Kassian, McNabb selected for Canadian camp

Buffalo Sabres 2009 draft picks Zack Kassian (13th) and Brayden McNabb (66th) have been selected to attend Hockey Canada's 2011 U20 Development Camp. The 19-year old duo will be two of 41 skaters convening this August in St. John's, NL as reigning silver medalist Team Canada begins construction for their entry in the World Junior Championships. The tournament will be played this winter in Buffalo, and the pair of future Sabres should be considered solid candidates to take the international stage on a familiar sheet. Both played with Team Canada's 2009 U18 entry that finished in 4th place.

The 6'3, 215-pound Kassian will participate for the second year in a row after helping the Windsor Spitfires win their second straight Memorial Cup. Last summer in Saskatoon, the physical forward did not register a point in the camp's two scrimmages before uncorking 19 goals and 47 points in 57 OHL contests including the playoffs. Kassian has the body and style to play in the NHL as early as next season, and his chances will only be enhanced with a strong summer beginning with the Sabres post-draft conditioning camp.

McNabb, 19, will prepare for camp on the heels of an excellent season in Kootenay that saw him log huge minutes en route to being named a WHL Eastern Conference First Team All-Star. In 64 games, the 6'4 blueliner scored 17 goals and 57 points to finish fifth in scoring among league defensemen. The Saskatchewan native is expected to get into a few preseason games for the Sabres this fall before returning to the Ice for the 2010-11 season.

The complete roster can be viewed here.
Previous
Next Post »

10 comments

Click here for comments
Anonymous
admin
Friday, June 11, 2010 ×

Any word on whether they're talking with Tropp and Legault?

Reply
avatar
Anonymous
admin
Friday, June 11, 2010 ×

What are your thoughts on Gragnani, does he make a push for the team next year or might he be good in a trade package?

Reply
avatar
Kris Baker
admin
Friday, June 11, 2010 ×

I expect a Tropp signing very soon. There's more of a need for him to get into the system now than there there is for him to remain in E. Lansing.

I like Tropp's game. His effort overcomes his lack of ideal size. They have until August, but I think it gets done before the draft.

Reply
avatar
Kris Baker
admin
Friday, June 11, 2010 ×

Gragnani will put up a decent battle as that much-needed offensive dman, but it all depends on what they do in UFA. Even with his PP abilities, I don't see him being in the long term plans. Paetsch was excellent on the PP, too...

Seriously though, they're better served giving their chosen farm hands room to grow if he's not in the blueprint. He may have some value as a trade sweetener. I can see teams wanting to see what he can do for them.

If the Sabres do plan on keeping him, maybe they can get him more forward reps. No time better than now to think about it.

Reply
avatar
Anonymous
admin
Friday, June 11, 2010 ×

I can't believe Hockey Canada invited Kassian to the camp!!! Sabres send a message to the young man and they spit in their faces.

Reply
avatar
Kris Baker
admin
Friday, June 11, 2010 ×

Hockey Canada finds Kass innocent until proven guilty. Between the boards, he certainly warrants consideration for the team. With the tournament in the States, they're going to need as much heat as possible to wrestle the gold back.

I'm not reading too much into it. The Sabres aren't abandoning Kassian. Neither is Team Canada.

Reply
avatar
gaf
admin
Saturday, June 12, 2010 ×

This is a great opportunity for Kassian and McNabb. Great to hear, hopefully both will get something out of it that will propel their careers.

Reply
avatar
Gaf
admin
Saturday, June 12, 2010 ×

this is a great opportunity for Kassian and McNabb. I hope both learn something that propels their careers.

Reply
avatar
Anonymous
admin
Tuesday, June 15, 2010 ×

Here's a pop quiz for ya Kris: the last radar gun read out you gave us for the prospects I think was 2 yrs ago at prospect camp with Brennan's slap shot being the highest at about 91-92 mph. What's he clocking in at now and aside from him, what other prospects would you consider to be real sharpshooters?

Reply
avatar
Kris Baker
admin
Thursday, June 24, 2010 ×

7:22 - No recent reading on Brennan (and Schiestel for that matter), but I imagine they're still in that 90-95 range.

Biega can really snap it from the point, but the heaviest shot has to be Kassian. He gets it off fairly quick and it moves. Tropp has a thick, heavy wrister as well. Need more shooters!

Reply
avatar