Five things we have learned so far at Development Camp
- Karl Alzner is the real deal. Defensively he's positionally sound and he has an uncommon economy of movement. He makes quick, smart decisions with the puck. He plays with his head up. He hits no one. Lidstrom-esque. He is the only NHL-ready player at camp.
- Sasha Pokulok is a bust. Taken with the Caps' first pick (14th overall) in the 2005 draft, Pokulok has played in both the ECHL and AHL in recent years. He's maxed out: He hits no one, he defends mildly. Even when surrounded by players with far less experience, Pokulok has turned the puck over at every opportunity.
- Oskar Osala will play in the NHL. The rookie-of-the-year in the Finnish league, Osala is ticketed for Hershey this fall. He's no Euro-weenie: He's 6-4, 220, and he hits everything that moves. He skates well with the puck, has a hard shot, and isn't shy about streaking toward the net. Sure, he has a little trouble getting off his shot in traffic. But he'll learn.
- Michael Dubuc was the surprise player of the first scrimmage. (He did not play in the second one.) A scorer from the QMJHL, where he went 44-34-78 in 2007-08, Dubuc would be a good FA signing for Hershey. He showed speed, a willingness to shoot the puck and an ability to score.
- Pleasant surprise of Thursday: St. Cloud State backup goalie Dan Dunn, who is every inch of 6-foot-4. He moved better than you'd expect a 20-year-old of his size, used his frame effectively, and showed good hockey sense. Yes, he has a big five-hole he must learn to close. But he's worth watching.