There were some pretty interesting things that happened this weekend in the OHL. This will be my first installment of 3 up's, 3 Down's from the OHL which I will try my hardest to do once a week!
Up- This is a Barrie Colts oriented site, so I will start with them. The Colts didn't have a pretty weekend. But all it took was one win to make sure they are not sitting in last place in the Eastern Conference. A 6-5 win over the Hamilton Bulldogs made sure of that. This was also Kade Landry's 2nd career multi point game as he finished with 3.
Up- Jeremy Bracco of the Kitchener Rangers is one of the elite forwards in the Ontario Hockey League. Most of us knew this coming into the season. Right now Jeremy Bracco is currently riding a 22 game point streak. During that time, the Toronto Maple Leafs 2nd rounder (Who still currently remains unsigned) has 16 goals and 29 assists. Jeremy could potentially be a big get on the trade market this year if Kitchener decides to sell. If Jeremy fails to make the USA World Junior Team, he could hit 100+ points this season.
Up- The Niagara Ice Dogs were pegged by a lot of people, myself included that they would finish this season in dead last of the Ontario Hockey League. Well early on, the ice dogs have easily been one of the hardest working teams in the OHL. The young squad is 5-3-1-1 in their last 10 games and have been averaging just about 3.5 goals per game which all things considered is pretty good. Leading the way for the Ice Dogs are vets Ryan Mantha and Johnny Corneil with sophomore forward Ben Jones and Rookie Oliver Castleman not far behind them in the points department.
Down- The Mississauga Steelheads entered the 2016-2017 season as favorites to win the East. I thought that they'd be better than and still do believe they are better this, but I laughed when so called experts had that team finishing 1st and competing for a Memorial Cup. When I look at teams who have won the East in the past, those rosters had twice the amount of depth the Steelheads currently have. With Saginaw beating Guelph on Sunday, the Mississauga Steelheads currently sit in last in the OHL. Some people say they will compete if they can make 2 more moves for all stars. Star power is not the problem in Mississauga. DEPTH, DEPTH, DEPTH. Mississauga needs to fire James Boyd if they ever want a chance. Running with a lame duck GM who has been known to draft kids who live locally so that comfy owner doesn't have to pay billets is a joke. Something's got to change.
Down- The Sudbury Wolves looked like they finally turned the page on those dark days (The Mark Burgess Era). They may have. Last year, the Wolves won 16 games, this season they already have 11. But over the weekend and the course of about 2 weeks, the Wolves have earned 23 games of suspensions, not including the suspension Chandler Yakimowicz earned which has yet to be determined by the league. Lack of discipline is never a good thing. Especially for a team looking to get out of the bunker, a team that has been a punchline in a joke for years. I like what Sudbury has done and in their defense, at least they are starting to show emotion. Those last 2 seasons where dark in Sudbury. But their is a fine line and 4 times in the last 12 days or so they have crossed that.
Down- If you haven't heard what is going on with the Peterborough Petes, their will be a link posted below that you can check out. I will say this, the OHL needs the Peterborough Petes, The City Of Peterborough needs the Petes and the Petes need both Peterborough and the OHL. What i'm saying is, at the end of the day, everyone loses if the Petes falter. Now as much as the money the City is taking is a problem, it is also the same reason the Steelheads are never competitive, the consistent lame duck managing from the GM. The East is almost always weaker than the West. Hell, if i'm being serious the Barrie Colts are likely 3 moves away from a 5th place finish in the East. Peterborough has always had the assets and foundation to make a run and have failed to do that. There is really no excuse.
Thanks for checking out this week's 3 up, 3 down article. I also want to thank every for the warm welcome to this awesome blog. I will look to add more Barrie Colts news to the article but for now this is what I've got! Have a safe and happy week!
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