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Tag: Trevor Connelly

Development Camp 2024 Takeaways

The final event of the summer has come and gone with VGK prospects wrapping up Development Camp at City National Arena this afternoon. The young players participated in a pair of scrimmages as well as a host of practices over the week. Here are my takeaways, mostly from the two scrimmages.

Trevor Connelly

Unfortunately, VGK’s 1st round pick this year picked up a knock that kept him out of the second scrimmage, but he was impressive in the first one. The biggest element of his game that stood out was his composure on the puck. Once he gets it, he looks so comfortable, plays with his head up, and is always looking to advance the play. There haven’t been a ton of 1st round picks that have come through VGK Development Camp, but of the ones that have, Connelly was the most impressive in their first appearance.

Carl Lindbom

The Swedish goaltender who had a monster season in the SHL showed well in his appearances in the scrimmages. He’s not the largest guy so you’d expect him to need to be very athletic to make saves, but it’s not necessary with the fluidity of his movement. This isn’t to say he’s not athletic, it’s just that he rarely puts himself into a position where he needs to rely on recovery moves to make saves. He confirmed the plan is to play in North America this year, so his stock could shoot through the roof in the next 12 months.

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Golden Knights Take Massive Risk In Selecting Trevor Connelly

Photo from CJBear in SinBin Discord

With the 19th pick in the draft, Vegas selected a player who has apologized for posting an anti-Semitic picture on social media, confessed to urinating on a student’s belongings, and was accused of directing a racial slur at an opposing player. There are also claims of punching, slew-footing, and verbally abusing teammates at different points on the seven teams he played on between the ages of 13 and 17. (If you haven’t read the article in The Athletic yet, stop what you are doing and read it now.)

In selecting Trevor Connelly, the Golden Knights have taken a giant risk in the name of winning hockey games.

The 18-year-old Southern California-born forward is one hell of a hockey player. At times during his junior career, he’s been considered a top-five talent and was regarded as one of, if not the, best player at the Hlinka Gretzky Cup U18 tournament last summer.

To ever make it as a hockey player though the words spoken by both Connelly himself and VGK GM Kelly McCrimmon after being drafted must materialize in his actions. Each spoke about how the teenager made mistakes, learned from them, and grew to be a mature, caring, charitable person.

Unfortunately, due to his checkered past, words aren’t going to cut it. To be able to chalk up his prior transgressions to childlike mistakes as they’ve been portrayed, he must prove his reformation as a person day in and day out for years and years to come. Until he does that, his talents as a hockey player are trivial.

The next chapter in the life of Trevor Connelly is now linked to the Vegas Golden Knights.

Entering this draft, Connelly’s history has been well publicized and it was clear many teams removed him from their draft boards completely. Vegas were willing to stick their necks out for this player like no team before them were.

Now, they have to be right.

The Golden Knights are an organization that has always talked about the importance of character. For months leading into the Expansion Draft they stressed their focus on selecting great human beings, even over great hockey players. During their initial run of success and all the way through winning the Stanley Cup, they attributed a large portion of the success to the culture that was built through exceptional integrity of the locker room.

All of that now rests in the actions of a supposedly reformed juvenile.

If more comes out about Connelly or if he makes another mistake even close to as grievous as those in his past, it will be a stain on everything the Golden Knights have stood for over the first eight years of their existence.

The Golden Knights say they’ve done their due diligence. The player has apologized and taken steps to correct his mistakes. The pieces are there for this to work out and it to go down as an awesome story of a young man’s growth as he becomes an adult.

But the pieces are also there for this to be one of the worst mistakes in the history of the NHL Draft, and one that was easily avoidable.

It’s up to Trevor Connelly with the help of the Vegas Golden Knights to decide which story this becomes.

Golden Knights Select Forward Trevor Connelly With 19th Pick In 1st Round

Photo from Kartane in SinBin Discord

With the 19th overall pick in the 2024 NHL Draft, the Golden Knights have selected Trevor Connelly from the Tri-City Storm of the USHL. Connelly is committed to play hockey this fall at Providence College.

Here are what scouts have written about the 2024 #19 overall pick. Connelly is a burner. Give him the puck in space, and he makes things happen. Some of that is skill, a lot that effectiveness rests in the details – it all depends on what’s in front of him. When confronted by a defender playing a tight gap, Connelly dictates their momentum, changing lanes and cutting across his opponents as they react; if the defence sags, he cuts inside

The Hockey Writers: The 18 year old is seen as a sure top-six talent according to league scouts.

Dobber Hockey: Dynamic, skillful winger with great playmaking and puck-carrying abilities. Plays a very unrefined game, but has sky-high upside.

Daily Faceoff: From an on-ice perspective, Connelly has so much going for him. He’s been lighting up the USHL all season long … Off the ice, though, is what teams are concerned about. It just depends on which teams you talk to.

The Hockey News: About two years ago, Connelly posted an image on the social media platform Snapchat, in which the photo depicted a friend posing in front of building blocks that was formed in the shape of a swastika. Connelly was also accused of making a racial slur in a game in 2021, but after an investigation was unable to verify the incident, it resulted in the initial suspension for the violation to be lifted.

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