SEA DOGS PREVIEW
“Saint John hit a peak in the President's Cup final after Gallant tweaked his top six, putting Charlie Coyle in between Huberdeau and finisher par excellence Danick Gauthier and creating a second-to-none Phillips-Stanislav Galiev-Jurco line,” writes Neate Sager. “That's a potent mix, with four top-35 NHL picks who can make any line better. Gallant is a master line adjuster, so the Sea Dogs should be able to stay away from top defensive pairings.”
Saint John’s depth up front will be key in this tournament with some solid defensive teams involved. The Sea Dogs had their struggles scoring against Brandon Gormley, Morgan Ellis, and company in the regular season.
Patrick King of Sportsnet has listed the top 10 players that will be participating in the Memorial Cup. Three Sea Dogs are featured: Stanislav Galiev at No. 8, Charlie Coyle at No. 2, and Jonathan Huberdeau at No. 1.
“He tied for the playoff lead in points with teammate Stanislav Galiev and scored at nearly a goal-per-game pace with 15 in 17 games,” writes King about Coyle. “It's often been said he's an American Hockey League player playing junior and his stat line would indicate so. He will be very difficult to contain.”
Sportsnet’s “Fan Fuel” has a Memorial Cup preview. They pick the Sea Dogs to win it all.
AND ANOTHER PREVIEW
Oh, hey, it’s yet another Memorial Cup preview. This one is from Hockey Future’s.
“Although the club enjoyed a relatively easy path to the Memorial Cup, a lack of being tested shouldn't be an issue for the squad as it has last year's experience to draw from and their combination of skill, depth, and experience should overcome any minor deficiencies the Sea Dogs may have,” writes Jason Menard.
The Pipeline Show compares the defense of Saint John, Shawinigan, Edmonton, and London.
"Their top four is fantastic; [Kevin] Gagné, [Pierre] Durepos, you have Beaulieu and Charles-Olivier Roussel (NSH) and then I think it drops off a little bit with [Ian] Saab and [Jason] Seed after that," said Sportsnet’s Sam Cosentino.
Cosentino says the Oil Kings have the best defense in the tournament. The Dogs play Edmonton on Monday.
The CHL newsletter has an article on Sea Dogs forward Maxime Villemaire.
“He’s a big-body guy, he goes to the net hard and he skates real well,’’ head coach Gerard Gallant said about Villemaire. “He’s been healthy the last while for us and he’s an important player for us. You get those big-body guys who can skate and finish their checks and it’s real important this time of the year.’’
Villemaire played in 13 playoff games, recording three assists and 27 penalty minutes.
The Journal Pioneer has an article on the Sea Dogs and Gerard Gallant.
“We are real happy with the performance of our team this year,” said Gallant. “We were expected to win the league this year, and sometimes when you are expected (to win) it makes it real tough. I thought our guys really responded well.”
During Sportsnet’s Memorial Cup preview show on Thursday night, Sam Cosentino named Sea Dogs defenseman Kevin Gagne one of his “Steady Eddies” for the season.
Here’s who each analyst picked as the Memorial Cup winner.
Millard: Sea Dogs
Garrett: Oil Kings
Faulds: Sea Dogs
Cosentino: Sea Dogs
Broadhead: Sea Dogs
Also, Rob Faulds interviewed Charlie Coyle on the Sea Dogs bus during the program. Incredible move by Faulds.
And instead of preparing to host the Memorial Cup this week, here’s what went down in the Harbour Station parking lot today. Video via CHSJ.