Avs top 6 picks
Shatternkirk is an undersized, strong skating defenseman, with great puck handling skills. He was the captain of the US under-18 team and he has demonstrated tremendous leadership qualities. Shattenkirk possesses excellent offensive abilities, which make him a valuable asset on the power play. He is a solid puck moving defenseman who should fit in nicely in the new NHL patrolling the Avalanche blueline.
Colby Cohen A skilled offensive defenseman… has good puck skills and a good shot from the point… makes good passes and sees the ice well… needs to improve his defensive positioning and the consistency of his work ethic.
T.J. GALIARDI Galiardi is an instinctive playmaker with tremendous scoring capability. He is very smart, patient and creative with the puck. Those features along with his great on-ice vision help make him an efficient puck distributor who can easily find open teammates as well. One characteristic that makes Galiardi such an outstanding player is his ability to blend those brilliant puck skills with the mental side of the game. He can be deceptive and what the opposition is reading isn't always what he is thinking. While Galiardi is a strong competitor and has the puck skills needed to be successful, being more aggressive more often in his puck pursuits would not only make him more difficult to play against but also make him a much more valuable asset to his team. Galiardi is also a superb skater, combining power and speed with immense fluidness in his long strides. As he continues to develop his size and strength, the power and quickness in those strides will become more pronounced.
Dartmouth head coach Bob Gaudet's comments on Galiardi: "T.J. broke into the college ranks and developed very quickly. T.J. has got an offensive flare. The offensive side of the game appears to come very naturally to him as far as the understanding and hockey intellect side of it. When his body (development) catches up, T.J. is going to be even more dominant and really something special."
Trevor Cann 2006-07: The 5’11, Oakville, ON native posted respectable numbers this season with a 3.69 GAA and .909 save percentage over 62 games for a struggling Petes franchise, which was reflected in his 23-32-5 record. A last-minute addition to the Canadian World Junior camp, Cann performed admirably under duress all season and has the makings of a solid netminder. Trevor Cann is a smallish netminder with a bulldog mentality who battled hard all season long behind a young and inexperienced defence in Peterborough. Saw tons of rubber and occasionally got shelled, but always came back strong and never wilted on his team mentally. Though only 5-11, Cann is powerfully put together and hangs tough with traffic around the crease. He's quick both side-to-side and down-to-up, and plays his angles well. He'll need to improve his glove hand and rebound control to succeed at the next level.
Brad Malone Over the last week I've been trying to identify suitors for Cushing Prep rightwing Brad Malone. Malone is the cousin of NHLer Ryan Malone, and his dad Jim was a first round pick of the New York Rangers in 1980. Malone grew up in Miramichi, New Brunswick, and moved on to Cushing Academy as a sophomore last season. While Angelo Esposito drew much of the attention in the Quebec midget this past June, Malone was the 4th rated player, but because of his announced intention to go the NCAA route, he wasn't selected until the 4th round. At 6'3, he's a power winger with good puck skills, having potted 4 goals and an assist in 5 games for the Atlantic team during the recent World Under-17. He projects as a second round pick in the 2007 NHL draft. Malone is a junior, so will be a 2007 recruit. Last year he indicated an interest in going to school in the Boston area, but as I noted in my January 17th post, scholarship spots for the Boston schools are thin. Maine is reported to have interest, as do western schools Denver, North Dakota and Michigan.
KENT PATTERSON is really Red Line's choice as the least heralded sleeper goaltender pick of the draft. He's a stand-up netminder who battles hard and hates to lose. He brings competitive fire and plays with a reassuring confidence that is settling to teammates. Plus he's the youngest player in this or any other year's draft. With a Sept. 15 birthdate, if he were born just a few hours later, he would not be eligible until 2008. So he's got a lot more upside on the developmental curve.