Top Prospects Game Exclusive Pt. 2

Dobber Sports

2008-02-16

 

Due to technical difficulties, there's no video- yet. So instead, here's an A-F- ranking of everyone who played in Canadian junior hockey's biggest showcase.

Luke Schenn- A+

You know how your gym teacher would sometimes join in floor hockey games if you were getting pasted? That's what it looked like at the 2008 Top Prospects Game when Luke Schenn was on the ice. Saying the 17 year-old had zero mistakes and zero panic doesn't come close to telling the story; he simply took command every time he had the puck. Schenn likely has blisters from his meteoric rise up the charts after a dominant  defensive showing.

Cody Hodgson- A+

While Steve Stamkos didn't dazzle, it's only fitting that a player I called a poor man's version of the phenom stood out. 6'0, 185 lbs offensive dynamo Cody Hodgson dominated with his vision and passing ability. The soon-to-be-18-year-old ran the table with three helpers, making pro-level passes. He'll be a top-seven pick.

Zach Boychuk- A+

A stay-at-home stud, a flashy passer… so who brought the hands? Zach Boychuk, that's who. While he tried a lot that didn't work and was almost laid out on a couple opportunities, you miss 100% of the shots you don't take. When they did work, Boychuk left the defenders seeing nothing but jock. The most entertaining player on the ice bar none, and he picked up a goal and two assists in the process.

Zach Bogosian- A

Last off the ice, sixth on the scoresheet, first in terms of offensive flash by a blueliner in the game. While he had a couple noticable defensive gaffes, Bogosian's offensive gifts were on full display. He played the puck with the confidence, skill and luster of a forward, and came away with the GWG. Once he irons out his defensive deficiencies, the 18 year-old will be a full five-tool blueliner.

Josh Bailey- A

Bailey is one of those names that CSB has ranked high, but no one ever really hears about. You can see what Central Scouting is talking about; while Bailey doesn't yet have game-breaking skills, the 6'1, 190 pivot makes decisions like a pro. Case-in-point: his first goal. On a routine offensive zone face-off, Bailey noticed that the D wasn't quite set in front of Q goalie Peter Delmas. Teammate Zach Boychuk won the draw, and Bailey, on the right side, wired a missle past Delmas. His second goal was also the result of a great read; sitting back, Bailey waited for Cody Hodgson to completely dismantle the D off the rush. With the D paying too much attention to the man, a trailing Bailey was in perfect position to jam in the rebound.

Colby Robak- B+

There may be more scouts from the Bugg line yet. I was excited to tell my brother all about smooth-skating Brandon Wheat Kings blueliner Colby Robak, but ten seconds into an Oil Kings game earlier in the year, the youngest Bugg exclaimed that Robak 'is like Jay Bouwmeester!'. On that night, Robak recorded an assist on a PP goal and generally looked composed. In the Top Prospects Game, Robak wasn't as noticable, but he made the pass of the game on a long-bomb from his own end that sent Jamie Arniel on a short-handed break. Small, but fast, smooth, and enormously intelligent as his team-leading +3 indicated.

Nicolas Deschamps- B+

He didn't register a point, but that was more luck than lack of effort. An injury fill-in, Deschamps brought it every shift, and made som