Posts Tagged ‘Scouting’

Scouting Report – 3/24/2017 – Alex Kile

March 25, 2017 - By

Rochester’s new ATO performed admirably on the left wing in his first game at the Blue Cross Arena. After finishing his senior year at Michigan with 7 goals and 7 assists, Alex Kile was quick to get on the score sheet for the Amerks, netting his first goal Friday night. Though he looked a bit raw, his performance was very encouraging. I’m going to rate him an A-.

Offensively, Kile’s hard work allowed him to grow into the game very nicely. In the first period he was very shaky on the puck and struggled to find teammates starting the breakout. Alex was also slow in transition, and as a result was not able to make an impact on the rush. However, he was much more successful once possession was set up in the offensive zone. Kile’s best asset was his commitment to driving the net. In the second, he made a nice backdoor cut behind a defenseman allowing him to deflect Patrick Mullen’s shot between the legs of the Springfield net-minder. He continued to make an impact in front of the net in the latter stages of the game. While on the power play he set up a great screen [...]Read More

Scouting Report – 3/10/2017 – Mac Bennett

March 12, 2017 - By

Though Mac Bennett was among the Amerks best players on Wednesday, he did not receive a similar amount of ice time on Friday night. For that reason I am not going to assign a rating to his performance. I think he played well, but his identity as a forward still remains quite foggy.

Offensively, Bennett was not able to contribute. I thought he worked very hard, but chemistry on the breakout was a major issue. They had difficulty clearing the zone and as a result, spent very little time in the opponents half. The lack of chemistry was even more evident in neutral ice. Early on, Bennett tried cutting behind Cornel to set up a drop pass entering the zone. Unfortunately, Cornel did not expect it and the two collided resulting in a turnover. Though zone entry was a struggle, Bennett was able to get a few pucks deep. However, it was very rare that an Amerk was able to retrieve it.

Defensively, Bennett seemed much more comfortable. He pressured the puck well, and back-checked exceptionally. On one occasion he harassed his man from behind his net all the way into the offensive zone before basting him into the glass. [...]Read More

Scouting Report – 3/8/2017 – Eric Cornel

March 10, 2017 - By

Going into Wednesday night, I had very low expectations for Eric Cornel. He by no means surpassed them. I am going to rate his performance an E, for Elmira. It was made very clear throughout the night his primary focus was on playing safe defensive hockey. In my eyes, Cornel only put fourth one shift of impressive hockey the entire game, during which he took two very good low shots that generated big rebounds.

For the majority of the night, Cornel offered very little offensively. He was most ineffective on the breakout. Early in the game, with plenty of time and no one around, he panicked flipping the puck high off the glass and right at the feet of a Marlie defender. Later on, he had a chance to get behind defenders and start an odd man rush. Instead of skating into space along the wing (the natural choice for a winger), he cut inside towards the defender. Not surprisingly, the pass from Austin went up the wing and missed him completely. Cornel showed good hustle to beat the icing call, but missed a big opportunity. Finally, during an odd man rush, he failed to get around his man and [...]Read More

Scouting Report – 3/4/2017 – Justin Vaive

March 5, 2017 - By

Though Rochester might already be eliminated from playoff contention, they could have finally found a winning formula. Their dismantling of Sound Tigers on Saturday night was by far one of the most physical games they have played all year. I expect this type of effort was exactly what coach Lambert was looking for when saying, “The team needs to play the way they are supposed to play.” As a result, they outshot the visitors 44 to 16. However, not everyone bought into the physical style of dump and chase hockey. Nick Baptiste continued to struggle; He seemed more interested in trying to stickhandle past the entire Bridgeport team rather than dumping the puck. Consequentially, the most talented player on the roster was rendered completely ineffective.

On the other hand, Justin Vaive flourished. I am going to rate his performance an A-. He almost perfectly performed the role of a 4th line winger. If he had dropped the gloves after an enemy winger ran Ullmark knocking the net off its moorings, he would have received my first A of the year.

Offensively, Vaive put forth the effort of a man fighting to keep his career alive. When the puck was dumped, [...]Read More

Scouting Report – 3/3/2017 – Mat Bodie

March 5, 2017 - By

In a game tainted by a lack of overall team effort, newcomer Mat Bodie played solid. Even though the Amerks were shutout he was able to make a positive offensive impact, and defensively there were very few holes in this game. I’m going to rate his performance a P for passive.

Offensively, I thought he played a very conservative game. A great deal of that comes from the aggressive risk taking example set by Fedun. Instead of long stretch passes, Bodie made several quick, deliberate passes on the breakout. When he had the opportunity dump the puck or skate all the way into the zone, he opted for short passes to his wingers waiting on the blue line. For this reason, I was surprised he was chosen over Fedun to lead the breakout on the first power play unit. Once they got setup, he cycled the puck quickly and moved very well; but was not a threat to shoot. That theme continued throughout the night. From the point, he only made a few attempts to shoot the puck into traffic. Each time a defender blocked his shot before it could get close to the net. I think he has [...]Read More

Scouting Report – 2/24/17 – Derek Grant

February 26, 2017 - By

Friday night the Amerks suffered their most demoralizing loss of the year, devastating their playoff chances. Even in the face of what might have been a season defining result; there were plenty of positives. Hudson Fasching continued his hot streak scoring two goals. Brady Austin continued to make progress offensively, adding a tally of his own on a picturesque slapper off the far post. And the Rochester faithful finally got their first look at Derek Grant in an Amerks sweater.

After the long wait, he did not disappoint. He notched two assists and went 15 for 25 in the face off circle. Grant even took the place of Cal O’Reilly as Coach Lambert’s go-to face off specialist in the third period. His physicality and playmaking ability in between Fasching and Nylander turned that line into the most productive unit of the night. I am going to rate his performance a B+.

Offensively, Grant was a near perfect fit for the Amerks. His work in the face off circle allowed them to enjoy the majority of puck possession while on the ice, and he also made the most of his opportunities on the breakout by getting into great positions in [...]Read More

Scouting Report – 2/22/17 – Tim Kennedy

February 24, 2017 - By

Even though the Amerks put forth their best lineup of the year Wednesday night in Buffalo, fans were still left wanting more. The return of Bailey, Baptiste, and Rodrigues was tarnished by a lack of effort and an All Star game feel. Thankfully the backbone of the Amerks this year (Linus Ullmark) stood strong with 39 saves. Karabacek also played well extending his goal scoring streak.

Another player making a notable return was Buffalo native Tim Kennedy. Though effort was not an issue, Kennedy struggled to make an impact. With a man advantage, at even strength, and on the kill, every part of Kennedy’s game was average. Fittingly, I will rate his performance a C.

On the power play Kennedy played a very minor role. He contributed nothing to zone entry, just waiting at the blue line for a dump. After the Amerks were set up, he assumed his position in the slot waiting for a deflection. Surrounded by Comets, the puck very rarely found his stick. He was able to redirect a shass (shot-pass) from Fedun on the point; unfortunately, it ricocheted harmlessly into the chest of the waiting netminder. Kennedy was no doubt limited by the role [...]Read More

Scouting Report – 2/19/17 – Taylor Fedun

February 22, 2017 - By

The presence of Taylor Fedun kick started the Americans back to winning ways on Sunday night. The team is now 12-9 in the 21 games he has put on an Amerks sweater, and 9-21 without him. In addition to a great overall game, he registered an assist bringing him to 18 points on the year and 0.86 points per game. He trails only Cal O’Reilly and Cole Schneider (.93 and .94). I am going to rate his performance a B+.

Offensive production is without question the most important aspect of Fedun’s game. His ability to skate the puck has been a difference maker since he arrived in Rochester. Sunday night was more of the same. Fedun led the breakout with patience under pressure and executed a few of his trademark two line stretch passes. His ability to find the sticks of teammates is unrivaled by anyone on the roster. The area the Amerks missed his talents the most was on the power play. However, in his return they were 0-4 with a man advantage. His ability to skate the puck made zone entry a breeze, his passing on the point opened countless shooting lanes, but Fedun’s shooting was awful. During [...]Read More

Scouting Report – 2/17/17 – Alexander Nylander

February 19, 2017 - By

The play of Nylander Friday was a microcosm of his time with the Amerks. Throughout the night he showed flashes of the first round talent he possesses. But, ultimately was defined by the glaring weaknesses in his game. I am going to rate his performance a C-. After comparing his style of play with Sweden to the effort he has put forth in Rochester, I am beginning to question his organizational fit.

There are two main differences between Nylander’s usage in Rochester and Sweden; his role on the power play, and on the rush. With a man advantage at the World Juniors, Nylander was extremely effective on the left point. He has strong body control and a right-handed shot giving a quick trigger. He picked out a few great cross-ice passes that led to assists, and was also in position to skate the puck. Against the Sound Tigers he spent all his time on the wing waiting for his teammates to dump the puck in. Nylander is painfully ineffective digging the puck out from the boards. His lack of desire to play physical hockey was on display as the Amerks had a difficult time getting set up. With Sweden this [...]Read More

Scouting Report – 2/10/17 – Patrick Mullen

February 12, 2017 - By

By Dennis Allen, Jr.

Friday night the Amerks suffered a debilitating 3-2 loss to the Devils. Their third period collapse is only the latest example of the team’s inability to put together 60 minutes of good hockey. Captain Cal was by far the best player of the night for Rochester. He was a team best 19 of 26 in the face-off circle and assisted on the second goal. The defensive pairing of Burgdoerfer and Mullen also played very well. Burgdoerfer is unquestionably the best defenseman on the roster, and it shows every time he steps out on the ice.

Patrick Mullen played a very steady mistake free game. I am going to rate his performance a B-. The Devils weren’t able to give Mullen much work; but he performed admirably when called upon. Late in the third the newest Amerk made what looked to be a game saving stop from his knees when Ullmark was pulled out of the crease.

Offensively, Mullen showed bright spots, but ultimately wasn’t able to do enough to be impactful. He was very conservative passing the puck to start the breakout. Most times he was unable to find the stick of a forward and [...]Read More

Scouting Report – 2/9/17 – Justin Bailey

February 10, 2017 - By

By Dennis Allen, Jr.

Thursday night the Sabres were dominated by a much better Anaheim Ducks team. A late rally when the game was out of reach narrowly kept them from being doubled up in shots. They were unable to contain Corey Perry who finished with two goals and an assist in this one-sided affair. Strength vs. strength, the Sabres top line just wasn’t able to measure up. However, I was very impressed with what I saw from the Bailey-Reinhart-Gionta line. They enjoyed most of the possession when on the ice, and created some really good chances.

After watching Bailey during the 10 minuets of ice time he received, I am certain that he belongs at the NHL level. I am going to rate his performance a B+. He wasn’t able find the net, but he did register his first NHL assist. He was able to leave his mark on the game even with limited ice time.

Offensively, Bailey was the same lightning rod that he has been in Rochester. It very quickly became clear that his speed will still be a factor at the NHL level. On two separate occasions Bailey skated the puck all the way [...]Read More

Scouting Report – 1/27/17 – Brady Austin

January 29, 2017 - By

By Dennis Allen, Jr.

The Amerks continued to slide Friday night dropping their third straight game. During that stretch they have also managed only one goal per contest. It seems the absence of Captain Cal has had a profound impact on the scoring output of both Cole Schneider and Nick Baptiste. In what is becoming an all too familiar site, the one-man show of Justin Bailey was not enough. Even with the Ice Caps starting to slide, I fear the lack of organizational depth is an obstacle too big to overcome. In this troubling stretch one of the major bright spots has been the play of the top defensive pairing.

Brady Austin played his usual steady brand of hockey. I am going to rate him a B+. Unfortunately, he was on the ice for both Albany goals or he might have earned my first outright A of the year. In the final two periods he was able to bring a physical aspect that his game has lacked at times.

Austin is not exactly known for his offensive prowess, but tonight was one of his better games. His passes out of the back were measured and resulted in only one turnover [...]Read More