Thursday, June 12, 2008

Watson Signs with Windsor

The Windsor Spitfires announced todhttp://www.blogger.com/layout?blogID=12302090
Layoutay that Compuware forward Austin Watson signed with the team.

Watson "committed" to Maine earlier this year, mainly because he was desperate to have some sort of commitment in place to try and get a better negotiating position with an OHL team.

51 comments:

Anonymous said...

What does this say about society in general when you give a "verbal commitment" to a college when you know all along that you are going to play in the "O". What has happened to the people's "word", does it not mean anything anymore? With that being said, is it the kid's fault or his family advisor's fault for playing this wicked game of recruiting/positioning etc. to get a "better package". AW is a great kid and very good hockey player but........this deception puts a stain on his credibility.

Anonymous said...

Wonder where the Windsor article got their stats from. League stats don't add up (Poinstreak.) Any other links to stats available?

Anonymous said...

Same as when a coach tells a player to wait, and defer for a year....

Anonymous said...

The problem with Chris H's post and the comment of the Anonymous poster hiding behind his computer keyboard is that they are both make reckless ASS-umptions that Watson wanted to go to the "O" all along.

Anonymous said...

He is a flash in the pan......just so so at NTDP camp, nothing after the 1st day.......a real prima donna.

Anonymous said...

This story in the Windsor Star seems to dispute your claim Chris that Watson only committed to Maine for OHL draft purposes and never really intended to go there. Maybe you owe this 16 year old kid an apology.

http://www.canada.com/windsorstar/news/story.html?id=f066fed4-9fbf-4332-8e0f-7c2e6f8ebfe3

Anonymous said...

149 points? is that possible?
luke moffatt had a much more "productive" year and I don't think even he cracked the 100 point barrier. Watson got around 40 points in league play and in the tougher tournament play managed another 100 points?

jrhockeywriter said...

Just from the information I gathered was if USA Hockey just offered a spot to him he would of taken it. He wasn't going to play games with them. I've been told it was his 1st choice going the NTDP. I think he said something at the press conference along those lines. The Windsor Star has the exact quote. Even if the USHL was willing to play more 16 year olds I believe he would of gone that route.

But it makes me wander, just wait a year.

There's no sour grape with Maine but Austin felt with USA Hockey in limbo on offering a spot to him was the nail in the coffin.

Anonymous said...

Watson visited the NTDP, visited many NCAA School and visited many OHL teams to decide what he wanted to do. He chose the NTDP and Maine as his route. Than the NTDP strung him along and wouldn't commit to him so his route changed. He chose Windsor which is close to his home and will probably be the best junior team in North America next season with incredible coaching and four future first round NHL draft picks on its roster. End of story. Good Luck Watson.

SimonTemplar said...

Not trying to be funny here but does the NCAA have concern will all these players opting out.

Just going down the blog list and it's getting longer. My point is these are for the most part pretty high end players.

Just sayin..

Anonymous said...

Good for him. Is there anything wrong with doing what you want? Nope..

It's a business.

Anonymous said...

The "stats" were not taken from pointstreak but from Grandpa's
4 X 6 cards. :) On a serious note, AW is a gifted player who should do well in the OHL.

Anonymous said...

Sinelli will be the next one to leave his verbal for the plymouth whalers

Anonymous said...

Can anybody name more than a handful of forwards in the NHL who came from the NCAA who are taller than 5-11" or many who would be considered power forwards, grinders, enforcers, punishing body checkers, character players, tough guys, role players?

The college game is not best suited for developing big NHL prototypical power forwards like an Austin Watson who will be a 6-4" or 6-5" 220 pound power forward by the time he is 19.

Yes, there are many very good college forwards who do go on to play in the NHL but they fit one specific category of the smallish to medium sized jitterbug who tends to play on the perimeter once their faceshield comes off and makes it to the NHL in spite of playing college hockey, not because of it.

Two OHL coaches (Hartsburg and Deboer) were just hired today to be the head coaches of the Ottawa Senators and Florida Panthers in the NHL. CHL coaches go on to coach in the NHL and college coaches generally do not because the college game is not pro-style hockey and is one-dimensional. Its so clear cut.

Anonymous said...

2 OHL Head Coaches to NHL.

Not bad for just a JR league.

Anonymous said...

""This story in the Windsor Star seems to dispute your claim Chris that Watson only committed to Maine for OHL draft purposes and never really intended to go there.""

Well duh, who the hell would openly admit that they did something unethical. Yeah I'm sure that he would tell a newspaper that he used Maine to get a better deal with Windsor.[me rolling my eyes]

Kinda funny you bring up Hartsburg who made it publicly known that he talked his son out of going to the OHL in favor of the NCAA route.

Anonymous said...

Why are you so tough on a 16 year old player? How about all of the tactics and pressure by the colleges and junior teams?

It amazes me the comments criticizing this young man's intentions when no one is criticizing the pressures put on by the recruiters of these teams.

Good Luck to the young man.

H8TR said...

Let's not forget that Watts did not sign with anyone and passed on the National team without taking up a spot in Rochester (or on the team for that matter). Isn't it worse to sign with a program and never report? I think he showed a lot of class and maturity. There appears to be no deception. If he was trying to position for a better "package" don't ya think he would have went to Rochester and committed to a more expensive school like ND for example?

Anonymous said...

To one of the above anonymous posters, Sinelli coming to Plymouth? Got a source? Link?

Anonymous said...

Just the word ive heard thats he's got a big deal and ready to sign

Anonymous said...

"Kinda funny you bring up Hartsburg who made it publicly known that he talked his son out of going to the OHL in favor of the NCAA route."

Actually Hartsy knew his son did not have the ability or the talent to play in the OHL as a 16 or 17 year old and thus the NCAA became a viable option to him. His son, now is the defacto head "work-out" man for the Greyhounds in the off season and if you talk to him he will be the first to tell you that he wishes he could have played in the O. He also does a great job in convincing young talented players like Archibald that the OHL is a much better route than the NCAA.

Anonymous said...

""Actually Hartsy knew his son did not have the ability or the talent to play in the OHL as a 16 or 17 year old and thus the NCAA became a viable option to him. His son, now is the defacto head "work-out" man for the Greyhounds in the off season and if you talk to him he will be the first to tell you that he wishes he could have played in the O. He also does a great job in convincing young talented players like Archibald that the OHL is a much better route than the NCAA""

You would be a great fictional storywriter!

444 said...

Some one please give me a reason why we always have to read pro-chl on a college hockey website?

Anonymous said...

Sinelli was not drafted by Plymouth, 92's are not allowed to be signed as free agents until they go through two drafts undrafted. Sinelli is not physically ready to play junior hockey anyway so forget it.

Anonymous said...

"You would be a great fictional storywriter!"

Fiction only when you can't handle reality. Why don't you take a drive up to the Soo and ask him yourself! Better yet, go to Port Huron and ask Archibald....or even better, why don't you ask the ever growing number of American born elite players who are choosing the CHL route over the NCAA!

Yeah, the truth hurts sometimes.

Anonymous said...

"Some one please give me a reason why we always have to read pro-chl on a college hockey website?"

Because they are insecure.

Anonymous said...

Some one please give me a reason why we always have to read anti-chl on a college hockey website?

Anonymous said...

I guess they are insecure, especially with the upcoming NHL Draft, which they will only dominate...

2nd year in a row an OHL'er will go 1st, next year could be the 3rd..

Two of thier Coaches just being named to coach in the NHL...

They have alot to be insecure about, eh?

Anonymous said...

his stats given are those for his entire hockey career with the Compuware program.nothing to write home about.
http://www.pointstreak.com/stats/am/playerpage.html?playerid=1399888&seasonid=2105

unlike Steven Stamkos who scored 208 pts for the Markham Waxers in just one season(72 games)before leaving Minor Midget.

Anonymous said...

"Some one please give me a reason why we always have to read anti-chl on a college hockey website?"

Because they are insecure and they have good reason to be! The CHL has been kicking the NCAA's butt lately and it doesn't look like its going to change any time soon!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 3:27 No. Those stats are his stats for this year only. They include tournaments and games that he played with other teams (selects, Vreds, BT MM etc.) Not all stats appear on pointstreak as you should well know.

Anonymous said...

"Two of thier Coaches just being named to coach in the NHL..."

That's nothing to brag about. Every year 3-4 NCAA coaches take their names out of NHL vacancies every year because they don't want to be part of the coaching carousel that lies within the NHL.

Anonymous said...

3:00 They are insecure about their literacy and spelling for sure. all my OHL buddies are driving trucks back and forth on the 401 HWY.

Anonymous said...

"3:00 They are insecure about their literacy and spelling for sure. all my OHL buddies are driving trucks back and forth on the 401 HWY."

Yeah, and you're putting that great degree in "Ojibwe" that you "earned" at Michigan by filling their tanks at the local gas bar....LOL!!!!!

Anonymous said...

"Two of thier Coaches just being named to coach in the NHL..."

That's nothing to brag about. Every year 3-4 NCAA coaches take their names out of NHL vacancies every year because they don't want to be part of the coaching carousel that lies within the NHL.


You are pathetic....you think ANYBODY believes that statement??

This is the funniest thing I have ever read on here...WOW!

Anonymous said...

What exactly does the CHL kick the NCAA's butt's at? Draft picks? Big deal, drafting is potential, nothing more.
Players in the NHL? Considering most of the league is Canadian that really isn't a shock but that gap gets smaller every year.
Until the CHL plays NCAA teams (which will never happen, from either end) neither side can say for sure that they "kick butt" at anything.
This whole argument is so fucking old and just as pointless.
Bottom line, which route is better depends on the individual player, period.

Anonymous said...

"3:00 They are insecure about their literacy and spelling for sure. all my OHL buddies are driving trucks back and forth on the 401 HWY."

In the CHL a sentence starts with a capital.

Anonymous said...

"In the CHL a sentence starts with a capital."

Shhhhh, you'll hurt his feelings and its not his fault, they didn't teach him stuff like that at Michigan! LOL!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

"Until the CHL plays NCAA teams (which will never happen, from either end) neither side can say for sure that they "kick butt" at anything."

Actually that's not true. Michigan was scheduled to play Plymouth in an exbition game in October. A few weeks before the game the CHL commissioner chickened out and canceled the game. And this was the year after Michigan lost everyone(Morrison, Madden, Botterill, Legg, etc.). So they weren't expected to be any good. Michigan Michigan St. have tried to schedule games with OHL teams before, but the CHL board will not allow that to happen. So it is one sided. Lake Superior St. tried hard to schedule games with the Soo Greyhounds in the 90's, but again was nixed by CHL authorities. Hmmmm I wonder why?

Anonymous said...

"Sinelli is not physically ready to play junior hockey anyway so forget it."

Seems to me that the kid who closely trailed or led Luke Moffatt all year in MWEHL has pretty much been written off, physically or otherwise, by too many organizations. Plymouth drafted a good number of players with better size, and less potential/talent than Sinelli.

Anonymous said...

Four years ago, Plymouth desperatly tried to arrange a "pre season" summit between two OHL and two CCHA teams. The CCHA teams declined, stating that NCAA regulations prevented them from playing in a "pro" tournament.

Undaunted, the Whalers tried again the following year, offering to play Michigan at Yost arena but again were denied, with Michigan stating that "insurance" purposes prevented such an exhibition game.

So to suggest that it is the CHL who is afraid of playing the NCAA is not just erroneous but an OUTRIGHT LIE!

As an aside, I happened to witness a midseason "scrimmage" between the Whalers and the U.S. U-18 NTDP a couple of years ago. The NTDP kids were quite cocky before the game, boasting how well they did against NCAA D-1 teams. I talked to a few of them before they hit the ice and they were quite dismissive of the Whalers and the OHL in general.
Guess what? The Whalers put a real spanking on them and were very delighted to do so considering how much verbal flack they were getting before the "festivities" started. By the end of the "scrimmage" the NTDP boys were literally cowering in the corners! It was a total mismatch and the Whalers proved that the OHL certainly deserved all the hype it receives......funny that only the Whalers front office every said anything about that "scrimmage" isn't it????

Anonymous said...

These stories are just that, if these items were fact, I am sure they would have been "reported on"
by honest, credible news services.

The fact is, who cares? You all sound like little schoolkids arguing over a marbles game. the CHL, OHL, NCAA, NTDP are all very credible hockey routes. To say the NTDP is going away, I doubt it.
They have made so many strides developing kids, that the NHL and others are taking note of the talent, training and coaching. The leadership and support there is second to none. the reason kids leave are for very selfish needs like money, exposure, playing time, promises, etc.
People really need to see the overall benefits of a program such as housing, school, uni's and sticks, off ice, medical, etc. We have all heard the stories and they are just plain that, stories.
make sure you make sound educated decisions before you hastily walk the walk.

Anonymous said...

Like I said the first time, it won't happen, from both sides.

But you want to talk about the OHL's "spanking" of the NDTP, how about the USHL two wins over the Q in a couple of exhibiton games?
Guess what, none of them matter.
Good god, people here should just take out their dicks and measure them if they feel they need to "prove" something.

Anonymous said...

Wow, great blog that started out about AW signing with the Spirfires to the great debate of the NCAA vs. the CHL. Guess what..who cares? It's about what is best for the kid and if he chooses one over the other, and he's developing, then good for him and the league. Both leagues are devoloping fine young hockey players and lets leave it at that. Now, for AW, ggod luck in your career, you're a fine young man.

Ryan said...

Congrats to Plymouth for that outstanding scrimmage victory!

Didn't some poor OPJHL team pound an OHL team in an exhibition game a few years back?

Anonymous said...

Comparisons of NCAA to OHL are ridiculous. OHL is a junior league for 16-20 year olds. NCAA is for 19-24 year olds.

Would Michigan beat the Whalers? I sure as heck hope so or it would not look good for Michigan.

The average age of the Whalers players are 18, the average age of Michigan's players are 21.

Also, the Whalers must draft or work trades to acquire all its players and with the exception of two euros all those players must live within a certain region of North America which means they have limited control over their roster. While Michigan is able to directly recruit and sign specific players to its team from any region of the North America or the the world.

Comparisons are stupid its apples to oranges.

Anonymous said...

"Four years ago, Plymouth desperatly tried to arrange a "pre season" summit between two OHL and two CCHA teams. The CCHA teams declined, stating that NCAA regulations prevented them from playing in a "pro" tournament.

Undaunted, the Whalers tried again the following year, offering to play Michigan at Yost arena but again were denied, with Michigan stating that "insurance" purposes prevented such an exhibition game."

Gotta love the lies. That is all false. The Michigan-Plymouth game is true and I believe it was 97. The CHL president did in fact cancel the game. I'm sure Chris probably remembers what the reason was?? In the USNDP's first year they played quite a few OHL teams. I think they compiled a record of something like 7-3-2(?)(you can probably look that up somewhere) record against them. Which wasn't altogether to great considering the talent on that team.

Anonymous said...

"Didn't some poor OPJHL team pound an OHL team in an exhibition game a few years back?"

Short answer---NO!


"how about the USHL two wins over the Q in a couple of exhibiton games?"

Oh yeah, what was widely regarded as perhaps that finest team ever assembled in the USHL only barely managed to beat a mediocre Quebec team---that was missing its top players. Meanwhile, the 2nd best team in the USHL (during the regular season) went 0-2 against the mediocre Q teams......safe to assume that both Omaha and Indiana would not have fared well at all in the Memorial Cup tournament!

Anonymous said...

apparently the CHL/OHL media guy has nothing to do......Eh?
Probably the same sorry soul!
go golfing...........JA!

Anonymous said...

Honestly, who cares???? all of us men who dont have a chance in ncaa, ohl, or the nhl and just waste or lives sitting arguing on a website is dumb, if your good enough your gonna make it on either route

Anonymous said...

All of these posts are quite funny with the debating between the NCAA vs. the OHL.

It all comes down to what is best for each individual player nothing else. Neither career route is better than the other.

In Austin Watson's situation he will probably play in the NHL when he is still a teenager at 18 or 19 years old regardless of which route he chose the NCAA or OHL. But why would a player who isn't going to play at the NTDP choose the college route at the age of 16 and not play in the best possible league the next two seasons if he would only stay in college for one or maybe two seasons anyway.

Not a single rationale person can dispute that the best league to play in for a 16 and 17 year old in Watson's situation based purely upon the coaching and the competitive level of play is the OHL.

Watson made the right career decision FOR HIM going to Windsor. Knocking the NCAA is stupid because that is the right career path for many many other players in different situations.