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Claimed:North America: Brampton


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by Thor Ludvigsen, VHL. com


Undeniably the superior conference in the VHLM, the North American Conference is loaded with top prospects and top General Managers. This superiority is showing on the ice this season, as all five North American teams are above .500, while just two European sides are above the same mark. Now, it is early on in the year, but based on preseason predictions, many expect this trend to continue. Thus, many also believe that the Founders Cup champion will come out of North America, so we at VHL.com will spend the next month analyzing all five North American teams and giving you an inside look at each team's make up. This week, the focus is on Brampton, Ontario, as we take a look at the Blades.



On offense, Brampton is largely relying on the prowess of three men: Tyrone Williams, Hunter Backenbauer, and Hudson Backenbauer. These three get between 60-80% of the ice time for forwards and as such, you can expect to see a lot of them. Through their first six games, Williams leads these three in points with 15 to his name. He also leads the team in goals with nine on the young season, four of which came on the powerplay, showing Williams' ability when his team is a man up. Of all players on the Blades, Williams is also the furthest along in his development with 149 logged practice hours. The 6'0" left winger has shown great skating ability and a nice scorer's touch in his young career and is also considered one of the top prospects for Quebec City, after being selected by them in the S39 VHL Entry Draft.


Alongside Williams on the first line are the Backenbauer brothers. Both of the young men are fairly equal at this stage in their development, with Hudson having two extra hours than his brother Hunter. A left winger, Hudson is still very raw in most aspects of the game, but do not tell him that, as thus far, he has 14 points and 14 hits, showing a nice physical element to his game. He is property of the Calgary Wranglers. Meanwhile, Hunter was selected by the Cologne Express this season and is definitely more of a sniper, as he has a great scorers touch and is a very big threat to goalies coming down the center of the ice. Thus far, he has 12 points and 16 hits, showing similar skills to his brother. He has also won 56.69% of the face-offs he has taken, displaying great confidence in his skills in the face-off circle.


Beyond these three, the only other forward of note is career minor leaguer DuJuan Cook, who has stunned everybody by breaking out with a team leading 17 points thus far. He is expected to slow down his pace as the season progresses, but he is certainly providing some unexpected points for the Blades.




When it comes to defense, Brampton is a little light, as they have just two players and both are career minor leaguers. Firstly, the oldest of the two is Season 35 prospect Mikko Leskonnen. A strong young man who has some skill in his own zone, Leskonnen has seven points thus far, as well as 19 hits and 11 blocked shots. Compared to his defensive partner, Herman Mudgett, he is producing just as much, though he is far more physical. Speaking of Mudgett, he is a former Season 36 prospect who is incredibly raw. He does not do much well, though his strength is definitely in his skating, in addition to his skill on defense. With eight points, seven hits, and 12 blocked shots this season, his statline is practically identical to Leskonnen's, aside from the hit total.


Ultimately, anything these two produce is a nice plus for Brampton, as expectations are very low. General Manager Damon Wolfe is likely just hoping his forwards manage to outscore opponents and off-set any easy chances allowed by this duo.



Brampton, somehow, has no goalies on their roster. How they expect to stop pucks I do not know, but somehow they still win games. How bad does a team have to be to lose to a team with no goalie?



Wolfe's philosophy is clear: it does not matter how bad our defense or goalie is, as our offense will simply outscore opponents. Somehow, this has worked well so far, as the team is 5-1 with a +11 goal differential. However, one must wonder how they expect to continue that pace and stay consistent throughout the year with no defense or goalie talent. If anybody is looking for some talent on the back-end via trade or via waivers, it is undoubtedly Brampton. Add a solid goalie and some good defensive prospects to this team and you may have something, but as of now, I see no way this team lifts the Founder's Cup.


823 words

Edited by Spangle
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  • Senior Admin

Content: 3/3

Nice read! No doubt VHLM North America is stacked this season, compared to the shit Euro side. Moscow and Bern are still fairly decent, but Bratislava and Oslo are both still in the midst of rebuilds so we can't expect much from them. Turku was going to go on a run this year, but it seems they have given up so I expect them to fall to shit as well.


Grammar: 2/2

Nothing worth noting, good job.


Appearance: 1/1

Looks good.


Overall: 6/6

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