Year in School: Junior
Hometown: Chesterfield, MO
Previous Team: Lincoln Stars (USHL) in 05/06
NHL Considerations: None yet, but I think Michael has an outside shot.
07/08 Stats: 39 games, 13-11-24, +8, 40 PIM
06/07 Stats: 41 games, 11-13-24, +1, 32 PIM
08/09 Role: 1st or 2nd EV Line, 1st PP Line
07/08 Recap: Michael tied for the team lead in goals last season w/ 13, and led the team in PP goals (7) and shooting percentage (15.1%). There is no doubt that Michael had another good offensive season for the Badgers. His game also grew on the defensive side of the puck, and was much improved over his freshman season, where it often appears he was just out there for the offensive side of things, but he still has room to improve. Michael still doesn't appear to give it his all every shift, something Coach Eaves noticed which led one series to a saturday benching.
08/09 Thoughts: While it sounds like I'm being pretty hard on Michael in my recap, its because I think he could do a lot more for the Badgers if he put his all into every shift. Afterall, the name of the blog is 60 minutes, no alibis, no regrets. Along w/ Blake Geoffrion and Ben Street, Michael is our other top returning offensive threat. If he works to make more of his opportunities in the offensive end, and bury a few more shots, he could have a big season. The right combination on the PP w/ Michael could produce a rather potent unit, something the Badger's PP rarely sees. The following prediction could be low if he raises his game to another level this season, both on offense and defense.
Prediction: 35 games, 16-10-26
Photo from uwbadgers.com