(Courtesy- USA Hockey)
It's a nice welcome break from all the rumors as on Monday afternoon we will find out if any New York Ranger or New York Islander prospects will be invited to take part in the annual summer evaluation camp held by USA Hockey.
The camp will be held August 4-11 at Lake Placid and is the start of the process used to determine which players might be named to the Under-20 team that will play for the World Under-20 Championships.
This year promises to be rather interesting because this year's tournament will be held in Ufa, Russia. It has been a while since this tournament has been played outside of North America.
Last year the Rangers (JT Miller and Shane McColgan) and Islanders (Scott Mayfield and Robbie Russo) were invited to take part but only JT Miller wound up making the final cut as well as eventually earning a spot on the team. This year, Miller should be a lock for an invite but it would be very disappointing to say the least if the Islander duo fail to receive invites.
Not sure if Shane McColgan will receive an invite but one never knows when it comes to USA hockey. It would be interesting to see if Steven Fogarty receives an invite because he played last year in the BCHL instead of the USHL.
With only 7 of those who made last year's camp final roster eligible to return; it would be also disappointing to see Steve Fogarty not received an invite.
Yes I know I'm a Ranger fan so I'm partial but in this case, I'm an American who was angry at the 2012 team not even making the medal round.
I see a 6'3 200+ center was coming off a 95 point season not a New York Ranger prospect. I do want to see both Islander prospects make this team as well because both have something to offer.
USA Hockey will also be announcing the will be coaching the 2013 and that selection itself should be interesting. I'm not a big fan of naming somebody who is already coaching a team (this also applies to Canada too) as I think somebody willing to do this full time does more to help improve the USA Hockey program as a whole.
I don't think that having somebody who can only coach the team from afar during the season helps the program out. You have a rushed selection camp in December and it's hard to believe you can build team chemistry over a four day weekend.
I do have a bit of friendly advice, several draft eligible players will receive invites but that will not raise their draft status with the NHL scouts. Nor will not getting an invite lower somebody's status.
And we'll all be arguing over who didn't get an invite, whether or not playing in the CHL rather than an NCAA school helps or hurts somebody's selection (or non selection).
At the very least it will be a good minor distraction for at least a day before we go right back to trade rumors and insane draft picks.
Speaking of the draft
An old friend Pat Hoffman will covers the Rangers for the folks over at Kulka's Korner did a quickie interview with me about the draft. You can find that here
I also need to get a SHOUT OUT to my favorite CHL player Brendan Leipsic of the Portland Winterhawks who earned himself an invite to Canada's summer evaluation camp.
Now Gordie Clark remember when it comes to which player to select at 119; it is spelled BRENDAN LEIPSIC as you never have enough Ryan Callahan's in your lineup. Not that I'm trying to tell Gordie Clark who he should draft but it's been seven years, that's seven very long years since the Rangers drafted a Portland Winterhawk.
Again I'm not pushing Gordie Clark to pick number 28 of the Portland Winterhawks BRENDAN LEIPSIC with the 119th pick. (Or at least offer to pay some of the gas money I would have to spend)
No sir, in Gordie I trust
That was BRENDAN LEIPSIC