If you missed it yesterday, I posted a separate set of notes for each of the two Sunday practices. Notes for the NHL group in the morning are HERE, and notes for the AHL/prospect session in the afternoon are HERE.
Timing is treacherous since we are on the brink of three days of game action that could wildly swing players roster hopes, but just for fun, I will take a shot at being a prognosticator for the various dark horse candidates. This sets up nicely for a Thursday or Friday review that sees which proved significantly different from Monday to Wednesday.
I like his game with the puck and think his upside is intact, but I do not think he is ready to defend and play without the puck at the NHL level yet. I think he will stick around late into training camp simply because the reps will be good for him before he dials back down to a lower level of competition.
Not for 2017-18
Phil Di Giuseppe
He needs to dial it up in the preseason games. Practices and internal scrimmages are not a great environment to show off a physical edge and ability to disrupt an opponent with it. Di Giuseppe needs to dial it up in preseason games to make an unmistakable impression if he wants to start the 2017-18 season at the NHL level.
An injury opening would help; otherwise it takes a massive impression in preseason game action.
As much as the couple power forward highlights and training points pop up regularly, he needs to do more when not making one of those plays. He is too quiet for long stretches. Because of that, I think he is bound for Charlotte to continue rounding out his game.
The totality of his game is not ready yet.
He needs to add size and strength to reach his full potential, but that is not to say that he is too small to play in the NHL now. He is top of my list for players to watch this week. If he shows an ability to score and/or create scoring chances now, he gets a longer look. The team needs offense. His situation reminds me a bit of Eric Staal’s. He too was supposed to spend another year getting stronger, but a huge preseason forced the team to keep him.
He is at the top of my dark horse/prospect watch list right.
He was likely to start the 2017-18 season in the AHL anyway, so a concussion layoff could seal the deal for that starting point.
His injury setback might have sealed his fate.
He went from being at least an even bet to win a roster spot to being mostly shut out when the Hurricanes signed Derek Ryan to a one-way deal and then added Josh Jooris and Marcus Kruger. I think the center part of the lineup is pretty set, but if an injury occurs, I think Wallmark would be the safest best to add another center from within. If that does not happen, he needs to pick up where he left off in 2016-17 to stay ahead of rising youngsters Janne Kuokkanen and Nicolas Roy.
It takes an injury at the center position at which point he would be the front runner.
I will take a shot at another batch in a day or two maybe with the benefit of preseason game insight.