Thursday, September 20, 2007

NAHL Showcase

The NAHL Showcase Tournament is going on in Blaine, Minnesota. You can follow the tournament on Pointstreak. In addition to the annual tournament featuring all of the NAHL teams, the NAHL is also hosting a Midget Showcase with some excellent Midget Minor and Midget Major teams participating. Needless to say, it's a lot of hockey.

I was there most of today, and will be there most of tomorrow. There's quite a bit to digest, so I won't have comments on individual players until sometime this weekend or early next week. In the meanwhile, here's a few general comments on some of the teams in the NAHL Showcase.

Fairbanks ended up knocking off the NTDP U18 team in an overtime shootout by a score of 3-2. I had to leave after the first period, but it looks like I missed two more periods of what I saw in the first. Fairbanks is one of the stronger franchises in the NAHL, and look like they have a pretty decent team this year, but the NTDP U18 team should have been able to beat them easily. There's too much talent on that roster not to. From what I saw, there was a lot of talented individual effort from the US players, but not a lot of team play. During their first period powerplay, I swear their ratio of shots to passes on the powerplay was about 5:1. It was a far contrast from last year's NTDP team, where that ratio was probably the opposite. Everyone on that team seemed willing to make the extra pass to set up a teammate for a nice one-timer.

Comparing this year's U18 team to past team's, I don't think that this year's rendition will have the success against college programs that some past teams have had.

In the NAHL Central Division, Fargo-Moorhead looks like they'll be the team to beat. They played pretty well today. Their rivalry with Southern Minnesota for division supremacy will probably continue this year. The Express played awful today, but I think they've got such a talented roster that they'll be right there at the end of the year.

In the North, Alpena looked good today, but apparently struggled on Thursday. St. Louis always seems to be strong. Mahoning Valley looks to have a good team again this year, but their bright orange jerseys could be considered a war crime.

Fairbanks looks to be the class of the South Division so far. Why Fairbanks is in the "South" Division is beyond me. Shouldn't the divisions be named West, Central and East?

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

u18 saw a couple team players the rest were selfish & greedy.

Anonymous said...

i find it intresting that all 3 teams from Alaska are in the southern div

section a crazy said...

i think they put AK in the south because it's cheaper to fly into dallas than flying to the other cities. Only long trip from the airport would be Topeka.

Anonymous said...

Any thoughts on John Hynes as a coach?

Anonymous said...

what about the north iowa/traverse city game??? 0-0 tie going into overtime, both goaltenders amazing during the entire game, traverse city was lucky to be in the game, but it was a good one

Anonymous said...

The link does not go to the showcase.

Anonymous said...

Great leader of Men! = John Hynes

Anonymous said...

Who were some of the top players defensively and offensively in the U-18? Anyone stand out? What were the scouts saying? Was there any player or players in particular that created any buzz from the scouts who were there?

Anonymous said...

I was there most of the weekend and the talk around the tournament was all about the Russell Stover U-18 program. For a program just in its 4th year what an impressive group. Watched their first game and their latest addition, the young 14 year old defenseman scored 3 times to lead them to a 4-0 win. Impressive start for this team. Will be intereting to see how well they're playing later in the season.

Anonymous said...

Didn't Springfield win all their games, and beat fairbanks? Why wouldn't they be in the race or the lead in the central? hello!!!