With the announcement today of the prospects camp on July 5, (which I hope to attend) I stopped to review just what this group looks like in the much needed size category and experience.
The possible talent display will wait till their camp.
There are 18 forwards in this group of which 11 are North Americans (eight Canadian, three American), two are Russians and one Swedish. Out of the 18, 10 average in height at 6’1" and weigh 191 lbs.
The other eight, average in height at 5’10”, weigh 180 lbs. The overall average age is 21.
The smallest is Jordan Schroeder at 5’8”, 175 lbs., and the biggest is Stephan Schneider at 6’4”, 206 lbs.
A number of these players have AHL game experience with the Manitoba Moose–Eric Walsky (37), Jordan Schroeder (11), Matt Pope (40) and Cody Hodgson (11 playoff).
Of these, Schroeder had the best point per game average by a mile, with four goals and five assists in 11 regular season games and three goals and three assists in six playoff games.
Now to the thirteen D-men: 10 come from North America (eight Canadian, two American), two are Russians and one Swedish.
Eleven are 6' tall or greater (avg.6’2”, 193 lbs) and the other two average 5’9”, 189 lbs.
The smallest is Lee Sweatt at 5’9”, the tallest Michael Funk at 6’4”, and the heaviest Sean Zimmerman at 220 lbs.
Out of this group Nathan McIver has the only NHL experience with 36 games, half with the Canucks and the other with the Ducks. He has been in the Canucks organization the longest (five years) and last year played in 44 games with the Moose.
Also with the Moose, Michael Funk and Taylor Ellington both played in 19 games with neither posting any type of impressive offensive stats.
Are there any players here that could make the Canucks next year, add some size, grit and talent to the third and fourth lines?
Well first of all, let’s see who gets the invite to the main prospect camp in a couple of months.
But, from what has been shown to date and if certain players are healthy, I would expect Schroeder, Hodgson, and Walsky from the forwards and Kevin Connaught, Taylor Ellington, Michael Funk, Nathan McIver, and Yann Sauve from the defense.
Depending who is signed in the next month, the only one from this group that I see possibly starting with the ‘Nucks would be Nathan McIver.
The rest, well you all have seen in the Stanley Cup playoffs the physical play, depth and talent that has been on display. Do you really think any of these forwards would add anything to the Canucks in the "what's needed department "?