Quick Monday Thoughts…

Only was able to catch some of the mid-afternoon sessions today, watching the vets get put through some drills and then play a couple of 40 minute (2 20 minute halfs) scrimmages…some quick thoughts…

— In the first session, Jason Grecica showed himself very well, scoring a couple of goals – one on a greasy rebound, the other on a partial breakaway, ripping it top shelf from in tight on Kurtis Mucha for a beauty of a goal – in his teams win.  Grecica looks great considering he sat out an entire season with knee surgeries.

— Nino Neiderreiter also scored a dandy goal with a stick-handle dangle along the goal line that had him slide it in as he was going behind the net.

— The goaltenders showed well all day with Mucha, Corbin Boes and Keith Hamilton all putting in good performances.  Mucha robbed Luke Walker with a great glove hand in tight while Boes also had a stellar glove save at one point.  Hamilton was steady in his 40 minutes, not allowing a goal.

— Chris Francis dominated his sessions, scoring three goals and setting up two others…he looks ready to dominate the WHL this season.

— Brett Ponich showed off some new skating skills and led the rush a few times that had me looking to make sure it was #6.

— Some of the younger players got to suit up with the vets, including A.J. Michaelson, Jake Montgomery and Corbin Boes.

— Ryan Johansen’s speed surprises me every time I see it and he really uses his long reach to his advantage.

Any way you look at it, there are some serious battles for spots on the 2009-10 roster and the scrimmages starting Wednesday afternoon should be played at levels not usually seen during training camp.  Guys are fighting for their jobs…in the end, the Coaching and Scouting staffs will have some long meetings to determine who stays and who doesn’t…I’m glad I don’t have to make the calls.

Lastly…if you haven’t already, go to www.winterhawks.com and check out the Hawks new site…looks good!

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  1. Perhaps I’m stuck in the past, but often times when I think about Chris Francis, I think about the loss of his father last year, and how he (and how the ‘Hawks) handled it. He was on a last place team, yet he made sure to minimize his downtime. Francis’ dedication to the game earns my utmost respect, and I look forward to another season of rooting for him.

  2. is killian hutt coming back i saw the rosters for the neely cup and did not see his name.

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