Weekend reading: Target Center, Novak, pros update, worlds
May 10, 2012 Leave a comment
The blog will be dark for a long weekend to celebrate Mrs. Blog’s graduation from CU-Denver on Saturday. Family and friends are descending on our fair city tonight and Friday and there are long overdue chores to be done that do not include keeping up with offseason college hockey.
In the interim, check USCHO for any national news or the Grand Forks Herald’s or Duluth’s blog for WCHA developments.
If anything big breaks, they will be all over it as usual. Here are some links to tide you over.
This blogger asks why people dislike Minneapolis’ Target Center; long rumored to be the postseason site for the new National Collegiate Hockey Conference.
The reality of it is, the league needs to get as good a deal as possible to generate revenue (this is the business side of things fans do not like to think about) and the central location of Minneapolis (like St. Paul) is attractive.
A deal was said to be close last week but negotiations can tend to drag out, especially with a one-man league office (commissioner Jim Scherr) until May 15, when new director of hockey operations Joe Novak starts working part-time (full time July 15). Those who have taken potshots at the league for the delay are just taking advantage of the situation because they feel snubbed.
Here is a good interview with Joe Novak by the Duluth beat writer and another by the Sioux reporter, which reiterates Novak’s focus on finding the best possible on-ice officials from the CCHA and WCHA. That is something that must please all the fans.
Former Tigers Nate Prosser and Chad Rau, both native Minnesotans, will visit four Northeastern Minnesota cities in June as part of the Wild’s 2012 Road Tour.
Tour stops and scheduled personnel are: June 25, Duluth from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Duluth Heritage Sports Center, and Eveleth from 4-5 p.m. at the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame, with Nate Prosser and Jason Zucker, and radio personalities Tom Reid and Bob Kurtz; and International Falls, 10-11 a.m. at Smokey Bear Park, with Justin Falk and Chad Rau, and TV personality and former player Wes Walz and radio personality Kevin Falness; June 26, Grand Rapids, 12-1 p.m. at the Eagles Club, with Prosser and Zucker, and Reid and Kurtz.
Each tour stop will include a fundraising opportunity for local youth hockey associations, and autograph sessions.
St. Louis columnists weigh in on the future of the Blues, where Jaden Schwartz will likely play a prominent role.
This fan thinks Bill Sweatt needs to break into the NHL as a regular this coming season or his window may have closed with the Canucks. Sweatt did go from minus-9 his rookie season to plus-9 which suggests he has become a stronger two-way player, which cannot hurt his chances of making the third or fourth lines.
The State of Minnesota will not be contributing more bond money for upgrades at Mankato’s home ice arena.
Two little-used Badgers will transfer to Division III schools.
The campaign, which has received considerable support from NHL players, was created by the late Brendan Burke, son of Brian Burke, General Manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs. Brendan was a student manager for the Miami RedHawks.
The mission of the organization is to guarantee that athletes are given a fair opportunity to compete and be judged by other athletes and fans alike, only by what they contribute to the sport or their team’s success.
Here is the list of former college players competing for their country in the world championships in Sweden and Finland as compiled by College Hockey, Inc. The number of Frenchmen and Italians involved surprised me a little.
College Players by Country
|Duncan Keith||Michigan State|
|Baptiste Amar||UMass Lowell|
|Stephane Da Costa||Merrimack|
|Laurent Meunier||UMass Lowell|
|Yorick Treille||UMass Lowell|
|Daniel Bellisimo||Western Michigan|
|Matt De Marchi||Minnesota|
|Rob Sirianni||Bemidji State|
|Justin Abdelkader||Michigan State|
|Cam Atkinson||Boston College|
|Richard Bachman||Colorado College|
|J.T. Brown||Minnesota Duluth|
|Joey Crabb||Colorado College|
|John Curry||Boston University|
|Patrick Dwyer||Western Michigan|
|Justin Faulk||Minnesota Duluth|
|Ryan Lasch||St. Cloud State|
|Kyle Palmieri||Notre Dame|
|Jeff Petry||Michigan State|
|Jim Slater||Michigan State|