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2019 Traverse City Tournament

2019-08-22

2019 EHE Prospect Tournament Comes To Traverse City

For the very first time in EHE the tournament will feature 4 teams with some of the league’s top prospects. Joining the tournament this year will be (Host) Detroit Red Wings, Vancouver Canucks, New York Rangers and the New Jersey Devils. 

 

New York Rangers

Fans will be treated to the #1 pick in this year’s draft in Jack Hughes to go along with fellow teammate Alex Newhook who was the #7 overall pick. The question is who will be lucky enough to play with Hughes and increase their stock. In the crease they will be getting a great look at goaltender Igor Shesterkin who NY fans have been waiting so long to finally make the jump to the pros. On defense Ryan Lindgren is one to keep an eye on as he could be a quite player but definitely one that will be on the Rangers team soon making an impact. 

 

Vancouver Canucks

The Canucks have an abundance of riches at the center position and will be giving a nice hard look at this year’s #4 overall pick Alex Turcotte. Other centers that will be looking to make an impression will be Barrett Hayton and Isac Lundestrom who are looking to crack the Canucks roster. On defense they have 2 blue chip defenders in Dante Fabrro and Henri Jokiharju which they already know what they have in both but why not give them more ice time and let other GM’s drool on what they don’t have in their pipeline. In goal Thatcher Demko will be looking to be this tournaments best goaltender and making the Canucks roster this coming season. 

 

Detroit Red Wings

For the first time the organization didn’t have a high draft pick since they just won the Stanley Cup and drafted last, but their 1st round pick Bobby Brink will be showing he belongs on the team sooner than later. Guys that will be looking to make a name for themselves will be guys like Joel Farabee, Kristian Vesalainen, and Sam Steel. As much fire power Detroit currently has in the pros and with more coming soon all scouts will be keeping a close eye out on the defensive unit playing in the tournament. Detroit knows 1-2 could be making the jump soon as the Wings need the help. With offensive defenders like Erik Brannstrom, Adam Fox and Jake Bean looking to be that power-play specialist Detroit desperately needs. 


 


New Jersey Devils

They have a franchise piece in place already in Matt Barzal and now the Devils will be looking to see what other pieces they have to build around him. The Devils have great prospects at every position and seem to be building a great team for the future. On offense guys that will be getting a lot of time ice time will be players such as Dillon Dube, Morgan Frost and Henrik Borgstrom. On defense their top pick of this year’s draft Heinola will join other former 1st round picks in Evan Bouchard, Nolan Foote and Nicolas Beaudin. Cole will be hoping all 4 of these pan out giving him a top 4 unit for years to come! In goal they have another former 1st round pick in goaltender Jake Oettinger who could be the answer for the Devils once Quick calls it a quit or is moved out for other young pieces. 


The way it works: Each team will play each other once; once those games have been completed a knockout stage will follow. It will look like this 1st v 4th and 2nd v 3rd and than the final game. 

Traverse City 

The EHE Traverse City Prospects tournament commenced Monday featuring an opening game between The Red Wings and Rangers. 

GAME 1: RANGERS 2 RED WINGS 1

The tightly checked contest ended in favour of the Rangers by a score of 2-1.  Russian Goalie Igor Shestyorkin stopped 28 of 29 shots to earn the win. Joey Daccord was solid despite taking the loss turning away 30 of 32.  

Rangers 1st overall pick Jack Hughes lead the way, factoring in on both goals, with one of his own, including an assist on teammate Jeremy Roy’s tally.  Sam Steel scored for Detroit in a game full of missed opportunities.

Red Wings GM Cisco Vaille was not happy with the lack of production “Some things we need to work on? How about putting the f***ing puck in the net? We’re hosting here!”

GAME 2: DEVILS 1 CANUCKS 0

Devils Forward Victor Olofsson scored a blistering one-time power play goal off a feed from Henrik Borgstrom to make it 1-0. 

It proved to be the lone goal in a game where Colton Point faced just 20 shots in his shut out victory.  Canucks Goalie Thatcher Demko stooped 27 of 28 in the loss. 

GAME 3: CANUCKS 2 RED WINGS 1

Goaltending was the story yet again and this time Thatcher Demko stopped 34 of 35 while earning the 2-1 win.  Adam Fox scored the only goal for The Red Wings while Dylan Sideroff and Carl Grundstrom recorded the goals for The Canucks. 

GAME 4: RANGERS 3 DEVILS 2

The Rangers prospects prevailed in a tight fought battle that ended in a score of 3-2.  Gabriel Fontaine, Jake Elmer, and Jeremy Roy scored for The Rangers.  

Like Roy, Devils Victor Olofsson scored in his second straight game. Dillon Dube had the other goal for New Jersey while Henrik Borgstrom added 2 more assists.

Shestyorkin was a excellent, yet again. The Rangers prospect stopped 29 of 31 shots in the win. 

GAME 5: RANGERS 3 CANUCKS 2

The New York Rangers prospects improved to 3-0 and came away with the overtime victory.  Goaltender Igor Shestyorkin continued his strong play. The Russian Goalie has stopped 71 out of 76 shots he’s faced after 3 games.

Evan Barratt and #7 overall pick Alex Newhook scored for The Rangers, while top line winger Dominik Kubalik recorded his 4th assist in 3 games.  

Up to this point, no Canuck player has more than a single point. Not for a lack of chances however, as Dante Fabbro and Alex Turcotte have 12 and 10 shots respectively. 

GAME 6: RED WINGS 4 DEVILS 2

The Detroit Red Wings prospects notched their first win of the tournament. The squad was lead by stud Defenseman Adam Fox, who scored his second of the tournament, and brought his whopping shot total to 16 after just 3 games.  

Forwards Jonathan Dahlen and Maxim Sushko each have 3 points after 3 games as well. Goalie Joey Daccord has turned away 78 of 84 shots. 

In The Devils side, Defenders Evan Bouchard and Cal Foote dished out two assists each.

ROUND ROBIN RECAP

 

Tensions High as Knockout Round Begins

With the round robin complete the knockout matchups were all set.

After going undefeated during the group stage, the Rangers secured top seed and were set to face the Devils, who only managed one win. Despite their dominant performance, New York GM Martins Auzins was caught trying to make a trade. 

The supposed deal would have sent 2019 1st overall pick Jack Hughes to Vancouver for Barrett Hayton, a 1996 Nissan Altima, a half-used bottle of maple syrup, and the right to marry Canucks GM Travis Fleming’s future daughter. Unfortunately, since there were no trades allowed at the event the deal was rejected.

“It’s all Kevin’s fault!” Auzins exclaimed, referring to EHE commissioner Kevin Lacy. The comment was odd, seeing how Lacy had no involvement in the tournament.

Meanwhile, Devils GM Cole Bates was seen bringing a medical doctor into the team’s dressing room. After finishing last in the round robin, he wanted to make sure his team still had a pulse before squaring off against the Rangers.

In the other matchup, the second seed Vancouver Canucks would be going up against the third seed Detroit Red Wings. Detroit GM Cisco Valle was seen arguing with tournament officials and Canucks GM Travis Fleming about the eligibility of Vancouver goaltender Thatcher Demko, claiming he wasn’t in fact a prospect.

“The tournament is just for fun anyways,” said Fleming. “I don’t see what the problem is. No one is taking this seriously anyways.”

Just then the door to the Canucks dressing room opened, cleary showing a doctor administering a shot into Thatcher Demko’s buttocks. Fleming quickly closed the door, saying that the Canucks goalie was taking some “special vitamins.”

Valle erupted in a fury and pleaded to have Demko thrown out of the tournament, but officials refused to take any action.

After all the commotion, the knock-out round commenced with the Ranger taking on the Devils. New Jersey managed to register a goal in the first against the heavily favoured Rangers, but that would be all the offence they would be able to muster. New York would go on to score 5 goals, with Russian import Ilya Mikheyev leading the way registering 1 goal and 2 assists.

Game two between the Canucks and Red Wings was much closer. Vancouver got on the board early in the first, but Detroit tied it up in the second. It looked like the game might go to overtime until 2019 4th overall pick Alex Turcotte scored for the Canucks late in the third. It would prove to be the game winner.

New York vs Vancouver in the Finals

Going into the finals, the undefeated Rangers squad was heavily favoured. Although they weren’t seen as the strongest team before the start of the tournament, their near perfect play and undefeated record had most taking New York to win.

Still, during a pregame interview Fleming’s faith in his squad was unwavering. 

“We’re not scared of the Rangers one bit. I have the utmost confidence in our group. Plus, we might just have a trick up our sleeve that they’re not expecting.”

Just then, word came out that a Canucks employee had attempted to assault Ranger goaltender Igor Shestyorkin with a baseball bat. Fortunately, the man slipped on a jock strap before he could actually inflict any damage.

Fleming cursed under his breath and abruptly left the interview.

The final game proved to be another nail-biter. After a scoreless first period, the Rangers jumped into the lead in the second. The pressure was on the Canucks going into the third, but they didn’t disappoint. With the tournament on the line Vancouver tied it up, forcing a thrilling overtime.

Sudden death was extremely close, with both teams getting their chances. It was looking like there might need to be a second overtime period until Vancouver winger Carl Grundstrom scored on a beautiful play to clinch the tournament for Vancouver.

Vancouver goaltender Thatcher Demko was awarded tournament MVP honours, posting a sparkling 1.40 GAA and .958 save percentage.

The Aftermath

The post-tournament press conference only featured three GMs. Rangers GMs Martins Auzins was absent, with reports indicating that he was in talks to trade his entire team with the goal of fielding an completely new roster for next year’s event.

Canucks GM Travis Fleming was ecstatic with his tournament victory as he clutched his championship trophy.

“It’s been a rough couple years in Vancouver,” he said. “I know it’s just a silly little prospect tournament, but I’m going to cherish this trophy for ever.”

Just then, Red Wings GM Cisco Valle showed up to the press conference carrying the Stanley Cup. He “accidentally” set it down right on top of Fleming’s tiny tournament trophy, crushing it completely, all the while blaring “We are the Champions” by Queen on his phone.

A fist fight between Fleming and Valle quickly ensued, while Devils GM Cole Bates grabbed the Stanley Cup and ran out of the room yelling “It’s mine! It’s finally mine!”

Needless to say, hockey fans everywhere are already looking forward to next year’s tournament.
 

 

Big thanks to Cisco, Travis and Cole as all contributed to this article and this tourney. It's all for fun purposes.

Check out their teams:

Detroit Red Wings

New Jersey Devils

New York Rangers

Vancouver Canucks 




Doug Waite

What a great article and idea. Nice work

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Brandyn Errickson

Jack Hughes with 4 points in 5GP? Can you say BUST? Cool article none the less.

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Cisco Valle

Awesome, I'm so happy with how this turned out. Great job boys!

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• 2 teams Like this  2 months