Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Ice in the CHL drafts

The Ice have had some action in the Canadian Major Junior drafts.

Current Ice player Adam Erne was chosen 22nd by the Halifax Mooseheads in the QMJHL draft. Former Indianapolis Ice player and Mooseheads GM Cam Russell had a pretty good summation of Erne's play in this Canadian newspaper: "He played in the USHL as a 15-year-old last year so that tells you something. That’s pretty rare. He’s a real good player. He’s a solidly built kid who likes to hit and can score. He’ll be a big addition if we can get him to come to Halifax."

The Quebec Remparts picked Ice goaltender Jon Gillies in the ninth round. Gillies is already committed to Northeastern University and play collegiately.

Ice Futures Draft selection Jeremy Gregoire was chosen sixth by Chicoutimi, but there is much intrigue in Canada as to whether or not he -- and several other top picks -- will report to their Canadian teams or play in the USHL. Gregoire attended the QMJHL Draft and said he was pleased to be selected by the Sangueens and GM Guy Carbonneau, but in this article, he said (translated from French): "(The Ice and Sangueens) are two similar organizations, I will meet them both and see the small differences that exist. I'm in no hurry to make my choice, I give myself the summer," he said. Sangueens CEO Joe Canale said the odds of him going to Indiana or to the QMJHL are "50-50" in this article. He is described as a "born leader, who leads by example," and has captain material. 

Of course, as has been heavily-covered, Max Domi's overtures to playing in U.S. college (and therefore in the USHL) didn't keep Kingston from drafting him eighth in the OHL Priority Selection draft. Justin Bailey, the Ice's No. 1 pick in the Futures Draft, was chosen by the Kitchener Rangers in the seventh round. 

The Western Hockey League's Bantam Draft selects 13 and 14-year-olds, so that would be less likely to affect players on USHL radar screens. 

If everyone reports, the Ice will have a loaded, talented offensive team for next season, anchored by a goaltender who had a great 2010-11 in Jon Gillies and a handful of veterans. 

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