"If you missed it live...click the archive..."
Last night we kicked off the show with discussions ranging from a David Frost sighting to WHL players demanding a trade and who's back or not from NHL camps. Guests last night included a new NCAA Head Coach who already has a stellar reputation, one of our CHL media regulars looking at who is and isn't still at NHL camps, a look at the Phoenix Coyotes and a 2011 eligible prospect who'd be getting top-10 hype if he were a few inches taller.
First up was Mark Osiecki, the new head coach for the Ohio State Buckeyes. Osiecki left an assistant coaching post at Wisconsin to be the head man and gave us his impressions of the team he's taken over. We discussed how he became a defenceman guru producing some very talented blueliners. Osiecki feels every blueliner he coached at Wisconsin last year will play in the NHL, which is an incredible accomplishment should it happen. Former Badger defenceman and current Oiler Tom Gilbert told me that Osiecki was instrumental in his development and used realistic drills in practice. Like having players block shots, using real pucks, as opposed to the sponge pucks most coaches use to prevent injuries. The Buckeye bench boss also told us about future OSU defenceman Troy Hesketh who was a 2009 Oilers draft pick.
From the NCAA we moved onto the CHL with Neate Sager of Buzzing the Net on Yahoo Sports. We discussed players who have been sent back (Ryan Ellis-Windsor, Kirill Kabanov-Moncton) and those who are still at camps like Erik Gudbrandon who is still with Florida. We asked Neate about the Kingston Frontenacs, who don't exactly have the best reputation among OHL teams and whether or not the Panthers, coached by former OHL bench boss Peter DeBoer, would keep him in Florida because of the Frontenacs. We also wondered out loud about how Kirill Kabanov will play out in Moncton after a disastrous season last year with the Wildcats.
The Phoenix Coyotes were in Calgary Tuesday night and will continue their Alberta tour with a stop in Edmonton Wednesday night, so Dave Vest joined us to discuss which prospects have a shot at sticking in the desert. Is this the year Kyle Turris breaks through with a productive NHL season and are the Coyotes frustrated with his progress. To be clear TPS has always said the Coyotes rushed Turris to the NHL, but this is a new management and we applaud them for trying to correct the situation. Still Turris needs to make the big club this year. Mikael Boedker, Viktor Thinkinov and others came up, as well as Oliver Ekman-Larsson who was a 2009 draft pick but is turning heads in Coyote camp.
Our 2011 draft prospect hails from Ann Arbour, Michigan by way of California. Rocco Grimaldi plays for the USNDT Under 18 squad and is hoping to grow on last year's offensive display. He put up 40 assists and helped his country win the U18 World Championship. Grimaldi's family moved east when he was young so he could play against better competition and so far the plan has worked. He is small, but speedy with lightning quick hands.
To hear these conversations, click here, and tune in Saturday morning when Hockey Night in Canada Radio host Jeff Marek joins us for a Calder Trophy preview.