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Posted On Wednesday, 10.08.2014 / 1:15 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

Muskegon's Marchin commits to Brown University

Muskegon Lumberjacks left wing Tom Marchin, a C-rated skater on NHL Central Scouting's preliminary players to watch list for September, will play at Brown University in 2015-16.

Marchin, a 6-foot-2, 200-pound power forward from Algonac, Mich., is in his first season with the Lumberjacks. He has two goals, four points and a plus-6 rating in five United States Hockey League games.

"I've always wanted to go to an Ivy League school and that's why I prided myself in getting good grades during high school to go to an institution like this with the academics that they have to offer," Marchin told the USHL website. "Their hockey program continues to be on the upswing, and the coaching staff is a bunch of great guys that are genuinely interested in me, which I like a lot."

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Posted On Monday, 10.06.2014 / 10:03 AM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

Eichel, McDavid begin season-long battle for No. 1

There's no doubt Boston University center Jack Eichel and Erie Otters center Connor McDavid will be engaged in an anything-you-can-do-I-can-do-better competition all season long leading up to the 2015 NHL Draft.

Both players are considered to be top-two picks in the draft and each received an A rating on NHL Central Scouting's preliminary players to watch list for September.

In Erie's four straight victories to open the season, McDavid had five goals, 12 points and a plus-7 rating. He was named the first star of the game Saturday when he had two goals and four points in a 7-3 victory against the Sarnia Sting. As first star he was honored with wearing the Super Player of the Game suit.

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Posted On Friday, 10.03.2014 / 1:24 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

Werensky to become youngest player in Berenson era

Defenseman Zachary Werensky, an A-rated prospect on NHL Central Scouting's preliminary players to watch list for the 2015 NHL Draft, will become the youngest player to play at the University of Michigan in the Red Berenson era on Saturday when the Wolverines visit Ferris State at Ewigleben Arena in Big Rapids, Mich.

Werenski, 17, accelerated his studies in high school in order to graduate after three years and join Berenson as a true freshman this season. The 6-foot-2, 214-pound left-handed shot will join a pretty formidable defensive corps that includes NHL draftees Michael Downing (Florida Panthers), Brennan Serville (Winnipeg Jets) and Nolan De Jong (Minnesota Wild).

Berenson enters his 31st season behind the bench at Michigan.


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Posted On Thursday, 10.02.2014 / 2:23 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

U.S.-born prospects to watch for 2015 NHL Draft

Each Thursday, NHL.com will highlight three prospects to watch for the 2015 NHL Draft. This week, the focus is on three players who competed in the 2014 CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game in Buffalo on Sept. 25.

The 2014 CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game on Sept. 25 provided a positive glimpse of what the future holds for American-born players eligible for the 2015 NHL Draft.

"I think it was a great showcase," winning coach Mike Grier said at the end of the game. "You see the talent that is out there and you can put it up there against any country in the world. You see kids from California, Georgia, Texas … kids from all over the place. The game is growing and the fact NHL Network was here to telecast the game shows you how big it is so we're right there with being able to compete with any other country for sure."

Though there were many players who earned praise from the 200-plus coaches and scouts in attendance at First Niagara Center in Buffalo, here are three players given an A-rating on NHL Central Scouting's preliminary players to watch list that could become first-round picks at the 2015 draft.
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Posted On Wednesday, 10.01.2014 / 9:57 AM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

Dylan Strome named OHL player of the week

Erie Otters center Connor McDavid isn't the only top prospect from the team eligible for the 2015 NHL Draft and exciting scouts this season.

Dylan Strome, the brother of New York Islanders forward Ryan Strome, is off to a great start in Erie. The 6-foot-3, 187-pound left-shot center was named the player of the week in Ontario Hockey League after leading the league with 10 points (one goal, nine assists) in three straight road wins to open 2014-15.

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Posted On Thursday, 09.25.2014 / 3:57 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

Caleb Jones looking to step out of brother's shadow

BUFFALO -- Defenseman Caleb Jones has a message for every NHL scout in attendance at the third annual CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game at First Niagara Center on Thursday (7 p.m. ET, NHL Network).

"I want to prove that Caleb Jones is a good player," he said. "I'm not just here because of [my brother] Seth Jones, and I don't mind saying that. I'm going to try to prove a point here in this game. It was an honor to get to this game and I feel I definitely deserve to be here like everyone else."

Unlike his brother, who was selected in the first round (No. 4) by the Nashville Predators at the 2013 NHL Draft, Caleb Jones enters the All-American Prospects Game as a C-rated skater on NHL Central Scouting's preliminary players to watch list for September. When Seth played in the AAPG two seasons ago, he was an A rated player.

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Posted On Thursday, 09.25.2014 / 2:34 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

Grier excited to return to Buffalo for prospects game

BUFFALO -- Mike Grier wasn't happy when informed that opposing coach Ed Olcyzk was seen spying on his practice in preparation for the third annual CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game at First Niagara Center on Thursday (7 p.m. ET, NHL Network).

For Grier, it's a homecoming of sorts since he played three-plus seasons as a right wing for the Buffalo Sabres. He's not only excited to have an opportunity to coach 21 of the top American-born prospects eligible for the 2015 NHL Draft, but to be back behind the Sabres bench.

"[Olcyzk] has got to ask for permission to come out and scout things," Grier said with a big smile.

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Posted On Thursday, 09.25.2014 / 1:17 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

Werenski took his time in determing his future

BUFFALO -- University of Michigan defenseman Zachary Werenski is one of three college freshmen competing in the CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game hoping to hear his name called in the first round of the 2015 NHL Draft on June 26.

The 6-foot-1, 201-pound left-handed shot joins center Jack Eichel (Boston University) and defenseman Noah Hanifin (Boston College) as legitimate first-year collegians with plenty to offer NHL scouts. Werenski will play for Team Mike Grier, alongside Eichel. Hanifin will play for Team Ed Olczyk.

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Posted On Wednesday, 09.24.2014 / 4:19 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

Eichel has busy day on eve of prospect game

BUFFALO -- Boston University center Jack Eichel, a likely top-two pick at the 2015 NHL Draft, concluded a busy nine-hour day Wednesday that included various interview requests, a press conference, a USA Hockey Twitter takeover and a video shoot with NHL Network.

He took it all in stride and now is looking forward to doing what he does best Thursday in the third annual CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game at First Niagara Center (7 p.m. ET, NHL Network).

"I expect this year to be enjoyable for me and my family and my friends," Eichel said. "I've worked pretty hard in my life for this opportunity to potentially get drafted. It's an exciting time and I'm just going to try to enjoy the ride and make sure that I work hard every day to try to make myself better. It's an exciting time and it only happens once, so you've got to make sure you're enjoying it."

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Posted On Wednesday, 09.24.2014 / 2:02 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - NHL Training Camps blog

Sabres' Pysyk could miss two weeks with injury

BUFFALO -- Buffalo Sabres defenseman Mark Pysyk could be out as long as two weeks with an upper-body injury, coach Ted Nolan said Wednesday.

Pysyk was hurt blocking a shot on his first shift of the first period of a 2-0 victory against the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday.

"It's not a real serious thing and it's probably day-to-day," Nolan said. "But it could be a week or two."

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