Bruins prospect Frederic seems to be exceeding their original expectations

Getty
4 Comments

Projecting draft picks is always an imperfect game, even for the people that are highly paid to do just that.

But when the Boston Bruins used a first-round pick in 2016 on Trent Frederic, a player that former director of amateur scouting Keith Gretzky said, “is not going to be a top-two line guy, we know that,” it really lowered any expectation anybody had for the pick. Of course first-round picks turn out to be useful bottom-six players all the time, but it’s usually because they never reached the top-line expectations teams had for them. It’s not often you hear a team come right and say about their top-pick that they want him to be a third-or fourth-liner.

One year later, after a season that saw him average more than a point-per-game and finish second in goals and points for the University of Wisconsin, Frederic seems to be exceeding those original expectations the Bruins had for him.

Jamie Langenbrunner, the Bruins’ director of player development, told Steve Conroy of the Boston Herald this week that there has been a re-thinking within the organization of Frederic’s potential.

“There is in my mind so far,” said Langenbrunner, via the Herald. “He plays top line at Wisconsin. Obviously, time will tell what he’ll be in pro hockey but there’s more skill to his game than people thought coming out of the draft.”

Frederic was Boston’s second first-round pick in 2016, going 29th overall. The Bruins acquired that pick from the San Jose Sharks in exchange for goaltender Martin Jones.

The 2016 draft is already looking like a promising one for Boston given the early promise shown by their top pick that year, defenseman Charlie McAvoy.

Thanks to trades involving Jones, Milan Lucic and Dougie Hamilton the Bruins had five first-round picks between 2015 and 2016 which they used to select McAvoy, Frederic, Jakub Zboril, Jake Debrusk, and Zachary Senyshyn. The 2015 second-round also produced Brandon Carlo and Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson, both of whom have already played in the NHL, with Carlo already looking like a mainstay on the Bruins’ defense.

Canucks’ Ilya Mikheyev to have season-ending knee surgery

Ilya Mikheyev
Bob Frid/USA TODAY Sports
0 Comments

VANCOUVER, British Columbia — Vancouver Canucks right wing Ilya Mikheyev is set to have season-ending surgery on his left knee.

Canucks general manager Patrik Allvin said Friday night the 28-year-old Russian forward tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in the team’s first preseason game Sept. 25. Mikheyev will undergo surgery next week and is expected to be ready for training camp in the fall.

Mikheyev was originally listed as week-to-week with the injury and played 45 regular-season games, finishing with 13 goals and 15 assists. He scored in his final appearance Friday night, a 5-2 home victory over Columbus.

Mikheyev signed a four-year, $19 million contract as a free agent last summer.

Maple Leafs’ Matthews out at least 3 weeks with knee injury

austonmatthews
Nick Turchiaro/USA TODAY Sports
0 Comments

Toronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews will miss at least three weeks with a sprained knee.

The team announced the reigning MVP’s anticipated absence Friday, two days after Matthews was injured in Toronto’s victory against the New York Rangers.

Matthews is expected to miss at least six games and could be out for a few more. The timing of the injury coinciding with the NHL All-Star break and the Maple Leafs bye week prevents this from costing Matthews more time out of the lineup.

After being voted an All-Star by fans, Matthews is now out of the event scheduled for Feb. 3-4 in Sunrise, Florida. The league announced Aleskander Barkov from the host Florida Panthers will take Matthews’ place on the Atlantic Division All-Star roster.

Matthews, who won the Hart Trophy last season after leading the NHL with 60 goals, has 53 points in 47 games this season.

Caufield opted for surgery with Habs out of playoff race

caufield surgery
David Kirouac/USA TODAY Sports
0 Comments

MONTREAL — Montreal Canadiens winger Cole Caufield said Friday he wouldn’t be having season-ending surgery on his right shoulder if the team were in playoff contention.

But with the Canadiens near the bottom of the Eastern Conference standings, the 22-year-old Caufield said he decided to have the surgery to protect his long-term health. The procedure is scheduled to be performed by Dr. Peter Millett on Wednesday.

“I didn’t want to stop playing,” Caufield said. “I had a couple tests done to look at it more clearly but, in the end, like it could’ve been one more fall and it could have been even worse.”

Caufield, who leads the Canadiens with 26 goals in 46 games, had three different medical opinions on his shoulder before concluding that his season was over.

“I think they’ve seen a lot more than I have and they know the differences and what they like or don’t like about it,” he said about the medical opinions. “Long term, I think this is what’s best but for sure it was tough to sit out that game against Toronto on Saturday night.”

Caufield initially felt the injury in an awkward fall during Montreal’s 4-2 loss at Dallas on Dec. 23. He said his right shoulder popped, and he replaced it himself.

Caufield felt it again in the Habs’ 4-3 loss at Nashville on Jan. 12. The club announced on Jan. 21 that Caufield would miss the rest of the season.

Caufield is nearing the end of his three-year, entry-level contract and will be a restricted free agent this summer.

All-Star Matty Beniers to miss next 2 games for Kraken

matty beniers
Joe Nicholson/USA TODAY Sports
0 Comments

SEATTLE — Seattle Kraken rookie All-Star Matty Beniers will miss the team’s final two games before the All-Star break after taking a big hit from Vancouver’s Tyler Myers earlier this week.

Seattle coach Dave Hakstol said after morning skate Friday that Beniers would not play Friday night against Calgary or Saturday against Columbus. Hakstol did not speculate on Beniers’ availability for next weekend’s All-Star Game in Florida.

The team has not specified what kind of injury Beniers sustained from the hit. He was barreled over by Myers away from the play early in the second period in Wednesday’s 6-1 victory over Vancouver. Myers was penalized for interference on the play. Beniers returned briefly for one shift later in the period but did not play in the third period.

Beniers is Seattle’s lone All-Star selection this season. He leads all rookies in goals (17) and points (36), and is fifth in total ice time for rookies.

Seattle also placed defenseman Justin Schultz on injured reserve and recalled forward Max McCormick from Coachella Valley of the AHL. Hakstol said Schultz is improving but there’s no timeline on his return.