mercredi 6 novembre 2013

Gloucester Rangers' Top Junior-Eligible Players - If Only

In building his teams, former Pembroke Lumber Kings Head Coach Sheldon Keefe was known to convince players to stay an extra year to make a run, especially in the 2011-2012 season when they pushed and won the RBC Cup Junior A national championship.  The Gloucester Rangers, now in year three of their rebuild, haven’t been able to convince players to stay behind as many have bolted for the ‘O’ or wanted out.  The team below is my compilation of the best junior-aged players that have donned the Rangers crest over the past few seasons.  Note how few of them are still with the club.

Remy Giftopolous (OHL)
Alexandre Boivin (QMJHL)
Nathan Pancel (OHL)
Patrick White (OHL)
Adam Lloyd (OHL/CCHL)
Jacob Jammes (OHL)
Matthew Foget
Eric Clitsome (CCHL)
Andrew Abou-Assali (OHL)
Matthew Rosebrook
Mason Nowak (OJHL)
Keegan Rowe

Scratches: Daniele Disipio (CCHL), Chad Millett (CCHL)
Zack Leslie (OHL)
Owen Stewart (OHL)
Andrew Rossy (CCHL)
Colton Keuhl
Liam Murray (OHL)
Riley Bruce (OHL)
Douglas Johnston
Gunner Rivers (CCHL)

While the players aren’t in their own particular positions (left wing or centre, for example), the team assembled above, from either Rangers picks or players who have played for them, would be a decent OHL team or an absolutely stellar CCHL team.  With a lineup like this, a serious run could be made for a national championship.

There are two points to this article, the first is that junior hockey is difficult because players personalities and pressure from parents and others (OHL teams, for example) make them want to press further and abandon the teams that put so much into them like Coach Favreau and his staff.  This isn’t helped when team management makes counterintuitive decisions and there has been a certain amount of that within the Rangers organization.

The other point, the main one, is that the organization is an excellent judge of talent.  Among their scouts is the unique Frank Barrette who found a lot of these players and pushed for their selection.  On top of that, he is greatly entertaining in the role of play-by-play man for the Rangers and someone I would consider a mentor in my learning about hockey.

Cheers to the team and players that gave me so much over the two years I was there!  Feel free to discuss my selections.

1 commentaire:

  1. Interesting observations. I therefore conclude that for a Team such as the Rangers or others that are not in a top league, the challenge is to pick players that are not quite good enough to make the next level, but love the game and want to give their all for their current team. From your observation, if the drafted players are too good, they will not want to stay.

    I also see a parallel in the working world, especially government where I worked. Top candidates hired by non-core departments tended to spend a bit of time and then moved on to Privy Council Office, Treasury Board, Finance.