I only have a brief entry from today's development camp sessions, as I was on baby duty today and found it pretty tough to multi-task. This "Mr. Mom" stuff is harder then I thought it would be...
So I got to the first session pretty late and managed to catch the end of Group B's session. Luckily, I was more interested in Group A today so that I could focus on a few "lesser known" players. Here are some thoughts from today:
- What more can be said about the "big guys"? Mark Scheifele, Jacob Trouba and Joshua Morrissey all looked very solid in what I saw today. I also thought that Morrissey looked much better in these drills, almost like he's getting more comfortable as he's going along.
- The trio of Scheifele, Morrissey and Cody Sol put on a clinic during some of the 3-on-3 drills. They were the best grouping that I saw.
- Ryan Olsen jumped out to me in a big way. He's a guy that I'm very intrigued to see how his winter progresses. Brennan Serville, Tanner Lane and Jimmy Lodge also made an impression.
- I spent way more time focusing on Group A, and saw a lot that I liked.
- All three goalies looked solid. I am so excited to see how Juho Olkinuora does in St. John's this coming season, but Jamie Phillips and Jason Kasdorf didn't disappoint either.
- Brenden Kichton finally did somethin today that really impressed me. He had looked okay to me so far, but during "walk-the-line" PP-style drill, he did it so smoothly and calmly and quickly that I can see how he could QB a powerplay.
- Julian Melchiori, Jan Kostalek and Ben Chiarot also did a nice job during this drill.
- Adam Lowry was the best player on the ice during this session. He's so big out there, but he doesn't look "awkward" in his stride like I seemed to recall him. He could be a very good player at the pro game, and soon.
- Nicolas Petan is so talented. He dipsy-doodled around a defender, twice, on the same play and scored a highlight-reel goal during a battle drill. His size will always be a factor, but the dude has skills.
- J.C. Lipon, Scott Kosmachuk, Andrew Copp, Austin Czarnik and Lukas Sutter (yes, even him) did enough for me to notice them.
- There is no question that the overall talent at this camp is better then last summer. They speed is up, the passes are crisper and the shots are harder. The drills also seem more "advanced", and the groups still manage to do them well. Good stuff.
I have very little negative to say about the prospects camp. However, most of these guys are at least a year or two away, if not 3 to 5. Other then Scheifele and Trouba, very few will have a chance to help the Winnipeg Jets any time soon, and I'm still pretty unimpressed with the big club's current roster as I still don't see the direction they're going. So while the future looks very bright, the here and now still does not, at least in my opinion. But at least the cupboards are looking more stocked.
Editor Ryan Blight will be covering the Winnipeg Jets' Development Camp all week. Stay tuned for his next instalment.