67's blueliner finally Czechs in

DON BRENNAN, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 9:14 AM ET

The 67's were able to cut through the red tape that was holding Radim Ostrcil out of training camp yesterday.

The Czech defenceman was given clearance from his former team, HC Vsetin, to begin skating with Brian Kilrea's squad in time for the afternoon scrimmage at the Civic Centre.

Ostrcil, the 67's first pick in the import draft, had been in Ottawa since Monday but could only watch rookie camp and the first day of main camp Thursday from the cement side of the boards.

"It was hard," said Ostrcil, a 6-foot, 197-pounder who was selected in the sixth round of the NHL draft by the Boston Bruins. "I've been looking forward to getting out there."

Not more than the 67's were looking forward to seeing him.

IMPORTS CRAPSHOOTS

Kilrea and his scouts wound up with three forwards (Michael Latta, Ryan Martendale, Johnathan Carnevale) and a goalie (Chris Perugini) when they selected the best players available with their earliest picks at the Priority Selection, then carried out Step 2 of their master plan by picking two defencemen at the crapshoot of imports.

Their blue line was going to be thin regardless of the impact made by Ostrcil and fellow Czech Martin Paryzek. The only returnees are a 17-year-old (Tyler Cuma), a soon-to-be 18-year-old (Julien Demers), who was in the CJHL at the start of last season, and a 19-year-old (Sean Ryan), who was generally not included in their top three pairings in 2006-07.

Had Ostrcil not been cleared, Kilrea was going to have to trade for another veteran defenceman sooner than he planned.

"We have an OA (overage spot) to play with too, but we're going to see how things develop," said Kilrea, who has a few extra draft picks stockpiled as trade bait. "We'll find out later what our needs are."

LIKE ZIDLICKY

Ostrcil's ideal player is Marek Zidlicky, a Nashville Predators defenceman who hails from the same home town. Ostrcil says his best attributes are his offensive skills, which he'll put on display for the Bruins when he leaves for their camp Sept. 11.

"Shot, pass ... I like the forward game," he said.

More defensive minded is Paryzek, a 6-foot, 184-pounder who comes from Ceske Budejovice. Whereas Ostrcil's previous North American visit was to Toronto for testing prior to the draft, Paryzek's only other trip to this side of the ocean was for an under-17 "hockey challenge" in Regina.

"This is a very nice arena, Ottawa is a very nice town," said the 18-year-old Paryzek. "Everything is nice here."

ICE CHIPS: Adam Courchaine, No. 1 on the team's goaltending depth chart, stopped 27-of-28 shots in yesterday's morning scrimmage. That gave him 62 saves on 66 shots through camp to that point ... Released yesterday was the 67's largest prospect, 6-foot-7, 215-lb. RW Luke Watson. While he did score a goal during the morning scrimmage, the Hamilton product did not display any desire for physical involvement ... The 67's have one scrimmage this morning, from 10-noon. It's open to the public, as is tomorrow's Black-White game at 11 a.m.


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