Sunday, September 14, 2008

Prospects In Kitchener; Prepare for Tournament

The Pittsburgh Penguins prospects headed to Kitchener in Ontario, Canada on Friday to take part in a four-team rookie tournament among the Toronto Maple Leafs, Florida Panthers, and Ottawa Senators.
"This is a chance for a Dustin Jeffrey or a Luca Caputi to be in charge.  They are the guys first in line and the guys who know the drill and are leading the way a opposed to taking the third or fourth fiddle to the NHL players," he [Dan Blyma, Wilkes-Barre / Scranton head coach] continued.  "So, it's a great time for them to get their feet underneath them and to get going.  By the time they do get to camp,  now they are full stride and now they have been a little more confident with their passing and it's not such a big deal to go with the NHL guys.  I think it's a great thing and it's huge for them.  It's great for the players to compete against other players in similar situations.  So, now we can see a Luca Caputi compete against his peers and we can say that, in his class of peers, he's a class above them as opposed to seeing them going against NHL guys and, if he doesn't have a good camp, ou really can't say that he's not there yet.  You just can't expect him to be there.  If he is, that's to his credit.  But, this really gives all the players a chance to show what they can do and it gives us a really good chance to evaluate them."
Pittsburgh opens the tournament on Saturday against Toronto at 6:00 PM.  They take on Florida on Sunday at 2:00 PM and end the tournament against Ottawa at 2:00 PM on Monday.  They're hoping to repeat last season's tournament victory.

There's also an interesting Pittsburgh Tribune-Review article on the viewpoints of different independent scouts on this year's prospects; one such scout is quoted as saying this year's prospects are an "uninspiring group."

No comments: