairing means the group has been together for at least two consecutive games, with the

number beside the star saying exactly how many games it’s been.




“Others” are players who were not in the lineup last game due to being injured, scratched or recently traded.
Questions and comments are greatly appreciated. Reach me at cnickolet@gmail.com.























BRANDON (Last updated Dec. 17)  















Forwards















#13 Bukarts (95) #23 McGauley (95) #28 Lisoway (95) *2




#17 Quenneville (96) #27 Duke (96) #15 Quenneville (94) *5




#25 Campbell (96) #19 Patrick (98) #21 Coulter (96) *2




#14 Lewis (98) #16 Kaspick (98) #22 Shmyr (97) *2












Other F: 
#12 Gabrielle (97) #8 Hawryluk (96)















Defence
















#9 Provorov (97) #6 Pilon (96) *15





#5 Waltz (95) #7 Roy (94) *15





#29 Matsuba (97) #20 Erkamps (95)













Other D:
#10 Clague (98) #3 Taraschuk (97)















Goalies
















#33 Papirny (96)







#35 Moodie (95)














Notes:  Only change from last game was 29 coming in for 3.





12 missed his second consecutive game.
















HC: Kelly McCrimmon







GM: Kelly McCrimmon







Sunday, December 14, 2014

WHL Lines - Dec. 15

These lines provide an outline of each team’s depth chart through player usage.  




They are not projections. They are based on the actual lines used in the team’s last game played.  










Note that the * signifies a repeated trend. If the star is located at the top of a team’s header it signifies

an identical lineup has been used for at least two games in a row. A star beside a specific line


or defensive pairing means the group has been together for at least two consecutive games, with the

number beside the star saying exactly how many games it’s been.




“Others” are players who were not in the lineup last game due to being injured, scratched or recently traded.
Questions and comments are greatly appreciated. Reach me at cnickolet@gmail.com.























BRANDON (Last updated Dec. 15)  















Forwards















#13 Bukarts (95) #23 McGauley (95) #28 Lisoway (95)





#17 Quenneville (96) #27 Duke (96) #15 Quenneville (94) *4




#25 Campbell (96) #19 Patrick (98) #21 Coulter (96)





#22 Shmyr (97) #16 Kaspick (98) #14 Lewis (98)













Other F: 
#12 Gabrielle (97) #8 Hawryluk (96)















Defence
















#9 Provorov (97) #6 Pilon (96) *14





#5 Waltz (95) #7 Roy (94) *14





#3 Taraschuk (97) #20 Erkamps (95)













Other D:
#10 Clague (98) #29 Matsuba (97)















Goalies
















#33 Papirny (96)







#35 Moodie (95)














Notes:  14 made his season and WHL debut.






12 was a late scratch before the game. 3 came in for 29.















HC: Kelly McCrimmon







GM: Kelly McCrimmon








WHL Lines - Dec. 14


These lines provide an outline of each team’s depth chart through player usage.  




They are not projections. They are based on the actual lines used in the team’s last game played.  










Note that the * signifies a repeated trend. If the star is located at the top of a team’s header it signifies

an identical lineup has been used for at least two games in a row. A star beside a specific line


or defensive pairing means the group has been together for at least two consecutive games, with the

number beside the star saying exactly how many games it’s been.




“Others” are players who were not in the lineup last game due to being injured, scratched or recently traded.
Questions and comments are greatly appreciated. Reach me at cnickolet@gmail.com.























BRANDON (Last updated Dec. 13)  















Forwards















#13 Bukarts (95) #23 McGauley (95) #19 Patrick (98)





#17 Quenneville (96) #27 Duke (96) #15 Quenneville (94) *3




#12 Gabrielle (97) #25 Campbell (96) #21 Coulter (96)





#22 Shmyr (97) #28 Lisoway (95) #16 Kaspick (98)













Other F: 
#14 Lewis (98) #8 Hawryluk (96)















Defence
















#9 Provorov (97) #6 Pilon (96) *13





#5 Waltz (95) #7 Roy (94) *13





#29 Matsuba (97) #20 Erkamps (95)













Other D:
#10 Clague (98) #3 Taraschuk (97)















Goalies
















#33 Papirny (96)







#35 Moodie (95)














Notes:  13 returned after missing 6 games with injury. 29 came in for 3.





12-17-19 have been together for 9 of the past 12 games.















HC: Kelly McCrimmon







GM: Kelly McCrimmon







Saturday, December 13, 2014

WHL Lines - Dec. 13


These lines provide an outline of each team’s depth chart through player usage.  




They are not projections. They are based on the actual lines used in the team’s last game played.  










Note that the * signifies a repeated trend. If the star is located at the top of a team’s header it signifies

an identical lineup has been used for at least two games in a row. A star beside a specific line


or defensive pairing means the group has been together for at least two consecutive games, with the

number beside the star saying exactly how many games it’s been.




“Others” are players who were not in the lineup last game due to being injured, scratched or recently traded.
Questions and comments are greatly appreciated. Reach me at cnickolet@gmail.com.























BRANDON (Last updated Dec. 13)  















Forwards















#13 Bukarts (95) #23 McGauley (95) #19 Patrick (98)





#17 Quenneville (96) #27 Duke (96) #15 Quenneville (94) *3




#12 Gabrielle (97) #25 Campbell (96) #21 Coulter (96)





#22 Shmyr (97) #28 Lisoway (95) #16 Kaspick (98)













Other F: 
#14 Lewis (98) #8 Hawryluk (96)















Defence
















#9 Provorov (97) #6 Pilon (96) *13





#5 Waltz (95) #7 Roy (94) *13





#29 Matsuba (97) #20 Erkamps (95)













Other D:
#10 Clague (98) #3 Taraschuk (97)















Goalies
















#33 Papirny (96)







#35 Moodie (95)














Notes:  13 returned after missing 6 games with injury. 29 came in for 3.





12-17-19 have been together for 9 of the past 12 games.















HC: Kelly McCrimmon







GM: Kelly McCrimmon







Friday, December 12, 2014

WHL Lines - Dec. 12


These lines provide an outline of each team’s depth chart through player usage.  




They are not projections. They are based on the actual lines used in the team’s last game played.  










Note that the * signifies a repeated trend. If the star is located at the top of a team’s header it signifies

an identical lineup has been used for at least two games in a row. A star beside a specific line


or defensive pairing means the group has been together for at least two consecutive games, with the

number beside the star saying exactly how many games it’s been.




“Others” are players who were not in the lineup last game due to being injured, scratched or recently traded.
Questions and comments are greatly appreciated. Reach me at cnickolet@gmail.com.























BRANDON (Last updated Dec. 11)  















Forwards















#28 Lisoway (95) #23 McGauley (95) #8 Hawryluk (96)





#17 Quenneville (96) #27 Duke (96) #15 Quenneville (94) *2




#25 Campbell (96) #19 Patrick (98) #21 Coulter (96) *2




#22 Shmyr (97) #16 Kaspick (98) #12 Gabrielle (97)













Other F: 
#14 Lewis (98) #13 Bukarts (95)















Defence
















#9 Provorov (97) #6 Pilon (96) *12





#5 Waltz (95) #7 Roy (94) *12





#3 Taraschuk (97) #20 Erkamps (95) *3












Other D:
#10 Clague (98) #29 Matsuba (97)















Goalies
















#33 Papirny (96)







#35 Moodie (95)














Notes:  12 and 28 swapped lines compared to last game.






12-17-19 have been together for 9 of the past 11 games.





13 missed his 6th consecutive game.






Acquired Moodie from Saskatoon on Nov. 26.
















HC: Kelly McCrimmon







GM: Kelly McCrimmon







Thursday, December 11, 2014

Josh Morrissey Dealt To Kelowna


The Kelowna Rockets did something out of the ordinary for their franchise late on Wednesday night, pulling the trigger on a large trade to land the biggest fish on the market ahead of the WHL trade deadline.

The Rockets acquired Josh Morrissey from the Prince Albert Raiders in exchange for Jesse Lees, Austin Glover, along with 2nd and 3rd round draft picks. Forward Gage Quinney also heads to the Rockets as part of the deal.

As noted by Regan Bartel, a move like this isn’t exactly commonplace for Kelowna. They’re a team that epitomizes the “build from within” mentality. They draft and develop their own players, only usually needing to accent that home-grown talent with minor tweaks here and there.

Now that I’ve had some more time to process the deal, here are a few thoughts on what took place last night:

- Despite the lack of history with a move like this, the trade didn’t come as a huge surprise to me. The Rockets are the top team in the WHL right now with 53 points, 6 ahead of the next closest team. While Brandon had a great start (and have since cooled off a bit), Medicine Hat continues to roll along, Regina and Portland are both picking up steam and the Everett Silvertips are in a similar spot to Brandon, there doesn’t appear to be a team quite at the Rockets level. To me that means they needed to make this push before another team could, possibly levelling the playing field a bit more.

- When looking around the league, the Rockets did make the most sense for a potential landing spot for Morrissey. I think the only other team that it would have made much sense for would have been a team like Portland. The Winterhawks should be looking to take advantage of Nic Petan’s last WHL season and acquiring a top-end blueliner would have helped that cause. I’ve heard people mention Brandon before, but that wouldn’t have made much sense to me. The Wheat Kings are very young and ready to contend for each of the next 2-3 years at least, a move like this probably wasn’t in the cards as there is no need to try and hit that homerun right now. A year from now? Probably a different story. I also think Everett would have possibly had some interest. They have some assets to deal and are looking to have a good performance this year. Also, a strong showing and a playoff run could go a long way to having uncommitted guys like Tyson Jost and Auston Matthews sign on with their program.

- Morrissey appears to be a perfect fit for the Rockets blueline. Kelowna captain Madison Bowey (a RH shot) has spent the season with youngsters Lucas Johansen and Devante Stephens as his defensive partners. No offence to those two guys, they’re both good young players, they’re just not Morrissey. I would imagine we see Morrissey and Bowey together on their top pairing, maybe even seeing time together at the fast-approaching World Junior tournament.

- If Morrissey and Bowey did play together, there is still plenty of talent to piece together a pair of good 2nd and 3rd defensive pairings with names like Gatenby, Martin, Stadel, Yorke, Stephens, Johansen and Wheaton (currently injured) in the mix for minutes. A very deep group even if you do stack the top pairing.

- Keep in mind that the Rockets continue to have a 20 year old spot open on their roster. Based on how that roster is shaped currently, I would imagine a forward is the target. A veteran RW would look pretty good on this team, possibly alongside Kirkland and Baillie on the 2nd line.

- This trade is also another example that the best teams in the league hang on to their 1st round draft picks. Kelowna could have easily dealt their 2015 1st in this deal, but I bet that was a complete non-starter with Bruce Hamilton here. Looking back, you can see why. Their 1st rounders from 2010-2013: Lees (2010), Chartier (2011), Merkley (2012), Dube (2013). Mix in 2nd and 3rd rounders like Gatenby, Glover, Stadel, Bowey and Baillie and you can see why building from within can be a good strategy.

- From a Raiders perspective, I don’t think the deal is quite as bad as some people are saying it is. Sure, they didn’t get a 1st round pick back, but they did get two solid players who can not only play now but will continue to be part of their organization in coming years. Glover should slide into their top 6 and Lees will help replace the injured Hunter Warner on the blueline. The 2nd or 3rd rounders are also valuable commodities. Yes, Morrissey is a fantastic player, arguably the best defenceman in the WHL, but he only has half a season of eligibility left and that fact hurts his value.