We only have one month to go in the regular season and it should be a busy one. Not only are 10 of the 12 Alliance teams making the trip for the Toronto Marlboros Holiday tournament beginning today, but the standings in the Alliance are super tight.
Heading into 2020, there is a three point separation between Elgin, Hamilton and Waterloo for the top three spots in the league. Following those teams, only four points separates 4th from 8th place with the Cambridge Hawks and Kitchener Jr. Rangers still clinging to life for that final playdown spot.
As we are looking at player rankings this time around, below is the December edition of the rankings as I once again have players slotted in A, B and C categories.
A new year leads us to a new format for the Alliance Scout player rankings. In previous years, the site would release a top 25 player list during the Toronto Marlboros tournament and then a final list prior to the OHL Priority Selection.
This year, we are changing things up. Rather than just having two rankings, we will be releasing a new ranking every month. And rather than just doing the top 25, we will be modeling the list after how OHL and NHL Central Scouting does their lists. Doing these lists monthly will allow for a more accurate representation and also can allow for players who have been having strong months to make their way onto the lists.
Prospects have been split into three different categories. Those in the “A Prospect” pool are players who I see as the cream of the crop and those who could be hearing their name called in the opening four rounds of the OHL Draft. A player under the “B Prospect” heading I believe could be going in rounds 5-10 while players in the C category could be going in rounds 11-15. Players names are all listed alphabetically and not in any ranking order.
So without any further delay, here is our initial list.
2018/19 Minor Midget Record: 16-13-4 (6th Overall)
2018/19 Minor Midget Result: Lost in quarter-finals to Kitchener
2018/19 Major Bantam Record: 14-15-3 (7th Overall)
2018/19 Major Bantam Result: Lost in quarter-finals to Hamilton
After a third consecutive year in the postseason, the Cambridge Hawks will need their defensive play to increase that streak to four year running.
There were some significant improvements for the 03 born team from bantam to minor midget. The team went from six wins the previous year to 16 at minor midget, which was good for sixth spot in the league. While not chalked full of offensive firepower, Mateo Amaral and Matthew Dimaline came up with timely goals while Kai Greaves improved leaps and bounds on defense. Ben Bates also emerged as one of the best goaltenders in the league. Injuries hurt the Hawks come playdown season, but it’s hard to not classify the year as a success.