With the OHL playoffs in full swing and both the NHL and AHL gearing up for their playoffs, a lot of players are swapping places. Look through most NHL rosters and you will find a handful of AHL guys filling in for injured players. With the loss of players to the NHL, AHL teams are looking to find more players that will give them one final push into the playoffs. The Lake Erie Monsters have found their final piece in Kyle Hope.
The AHL team signed the solid junior player to an amateur tryout contract for the rest of the season in hopes he will be
signed by the team for next season. Hope’s junior career officially came to an end last week when his Owen Sound Attack were knocked out the OHL playoffs.
Kyle Hope was drafted by the Oshawa Generals in the OHL draft and played two and a half season’s with the Generals before they traded him to the Owen Sound Attack. Hope will turn 21 next month and hopes some time the AHL will prompt an NHL team to give him a look after going un-drafted.
In his final AHL year Hope recorded 24 goals and 24 assists for 48 points in 54 games with the Owen Sound Attack. In his AHL career he laced up for 268 games recording 124 points and 433 penalty minutes.
Hope is looking for the final action to push him into NHL contention after attending the Vancouver Canucks training camp this past season and the New York Rangers camp the year before. The Erie Monsters are the Colorado Avalanche farm team and a strong showing down the stretch could earn Kyle Hope another NHL camp invite.
In an NHL role, the 6 foot 2 197 pound Hope, would fit into the role of third line grinder/shutdown forward who makes his opponents earn every inch of their ice against him. He’s a battler who isn’t afraid to get rough and tough when need be.
When asked about Hope’s future, his OHL head coach had nothing but positives to say about the youngster;
“He’s been doing a good job of being feisty and aggressive and hard on the forecheck and tough to play against. That’s really what got him on invited to an NHL camp.” They’re hard to find and every team is looking for them. I think there’s a future for (Hope) if he shows that he can do that consistently.” ~Greg Ireland, Owen Sound Attack head coach.
If Kyle Hope can stick to his game and prove to be a big help to the Lake Erie Monsters, his phone should be ringing with more NHL camp invites for next season.