Over the past weekend, we got to take in the Young Stars Classic in Penticton BC. The four western Canadian teams, the Calgary Flames, Edmonton Oilers, Vancouver Canucks, and Winnipeg Jets would send their rookies for a quick weekend classic. Although the Jets young stars would walk out of the tournament with a 1-2 record the Jets were a really fun team to watch. Of the young stars which were the most impressive? Gather around friends and let’s talk about the Jets future stars.
The 30th overall draft pick from the 2022 draft Brad Lambert looked so good in the Young Stars. Lambert was touted to be the best skater in the 2022 draft and he had to of been the best skater in the whole classic. You can not forget his two goals from the weekend either, the first goal of the classic was against the Oilers on the Friday night where he came rushing in got the first shot, and picked up his own rebound. The second goal of the classic for the Finish-born player was against the Flames where Lambert picked up a big juicy rebound and put the puck into the wide-open net. Lambert was making solid passes and seemed to be in the right place at the right time more times than not. You can see that mix of Finnish and North American hockey in his game, it’s a strange mix but that mix is going to make Lambert stand out in the NHL one day. After just the three games I am a little disappointed he is going to the WHL to join the Seattle Thunderbirds where he is going to dominate. I think Lambert would have thrived with the Manitoba Moose in the AHL. Overall Lambert was a ton of fun to watch and to see him with the Jets in the next couple of years is going to be great.
Greg Meireles is an interesting case for the Manitoba Moose, last year he started on the fourth line with the Moose and due to injuries and guys being called up to the NHL. Meireles found himself on the top line where he would start to thrive and ultimately pick up five goals and 27 points in 49 games for the Jets’ affiliate. Over the weekend Meireles would score two for the Jets just like Lambert. The first going against the Oilers where Cole Perfetti would find Meireles for a beautiful back-door one-timer. The second goal from 6th round pick in the 2019 draft was a header? Meireles just goes for the header. I respect it but it could have a dangerous play it was ultimatley the game-winner for the Jets against the Flames.
Meireles got a majority of time on the top line and some power play time where he looked really comfortable being a complementary player to Lambert and perfetti. If injuries start to pile up for the Jets this season Meireles could be a candidate to join the Jets even for a game or two.
I had to debate who I was putting up as my third man. Perfetti would have been the easy choice but @Dominic DiVincentiis was the only reason the Jets won the game against the Flames, thus he gets my pick for this article. The 206th draft pick in the 2022 draft was a backup in the game against the Canucks. Once he got his chance to play he saw plenty of rubber from the Flames. He would stop 44 of 47 shots. Although a lot of those shots were from the outside the Flames had a lot of pressure in the Jets zone for the majority of the game and there were both big and awkward shots on DiVincentiis yet he kept making the saves. At times I think the nerves were starting to get to DiVincentiis but once he made a few saves he looked ready to go. If DiVincentiis continues to play games like that the Jets might have another goaltender who is a diamond in the rough. DiVincentiis is just 18 years old so his journey to the NHL is still going to be a long one so don’t expect to see him around the Jets anytime soon but with seeing his name on the back of a Jets jersey for the first time he knows what his potential can be. May DiVincentiis have a great season with the North Bay Battalion this upcoming season.
Let us know who you liked from the Young Stars Classic down below and share this article with your friends!