Jan 13, 2012; Buffalo, NY, USA; Toronto Maple Leafs left wing Nazem Kadri (43) during play against the Buffalo Sabres at the First Niagara Center. Sabres beat the Maple Leafs 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-US PRESSWIRE

Kadri and Colborne Aren’t The Only Players Struggling In The AHL

Last Friday both Joe Colborne and Nazem Kadri were healthy scratches for the Toronto Marlies in a game against the Texas Stars.  Both players have struggled to start the year and nothing was more evident of that than their game against Houston on Thursday night.  The two prospects played on a line together and were both minus-3 with zero points in a game that the Marlies won 6-4.  Clearly their performance to that point was unacceptable to Dallas Eakins and the coaching staff.  Marlies assistant coach Gord Dineen had this to say on the benching:

Lance Hornby@sunhornby
Marlies asst. coach Gord Dineen on high profile benchings: “Sometimes it’s better to sit and watch in the stands.”
9 Nov 12 ReplyRetweetFavorite


The message appeared to be received loud and clear by both players.  Kadri had a goal and two assists, while Joe Colborne also scored and added an assist to help the Marlies to a 5-3 win over the San Antonio Rampage the following night.

Given the hype surrounding these two prospects, Kadri especially, the news of the benching surely was a disappointment.  But given the lack of the production from the two players, it was hardly unexpected.  Kadri only had three assists in the first nine games and Colborne wasn’t much better with four assists.  I am the first one to point out that goals and assists don’t always tell the story, but even I was becoming a little concerned.

Scanning through some of the NHL prospects playing in the AHL this season, the lack of production is not a problem exclusive to Colborne and Kadri.  The list below contains many players who either spent the majority of last season in the NHL or were expected to be full time NHL players this year.  All of these players have struggled to produce points thus far at the AHL level.

 

Player

NHL Team

GP

G

A

Pts

Nazem Kadri Toronto Maple Leafs

11

1

6

7

Joe Colborne Toronto Maple Leafs

11

1

5

6

Devante Smith-Pelley Anaheim Ducks

12

1

6

7

Jordan Caron Boston Bruins

11

4

1

5

Cody Hodgson Buffalo Sabres

9

1

9

10

Magnus Pajaarvi-Svensson Edmonton Oilers

13

2

5

7

Adam Henrique New Jersey Devils

11

3

0

3

Chris Kreider New York Rangers

11

1

6

7

Jakob Silfverberg Ottawa Senators

11

3

3

6

Mika Zibanejed Ottawa Senators

11

0

4

4

Jaden Schwartz St. Louis Blues

12

2

2

4

Brett Connolly Tampa Bay Lightning

11

3

4

7

Zack Kassian Vancouver Canucks

11

4

3

7

Alex Burmistrov Winnipeg Jets

13

2

5

7

Now there are plenty of prospects like Justin Schultz, Marcus Foligno and Nino Niederreiter that are off to very good starts, but it is important to keep in mind that we are less than 15 games into the season and there is no need to panic just yet.

Follow Tony on Twitter: @TheDailyBites

 

 

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