Four Rebels crack NHL Central Scouting list (With video)

Four Rebels crack NHL Central Scouting list

The Red Deer Rebels got their first win in over a month on Tuesday and it was the second-straight day of good news for the club.

On Monday, four Rebels were named in the NHL Central Scouting Midterm Rankings, a list that usually provides a pretty good indication of where players will be selected in the upcoming draft.

Through the struggles of the rebuilding club, associate coach Jeff Truitt says having four players on the list is a small nod to their development and culture. The four players on the NHL radar was only bested in the WHL by the Vancouver Giants, who had five.

“We’re a hard-working team and that’s what we pride ourselves on. Anybody who takes a look at our team — these guys who are identifiable and maybe not on the radar yet, very well could be because of the program we have,” Truitt said.

“It’s nice to know people are watching your players because of the type of program you’re running.”

Rebels defenceman Alex Alexeyev was the highest ranked player on the team as the 26th best North American skater. Earlier this month he was ranked 22nd out of the top 31 prospects by the International Scouting Service.

His defence partner Jacob Herauf, who was number 203 on the central scouting list, said Alexeyev just has a special ability to see the ice in a way that most players can’t.

“He sees the game differently than everyone else. He’ll make plays that guys in the pros aren’t even making. That’s just the kind of guy he is. He can move the puck quickly and he can skate. He’s offensive too but defensively he’s not a liability either,” said Herauf.

Currently, Alexeyev leads all Rebels’ defenceman with six goals and 25 assists in just 37 games, which sits 18th across all WHL defenders.

Even with those numbers, Truitt said he has seen Alexeyev develop and really grow as a player this season but still thinks the young Russian defender has enormous untapped potential.

“I think you’re seeing a very smart player, who’s got a very solid foundation and who is always building and layering other avenues in his game that’s making him better,” said Truitt.

“If you can be an efficient defenceman by moving pucks quickly and not getting bunched up in the traffic, that makes a better play for you and your teammates. At times he can be physical and finish guys off. ”

Kristian Reichel is another Rebel who cracked the Central Scouting radar, as the 80th ranked North American skater. The forward from Czech Republic is enjoying a breakout campaign in his first season in North America. He currently sits third in WHL rookie scoring with 16 goals and 15 assists in 39 games.

The Rebels selected Reichel 27th overall in the CHL Import Draft last summer.

“He pushes the pace with his puck play and work ethic is relentless. Right from practice to games. He’s very consistent in that. You never doubt his effort,” Truitt said.

“He’s got a tremendous shot. Great vision on the ice as well. He’s turned into a pretty good leader in our dressing room as well.”

For his own ability, Reichel said it’s been fun learning the North American game and he thinks there have been a few places where he’s been able to excel.

“I’m going to the net more often and I’m trying to shoot from lots of places on the ice because you can score goals from the corner. Trying to improve my skating a little bit and I’ve improved my shot a lot,” Reichel said.

Seven of the forward’s 16 goals have come on the power play, many of those of the one-timer variety from the top of the faceoff circle. Herauf said Reichel’s shot sets him apart and on the man advantage, the Rebels are simply trying to get it onto his stick any way they can.

“He does everything right. His shot obviously, he’s got a cannon. His work ethic and leadership ability,” Herauf said about the forward.

“On the power play just feed it to him and he’ll unleash it.”

Rebels defenceman Dawson Barteaux also cracked the Central Scouting list at 156.

Red Deer will host the Kelowna Rockets Saturday, before ending their eight-game homestand with a Sunday contest against the Lethbridge Hurricanes.

Email sports tips to Byron Hackett

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Biathlon women sweep the podium for second time

Biathlon women took top four spots in Thursday’s 10-km race

Red Deer firefighter is recovering, thanks community for support

Firefighters who help together, stick together. Red Deer firefighter medic Ben Barthel… Continue reading

Petroleum producers speak to Red Deer & District Chamber of Commerce

Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers brings recommendations

Science fair is around the corner

Central Alberta Rotary Science Fair happens March 29 and 30.

Ponoka host to Bayer Crop Science seed innovations trade show

The company held a trade show with seed crop science industry partners at the ag event centre

Gaudreau snaps goal drought to help Flames double up Islanders 4-2

CALGARY — The drought is over for Johnny Gaudreau. Gaudreau’s first goal… Continue reading

Federal government set to develop code of conduct for sport in Canada

OTTAWA — The federal government is developing a code of conduct for… Continue reading

Jay Baruchel has trained the dragon, now he’s letting go with ‘The Hidden World’

TORONTO — The first time actor Jay Baruchel stepped into a recording… Continue reading

Hockey ref says AC/DC support is giving him motivation in Alzheimer’s fundraiser

Enthusiastic AC/DC fan Steve McNeil says he’s feeling inspired to push even… Continue reading

Gardening: What are you planting in 2019?

What’s new in plants for 2019? Checking catalogues, greenhouses and stores will… Continue reading

Opinion: I spy another energy hypocrite

Talk about biting the hand that feeds you. The mittens provided to… Continue reading

Canada’s bobsleigh team races World Cup on Calgary home track facing closure

CALGARY — Canada’s skeleton and bobsled teams will race a World Cup… Continue reading

Most Read