Thursday, June 28, 2018

Sea Dogs make two picks in Import Draft

For a second straight year, the Saint John Sea Dogs made two selections in the CHL Import Draft.

Saint John had the first overall pick in this year's draft and selected highly touted Slovakian forward Maxim Cajkovic. Then, with the 61st selection, the Sea Dogs added another forward, picking Filip Prikryl of the Czech Republic.

“Our team philosophy with import spots is that they are used for elite goal scoring and point producing top six forwards,” said Sea Dogs president and general manager Trevor Georgie. “That is going to be the composition we strive for year after year, especially as we build for our next championship.”

Both are 17 and are eligible for the 2019 NHL Draft. Cajkovic is projected to be a first round pick.

“He has a great toolbox, he’s a smart player, and he will grow with our young talented nucleus,” said Georgie about Cajkovic. “He is excited to be a Sea Dog. He can’t wait to get here and will be very motivated in his NHL Draft year. He is very proud to wear our jersey and wants to be part of what is happening here in Saint John.”
Cajkovic comes to Saint John after spending this past season with the Malmo Redhawks junior program in Sweden (this is a feat in itself as very few players from Sweden make the switch to the CHL). He put up exceptional numbers last year, recording 24 goals in 38 games between the under-18 and under-20 teams.
Cajkovic was dominant at the World Under-18 Hockey Championship this year, finishing second in tournament scoring with four goals and seven assists in five games. American Jack Hughes, considered the top prospect for the 2019 NHL Draft, finished with one more point.

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Sea Dogs to pick first in Import Draft

The Saint John Sea Dogs will pick first overall in Thursday's CHL Import Draft.

This will mark the second time in franchise history that Saint John has selected first. In 2009, the Sea Dogs picked Stanislav Galiev with the top pick.

Thursday's draft begins at noon Atlantic time and will be conducted online. Fans can follow along on the CHL website.

Saint John also has the 61st pick in the draft (it will be much higher with many teams passing on picks) but it appears the team will make one selection. The Dogs traded defenceman Radim Salda to Rimouski recently, making Ostap Safin the lone import remaining on the squad.

As rumoured, goaltenders will be eligible to be selected in the Import Draft for the first time since 2013, which puts an end to a dumb rule. Logic says the Sea Dogs will select a forward on Thursday given their influx on young defenceman and need for scoring help.

Saint John hasn't picked higher than fifth overall in the Import Draft since 2014 when they took Jakub Zboril. The team hasn't had great luck in the Draft since the Galiev/Jurco picks in 2009. Their Draft last year - where they took Safin and Salda - was probably the team's best since '09.

The WHL's Edmonton Oil Kings will select second on Thursday followed by the OHL's Sudbury Wolves.

Saturday, June 23, 2018

Veleno, Salda drafted into NHL

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Two former Saint John Sea Dogs had their names called at this weekend's NHL Draft in Dallas.

Former captain Joe Veleno was selected 30th overall by the Detroit Red Wings on Friday while defenceman Radim Salda was selected 206th overall by the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday.

Veleno was traded to the Drummondville Voltigeurs at Christmas while Salda was recently moved to the Rimouski Oceanic to free up an import spot.

Veleno, the first overall pick in the 2015 QMJHL Entry Draft and the first player to be granted exceptional player status in league history, slid down the draft rankings much of the season and slid further than many expected on Friday.

A post shared by Joseph Veleno (@__jv90__) on
“We had him extremely high on the board,” Red Wings director of amateur scouting Tyler Wright told the Detroit Free Press. “I don’t want to do a lot of comparisons but he skates a lot like Dylan Larkin. He plays the game kind of like Dylan Larkin. I don’t want to compare him to Larkin, but he fits the mold of what we’re trying to accomplish. We want to be fast, we want to be competitive, and we want to produce more offense.”

Three of Detroit's top four picks in this year's draft came from the QMJHL: Halifax's Filip Zadina at No. 6, Veleno at No. 30 and Halifax's Jared McIsaac at No. 36.

Salda went around where most had projected him to go. The Lightning have been drafting a lot of QMJHL talent in recent years, so it wasn't shocking to see them use a seventh round pick on the offensive defenseman.

78 players from the CHL were selected in this year's draft - which included 23 from the QMJHL. Drummondville and Halifax each had four players selected.

Monday, June 18, 2018

Observations from development camp

By Lorne Webster | SN Staff
QUISPAMSIS - The Saint John Sea Dogs did something a bit different this year, holding a development camp for their new draftees and prospects.

All of the Sea Dogs' 2018 draft choices were present with the exception of two of the six players invited to Team Canada's under-17 camp – Mathias Savoie (fourth round, 62nd overall) and Dawson Stairs (seventh round, 109th overall) as well as second round US draftee – Cade DeStefani. Saint John Vito’s standout defenceman Kale McCullum was originally listed but did not scrimmage Saturday afternoon at the qplex.

The group was supplemented by second year players Nathan Larose, Luke Wilson, Aiden MacIntosh and Jeremie Jacob along with goaltenders Tommy DaSilva and Stewart Bagnell.

While it is early and caution from one practice is required - it was readily apparent that the team’s excitement and the draft pundits’ accolades are warranted. This draft class could be as good as – possibly even better than - that of 2013, when the Sea Dogs drafted the likes of Nathan Noel, Thomas Chabot, Mathieu Joseph and Samuel Dove-McFalls.
Here are some takeaways from Saturday's on-ice action in Quispamsis:

Jeremie Poirier – who draws comparisons to Chabot or Nathan Beaulieu - is a dynamic skater and puck handler who is prepared to push the pace at all times.

William Villeneuve – who draws comparisons to Noah Dobson – is an extremely strong skater who oozes poise and skill.

Charlie DesRoches - another defenceman with lots of skill and poise. He is likely to remind a number of Sea Dogs faithful of Pierre Durepos.

Nathan Larose - looked to be bigger and stronger. The returnee made a couple of spectacular end-to-end rushes with ‘bar down’ finishes. Following a strong second half of last season, Larose appears ready to take his game to another level next year.

Huberdeau inducted into Sea Dogs Hall of Fame

SAINT JOHN - Jonathan Huberdeau became the first inductee into the Saint John Sea Dogs Hall of Fame on Saturday at the Trade and Convention Centre.

The induction capped off a two-and-a-half hour ceremony that featured several speeches, hot stoves and a ring ceremony for the 2016-17 Sea Dogs team.

The most notable part of the evening - other than Huberdeau's induction - was probably the fact that Mike Thomas was announced as the second inductee into the Hall. There will presumably be some kind of ceremony for Thomas in the future.

Here are a few other news and notes from the evening:

  • According to a Sea Dogs release, 14 former players were in attendance: Jonathan Huberdeau, Mike Thomas, Zack Phillips, Bailey Webster, Thomas Chabot, Bokondji Imama, Simon Bourque, Phil Richer, Alex Leduc, Dave Comeau, Kyle Ward, Mathieu Joseph, Chase Stewart, and Samuel Dove-McFalls.
  • Current players and prospects greeted fans as they entered the venue on a red carpet.
  • The Sea Dogs held a development camp at the qplex over the weekend, and those players were in attendance. Many speeches made mention of them, and there were moments where the event felt like a recruitment tool.
  • The event had a cool feel to it with the 2018 draft class in attendance. It really felt like the franchise's culture of success was being handed off to them.
  • The videos created for the evening were excellent. Also played was the QMJHL's 50th anniversary video, which was played at the Draft. If you haven't seen it, you'll probably be fired up enough to run through a wall after watching it.
  • Memorial Cup champions Mike Thomas, Zack Phillips and Jonathan Huberdeau were on one stove while the other featured members of the 2016-17 QMJHL championship team: Mathieu Joseph, Kyle Ward and Thomas Chabot. Tara Slone form Hometown Hockey hosted the discussions.
  • Chabot, as expected, did not go into great detail when asked about how this past season went for him. His current team, the Ottawa Senators, is on fire.
  • One of the better (and perhaps cheesiest) videos of the night came from Mike Kelly and Gerard Gallant, who coached Huberdeau during his Sea Dogs days and again with the Florida Panthers.
  • Sea Dogs CEO and majority owner Scott McCain said during his speech that the Sea Dogs will again bid to host the Memorial Cup - but only if the team is ready. The next time the QMJHL will host (following Halifax in 2019) is 2022.
  • Former Sea Dogs assistant coach Greg Leland, who was Huberdeau's billet dad, had the longest and most emotional speech of the night.
  • A Sea Dogs release stated that over 500 people attended the event.
  • There still haven't been many details released about the Hall itself.
  • I don't know if this format will be a yearly event, but it was very well done. Very few teams (if any) in the CHL hold events like this.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Huberdeau to be inducted into Sea Dogs Hall of Fame tonight

SAINT JOHN - Florida Panthers forward Jonathan Huberdeau will become the first player inducted into the Saint John Sea Dogs Hall of Fame tonight.

A ceremony will be held this evening at the Saint John Trade and Convention Centre to induct Huberdeau into the club's Hall. The 24-year-old was selected for induction by an esteemed panel of Sea Dogs stakeholders, according to a team press release.

The Sea Dogs announced last summer the creation of a Hall of Fame. Not many details have been announced about the Hall itself, though.

The 2016-17 President Cup winning Sea Dogs team will also be honoured this evening. Players in attendance will receive their championship rings.

Players expected to be in attendance tonight include Thomas Chabot, Mathieu Joseph, Samuel Dove-McFalls, Simon Bourque, Bailey Webster, Cole Reginato, Kyle Ward, David Comeau, Chase Stewart, Mike Thomas, Zack Phillips, Spencer Smallman, Boko Imama and more.

The event will be hosted by Tara Slone of Sportsnet's Hometown Hockey.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Report: Salda traded to Rimouski

SAINT JOHN - The Saint John Sea Dogs have traded defenceman Radim Salda to the Rimouski Oceanic.

The deal, which has not been made official by the league yet, will see the Sea Dogs receive a second and third round pick in the 2019 QMJHL Entry Draft for the offensive defensemen.
The Sea Dogs were expected to trade Salda as the team had no choice but to move him or forward Ostap Safin. Teams can carry only two imports, and with Saint John picking first in the CHL Import Draft, the Dogs had to make a deal.

Salda was one of the biggest surprises in the league last season, putting up 10 goals and 31 assists in 62 games. He was held pointless in seven games with the Czech Republic at the World Junior Hockey Championship. The 19-year-old, selected 113th overall in last year's Import Draft, was a relative unknown entering the 2017-18 season but could now hear his name called at the NHL Draft.

While the return isn't massive, it's pretty decent. Saint John was in a tough spot as teams knew they had to deal one of their imports.

Salda's loss is definitely a big loss for Saint John's defence - but there will be plenty of promising new faces filling his shoes on the blue line (faces that could use the experience and ice time in a rebuilding year like the one coming up).

The Sea Dogs will pick first in the June 28 CHL Import Draft, followed by the Edmonton Oil Kings, Sudbury Wolves and Shawinigan Cataractes.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

MHL holds annual draft

The Maritime Hockey League held its annual draft on Saturday in Berwick.

Three players selected by the Sea Dogs in this year's QMJHL Entry Draft heard their names selected. Defenceman Brendan Sibley and goaltender Stewart Bagnell, selected by Saint John last year, were also picked in the territorial portion of the draft.

Here's who went where, according to the MHL website:

Round 2: Kale McCallum (Edmundston Blizzard)
Round 6: Mathias Savoie (Campbellton Tigers)
Territorials 2: Brady Burns (Valley Wildcats)
Territorials 2: Stewart Bagnell (Miramichi Timberwolves)
Territorials 2: Brendon Sibley (Yarmouth Mariners)

The Valley Wildcats also selected four Sea Dogs in the QMJHL supplemental draft.
The St. Stephen Aces, meanwhile, had the first three overall picks in the draft. They selected Zachary Alchorn (forward - Saint John Vito's) first, Jack Morris (defenceman - Cape Breton West Islanders) second and Ethan Stuckless (forward - East Coast Blizzard) third.

Saturday, June 9, 2018

A look at who the Sea Dogs drafted

By Kevin Chambers | SN Staff

The 2018 QMJHL Entry Draft took place last weekend, so let's give a brief summary of each of the picks chosen by the Saint John Sea Dogs.

The reviews are based off the scouting reports provided by in their annual QMJHL Draft Guide and are only a small portion of what they have to offer.

Round 1 - No. 2 overall: William Villeneuve
RD - 6’1” and 154lbs
With their top pick in the draft the Sea Dogs went with William Villeneuve of the Magog Cantonniers. Villeneuve is a right handed shooting defenceman and is considered to be very intelligent, offensive defenceman that is very reliable in all three zones. His passing is considered to be excellent both on the power play and breaking out of his own zone. Villeneuve also likes to carry the puck up ice and does so very efficiently. He also kills penalties and is often trusted by his coaches in difficult situations playing against top level players in all situations. Villeneuve’s potential sees him as a first pairing defender and a power play quarterback.

Round 1 - No. 8 overall: Jeremie Poirier
LD - 6’0” and 177lbs
With their second selection in the opening round, the Sea Dogs went with another defender in Jeremie Poirier. Poirier can read the play very well and makes a strong first pass. Much like Villeneuve, this defender is also a quarterback on the power play - with the difference being that he shoots left handed. He has high-end puck skills and has a hard, accurate shot. Poirier, like many young defenders, will look to get stronger and continue to improve his defensive play in his own zone.

Round 1 - No. 15 overall: Joshua Lawrence
C - 5’ 9” and 163lbs
With the 15th overall selection, the Sea Dogs rolled the dice a little bit by selecting centre Joshua Lawrence, who spent last season with the Selects Hockey Academy U-16 program. Lawrence had verbally committed to Boston University for 2020-21. Lawrence has very quick hands and can score goals using his quick release and above average puck skills. Lawrence showed that he is ready to play against older players as he did this past season - which did not hamper his offensive production.

Round 2 - No. 29 overall: Brady Burns
C/LW - 5’8” and 139lbs
Brady Burns is an intelligent player with a very high compete level. Unfortunately for Burns, his season was cut short by injury, only getting in 26 games - but he was still able to pick up 39 points. Burns has very good edges and an outstanding work ethic that fans will enjoy. Burns projects to be more of a playmaking forward and will need to get a little bit stronger in the off-season as he does have a slender frame. Burns is the son of Acadia Axemen head coach Darren Burns.

Six Dogs prospects invited to U-17 camp

Six Saint John Sea Dogs prospects have been invited to Hockey Canada's Under-17 Development Camp.

Forwards Josh Lawrence (first round, 15th overall) and Dawson Stairs (seventh round, 109th overall); defencemen Charlie DesRoches (second round, 32nd overall), Jeremie Poirier (first round, eighth overall) and William Villeneuve (first round, second overall); and goaltender Mathias Savoie (fourth round, 62nd overall) have all been invited to the camp, which will take place July 21-27 at the Markin MacPhail Centre at WinSport’s Canada Olympic Park in Calgary.
According to Hockey Canada, "following the development camp, players will continue to be evaluated through the early season before 66 are named to one of three Canadian national teams – Team Canada Black, Team Canada Red, and Team Canada White."

While the Sea Dogs may be missing a chunk of their team for a couple weeks during this tournament, fans won't have to go far to watch them. The World Under-17 Hockey Challenge will take place Nov. 3-10 at Harbour Station and the qplex. Tickets are now available.

All six players were selected by the Sea Dogs in last weekend's QMJHL Entry Draft in Shawinigan. 111 players were invited in total, 28 of which have been drafted into the QMJHL.

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Campoli joining Sea Dogs

SAINT JOHN - After years of struggling to land players with NCAA experience or intentions, the Saint John Sea Dogs have had an extremely encouraging week.

After officially announcing that Josh Lawrence had decommitted from Boston University to sign with the Sea Dogs, the team has added overage defenceman Michael Campoli, who played a season at Boston College.

Saint John acquired Campoli at last weekend's QMJHL Entry Draft in a deal with the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada. The Dogs sent fourth and sixth round picks in 2019 to the Armada.
Campoli was a fourth round pick of Blainville-Boisbriand in the 2014 QMJHL Entry Draft but has never appeared in a Quebec league game. He spent the 2016-17 season at BC where he recorded an assist in 12 games (and presumably got very little ice time).

The Pointe-Claire, Que. native spent last season with the BCHL's Penticton Vees where he registered three goals and eight assists in 19 games.

Campoli will be part of a revamped Sea Dogs defence core, which will likely include three of the teams top 2018 draft picks in William Villeneuve, Jeremie Poirier and Charlie DesRoches (who has decommitted from Northeastern University). It will be young and inexperienced, but certainly a lot more promising and intriguing than last season's group.

It's believed that Saint John will deal defenceman Radim Salda in the coming weeks in order to make room for a new import. The Sea Dogs hold the first overall pick in this year's CHL Import Draft.

Sea Dogs sign Lawrence

SAINT JOHN - The Saint John Sea Dogs have landed a big fish.

Reports surfaced this afternoon that forward Josh Lawrence, a top prospect for this year's QMJHL Entry Draft, has signed with the Sea Dogs.

Lawrence, 16, had previously committed to Boston University. Wednesday's news ends a recent string of losses for the Sea Dogs when it comes to swinging players to take the major junior route over NCAA.

“We are thrilled to have Josh and his family join our Sea Dogs family,” Sea Dogs president and GM Trevor Georgie said in a release sent to Sportsnet. “He is a franchise centre. He is an elite offensive talent. He is a local rising star who has decided to commit to us, to his home province, and to the best developmental league in the world – the Canadian Hockey League.”

Lawrence was a top prospect for this year's draft, ranked sixth by QMJHL Central Scouting and ninth by He slid to the Sea Dogs at 15th because of his NCAA intentions.

Last season, the Fredericton native recorded 27 goals and 56 assists in 49 games with the Selects Hockey Academy under-16 team in Connecticut.

Saint John's second round pick, Charlie DesRoches, has, meanwhile, decommitted from Northeastern University and will be joining the Sea Dogs next season. The 16-year-old defenceman from Wellington, PEI played at the same school as Lawrence last year.

“It was one I had to think about a lot, but in the end I think I made the right choice,” DesRoches told The Journal Pioneer.

“They had a great draft, and have had a lot of success the last few years. They know how to win, and I’m really excited.”

It's early, obviously, but Lawrence and DesRoches are part of what has to be considered one of the best drafts in Sea Dogs history. The team also landed two of the top defensive prospects available - William Villeneuve and Jeremie Poirier. 

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Sea Dogs welcome new crop of players

SHAWINIGAN, Que. - The Saint John Sea Dogs drafted 17 new players on Saturday at the 2018 QMJHL Entry Draft.

The Sea Dogs had three first round picks and six in the top four rounds. The Dogs also pulled the trigger on a trade, acquiring the QMJHL rights of overage defenceman Michael Campoli.

Saint John drafted nine forwards, six defensemen and two goaltenders on Saturday. Here's the full list of players drafted (click here for further player info):

1st round, 2nd overall: William Villeneuve (D)
1st round, 8th overall: Jeremie Poirier (D)
1st round, 15th overall: Josh Lawrence (F)
2nd round, 29th overall: Brady Burns (F)
2nd round, 32nd overall: Charlie DesRoches (D)
4th round, 62nd overall: Mathieu Savoie (G)
5th round, 82nd overall Alexandre O'Neill (F)
6th round, 108th overall: Charles-Antoine Dumont (F)
7th round, 109th overall: Dawson Stairs (F)
8th round: 127th overall: Nicolas Kakouras (D)
8th round, 133rd overall: Kale McCallum (D)
10th round, 163rd overall: Connor Richard (F)
10th round, 165th overall: Connor Bradford (G)
10th round, 178th overall: Anthony Provost (F)
12th round, 199th overall: Riley Bezeau (F)
13th round, 217th overall: Simon Trottier (D)
14th round, 235th overall: William Gagnon (F)

The Sea Dogs moved up to select DesRoches, sending third (37th overall) and fourth round (67th overall) picks to the Charlottetown Islanders in exchange for the 32nd overall pick. In the 10th round, Saint John sent a 2019 ninth round pick to the Val-d'Or Foreurs to select 165th overall.

Both Lawrence and DesRoches have committed to NCAA programs: Lawrence, a Fredericton native, to Boston University and DesRoches, a PEI native, to Northeastern. Both played at the Selects Hockey Academy in Connecticut last season.

Saint John also did something they have rarely done in their history: go heavy on picking locals. This year, the Dogs drafted two players from the Saint John Vitos, one from Rothesay Netherwood and, unexpectedly, one from St. Malachy's High School.

This marked the eighth time in team history the Sea Dogs have used their first pick in the draft to select a defenceman (and the second straight year following Brendan Sibley in 2017).

Saint John will select first overall in the upcoming CHL Import Draft.

Sea Dogs acquire Campoli from Armada

SHAWINIGAN, Que. - The Saint John Sea Dogs made an unexpected move at Saturday's QMJHL Entry Draft.

During the seventh round, the Sea Dogs announced that they have acquired the QMJHL rights of Michael Campoli from the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada in exchange for fourth and sixth round picks in 2019.

Campoli, a 20-year-old defenceman, spent last season with the BCHL's Penticton Vees, recording three goals and eight assists in 19 games. A dual citizen who has spent time with the United States development program, Campoli spent the 2016-17 season at Boston College. He announced his departure from the program this past December.

A Pointe-Claire, Que. native, Campoli played midget with the Lac St. Louis Lions and was a fourth-round pick of the Armada in the 2014 QMJHL Entry Draft. He has never appeared in a QMJHL game.

If Campoli reports, Saint John's defence will look drastically different this coming season. Saint John also used their top two first round picks in Saturday's draft to select defencemen.

Sea Dogs make three picks in first round

SHAWINIGAN, Que. - The Saint John Sea Dogs went heavy on defence in this year's first round.

The Sea Dogs used both of their top 10 picks in the 2018 QMJHL Entry Draft to select defenceman, taking William Villeneuve second overall and Jeremy Poirier eighth overall.

Villeneuve was widely believed to be heading to Saint John after the Chicoutimi Sagueneens took Hendrix Lapierre with the first overall pick.

Villeneuve recorded nine goals and 25 assists in 40 games with the Quebec Midget AAA Hockey League's Magog Cantonniers last year. He added four goals and 15 points in 18 playoff games.

The 16-year-old is listed at 6'1" and 154 lbs.

"A right-handed offensive defenseman, he is able to get involved regularly on the attack when an opportunity arises, not hesitating to carry the puck from his own zone and support his forwards by offering options to them during counter-attacks," write "Excellent from the opposite blue line, he is particularly effective on the power play, where he is very active with the puck."

At No. 8, the Dogs picked up Poirer, a 6'0," 176 lbs defender who played with the Châteauguay Grenadiers last year. In 50 games, Poirier had five goals and 26 assists. He added a goal and five assists in 13 playoff games.

It's draft day

SHAWINIGAN, Que. - It's draft day in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.

A new crop of players will be drafted into the league today. The Chicoutimi Sagueneens won the league's draft lottery and will select first overall. There's always the possibility of a trade, but it appears the Sags will be using the selection.

The Saint John Sea Dogs are scheduled to pick second overall - the first of three picks in the opening round. At this time, they are also scheduled to pick again at eighth (acquired in the Joe Veleno trade) and 15th (acquired yesterday in the Cedric Pare deal).

Here's a look at Saint John's full list of selections:

1st round: 2nd, 8th, 15th
2nd round: 29th
3rd round: 37th
4th round: 62nd, 67th
5th round: 82nd
6th round: 108th
7th round: 109th
8th round: 127th, 133rd
9th round: None
10th round: 163rd, 178th
11th round: None
12th round: 199th
13th round: 217th
14th round: 235th

The Sea Dogs have not picked in the opening round since 2016. The team has never picked second overall before but have, of course, selected first overall on several occasions.

This will be a key draft for the Sea Dogs, as this will set the base for the team's rebuild. Last season was more a year zero, while this will be year one of the build back to contention.

Fans can watch the draft beginning at 11 a.m. on TVA Sports or follow it through the usual social media channels.

Friday, June 1, 2018

A look at the top prospects

Kevin Chambers | SN Staff

SHAWINIGAN, Que. - With the Saint John Sea Dogs drafting twice in the top 10, we decided to take a look at some of the names we might hear on QMJHL Entry Draft day.

The Sea Dogs currently hold the second and eighth overall selections (and the 15th - pending any other trades). This will be a crucial draft for Saint John's rebuilding process.

1. Hendrix Lapierre - Gatineau L'Intrepide
Forward - 5' 11" 161lbs

The No. 1 prospect hails from Gatineau, Que. and plays for the Gatineau L'Intrepide in the Quebec Midget AAA league. Lapierre is a skilled centre with a great understanding for the game both offensively and defensively. He has a very good release, protects the puck well, and is willing to play in all areas of the ice. This past season, Lapierre tallied a total of 17 goals and 40 assists for 57 points in 35 games. Lapierre also led the Gatorade Excellence Challenge in scoring by netting three goals while adding six assists for a tournament high nine points. He was a key factor in Team Quebec Blue's tournament victory.

2. William Villeneuve - Magog Cantonniers
Defense - 6' 0" 154lbs

The top rated defenseman in this year's draft class is William Villeneuve - who spent this past season playing with the Magog Cantonniers out of the Quebec Midget AAA Hockey League. Villeneuve is a slick skating defender and has an outstanding hockey IQ. He plays extremely well at both ends of the ice and is considered to be a two way defender. Villeneuve can QB a power play with a quality point shot and has creative playmaking ability while shutting down the opposing team's top players when called upon. It should be noted that Villeneuve also shoots right handed, which should be considered a plus for any team drafting him. This season, Villeneuve collected nine goals and 25 assists for 34 points in 40 games with Magog. Villeneuve took part in this year's Telus Cup and played very well, compiling five assist in his seven games and often played against opposing teams' top players.

3. Patrick Guay - Magog Cantonniers
Forward - 5' 8" 155lbs

Patrick Guay played with the previously mentioned Villeneuve on an outstanding Magog squad out of the QMAAA league. Guay is also the younger brother of Drummondville Voltigeurs forward Nicolas Guay. Guay put up some impressive numbers this season with the Cantonniers, amassing 34 goals and 30 assists for 64 points in just 39 games. He also finished in a tie for the league goal scoring title with Sea Dogs prospect Justin Hryckowian - who is a year older. While Guay can fill the net with an excellent release, he plays an intelligent two-way game. Guay also played in the Telus Cup tournament and showed more of a play making style to his game, picking up a goal and five assists in seven matches.