Photo: Aaron Bell/CHL Images

Talking With Detroit Red Wings’ Prospects: Anthony Mantha

The Detroit Red Wings drafted Anthony Mantha in the first round – twentieth overall –  of the 2013 NHL Entry Draft from the Val-d’Or Foreurs of the QMJHL.

There was a concern that Mantha’s fifty goal season in 2012-13 – the year before Detroit drafted him – could have been a fluke, but he proved that to be false and had an even more impressive season in 2013-14.

In Mantha’s last two seasons with Val-d’Or in the QMJHL, he tallied two hundred and nine points in on hundred and four games, which put his at just above two points per game.

Now Anthony Mantha will be making the transition from the QMJHL to the AHL or NHL this season and he looks ready for the challenge ahead of him.

Anthony Mantha is once again looking to make the Detroit Red Wings and he knows he has a good chance to do that in Training Camp this season, but he is not getting ahead of himself.

On trying not to get ahead of himself, Mantha said, “Being calm, getting out there and doing what I should be doing. If I am doing the right things I’ll get my chance and not put much pressure on myself.”

But Mantha knows he must have to drive to make the team. “You want to be an NHLer”, said Mantha. “I will try to make every little step to get there.”

Mantha had only been on the ice a few time after the Memorial Cup, but there is no doubt that he had done some off ice training because of the way he looked on the ice.

Anthony Mantha looked stronger on the ice during the Detroit Red Wings Development Camp than he did a month and a half earlier at the MasterCard Memorial Cup and looked in charge when on the ice.

While Development Camp is not the main focus for Anthony Mantha, he knows that is the first step towards his goal of making the NHL and he can take a lot from it.

Mantha said, “Getting more experience, playing with the new guys, competing hard for sure. I mean, it is the rookie camp, but you want to show the organization what you can do out there and that is what I am going to do.”

There are still concerns with Anthony Mantha and his Franzen-ish gliding, but most of the time he is gliding or seems to be moving slowly because he is in the right position and if he vacates an area, then his man will be open. The other times are bad habits from his time Val-d’Or and the system they ran there.

Anthony Mantha was the guy in Val-d’Or and their entire system ran through him when he was on the ice, so he was either back-checking a bit slow in case there was a chance for a long breakout pass or slowly making his way around the offensive zone looking for a soft spot in coverage.

Neither of those issues would make him a lazy player when on the ice, in fact, during the Memorial Cup or Dev. Camp, Mantha was aggressive in the corner and on the boards and never gave his opponents much room on the ice.

Anthony Mantha will most likely start the season in the AHL with the Grand Rapids Griffins, but if a spot opens up in the Red WIngs’ top six, then Anthony Mantha should receive the call-up to play in the NHL.

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