What the Barrie Colts need to do to contend in 2018-2019

This upcoming season will be a very interesting one for the Barrie Colts. They once again have the potential for a championship, but there is a lot of questions that need to be answered by September if they hope to have a successful season. With the import draft today, it could be the beginning of the answers as they selected goaltender Maksim Zhukov and forward Matej Pekar. Without further ado, here’s what I think the Colts will need to do to at least start the chance of icing a championship caliber squad in 2018-2019

Sign the Imports
The Colts have filled some spots in the import draft nicely with the selections of Zhukov and Pekar. This will only be good if they can get commitments from these two players which could prove slightly difficult as both have NCAA intentions. The Colts are very strong franchise and have a hall of famer coach, but aren’t exactly the London Knights in this area of expertise. No imports going into the season would leave a hole up front that would have to be addressed if they hope to contend and leaves the goaltending situation with questions. We’ll get to that later on.

Do the right thing with the OA’s
The Colts have 4 possible returning overage players, and that will need to be cut down to 3. These players are Zach Magwood (27G, 32A, 59PTS, +27), Lucas Chiodo (30G, 49A, 79PTS, +30), Captain Justin Murray (6G, 25A, 31PTS, +25) and Ben Hawerchuk (12G, 15A, 27PTS, -6). I’ll let everyone come to their own conclusion on what would be best here, and I think most would agree, but it’s a sticky situation for the Colts. What I do hope for is that it is dealt with in a timely manner before it becomes a problem.

 Goaltending Situation
With Leo Lazarev moving on, the Colts will have a new starting goalie this season. The question will be, who is it? Kai Edmonds is the only returning goalie and has shown flashes that he will be a solid goalie in this league, 2017 3rd round pick Jet Greaves is a highly touted goaltending prospect who could also steal the job, but would be a rookie this season. Lastly, newly drafted import Maksim Zhukov who has 2 solid seasons under his belt in the USHL should he choose to come to Barrie. Much like a similar situation in 2013-2014 with Gibl, Blackwood and Fotinos I expect the three to battle it out in camp, and maybe even early into the season until they position themselves. Again, that’s assuming Zhukov comes to Barrie which could open other questions and possibilities with two talented and good goalies that perhaps lack some experience at the OHL level.

In conclusion, I think this is a start for what the Colts will have to do to have a contending season. The rest will have to be decided later on after seeing how other players have developed over the summer, and what other teams that plan on contending do as well. Now we wait for training camp, and boy do I ever hope that hurries up!


Post a Comment