Miraculously, the QMJHL website has managed to get back up and (partially) operating. Despite technical difficulties galore, the Mazda Plays of the Week have been posted and they include a Tomas Jurco highlight from last weekend.
THREE DOGS MAKE THIS LIST
The Hockey Writers’ Christopher Ralph recently released his early Top 60 draft rankings for the upcoming NHL Entry Draft.
Sea Dogs forward Tomas Jurco was the highest rated Saint John player, coming in at number nine.
Defenseman Nathan Beaulieu came it a number 18 while forward Jonathan Huberdeau was ranked 21st.
PALOV PICKS FOUR
The Chronicle Herald’s Willy Palov released his top 10 list of QMJHL draft eligible players for the draft. Not surprisingly, Drummondville’s Sean Couturier was ranked first.
Tomas Jurco came in at the two position.
The second-year Slovak forward has the early goal scoring lead in the league, with five in his first two games. He had a solid season in 2009-10 but wasn’t given much first-line duty because the Sea Dogs were so stacked with veterans. He could blossom with more prime ice time as a sophomore.Jonathan Huberdeau was picked as the third best prospect.
He too had to scratch and claw for playing time last year but will be given every opportunity to thrive this year. He’s already tied for the league scoring lead with six points in his first two games.Nathan Beaulieu was ranked fourth.
Yes, that’s three Saint John players in a row. The son of former Saint John head coach Jacques Beaulieu has excellent hockey sense and plays a well-rounded game.And lastly, Zach Phillips comes in at number nine.
The Fredericton native gives the Sea Dogs four of the top nine prospects at this point, which is pretty remarkable. Phillips has already proven he is a good athlete but must now show he can put up the numbers. Scouts want to see his production measure up to his promise.BEAULIEU, JURCO SORT OF MAKE McKENZIE’S TOP 10
TSN’s Bob McKenzie released his first top 10 rankings for the upcoming NHL Draft. The pre-season rankings were made through a survey a scouts. McKenzie’s rankings are usually the most accurate and insightful come draft day.
Although no Sea Dogs made the list, two were given an honorable mention.
Other prospects who also received consideration include: Portland Winterhawk winger Ty Rattie; Slovak forward Tomas Jurco of the Saint John Sea Dogs, U.S. Under-18 defenceman Connnor Murphy, U.S. under-18 forward Tyler Biggs; Vancouver Giant defenceman David Musil, Boston University offensive freshman forward Matt Nieto and fellow Californian, Kelowna forward Shane McColgan; Soo Greyhound forward Daniel Catenacci; Oshawa General forward Lucas Lessio; Belleville Bull winger Austen Brassard; and Saint John Sea Dog defenceman Nathan Beaulieu.“Unbelievably, 27 prospects received at least one vote in the survey, where scouts were asked to rank their top 10 pre-season prospects and two honorable mentions,” writes McKenzie. “That is, by far, the most prospects who have received top 10 consideration in the pre-season Top 10 survey.”
Zach Phillips is prepared for the upcoming season – his final campaign before his draft year.
"It's always your dream since you're a little kid to get drafted into the NHL and make it to the NHL, but it always seems so far in the future," Phillips said to TheDaily Gleaner.
"But now that it's this close, it's kind of crazy. This season is the season that I need to perform in. It's what I've been working for all my life."