Bishop picked for top prospects game

John Browne
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St. John’s native rebounds after finger injury

Back on ice after a freak accident, Clark Bishop of St. John’s is determined to finish his Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL) season on a high note.

Clark Bishop has come back strong  after an injury. — Photo courtesy of Mike Sullivan

The 17-year-old Cape Breton Screaming Eagles forward took a shot on his hand in a game in early November.

“The shot left the tip of my left ring finger hanging off,” recalled Bishop, who got back into the lineup about three weeks ago.

“The doctor stitched it back on, but it was really painful and very fragile for a time,” noted Bishop.

While his finger still isn’t 100 per cent, Bishop said it doesn’t bother him anymore.

“It was pretty disappointing at the time because it was the first time I ever had a serious injury,” he said. “Being off the ice for almost a month, I was getting kind of bored not being able to do anything.”

After missing nine games, Bishop said it took him a few games to get back to the way he usually plays.

Bishop is in his National Hockey League draft year, but said he doesn’t feel the time lost and possible loss of production in terms of points will hurt him from that perspective.

In 24 games so far this season, he’s scored eight goals with three assists. Last year, his first with the Screaming Eagles, he scored eight goals with 14 assists in 58 games.

“I’m not too worried,” said Bishop. “The scouts have seen me, and they know what I’m capable of doing.

“I’m sure they’ll be watching me the rest of the season, but I’ll let the scouts deal with that stuff and see what happens in June.”

It doesn’t seem to have turned off certain selectors.

He’s already been chosen to play in the BMO Canadian Hockey League/NHL Top Prospects game Jan. 15 in Calgary.

“Going to the prospects game gives me a lot of confidence,” said Bishop, one of only seven players from the Q picked for the game.

“It’s an accomplishment to be picked for the team and I’m looking forward to it.”

The six-foot, 182-pound centre said for the rest of the season he’s just going to, “play my own game and help my team get to the playoffs.”

The Screaming Eagles are second in the Maritimes Division at 19-13-0-3 heading into Friday’s slate of games.

As of December, Bishop is listed as 67th out of 90 players, according to TSN’s Craig Button, the former NHL executive who is ranking the top players eligible for the 2014 NHL Entry Draft.

That’s down two spots from Button’s last assesment. Button had Bishop ranked 65th in his previous list.

Bishop played with Canada when they blanked the United States 4-0 in the final of the Ivan Hlinka Memorial men’s under-18 hockey tournament in Piestany, Czech Republic in August. He was also the top scorer for his Team Atlantic squad at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge last January with three goals and two assists in five games.

Drafted in round one, third overall, by the Screaming Eagles at the 2012 QMJHL draft, Bishop is a product of the Avalon Minor Hockey Association who played for the St. John's Privateers at the major midget level.

Organizations: National Hockey League, BMO Canadian Hockey League, Maritimes Division Avalon Minor Hockey Association

Geographic location: Calgary, Canada, Piestany Czech Republic St. John's

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