clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

2015 Florida Panthers Development Camp: Recapping Day Three

New, comments

The defensive group stood out on day three and showed us why we have reason to be optimistic of the blue line's future.

The Cats prospects gather at center ice on Day Three of Development Camp.
The Cats prospects gather at center ice on Day Three of Development Camp.

After a solid Day One on the ice, Florida Panthers' prospects headed to the beach for a second day full of leadership and team building excersises.

Though the beach and sun must have been a fun break for the prospects, they were back on the ice on Wednesday for Day Three of the 2015 Development Camp.

In Day One, the top offensive prospects really wowed, as Lawson Crouse and Rocco Grimaldi impressed with their respective skills. Today, however, it was mostly the defense and the goaltenders.

I could talk about Matheson's skating for hours. His ability to move on the ice is incredible.

While doing this drill..

Matheson was ridiculously ahead of everyone else.

I think he'll definitely play a year in the AHL, but the year after that, I could definitely see Matheson replace Brian Campbell on the blue line. He's got the speed, and all the puck moving tools. It'll be interesting to see how he continues developing.

Thomas Schemitsch also moves well. He got himself open often in the scrimmage drills, but the goaltenders were usually up to the task of stopping him.

When it comes to goaltenders, watch out for Evan Cowley, the team's fourth round pick in 2013. He had a solid season in Denver, posting a .924 save percentage in 20 games, and looked great today in every drill.

His movement in the crease and his rebound control really impressed me. In drills where the skaters had to shoot low for rebounds, he never put the puck back into the middle. He either kicked them into the corner, or directed them off his stick and out of play.

He showed off his athleticism too. Despite standing 6'4" and weighing 185 pounds, Cowley had no trouble moving across the crease to catch one-timers. It was a good showing for the University of Denver netminder.

Some tidbits on the forward group:

Oh man, was this something to watch. Rocco wanted to go into the slot, and Shea didn't want to let him get there. A quick shove sent Shea airborne, and I honestly felt bad for the team's recent draftee. Grimaldi has had an extra four years to bulk up and build lower body strength.

This guy honestly never stops trying to get better. He worked with Matheson on passing for five minutes after everyone else left the ice, and then took a couple more shots before pulling the net off.

The skills competition and final day of development camp is Thursday, starting at 9:00 A.M. and ending at 11:00 A.M. Be sure to follow along on Twitter (@shane1342o), and watch out for my Periscope streams. Not only do you guys get to see what I see, you can also enter a chat and ask me questions, request to see certain prospects, and get great feedback directly from someone at the camp.