Day three of development camp started off without a ton of action, and ended with one of the biggest must-see moments of camp. The majority of the sessions were spent going through a progression of drills with skills coach Angelo Ricci, the drills ranged from chopping up the ice, stick-handling on your edges like Lawrence Pilut and Casey Mittelstadt demonstrate below, to players stick-handling holding their sticks with the opposite handedness.
I think the general consensus among everyone watching was that Casey Mittelstadt out-performed the pack in the stick-handling focused drills. No surprise as everyone knows this is a centerpiece of Casey’s offensive toolset.
Pilut has easily been one of my favorite players to watch at camp so far. He got a lot of attention today starting with his warm-up.
As the practice shifted to 3-on-3 practice ahead of tomorrows scrimmage, Pilut didn’t shy away from the creativity. I caught this shift of him trying some unorthodox moves. His offensive skill-set is off the charts for a defenseman. I think the Sabres struck gold if he has no unexpected hiccups in transitioning to the North American game.
As I previously alluded to a bit above, the Sabres ended both sessions today with some 3-on-3 practice. Some thoughts and highlights:
- The big one that everyone was talking about was Rasmus Dahlin absolutely blowing up 2018 4th rounder, Matej Pekar. The USHL rookie of the year hauled Dahlin down yesterday when Rasmus tried deking him at the blue-line, and they were nudging a bit on previous shifts in the 3-on-3 as well. Dahlin eventually caught Pekar with his head down and caught the entire crowd off guard with him as he dropped Pekar to the ice.
- Casey Mittelstadt continued his good camp with good play in the 3-on-3. Him and roommate Rasmus Asplund worked together nicely combing their hockey smarts and elite vision in small area situations. Mittelstadt strung together a few nice sequences with his hands and agility like the clip below as well.
- Some late rounders and invitees that stood out in 3-on-3’s as units were the defensive group Lindstrand-Cronholm (2018 4th rounder), Andrew Peski (Invitee from North Dakota), and Brendan Guhle, as well as the forward group of Joe Snively (invitee from Yale), Brandon Biro (invitee from Penn State), and Vasily Glotov (2016 7th rounder). As an individual rather than a group, I thought Cole Coskey, an invitee from the Saginaw Spirit showed well in the 3-on-3 as well.
Day 3 MVP – The Defensemen
I couldn’t decide between the all of them so I gave the MVP to the entire set of defenseman after taking home the win in both 3-on-3 scrimmages before the actual scrimmage. If Rasmus Dahlin wasn’t already the talk of the day, he absolutely was after nearly taking Matej Pekar’s head off. I thought Pekar actually had a nice showing on the day until Dahlin found him with his head down, fwiw. The usual suspects stuck out throughout the skill work, but the defenseman swept the actual competition of the day with significant performances from multiple players. Brendan Guhle had a nice day as well standing out defensively in the 3-on-3, and ultimately scoring the winning goal off a feed from roommate, Rasmus Dahlin. Jacob Bryson scored the winner for the defenseman in the other session, and Lawrence Pilut joined him as a driving factor for the dmen’s victory. Will Borgen and Mattias Samuelsson showed off their two way ability in the scrimmage as well. I also noted earlier on a pair of late rounders/invites in Andrew Peski and Linus Cronholm who had a nice showing.
Looking forward to the legit 3-on-3 scrimmage tomorrow! Follow for more coverage and check out the site if you missed any other days of camp.