09 October 2007

Prospect Update: Rylan Kaip

The guys over at Illegal Curve did a nice write up on Thrash prospect Rylan Kaip. Since we don't know much about him, we're pasting their write up, but please go visit them. They run a great blog, with a daily aggregate of everything hockey that you need to know!

Kaip, a 9th round selection of the Atlanta Thrashers in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft, will never be a Calder candidate nor will he be found at the top of the league scoring race. In any league. However, this is the type of player every team needs to win.

A product of Saskatchewan who played junior hockey with the Hounds of Notre Dame, Kaip is now entering his senior year with the University of North Dakota. The 3rd line center on a deep team, Kaip is the captain this year and plays a very strong defensive game with a knack for scoring goals when the team needs it most.

Kaip is a high energy player that can shut down other team's top lines, create chances off the forecheck and provide up tempo shifts. He can and will play a physical game and is adept at blocking shots. As such, he sees a lot of time on the penalty kill, where his skill in the face-0ff circle is evident.

If Kaip can add a little more offense to his game, he could very well turn out to be a serviceable NHL player in the Marty Reasoner/Jim Dowd type of role.

The Caps are 3-0 to start the season, the first time since 02-03, which was also the last time they made playoffs. And we all remember how that worked out. If you don't, in game ... we forget which game, but it was 1st round against Tampa. Actually we don't remember most of the details, but Jagr got nailed for retaliation in OT when he shouldn't have, and a Tampa player was not penalized, and we lost the game and series as a result, and the ice at (then) MCI Center was littered with any and everything that could be thrown over the nets, and the people of the lower bowl had to dodge detrius like they were in a warzone. Later the Caps received a letter of apology from the NHL for the bad calls, but the damage was done, and Tampa went on to win the Cup. Now we're not saying the Caps would have won the Cup had the proper calls been made, but would Tampa? It's a question for the ages. At any rate, the Caps are still undefeated, and Sasha Vanilla (Alexander Semin) has only played one game due to an ankle injury. Once he's at full strength, it'll be fun to see what the team can do.

Our thoughts go out to Jason Blake and his family. If you live under a rock and have not yet heard, the Toronto forward was diagnosed with chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML), which is a cancer of the white blood cells. In laymen's terms, it causes your body to go into overproduction of white blood cells. It seems Blake's case was caught quickly, and in the early stages, which bodes extremely well for him. After 5 years of treatment (via oral medication), there is an 89% survival rate. If you know anything about cancer, you know that is an unbelievable number. While no one ever wishes to have cancer, if you have to have it, this is one of the kinds you hope for, as it's extremely treatable and manageable, and despite being a rare type of the disease, the survival rates are outstanding.

Blake will play tonight against the Canes, and is apparently prepared to stay on a full schedule with the Leafs. Does anyone else see the irony of this occurring during all the hype for the the 10 year anniversary of Hockey Fights Cancer?

Learn more about CML here.

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