So this week the Dallas Stars wrapped up their Development for their young prospects and newly acquired draft picks, this young group of prospects were very impressive and big, and when I say big I mean everywhere from forwards to goalies, Dallas certainly has made drafting players with size a big part of their future. To wrap up after all the videos and articles I have read about camp, I am going to list the ten prospects I believe had the best camps.
10. Radek Faksa – Center – Kitchner Rangers
I certainly saw what a bunch of other scouts from Dallas saw in him when they took him 13th overall with this seasons first round draft pick, but he was definitely a bit raw and it would suit him better if he spent this season in the OHL with the Kitchner Rangers instead of burning a year of his Entry-Level Contract trying to fill a spot left by Derek Roy while he recovers from shoulder surgery.
9. Scott Glennie – Center/Left Wing – Texas Stars
The first round draft choice of the Dallas Stars in the 2009 draft has certainly had big knocks against him with labels of being a bust or a waste of a draft pick, but certainly has worked hard to improve, this development camp he certainly looked a lot more confident with the puck and could was a lot better at decision making. When training camp arrives expect Glennie to be competing with Cody Eakin and Tom Wandell for the shot to fill in Derek Roy’s spot on the second line regular ice time in the NHL.
8. Austin Smith – Right Wing – Texas Stars
Recently graduated from Colgate University the Dallas, Texas native drew much attention last season in the running to become the winner of the Hobey Baker award given to the overall best player collegiate hockey player in the nation, taking his talents to Austin this season with the Texas Stars Austin can show his great play that sets up many teammates and a shot that goalies respect.
7. Reilly Smith – Left Wing – Texas Stars
Also drew attention as a finalist for the Hobey Baker award Reilly Smith got a taste of the NHL last season and will be looking to make it back this season, in camp it certainly looked like he knew how to find the net and get in scoring position, certainly with Austin they can put on a show this season with the Texas Stars.
6. Alex Chiasson – Right Wing – Texas Stars
The big Boston University product saw his college career close and his professional career begin with the Texas Stars last season, he will be a big problem for defenseman to handle in front of the net, and literally big at 6’4 200+ pounds. Coming from the college level he will certainly have to work on his physical play and continue to work at becoming a complete player.
5. Matej Stransky- Right Wing – Saskatoon Blades (WHL)
He certainly is looking like the steal of the 2011 Entry Draft. Drafted in the sixth round by the Stars, Stransky had a excellent year in Saskatoon leading his team in scoring with 81 points (39g, 42a). In camp he certainly knew where to position to find shots on goal and can help create plays, he still looked a bit of a raw talent and when he goes back to Saskatoon this season (Stransky is still under 20) then he can develop a better two-way game.
4. Jamie Oleksiak – Defenseman- Texas Stars
Jamie Oleksiak has a lot of size and he uses it real well as he is very dependable in his own zone and can break up passes and end fast breaks with the large stick he uses, certainly worked on his offensive game this season with the Saginaw Spirit and the Niagara Ice Dogs and will be making the jump to the professional leagues since he was drafted out of college.
3. Christopher Nihlstorp – Goalie – Texas Stars
The highly recruited goalie out of the Swedish Elite Leagues signed with Dallas this offseason and in camp we certainly saw why. Each year in the Swedish Elite League he just got better and better, he finished this season with a goals against average of 1.98 and a save percentage of .928. He has fast reflexes and good puck control, he is a big goalie and that certainly is what most teams are going for today, many believe he will be able to compete with Richard Bachman for the backup job in Dallas this season.
2. Jack Campbell – Goalie – Texas Stars
Campbell has been also marked by Stars fans as to why he was drafted over Anaheim Duck defenseman Cam Fowler who already has established some NHL success, but Campbell has progressed nicely since he was drafted in the first round by Dallas in the 2010 entry draft. In camp he also made a case to why he can also compete with Nihlstorp and Bachman for time in Dallas this season, but would probably better suit him to get regular playing time in Austin this season with the Texas Stars.
1. Brenden Dillon – Defenseman – Texas Stars
Brenden Dillon was an undrafted free agent signed by Dallas close to the end of the 2011 season and was sent to the AHL to help Texas with their playoff run even though the Stars were eliminated in the first round, Dillon stood out with his physical play. At camp Dillon looked like a men amongst boys he stood out in all competitive drills and is certain to have a spot in Dallas this season with the defensive group.