Monday, October 31, 2011

The Kids' a keeper...

A few NHL teams have had some tough decisions to make over the last few days, as their youngest of talent reached the ten game mark, the point of return or no return where NHL teams decide to send back to junior or keep the young players on their active rosters.

A few had an early head start on their journey, having been told to pack their bags, the latest being Winnipegs' Mark Scheifele, who was returned to the Barrie Colts, a move the Jets no doubt will help season him for next year and a full time slot with the Jets.

Likewise, the Ottawa Senators decided that their young prospect, Mika Zlbanejad would best learn his craft for one more year back in Sweden, even though he was a most pleasant surprise in the Senators camp this early season.

Some of the young guns however made impressions and made the cut , having made it rather hard to hand out the return to junior tickets.

Among the tour to draftees that remain in the Big Leagues for the season are:

Gabriel Landeskog of the Colorado Avalanche, Sean Couturier of the Philadelphia Flyers and Adam Larsson of the New Jersey Devils.

However, leading the parade of the prospects in the quest to stay up in the Big League, was Ryan Nugent Hopkins of Edmonton, if ever a junior wants the blue print on how to stay up with the big team, Nugent-Hopkins has provided it.

In the short ten game trial period, none of the youngest of guns has captivated the hockey world more than the exploits or Nugent-Hopkins.

On two consecutive Hockey Night In Canada nightcaps, he was one of the top players on the ice,  he scored two goals in his HNIC debut and came close to recording a third, again a week ago, Nugent-Hopkins gained one of the Oilers goals in a 2-0 victory over the Rangers.

There are some NHL teams that probably wish they could find scoring at that pace by November, Edmonton had it before Halloween.

His pace seemingly made the choice rather easy for the Oilers who added him to the regular season roster full time last week, it may be a long, cold winter in Northern Alberta and there have been some long seasons steeped in disappointment in the last few years, but the future sure looks bright as the line of Nugent Hopkins, Taylor Hall and Jordan Eberle offer up some reminders of the glory days of another Oiler team steeped in  youth.

One which if we remember correctly had a pretty good run of things over time.

Edmonton Journal-- Awesome to remain an Oiler: RNH
Edmonton Journal-- Coach has phenom playing to his strengths
Edmonton Journal-- Another stiff test for young guns
Edmonton Sun-- Nugent-Hopkins stays in the bigs
Edmonton Sun-- The Oilers took their Tweet time
Edmonton Sun-- "It would be Pretty Silly"
Edmonton Sun-- Ovechkin touts Oiiler young-guns' 'sick' moves
Edmonton Sun-- RNH a keeper for Oilers
Globe and Mail-- Nugent-Hopkins to remain with Oilers
National Post-- Nugent-Hopkins sticking with Oilers

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