Sunday, July 24, 2016

Passingham, Sauve earn tryout contracts

More former Sea Dogs are on the move.

Ex-Dogs goaltender Troy Passingham has signed a professional tryout agreement with the Peoria Riverman of the Southern Professional Hockey League.

Passingham played in two games with Saint John during the 2007-08 season, posting a 3.02 goals against average and a .897 save percentage. He eventually moved on to the OHL where he spent time with the Windsor Spitfires and Sarnia Sting.

The “Monster from Mississauga” has spent the past five seasons with the Ryerson University Rams, posting some of the best numbers in school history. In 2015-16, the 25-year-old had a 2.47 GAA and .933 SV%.

In other alumni news, former Sea Dogs defenseman Yann Sauve has been signed to a tryout contract by Medvescak Zagrebof the KHL.

“We welcome Yann who’s also looking to come in and make a good impression that he can be a solid depth defenseman,” said Medvescak's Sports Director, Aaron Fox, in a news release. “He is a big strong skating two-way D whose game should translate to Europe.”

Medvescak is coached by former Charlottetown Islanders head coach Gordie Dwyer.

Sauve has been struggling to find a home, spending time with eight different minor league clubs over the past three seasons. He spent most of the 2015-16 campaign with the ECHL’s Manchester Monarchs where he posted two goals and 22 assists in 52 games.

The 26-year-old was a second-round pick of the Vancouver Canucks in the 2008 NHL Draft. He appeared in eight career NHL contests.

Sauve played in 251 games with Saint John over four seasons, registering 20 goals and 82 assists. He added six goals and 14 assists in 39 playoff games.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Sea Dogs prospects named to Futures List

Prospects Shane Bowers, Marc McLaughlin and Ben Mirageas all made the list, which features players available for the 2017 NHL Draft.

Bowers is the most notable of the three. The 16-year-old Halifax native registered 15 goals and 18 assists in 56 games with the USHL’s Waterloo Black Hawks last season. The centre was drafted by the Sea Dogs in the second round of this year’s QMJHL Entry Draft but is, at the moment, still committed to returning to Waterloo.

Future Considerations lists Bowers as the 27th best player available for the 2017 NHL Draft.

McLaughlin was drafted by Saint John in the 2015 draft. The 16-year-old forward had 24 goals and 19 assists in 33 games with Cushing Academy last year. The Massachusetts native is committed to St. Lawrence University for the 2018-19 season.

Mirageas was also picked by the Sea Dogs in the 2015 draft. The 17-year-old defenseman recorded six goals and 16 assists with Avon Old Farms last season. The Massachusetts native is committed to Providence College for 2018-19.

Charlottetown's Pierre-Olivier Joseph, the brother of Sea Dogs forward Mathieu Joseph, also made the list.

Nolan Patrick of the Brandon Wheat Kings is projected to go first overall in the 2017 NHL Draft.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Alumni Game cancelled

The 2016 Saint John Sea Dogs Alumni Game has been cancelled.

The game was originally scheduled to be held Aug. 12-13.

Alumni Games were held in 2015 and 2013.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Veleno merchandise already valuable

Joe Veleno signed items are already valuable, according to the website

The website has Veleno signed pucks priced at $39.99 and signed photos at $24.99 – and those prices don’t include shipping or the Canadian exchange rate.
On ebay, Veleno signed hockey cards and jersey cards are going for over $50.

Meanwhile, you can watch Veleno play at Harbour Station for $10 to $15.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Joyal joins Hockey Canada staff

Former Sea Dogs goaltender Maxime Joyal has been named the goaltending coach for Canada’s National Women’s Development Team.

Max Joyal is the goaltending coach with Limoilou, winning the provincial championship in 2016. He served as camp staff at Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team selection camp last summer, and was a consultant at Canada’s National Women’s Program goaltending camp in June. Joyal also won gold as the goaltending coach with Team Quebec at the 2015 Canada Winter Games.

Joyal played in 31 games with the Sea Dogs during the 2006-07 season, posting a 4.99 goals against average and a .862 save percentage.

After completing his junior career, Joyal played a couple games with the ECHL’s Elmira Jackals before joining the CIS' Concordia Stingers. The netminder spent four seasons at Concordia before heading to the LNAH.

According to the Hockey Canada website, “Canada’s National Women’s Development Team selection camp is scheduled for Aug. 5-14 in Calgary, followed by a three-game series against the United States’ Women’s Under-22 Select Team from Aug. 17-21. It will also participate at the Nations Cup in Germany in January 2017.” 

Monday, July 18, 2016

Fullerton finds new home in EIHL

Former Sea Dogs goaltender Travis Fullerton has found a new home.

After splitting last season between the LNAH and EIHL, Fullerton has signed with Edinburgh Capitals of the Elite Ice Hockey League.

“I’m delighted to have signed in Edinburgh for the upcoming season,” the 28-year-old said in a news release. “I’m excited by the group the club has put together and it was an easy choice to make.”

In 15 games with the EIHL’s Braehead Clan last season, Fullerton posted a 2.61 goals against average and a .919 save percentage. He joins a Capitals team that features former StFX defenseman Michael D’Orazio and ex-UNB forward Taylor MacDougall.

Fullerton has been playing professionally the past three seasons. Prior to turning pro, the Riverview native played five seasons with the UNB Varsity Reds, winning three national championships.

Fullerton spent parts of two seasons with the Sea Dogs in 2006-07 and 2007-08, helping the team reach its first ever QMJHL semifinal in 2008.

Photo via the EIHL website

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Two more Sea Dogs commit to CIS schools

Two more former Sea Dogs are heading to school this fall.

It was announced on Thursday that former Dogs defenseman Braydon Blight has committed to the Laurier Golden Hawks for the 2016-17 CIS season.
Blight, a third-round pick of the Kingston Frontenacs in the 2011 OHL draft, recorded three goals and five assists in 37 games with the Sea Dogs during the 2014-15 season. He was held pointless in five playoff games.

The 21-year-old played with the MHL’s Truro Bearcats last season where he registered nine goals and 17 assists in 45 games.

Laurier begins the OUA regular season on Oct. 6 at Ryerson University. They have a few unique exhibition games before that, visiting Saint Mary’s and Dalhousie on Sept. 23 and 24, respectively, and Ohio State on Oct. 2.

It was also announced on Thursday that former Sea Dogs forward Marcus Cuomo has committed to the StFX X-Men.
"He was a very popular teammate in his time in the QMJHL and we look forward to the energy and grit he will bring to our program," said StFX head coach Brad Peddle in a news release.

Cuomo spent the 2012-13 and 2013-14 seasons with the Sea Dogs, recording 10 goals and 20 assists in 116 games. He joined the Quebec Remparts for the 2014-15 season. Last year, he played in just eight MHL games with the Amherst Ramblers due to a knee injury.

The X-Men begin the 2016-17 AUS season on Oct. 7 at Dalhousie.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Noel blogging from Blackhawks camp

Sea Dogs forward Nathan Noel has been blogging from Chicago Blackhawks development camp.

Noel was having a strong game on Wednesday until he had to leave due to injury.

Everything was working. After scoring twice early on, I thought I was having a good game until I got injured and had to come out. 
I went for a check and hit the guy; his skate came up and caught me. It’s nothing major, so I should be all right.

Noel’s first, second and third blogs can be found on the Blackhawks website.

The 19-year-old St. John’s native is attending his first camp in Chicago after being selected by the club in the fourth round of this year’s NHL Draft.

Photo via Blackhawks website

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Zboril solid on first day of Bruins camp

Boston Bruins development camp began today and the first reviews of Jakub Zboril are positive.

According to Joe Haggerty of CSN New England, “he looked much better in this year’s development camp than he did last year.
“He was clearly in much better shape, and looked smooth moving the puck while also showing good battle for pucks during the 2-on-2 drills. While some may be throwing around the “bust” word for a kid that’s only 19 years old, Zboril still looked like a first rounder to me during the first day of development camp.”

More can be found at CSN New England.

Bruins development camp continues until Friday.

Meanwhile, here’s a nice article on Samuel Dove-McFalls from Philadelphia Flyers development camp.

2018 Memorial Cup bid guidelines coming

The CHL confirmed last week that the 2018 tournament, which will be the 100th Memorial Cup championship, can be bid on by any of the 60 CHL clubs.

Despite rumours that have circulated over the past couple years, the format for the tournament will remain the same with a host team and the champions of the QMJHL, OHL and WHL.

Interested clubs must submit their intent to bid by Sept. 1, 2016. The CHL will make its decision in the first week of February, 2017.

The 2017 Memorial Cup will be held in Windsor.

The Sea Dogs have stated their intentions to bid on the 2019 tournament, which will be the next Memorial Cup the QMJHL hosts.

In other news…

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Sea Dogs at NHL Development Camps

Development/prospects camps are winding down across the NHL.

While a few teams will be holding camps next week, most are wrapping up this weekend or already have. 

Plenty of current Sea Dogs attended or are attending summer camps. Here's a look at who is where:

Nathan NoelChicago BlackhawksDraft Pick
Luke GreenWinnipeg JetsDraft Pick
Jakub ZborilBoston BruinsDraft Pick
Spencer SmallmanCarolina HurricanesDraft Pick
Matthew HighmoreFlorida PanthersInvite
Thomas ChabotOttawa SenatorsDraft Pick
Samuel Dove-McFallsPhiladelphia FlyersDraft Pick
Bokondji ImamaTampa Bay LightningDraft Pick
Mathieu JosephTampa Bay LightningDraft Pick

And here's a look at some other notable names - including former Sea Dogs - who received camp invitations.

Matt MurphyAnaheim DucksInvite
Olivier LeblancArizona CoyotesInvite
Jake MassieChicago BlackhawksDraft/Trade
Jamie ArmstrongSt. Louis BluesInvite
Sam PovoroznioukSt. Louis BluesSignee
Adam MarshDetroit Red WingsDraft Pick
Marc BiegaNew Jersey DevilsInvite
Joel DaccordOttawa SenatorsDraft Pick

Photo: Marc Henwood/Station Nation

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Bruins not concerned about Zboril

The Boston Bruins announced Wednesday that the team’s development camp will begin next Tuesday, July 12.

Among the players named to the camp roster was Saint John Sea Dogs defenseman Jakub Zboril. After recording 13 fewer points in 2015-16 than he did the previous season, the Bruins’ 2015 first round pick has gotten some attention.

The Bruins, though, say they are not concerned with the 19-year-old’s development.

“But everything is on track with him,” Bruins assistant general manager Scott Bradley told CSN New England on June 26. “He’s going to come to camp and hopefully shines, and has a good year this year…patience.”

Bradley talks more about Zboril in this article.

Meanwhile, Carolina Hurricanes development is underway, which features Sea Dogs captain Spencer Smallman.
Former Sea Dogs forward Sam Povorozniouk is taking part in St. Louis Blues prospects camp. The Pioneer Press had a nice article on the Illinois native signing a tryout contract with the Chicago Wolves, which is the Blues’ AHL affiliate.

American Jamie Armstrong, a Sea Dogs prospect who was not selected in this year’s NHL Draft, is attending the Blues camp as well.

And while Ottawa Senators development camp has come to an end, the Ottawa Sun had a solid piece on the different paths prospects Thomas Chabot and Colin White are taking to the NHL.

Photo: Marc Henwood/Station Nation

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Sens left wanting more from Chabot

The reviews from Ottawa Senators development camp are in, and they are not all positive for Saint John Sea Dogs defenseman Thomas Chabot.

From Sportsnet:

“Average,” said Senators assistant general manager, Randy Lee when asked of the prospect’s performance. “I thought Thomas should have been a bit more intense. I think Thomas should have dominated.  
“Thomas and I have talked about it and I think he could have given a bit more to this camp.” 

The Ottawa Citizen has a similar article, where Chabot said, “I don’t think I did what they expected from me.”

The Citizen's Ken Warren went on TSN Radio 1200 to talk about Chabot’s development camp performance.
The 19-year-old recorded 11 goals and 45 points in 47 games with Saint John last season, adding another three goals and 21 points in 17 playoff matches. He also played a key defensive role for Team Canada at the world juniors.

It’s certainly unusual to hear negative reviews about Chabot, especially given that his career has been on a steady rise for several years. But this may just be the Senators way of challenging a player that could be playing a regular role for the team in the near future.

Chabot has a shot at making the Senators this season. If he doesn’t, it’s back to the Sea Dogs as he is not eligible for the AHL. He’ll no doubt play a staring role for Canada at this year’s world juniors.

Photo: Marc Henwood/Station Nation

Alex Grant signs with Bruins

Embed from Getty Images
Alex Grant, the original Sea Dog, has signed with the Boston Bruins.
Grant was part of the Arizona Coyotes organization last year, appearing in five NHL games. He recorded 11 goals and 31 assists in 69 games with the Springfield Falcons in 2015-16, placing him 10th in AHL scoring by defensemen.

The 27-year-old has registered 43 goals and 174 points in 323 career AHL games, which has turned him into a coveted offensive defenseman at the minor league level.

Grant, who has appeared in seven career NHL contests, was Saint John’s first ever draft pick in 2005. He spent three-and-a-half seasons with the club.

The Antigonish native joins current Sea Dogs defenseman Jakub Zboril in the Bruins system.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Sea Dogs prospect named to US U-18 roster

USA Hockey released its roster for the 2016 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament last week.

Among the 21 players named to the team was Sea Dogs prospect Ben Mirageas, a 6’1” defenseman from Massachusetts.

The 17-year-old was a ninth-round pick of the Sea Dogs in the 2015 QMJHL Entry Draft. He recorded six goals and 16 assists in 24 games with the Avon Old Farms School this past season. He also appeared in 12 games with the Neponset Valley River Rats U-18 team where he put up one goal and six helpers. As well, in four games with the USHL’s Bloomington Thunder, the d-man was held pointless in four matches.

The Thunder drafted Mirageas in the second-round of the 2015 USHL draft. According to Elite Prospects, he is committed to Providence College for the 2018-19 season.

The annual under-18 tournament takes place in early August in Breclav, Czech Republic and Bratislava, Slovakia.

Last month, Sea Dogs forward Joe Veleno and prospect Shane Bowers received invites to Canada’s under-18 camp.

And in other USA Hockey news:
Gould was a sixth-round pick in this year’s draft by the Sea Dogs. The 16-year-old forward - who's hometown is listed as Weymouth, MA, which is the same town that produced Charlie Coyle - is committed to Providence for the 2019-20 season.

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Imama, Joseph light up Lightning camp

Two Saint John Sea Dogs had solid showings at Tampa Bay Lightning development camp this past week.

From Erik Erlendsson, former Lightning beat writer for the Tamp Bay Trubune (RIP):
The Tampa Bay Times has some reaction from Joseph and some comments on Imama from Stacy Roest, the Lightning’s director of player development.