Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Alumni share secrets

MSU is holding its Maverick Skills Camp for youth and high school hockey players at All Seasons Arena this week. Each day features a different former player to teach some the finer points of his game. On Tuesday, Anaheim Ducks forward Ryan Carter was there. You can read more about him and one player's thrill of winning a faceoff against him here. On Monday, it was Andy Hedlund. Wednesday will be Tim Jackman, and Thursday will be Shane Joseph.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Stevenson signs with Thrashers

Former MSU All-American Grant Stevenson has signed with the Atlanta Thrashers.

It's the third NHL team Stevenson has been with since leaving Mankato in 2003. He originally signed with the San Jose Sharks and played in 47 NHL games in the 2005-06 season, scoring 10 goals and assisting on 12 others.

Last year, he was with the Calgary Flames, although never got called up to the big club. As an American Hockey League player, Stevenson ahs 206 points, including 79 goals, in 304 games. Last season with the Quad City Flames, he scored 73 points to lead the team in scoring. His 30 goals tied him for the team lead, and he had a 15-game point-scoring streak.

The Thrashers also signed former Minnesota-Duluth star and 2004 Hobey Baker winner Junior Lessard.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Rule changes

The NCAA has approved some rule changes for college hockey for the upcoming season. It includes the two-referee, two-linesman system that the WCHA experimented with last year -- to fairly good reviews, I might add -- as well as new icing rules, including not allowing the attacking team to make a line change after an icing, as the NHL does.

The kicked-in goal rule, which seems almost impossible to define, continues to be tweaked after last year's controversy in the national championship game.

I'm sure we'll explore these more as the season approaches, so, for now, I'll defer to Grand Forks' hockey guru Brad Schlossman, who breaks it down rather nicely here.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Blues hang on to Backes

The Vancouver Canucks signed ex-Mav and restricted free agent David Backes to a three-year, $7.5 million offer sheet Tuesday night, and the St. Louis Blues quickly matched the offer, saying that Backes is a big part of the team's future. Blues president John Davidson said in a statement: "David is a major part of our youth movement in St. Louis and we expect him to play a huge role as we move forward." More later. ...