As I reported on Monday, the Stingrays have signed AHL veteran forward Jordan Owens.
Owens has played more than 300 games in the AHL and was released by the AHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs last weekend. Owens played for Charlotte, when the Checkers were in the ECHL, during the 2007-08 season and had 13 points in 20 games. This is a very nice pick-up for head coach Spencer Carbery.
Here are a few more details from our own Joey Z on Mr. Owens.
Last season, Owens, 27, recorded 13 goals and 18 assists for 31 points in 31 games with Soenderjyske in Denmark and helped the team capture the league championship with nine points (six goals, three assists) in 16 postseason contests. Entering his seventh professional season, the Toronto, Ontario, native skated in 311 American Hockey League (AHL) games from 2007-12 with the Hartford Wolf Pack, Grand Rapids Griffins and Connecticut Whale totaling 111 points (37 goals, 74 assists) and 347 penalty minutes. During the 2007-08 season, Owens appeared in 20 games with the ECHL’s Charlotte Checkers netting three goals and 10 assists for 13 points.
Prior to turning pro, the 6-foot, 180-pound forward played three seasons of junior hockey with the Mississauga IceDogs of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) acquiring 153 points (69 goals, 84 assists) in 192 games.
I got a chance to watch the intra-squad scrimmage this morning and to be honest the guy that impressed me the most was goalie Adam Morrison.
Let’s face it, the kid couldn’t stop a beach ball last year, struggling last season during his time with the Stingrays. He rebounded and played better after he was sent to Utah. Morrison looked very confident in net on Wednesday and made several point-blank saves. The former 3rd-round pick of the Philadelphia Flyers is looking to have a breakout season with the Rays.
Other than that, Scooter Vaughan had a couple of five-on-three goals and Kyle Thomas had a goal. Thomas played for D-III school Norwich and helped lead the school to the national title.
I can tell you from just some brief observations that this year’s team is much stronger across the board than a year ago.
“The pace is so much faster this year,” Vaughan said. “(Marc) Hagel, (Scott) Campbell, (Jeremy) Price have all looked good so far. I’ve got to give (Lindsay) Spark, my Michigan boy, some credit. He was flying around out there. Everyone is moving their feet and working hard. Both the goalies have been sharp. It’s been a good camp so far. We’ve got a lot of bodies here, so if guys are going to get a spot, they’ve got to make an impression pretty quickly.”
Just from my early observations, here are some line and D-men combinations that I’ve notice:
Peter Boyd-Scott Campbell-Jordan Owens
Chad Painchaud-Chris Langkow-Jack Downing
Igor Gongalsky-Justin Maylan-Wayne Simpson/Marc Hagel
Lindsay Sparks-Patrick Gaul-Eric Alexander/Andrew Cherniwchan
Ryan Grimsahw-Steve Spinell
Kevin Quick-Jeremy Price
Scooter Vaughan-Luka Vidmar
The top line, in my opinion is going to be Boyd-Campbell-Owens right now if they stay together. So if Painchaud-Langkow-Downing or Gongalsky-Maylan-Simpson/Hagel is your second or third line, things are good. Each line has a little bit of everything.
I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait for the start of the season.
See you at The Rink,