Cole Cassels and the Oshawa Generals Win 2015 Memorial Cup

Rhys Jessop
May 31 2015 09:03PM

After a monster regular season and an even better playoff run, Canucks prospect Cole Cassels is now a Memorial Cup champion after his Oshawa Generals beat the WHL champion Kelowna Rockets 2-1 in an overtime thriller. The Generals leaned heavily all tournament long, and although he didn't score in the final, he was tasked with playing heavy minutes and shutting down Edmonton Oilers prospect and tournament MVP Leon Draisaitl in the final game of the CHL's season.

Cassels was one of the OHL's best players for Oshawa's entire playoff run, scoring 10 goals and 21 assists in 21 games to help the Generals punch their ticket to the Memorial Cup, and added one goal and 3 assists in 3 Memorial Cup games.

Congratulations to Cole and the rest of the Generals on a fantastic season!

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Report: Benning Offering Eddie Lack for a Second Round Pick

Rhys Jessop
May 31 2015 05:05PM

Per the Ottawa Sun's Bruce Garrioch, Vancouver Canucks GM Jim Benning is trying to trade Eddie Lack and is seeking a second round pick in return for the burgeoning goalie.

Sigh.

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Utica Comets Deep Dive: Calder Cup Playoffs Round 2

Josh W
May 29 2015 03:00PM

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Courtesy: @lamogle

The Utica Comets are on their way towards the Calder Cup finals as they are already playing the Grand Rapids Griffins in the Western Conference final.  Things are looking up for the Comets as they were able to take a 2-1 series lead on the strength of a Sven Baertschi natural hat trick in game 3.

To get to the final the Comets had to spend nearly two weeks, and go the distance of a full seven game series with the Oklahoma City Barons.  In our preview we noted that the Comets were a stronger possession team, had a better depth of talent and the stronger goaltender.  Oklahoma City was stronger in term of special teams.

This turned out to be true as these areas played a key role in taking the series the full seven games.  Read past the jump to see what went down.

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Charting the Development of the Canucks Top Forward Prospects

money puck
May 29 2015 12:00PM

The team at Canucks Army has been pretty busy pumping out a lot of content on the Prospect Cohort Success % (PCS%) and PCS points per game (PCS p/GM). For primer on these new stats see the piece Josh Weissbock published earlier this week

In general, the PCS system finds the closest matches for a particular player in terms of age, league, height, and points, then calculates the percentage of that player's peers who play over 200 NHL games (PCS%) and the NHL points per game of those peers who successfully made the NHL (PCS p/GM). I argued recently, that when evaluating prospects we can use PCS% to evaluate the risk of a player not making the NHL, and PCS p/GM to estimate the reward associated with the player in terms of NHL scoring potential. 

The elegance of this model, is it allows you to track prospect development over team, by reassessing their PCS% and PCS p/GM after each season in what we call PCS% Development Curves. 

After the jump I'll review the PCS% Development Curves for the top Canucks Forward Prospects. 

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Are the Canucks Stuck with Ryan Miller?

J.D. Burke
May 29 2015 10:00AM

It wouldn't be summer in Vancouver without upheaval in the Canucks crease. So what better way to kick off this one with yet another episode in the long and tired history of goalie controversy this side of the Rockies? 

This, of course, was exactly what the Canucks were looking to avoid when they signed Ryan Miller to a three-year deal, worth $18-million last off-season. For most of the season at least, it was mission accomplished. Miller's numbers weren't sterling by any stretch of the imagination, but he was hardly a liability. 

Willie Desjardins is more loyal than most dogs and this old school trait lent itself well to maintaining the pecking order in net. The upstart Eddie Lack was played sparingly, seeing action maybe once every three or so weeks, before injuries forced him into a more prominent role. When the Canucks needed their goalie most, Lack delivered, dragging this team into the playoffs kicking and screaming.

Lack's value is now as high as it's ever been and with just the one season left on his contract, Canucks brass are faced with the reality that they might need to eschew their charismatic netminder out of town if for no other reason than logistics. Many would consider Miller's contract, which comes with a limited no-trade clause, prohibitive to any move of the aging tender - a move which, in theory, would facilitate Lack's succession to the throne.

Do the Canucks have the ability to move on from Miller, though? Lets find out, on the other side of the jump.

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