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A Scout's Eye: Home Grown Talent

by Staff Writer / Florida Panthers
A Scout's Eye is a blog written by Panthers Director of Amateur Scouting Scott Luce as he takes you behind the scenes of what a scout really goes through as they prepare for their big holiday, the NHL Entry Draft. Scouts are the reason for the home-grown product, those players that are drafted by the team and then make a huge difference for them.

Luce is in his seventh season with the Panthers, after joining the club's scouting staff on July 11, 2002. He oversees the club's amateur scouts and works closely with Panthers General Manager Jacques Martin, tracking prospects throughout the world.

Luce has been responsible for the Panthers drafting notable players such as Nathan Horton, Rostislav Olesz, David Booth, Michael Frolik, Michal Repik, Keaton Ellerby and Jacob Markstrom.

A Scout's Eye Archive

I recently spent a two-week span in which I was impressed with some home-grown talent.  Some of you may think I am talking about our past draft picks and that may be a bit confident. The home-grown talent I am speaking of is the number of Florida natives currently playing in various leagues around North America. It is a testament of where hockey continues to grow and develop high-end prospects. Below are some of the examples I witnessed :
Andrew Yogan from Boca Raton is now playing with the Erie Otters of the OHL after starting the season with the Windsor Spitfires. I saw him play against Kitchener and he has really found his game since being traded. He is close to a point-a-game player and is having a strong underage season. He was solid enough in this game that a scout from another organization commented to me about his being from Florida.
The next weekend I was in Boston for some Hockey East and Prep School games. In one Prep School game, I counted seven Florida residents on the rosters and three of them played a significant role in the game. R.J. Boyd from Sarasota, Corey Scammon from Orlando, Mike Reed from Ft. Myers, Garrett Clement form Royal Palm Beach, David BenMocha from Lutz, Geoff Linblad from Boca Raton and Chris Weiland from Royal Palm Beach. They are various ages and at different stages of development, but it was nice to see all of them from Florida.
Lastly, I was at the Boston College-Maine weekend series and Malcolm Lyles from Miami Gardens made his NCAA debut on defense for BC. In the opening game of the series he registered his first collegiate point, earning an assist. He played a regular shift and all in all was pretty good. Marginal size, but a good set of wheels. Not that often you see a hockey player from Miami Gardens playing as a freshman at a powerhouse program like Boston College.
I look forward to monitoring these prospects as their hockey careers move forward.
Scott Luce
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