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Tag: Paul Cotter

Rookie Game Takeaways – Game 3 vs. Anaheim

(Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

The Golden Knights finished the Rookie Showcase in Irvine winless and looking rather listless for a majority of the three games. However, there were plenty of positives to take away from the tournament in terms of individual players. I wrote up recaps from Games 1 and 2 earlier, this one is a bit more of a recap of the whole weekend, but includes Game 3.

  • The standout of the entire weekend was Dylan Coghlan. His offensive game popped consistently no matter the situation, and he was one of the most responsible defensemen in his own zone. He personally scored three of the team’s seven goals and registered a beautiful primary assist on another. There’s still a long way to go, and rookie games probably hold the least weight in comparison to full training camp and preseason games, but Coghlan’s performance in Irvine will absolutely play a part in the final decision as to which defenseman stays with the team when camp breaks in a few weeks.
  • Paul Cotter did well to start the process of cementing himself as a pro. He was one of the few Golden Knights to play with an edge and it led to him being in the middle of a lot of the team’s best offensive plays. He still has a lot to prove over the next week or two before he’s sent out of camp and either to the OHL or the AHL, but those three games were a giant leap towards Chicago.

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Rookie Game Takeaways – Game 2 vs. Arizona

(Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

My biggest takeaway from Game 2 of the Rookie Showcase in Irvine is that the Golden Knights sent out a roster that wasn’t good enough to compete in that game, and they still managed to play two solid periods. Let’s be quite honest with what the Vegas roster looked like against Arizona. They had just five forwards of their 12 that were drafted by the Golden Knights. Plus, their defense was without Jimmy Schuldt. Simply put, this game had little to do with the score and even less to do with the team as a whole. In games like this, it’s all about individuals and their path to eventually becoming contributors at the NHL level. Some did just that, others did not, but the terrible period, the apparent lack of energy, and the inability to generate offense as a team means little to nothing so stop tweeting me about it.

  • The first name to highlight is one that’s almost been written off as a Golden Knights prospect, and that’s Jake Leschyshyn. He shows excellent flashes of speed, looked terrific helping to generate offense through the neutral zone and into the o-zone, and looked his normal stellar self backchecking and defending. The former 2nd round pick has not shown a ton while wearing a Golden Knights jersey over the past two summers (partially due to the injury that caused him to miss one), but in this game we could finally see some of the traits that garnered that selection. He plays in all situations and has always been good on the defensive end, but he is finally starting to assert himself a bit more in offensive situations. I’m hoping to see him with Cotter, Rondbjerg, and/or Elvenes in the final game, then we should get to see even more offense show up.
  • Jordan Kooy continues to establish himself as one of, if not the most, promising goalie prospect the Golden Knights have. His size is a big part of that when comparing him to Dylan Ferguson (who will be in the net for the 3rd game). Kooy looks comfortable in his goal no matter what’s going on in front of him, and since that one scrimmage that was a disaster, there hasn’t been a single soft goal scored on him since while in a Vegas net. He was under siege for most of this game and helped keep the score looking respectable.

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Rookie Game Takeaways – Game 1 vs. Colorado

(Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

It’s been a busy weekend of throwing magenta ping pong balls and raising a butt-ton of money for charity, which has left us at SinBin.vegas a bit behind. But, if Golden Knights hockey happens, you best believe we’re going to watch it, and thanks to this fantastic thing called the Internet, we’ve been able to go back and watch the rookie games we’ve missed, (Here’s the link) and now I’m here with takeaways from the Vegas rookie loss to Colorado.

  • The best player on the ice for me was Zach Whitecloud and to be honest it wasn’t all that close. There were flashes from many other guys, which we’ll get to in a moment, but Whitecloud was a steady calming force on the back-end, consistently making the right read and play. His gap control continues to impress and his skating is so solid that he’s able to keep his positioning in any situation that’s thrown his way. He was reliable on the penalty kill and helped allow Nic Hague to get forward time and time again. Whitecloud plays a VGK style of defense, which is a different way to say, simple yet effective. Not that this should come as a surprise, but there’s absolutely a shot he wins the job and finds himself in the Golden Knights starting lineup on October 2nd.
  • Behind Whitecloud, there were two other major standouts, Paul Cotter and Jonas Rondbjerg.
    • Cotter, playing center with two non-roster players (Pavel Gogolev and Charles Antoine-Roy) consistently drove offense. He has an incredibly high compete level that reminds me a bit of Jonathan Marchessault. Cotter believes that every puck is his and he’s not afraid to bully his way through someone to take it from someone or to get it back. The best skill he displayed though was his vision through the neutral zone. Three or four times Cotter carrier or passed the puck through the neutral zone to lead directly to scoring chances. Great first step towards his goal of being in the AHL rather than OHL this year.
    • Rondbjerg has the Golden Knight style of hockey written all over him. He’s a ferocious forechecker who uses his stick well to rip the puck off defenders. There had to be five different instances that the Golden Knights lost the puck in the offensive zone and Rondbjerg either got it back himself or helped to get it back to keep a play alive. Then there’s his backchecking, which might be even better than his forechecking. He’s non-stop getting back into his own zone and he has the foot speed and the stick to go along with his willingness to defend. Gerard Gallant is going to love this kid, and if he finds even an ounce of finish, so are VGK fans.

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Paul Cotter: “I’m Ready For The AHL”

(Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

Just when you think you’ve got Golden Knights prospect Paul Cotter figured out, the target moves.

A USHL product, the Golden Knights selected Cotter in the 4th round as a player most described as well-rounded without an elite offensive game. He showed up to Development Camp in 2018 and wowed in his first time on Vegas ice scoring points and making offense-driving plays consistently.

He then headed off to Western Michigan to play college hockey which likely meant seeing him stashed away as a Golden Knights prospect for years to come. Eight games into his career as a Bronco, Cotter left school for the OHL and the London Knights.

Less than two months later, Cotter signed his entry-level contract with the Golden Knights, something he wasn’t able to do while in college. He played in London with limited success and was expected to shine once again at Development Camp in 2019.

Cotter was mysteriously absent from camp, which we later learned was due to appendicitis. He missed out on his chance to shine and likely took a step backward towards reaching the NHL.

Then he showed up to Rookie Camp, and on the very first day back with the Golden Knights, Cotter made his motives clear where he wants to end up this season.

Obviously the goal is to make Vegas. But it might be a smaller percentage chance for us younger guys, so the big goal for me is to make Chicago. That’d be awesome for me a younger guy. I do think I’m ready. -Paul Cotter

Because Cotter is American, he does not fall under the CHL/NHL agreement which forbids many prospects from leaving the OHL to play in the minors. Cotter’s plan is to prove he’s ready for professional hockey now, and hopefully prove he’s ready to play in the NHL sooner rather than later.

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Golden Kights Prospect Paul Cotter Leaves Western Michigan For OHL’s London Knights

Paul Cotter showed he can score during his short time in Vegas for Development Camp. Now he’ll have a chance to show it in the OHL. (Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

Paul Cotter was selected in the 4th round by the Golden Knights and within days became one of the most promising prospects in the Vegas system. At Development Camp, Cotter flashed in drills as well as scrimmage before heading off to Western Michigan University to play his freshman year in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference.

Cotter did not score a goal and registered just one assist over his eight games at Western Michigan. His roles on the roster ranged from healthy scratch to top line center for the Broncos. Then, Cotter decided to leave.

Cotter will now join the London Knights of the OHL and likely instantly step into their everyday lineup.

He’s really grown as a player and he’s a mature young man. We believe he’s going to bring leadership and character to our dressing room. I think he can score at this level. He’s a good two-way hockey player. –Mark Hunter, London Knights GM to London Free Press

So what does this mean for the Golden Knights?

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Five Golden Knights Prospects Headed To World Junior Summer Showcase

Glass and Suzuki should shine at the Summer Showcase. Hopefully on the same line. (Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

Every year, in advance of the IIHF World Junior tournament that takes place in December, four teams get together for the World Junior Summer Showcase. Last year it took place in Plymouth, Michigan where Erik Brannstrom starred for Team Sweden. This year the Summer Showcase is headed to Kamloops, British Columbia and the Golden Knights are well represented.

The World Junior Summer Showcase begins with practices on July 28th and games get underway on July 30th.

Paul Cotter was a standout at VGK Development Camp. We’ll see if he does the same at the Summer Showcase. (Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

The American players, Kruse and Cotter, are both on Team USA’s Team Blue. Team Canada is split into two teams as well, but their split roster has yet to be released.

Team USA’s Team Blue plays the first game against Elvenes and Team Sweden at 4:00 PM on the 30th.

Notably absent are Erik Brannstrom for Team Sweden and Nic Hague for Team Canada. Both are expected to have a shot at making the NHL or AHL roster this season.

NHL Network is airing six games starting with the USA vs. Sweden game on August 2nd. Here’s the full NHL Network schedule.

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