PENTICTON, B.C. - The 2017 Young Stars Classic wrapped up Monday afternoon in Penticton with the Flames going 1-2 in the tournament.
Calgary dropped a 4-2 decision to the Edmonton Oilers on Friday, collected a 6-2 victory against the Vancouver Canucks on Sunday and finished off the tournament on Monday, falling 4-1 to the Winnipeg Jets.
Here are five thoughts on this year's tournament:
All eyes were on the former first-round pick during the two games he played and he did not disappoint. Mark Jankowski was credited with two points at the tournament - a goal and an assist - and centered the Flames' top line in their games against the Edmonton Oilers and Vancouver Canucks. He was one of the most dominant players on the ice in both contests, showcasing his playmaking ability and high hockey IQ. Jankowski was also strong on face-offs, warding off his opponents with a quick stick and positioning. He has learned to use his body more effectively on draws, thanks in large part to bulking up to 210-lb.
Fischer Makes A Statement
Zach Fischer was passed over in two drafts before being selected in the fifth round, 140th overall, this summer following a tremendous 2016-17 campaign with the Medicine Hat Tigers. Fischer leapt from eight goals and 13 points in 2015-16 to 34 tallies and 63 points last year and upped his physical game as well. In 2015-16, he had just 15 PIM. Last year? A whooping 145, thanks in large part to his 14 scraps during the regular season. He carried that momentum into this weekend's tournament, putting up one goal and two points and establishing himself as one of the hardest working forecheckers on the ice.
Penalty Killing Perfection
One of the Flames' best assets in the tournament was their penalty killing. They were perfect over the course of the three games, denying their opponents on 11 powerplay opportunities. Stockton Heat head coach Ryan Huska employs the same system used in Calgary and while some of the players were familiar with that structure, it was impressive to see the entire group quickly buy into the system and execute it flawlessly.
Healey's Physical Play
Some have said Josh Healey was 'too physical' for college hockey thanks to his propensity to throw incredibly solid hits on multiple occasions in a single game. The Ohio State alumnus continued that trend in Penticton, putting his opponents on notice by leveling anyone that was in striking distance. Impressively, Healey managed to throw countless hits without putting himself out of position or making dangerous checks. The defenceman was strong in his own end and wasn't out searching for hits - just throwing them at the right moments.
Foo, Valimaki Turn Heads In First Young Stars Appearances
In their first go-round at the Young Stars Classic, forward Spencer Foo and defenceman Juuso Valimaki acquitted themselves well amongst their peers. Foo led the Flames in scoring with a goal and three points and was a mainstay on the team's top line in all three games. Valimaki scored the opening goal of the tournament, putting the puck over the Oilers' goaltender's pad with a perfectly placed wrist shot from the blueline. The 18-year-old skated alongside Rasmus Andersson on the team's top pairing and looked right at home in the role.