USHLers on the rise in November

Andrew Weiss2013 Draft Center0 Comments

With the second month of the USHL season in the books, many top draft eligible prospects’ November can be summed up by a streak or a trend.

Lincoln Stars forward Kevin Roy and Indiana Ice forward Robbie Balligareon, November’s hottest draft eligible prospects, both put together impressive point streaks and saw their draft stock rise.

Roy tacked onto his four game point streak in October by scoring six goals and adding three assists in his first four November games. His eight game point streak would end on November 12 against Omaha, but the Lac Beauport, QC. native continued to pick up right where he left off, scoring three goals and adding six assists in Lincoln’s final six November games. Roy’s hot month has him pacing all USHL players with 27 points in 18 games.

Roy was Lincoln’s first round pick in this year’s USHL Entry Draft and has dazzled USHL scouts with his stickhandling ability all season. This should not come as a surprise as he is the same kid who became an internet sensation because of his hands at just 13-years-old.

Balligareon pieced together an impressive streak of his own, contributing at least a point in the Ice’s first seven November games. Balligareon, after scoring once in the entire month of October, appeared much more confident with the puck on his stick in November. Balligareon did not hesitate to make the simple play or fire the puck on net—something that was missing from his game in October. Shooting on net was something the Boston University commit really focused on as he more than doubled his shots per game from October to November. Balligareon ended the month with six goals and four assists in nine games.

Many scouts have already noticed the pure talent of Zemgus Girgensons, more are beginning impressed with his consistent play this year, an aspect of his game that had been lacking. Girgensons also contributed on the scoreboard for the Fighting Saints with three goals and four assists in seven November games.

Girgensons’ commitment to play in all three zones will help his draft stock on the big stage when he represents Latvia in late December at the World Junior Championship. Latvia will have their hands full defensively all tournament, especially against Sweden and Russia in the preliminaries, so help from Girgensons will be needed.

A.J. Michaelson’s draft stock continued to slide throughout November as the Apple Valley, Minn. native had three assists in five USHL games and went pointless in five games at the World Junior A Challenge. The struggles are more head scratching considering how much talent the Waterloo Blackhawks have upfront. While Michaelson was originally ranked 21st in Future Considerations’ preliminary rankings, he fell out of the top 30 in the latest rankings, indicative of his slide.

Though the USHL season is two months over, scouting reports are far from concrete as there is still two-thirds of the season for draft eligible players to solidify their play.

Andrew Weiss is a USHL correspondent at Future Considerations and can be found on Twitter. For all the latest Future Considerations news and posts, follow FC’s Official Twitter Feed, on YouTube and on Facebook!

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