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Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Prospect Pulse: Derrick Lapoint

Florida draft pick, and UND recruit, Derrick Lapoint is a lanky, minute eating defenseman with solid all around skills. Though he tends to tilt towards being an offensive defender, he can also play a shut down game if called upon. The 116th overall pick in 2006, Lapoint was heavily recruited by both the University of Minnesota and the Wisconsin Badgers before deciding upon the University of North Dakota.

Putting up nearly point per game numbers with the Green Bay Gamblers of the USHL, Lapoint will look to make an immediate impact on the blue line with the departure of Brian Lee. A 6'3, 190 pounder, Lapoint has a long reach and uses that wingspan effectively one on one. More of a shooter than a passer, Lapoint possesses a heavy shot that he can unload quickly.

Lapoint attended the Panthers development camp this past summer and didn't look out of place. He hopes to continue his development at UND under Coach Dave Hakstol, who has good reputation for producing defensemen. The rearguard, who once played an entire game in high school, is relishing the challenge of stepping into a deep defensive core and making a contribution. The former USHL First Team All Star is expected to spend at least two years with the Sioux before considering the move to professional hockey.

News You Can Use Late in the Day:

-Good news for the Senators. McCammond does not suffer any fractures from the hit by Steve Downie.

-Leafs prospect Jiri Tlusty gets the start on the top line.

-The Hurricanes returned Brandon Sutter to junior and sent goaltender Michael Leighton to the minors today.

-News from around the CHL.

-Darius Kasparitis hopes to find work with another NHL team. If he couldn't stick with the Rangers, it may be the end of the line.

Al Strachan writes that the Ducks' trip to England wasn't all that easy. Poor guys, a private jet to Europe. And to top it all off, NO NAPS! Life is tough in the big leagues.

Dean Bennett of the Canadian Press reports that Sheldon Souray and Joni Pitkanen have impressed so far at Oilers camp.

-Tom Reed of the Columbus Post-Dispatch notes that no one has seized the number one center job in Columbus. Also notice that Joel Bouchard is still with the club on a tryout, but will explore other options if he is cut.

-Flyers coach John Stevens has to thin out his blue line corps this week.

-A recap of the a discussion from The Score detailing problems with the NHL.

-Check out Raffi Torres in this clip from the Daily Show.

-The USHL to hold a scouting combine in Florida.

-Steve Rosenbloom with an excellent editorial on the passing of Bill Wirtz.

-On Frozen Blog with a few words on the renovations performed at the MCI Center.

-Wings prospect Logan Pyett said he is ready to be the leader for the Regina Pats.

-Wayne Gretzky a proponent of the new electric hockey blades. Not a bad guy to have in your corner. Good thing Boyle didn't have these skates, or he would have also been electrocuted.

-Fanhouse with a preview on the Vancouver Canucks.

-Brian Rafalski likes playing the Red Wings free flowing offensive system.

-Sports Illustrated's preview of the Western Conference.

-The Predators visit Fort Campbell. The US Army, unofficial sponsor of the NHL.

-Fan Nation with their list of the Top 20 Left Wingers. Jack Layton, Hilary Clinton, Michael Moore, Marc Hoe and my in-laws all absent from the list.

Damien Cox does not envision the Sabres suffering much of a let down this year.

-Robert Tychowski writes about the lack of atmosphere and fans in Phoenix.

-Paul Friesen of the Winnipeg Sun tells Phoenix to keep the Coyotes, Winnipeggers want a real NHL team. Zing.

The Flyers report that they lost four players to injury in last night's game with Ottawa.

-Winkler, Manitoba chosen as the sight of the next Hockey Day in Canada.

-The arrival of the NHL barely causes a ripple in Jolly Olde England. Watch for an expansion team in Manchester next year.

-Another story on Gomez and Drury in NYC, this one by ESPN.

-Stan Fischler notes that tickets are selling fast in New York and Minnesota. Also note that Soprano's star Lorraine Bracco will host a wine tasting in the restaurant contained within the Devils new arena. No word on whether or not it will contain a Bada Bing! franchise.

Scott Morrison wonders how good Sidney Crosby can get in this piece for Maclean's Magazine.

-Kelly Hrudey weighs in with his thoughts in Macleans Magazine.

-Sean Avery is anxious to get his shot at the Islanders.

-Rob Rossi reports that Kris Letang is not a lock to make the Penguins.

-Bruins' defender Andrew Alberts still making adjustments to the new defensive system.

-Jacques Lemaire ready to ice his regulars in a pre-season tilt.

-Craig Constance of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution with news and notes from the Thrashers.

-The Score's Training Camp Notebook.

For Illegal Curve, I'm Kyle Kosior. Please note that I will away for the next few days. Guest blogger Marc Hoe will take over Prospect Pulse.

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