|5’11”||190||Jan 7, 2005||RD||R||3rd overall 2021||A Prospect||CANADA|
|2019-20||GTHL U15||Toronto Nationals||33||14||12||26|
|2020-21||GTHL U16||DID NOT PLAY|
Coming out of the 2021-2022 season, most hockey pundits had Cam Allen of the Guelph Storm as one of the best defencemen available for the 2023 National Hockey League Entry Draft, if not the best available. He was named the OHL Rookie of the year and to the OHL First All-Rookie squad.
That assertion was reinforced at the Hlinka-Gretzky in August as he captained and led Team Canada to a gold medal.
Right shot defencemen with Allen’s tools don’t grow on trees. He’s a very good skater, smart, can quarterback a powerplay, is offensively gifted while strong defensively, he can rush the puck and make excellent passes – he just did it all.
The truth is, things have gone south quickly for Allen this season as it has for his team. While you see glimpses of the talent he possesses, it has become more of a rarity than regular. And his team was supposed to be a young team challenging and instead are fighting for their playoff lives.
There has been discussions in hockey circles wondering how much of Allen’s slide is due to the Storm being a disappointment and vice versa. Some claim that he is doing too much to get his team on track, and if you watch him on a nightly basis, there is some truth to that. His competitive spirit won’t allow him to be any different.
That said, you don’t just lose that talent overnight. It’s still there and at this point I think simple is better for Allen. He needs to stop forcing things and get back to the basics. Once he realizes that he can’t do it on his own, no matter how talented, he and his team will be better off.
He’s out with an injury at this time, and that may just be what he needs. A chance to sit back, watch the game and learn that he can’t do it on his own. The Storm have come on a bit lately in his absence and if he ingests that “simple is better” mentality, he should get back to where he belongs near the top of the rankings among blueliners.
I expect him to do just that with a very strong second half of the season.
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