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OHL: Oshawa Generals – King of the Cassels

 The Oshawa Generals skated to a 5-4 shootout victory over the visiting Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds on a late Sunday game, extending their October record to 7-1 en route to the Eastern Conference lead, adding to the six-points separating them from second ranked Niagara IceDogs (5-4-1).

The Generals have yet to dress in a 3-games-in-3-nights set during the month of October – the first set is over the weekend of October 25 through to October 27 – the first real set of scheduling adversity.

In a game heavily scouted – and with draft-eligible Michael Dal Colle and Greyhounds Sergey Tolchinsky stealing some of the scoring spotlight, the two featured players below played a significant part in the Generals pulling ahead early in the third period, combining for the 4-3 go-ahead goal before the Greyhounds Tyler Gaudet tied it and sending it to overtime.

Scott Laughton was on the ice for three of four Oshawa goals while Cole Cassels was on the ice for the last two Oshawa goals (recording his two assists on both goals).

Cassels was the lone forward lined up when the Greyhounds scored their first goal of the night, otherwise, neither player was on the ice for any other Sault Ste. Marie goals against.

nhl-vancouver-canucks Cole Cassels, C

Selected in the 3rd round (85th overall) by the Vancouver Canucks, the Oshawa Generals pivot extended his point streak to a personal best five games (5-2-6-8) with two assists .. demonstrated an elevated commitment to be a consistent net presence without the puck – even took a puck to the outside of the left knee as a result during a late first period powerplay and though visibly shaken stayed on the ice and didn’t miss a shift afterwards .. exhibited keen vision and distribution ability, but stick handling and puck skills didn’t match up .. didn't really stickhandle with the puck much, rather 'pushed' it along in front of him before setting up for plays .. showed a strong sense for the amount of manoeuvrable space to find an edge, such as dumping the puck into the zone when seeing little room or options to make a move at the blueline for controlled entry, but lots of space to create a race for the puck behind the defenseman .. strong penalty killing instincts within spatial and intellectual terms – thinks and anticipates the play accentuated with a burgeoning active stick .. start up and first few steps are still sluggish and could be a weak spot  .. lots of character and resilience after the puck to the knee while hurting his hand in a scrum later in the game .. buzzes around the goal and in close – a characteristic conducive to scoring success .. works around the boards and will battle for pucks both with sticks and using his body to force turnovers, but stayed relatively close to the net in this game, using touch around the goal to make plays whether it's a quick shot or a playmaking opportunity .. some work required around sluggish feet, but is developing more of the offensive instincts he was showing only in spurts playing behind Scott Laughton (see below) and Boone Jenner (graduated to Columbus – NHL).

nhl-philadelphia-flyers Scott Laughton, C

Philadelphia 1st round selection in 2012 (20th overall), known more as a playmaker, capped off the weekend flaunting his goal scoring ability, scoring five goals and doubling his season totals to 10 (8-10-7-17) .. scored his third career OHL hat trick – has recorded one in each of the previous two seasons .. one of the final cuts from the Flyers and returned back to junior after being scratched in the first game of the NHL season and immediately named Player of the Week ending October 6th with a nine-point effort (3-3-6-9) .. 200 foot player showed his breadth of instincts at both ends of the ice, scoring twice where he jumped into the play, recognizing free lanes and dashing into the openings and creating scoring chances – on some great distribution by Cole Cassels .. enthusiastically backchecks and consistently demonstrates positional awareness in the defensive zone .. generally lined up as the high forward in the offensive zone, with short bursts to the net to support puck presence down low .. makes good and proper defensive decisions, rarely caught behind the play .. solid start up with a good separation gear only requiring a few quick steps .. physical and aggressive – sometimes to a fault where overly aggressive nature takes him out of position .. still, he’s already fairly strong and still filling out .. took his man into the boards hard at the end of a long shift – stamina and last ditch spikes in energy before heading to the bench, which could have repercussions if the puck is going the other way  .. first goal was a clear demonstration of sensing when to jump into holes, skating shorthanded into open ice while teammate Cassels won a puck battle along the right side boards .. strong moves in close to get the goaltender to open up a hole and he slipped it through .. defensively conscience and seems to start his offense through solid support positions .. has the make up of a checking center with scoring touch at the professional level, while bringing sandpaper and grit to the lineup .. built to be a Flyer.



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