Prospects and undrafted free agents reported to Kettler Capitals Iceplex again this morning for the second of three scrimmages during Washington Capitals Development Camp. As Bruce Boudreau predicted, the quality of Thursday’s play generally increased when compared to Wednesday.
In the first period, Reid Edmondson scored first, skating down the half wall and cutting to the middle for a 1-0 Red lead early. Red continued to push early but could not force another through, and David Civitarese tied it up with about five minutes to go. In the second, Danick Paquette scored the lone goal, putting White into a 2-1 lead with less than a minute to go, and the middle frame also included a fight between Garrett Mitchell and Scott Wietecha. Early in the third, Andrew Mitchell put Red ahead 3-1 off a nice rebound goal, but 2011 draftee Travis Boyd brought the heat within the next ten minutes with two goals to tie it up. The final frame also featured Scott Wietecha’s second fight of the game, this time with Danick Paquette. The game ended in a 3-3 tie despite, and a shootout was used to determine the winner. The White team won for the second consecutive day, as Garrett Mitchell scored the lone shootout goal.
Danick Paquette is just what everyone though he would be when DC acquired him: an annoying, checking player. He was very aggressive early in the game and took a poor penalty, and was able to work the puck away from some of the younger players easily including an especially nice strip from Dmitry Orlov. His goal was a beauty, a nice collect from Garrett Haar that he roofed over Brandon Anderson.
Both top goaltending prospects – Philipp Grubauer and Steffen Soberg – made several nice saves during their time on ice. Grubauer in particular continued to show great reflexes and ability to stop the first shot, while Soberg’s strong suit is his lateral movement; he is a very raw goalie who should improve rapidly with proper coaching this year in Major Junior.
Cody Eakin took a step back Thursday; he was not controlling the play as well as he was Wednesday and there were some instances where he went long periods of time unnoticed. When asked about his play after the scrimmage, Bruce Boudreau even went as far as to say he’s not standing out as much as he did last year. Dmitry Orlov, too, was not particularly impressive, but that’s to be expected. This is, after all, still his first four months in the North American game. They will both be fine.
Travis Boyd was very impressive for the second consecutive game, scoring two goals to bring his total to three goals and two assists in the two scrimmages so far. I know it’s ridiculously early, but the guy is showing some promise already and it could be that the Caps have found a diamond in the rough with this past year’s sixth-round pick. Maybe.
Another good day at KCI. The next scrimmage will be on Saturday morning with FanFest.