Performances in the showcase will lead to tough decisions in the following weeks
There is plenty to watch once the team gets on the ice for training camp this week. While many of the roster spots are likely already decided, the fight to be the fourth-line center will be a battle to watch closely. While Jack Drury may have the most experience in the group, the performances of Ryan Suzuki and Vasily Ponomarev during the Southeast Rookie Showcase make them strong candidates to crack the Opening Night roster. Ponomarev’s hard work throughout the showcase was rewarded on Monday with a goal, and he added four assists to be the unofficial leading scorer for the team. In my eyes, Suzuki was the team’s MVP, scoring two goals, adding two assists, and scoring on all three shootout attempts he had. Both players also impacted the power play, scoring a few points each on the man advantage. This was the type of effort I hoped to see from Suzuki because I think his turn on the NHL roster is long overdue.