The Ottawa Senators had three prospects taking part in this year's World Junior tournament in Malmö, Sweden — Marcus Högberg (Sweden), Curtis Lazar (Canada) and Quentin Shore (United States). All three players had successful tournaments with Lazar and Shore playing important roles for their respective teams while Högberg backed up Sweden in goal during their run to a silver medal.
Pierre Dorion, Director of Player Personnel for the Senators, was in Malmö for the tournament and offered his thoughts on the performance of the three Sens prospects.
Here's what he had to say...
On Marcus Hogberg:
It's tough to say when someone doesn't play a lot and they weren't really tested. In that game I think he had to make two or three big saves, he looked big in his net, he looked comfortable. I think Rick Wamsley going over there spending time with him — with his team — was very beneficial for him and I think he is headed in the right direction.
On Quentin Shore:
Quentin Shore with the States, I think his development has been going really good, we drafted a good player there, especially in the late rounds. He understands the game, he has got to get stronger and quicker and I think Randy (Lee) has addressed that with him as far as those things. He is smart, he knows how to play above the puck, he knows how to get in lanes to check, he has got good skills for a role player. Down the road, I don't think we're going to see someone who is going to come in here and get a lot of points, but I think with his progression and development he has a chance to be an NHL player one day.
On Curtis Lazar:
Curtis is going on a real good trend right now. I think he's having a great season with his Edmonton team and that carried over to the World Junior team. The way the coaches used him, he was a key part of the team, he's a high character kid. The way he handles the puck, the way he handles the puck with pace, the way he drives offensively, the way he goes to tough areas — he can score goals just with his release but he can also score goals in tight — he makes plays off the cycle, he is very responsible defensively, he'll block shots, he'll do all the little things you need to do to win and I think we got a high character player there.
On the system halfway through the year:
I think obviously the first two guys that we drafted last year, Lazar has been having a good season and Hogberg has been up and down. I think we've got a few guys that are coming out in major junior this year that we're going to have big decisions to make with Chris Driedger and Francois Brassard. We also have some college players on their way that could be good pros.
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