Friday, August 31, 2012

Rankings and Features, Part 2

And for the second installment...
  •'s "30 Teams, 30 Days" series wrapped up yesterday, and several North Dakota players past and present found their way onto the top prospect lists of their respective organizations. Here's a summary:
               Danny Kristo - No. 7 (Montreal Canadiens)
               Brad Malone - No. 5 (Colorado Avalanche)
               Jordan Schmaltz - No. 6 (St. Louis Blues)
               Rocco Grimaldi - No. 10 (Florida Panthers) 
               Brock Nelson - No. 4 (New York Islanders)
               Derek Forbort - No. 4 (Los Angeles Kings)
  • Hockey Prospectus has been releasing its prospect rankings over the course of the summer, and here are the latest UND inclusions:
               Jason Gregoire - No. 10 (Winnipeg Jets)
               Brad Malone - No. 6 (Colorado Avalanche)
               Rocco Grimaldi - No. 3 (Florida Panthers)
               Corban Knight - No. 4 (Florida Panthers)

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Trupp Re-Signs Plus a Mixed Bag

Here are a few random nuggets, some new & some old:
  • Evan Trupp has re-signed with the ECHL's Bakersfield Condors. He began last season with the Cincinnati Cyclones before a mid-season trade sent him out west. He was putting together a solid rookie season with the Cyclones, producing 12 points (2G, 10A) in 20 games, but he really found his groove in Bakersfield. While with the Condors, he put up 22 points (10G, 12A) in 25 games, including this ridiculous beauty:

Rankings and Features, Part 1

A number of players have been featured in an assortment of offseason rankings, series, lists, etc. Here is the first installment of a complete rundown:

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Comings & Goings

It's been awhile since the last post containing transaction news, but in the last few weeks a decent amount of player movement has taken place amongst the UND hockey world. Below is a rundown of the recent comings and goings:
  • North Dakota received a verbal commitment from defenseman Ryan Mantha yesterday. Mantha, who will play for Sioux City (USHL) this upcoming season, joins Nick Schmaltz, Chris Wilkie and Brendan Lemieux as 1996-born UND commitments. To learn more about UND's newest recruit, you can check out his Recruit Profile or you can catch him in action September 28th when Sioux City opens the USHL regular season against the Fargo Force at Scheels Arena.
  • Taylor Dickin, who spent one and a half seasons with North Dakota, has opted to transfer to the University of Manitoba. Dickin and the Bisons will travel to Grand Forks October 6 to take on UND in an exhibition tilt.
  • Jordan Parise came to terms with Valpellice of Italy's Serie A, joining Anthony Grieco as former Sioux goaltenders who have signed on with an Italian elite league club. Earlier this summer Grieco signed with Pontebba. Parise spent last season playing in Germany while Grieco played with Asiago of Serie A.
  • Corey Fienhage signed an AHL contract with the Rochester Americans. He split time last season between Rochester and Gwinnett (ECHL).
  • Michael Forney re-signed with the ECHL's Colorado Eagles. Forney spent the bulk of last season with Colorado, where he was one of the team's top point producers. He also spent some time with the AHL's St. John's IceCaps and Texas Stars.
  • Joining Forney in Colorado is Aaron Dell. Dell, of course, recently forfeited his final season of collegiate eligibility to sign a professional contract, and he will be one of two new faces in goal for Colorado.
  • Andrew Kozek has signed with Dornbirner of the Erste Bank Liga (Austria Tier 1). He spent last season with the Nikko IceBucks of the Asia League.

Recruit Profile: Ryan Mantha
Current Team:  Sioux City Musketeers (USHL)
Potential Arrival at UND: 2014/15
Position: Defenseman
Birthday:  June 18th, 1996
Hometown:  Clarkston, MI
Height:  6'5"
Weight:  225
Shoots:  Right

Profiles & Press Clippings:
  • He will play for the Sioux City Musketeers of the USHL.
  • He participated in the 2013 All-American Prospects Game as one of the top American-born prospects eligible for the 2014 NHL Draft.
  • In September he was listed as a B skater on the NHL Central Scouting Service's Preliminary Watchlist for the 2014 NHL Draft.  
  • In August he was a member of the USA Hockey Under-18 Select team that took part in the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup.
  • In July he participated in USA Hockey's Select 17 Development Camp, earning camp All-Star honors after recording one assist in six games on his way to earning a spot on Team USA's Under-18 Select team roster.
  • Playing for the Sioux City Musketeers (USHL), he registered seven points (1G, 6A) in 52 games while finishing second on the team with a +15 rating.
  • He was invited to participate in the USA Hockey National Team Development Program 2012 Evaluation Camp.
  • Played for the Detroit Belle Tire U-16 Midget Minor team, producing 22 points (8G, 14A) in 38 games.
2010-11 & 2009-10:
  • He played for the Detroit Little Caesars 1996 team, registering 21 points (6G, 15A) in 59 games.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

UND Women Represent USA Hockey Well

Several current and future members of the North Dakota women's hockey team took part in a pair of USA Hockey events against Canada last week. Below is a quick summary of the results:

2012 Women's Under-22 Series:
  • UND seniors Jocelyne and Monique Lamoureux helped lead Team USA to an impressive three game sweep over Canada, outscoring the Canadians 12-6 in what was a breakout weekend for USA Hockey's Under-22 team.  Jocelyne led all players with six points (3G, 3A), while Monique's four points (1G, 3A) tied her for second with Wisconsin's Brianna Decker. Heading into the weekend, Team Canada had gone 10-1 in the previous eleven games of the series.
2012 Women's Under-18 Series:
  • Three committed UND recruits represented USA Hockey's Under-22 team in its three game series against Canada. Canada won the series two games to one, despite being outscored by Team USA 9-8. UND recruit Alexis Shaw stopped 34 of the 39 shots she faced while splitting time in net for the Americans, while fellow North Dakota commits Gracen Hirschy (D) and Amy Menke (F) each contributed a goal. All three recruits are expected to arrive in Grand Forks in time for the 2013-14 season.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Friday Morning Post

Vacation time starts today, but one last post is in order before heading out for a Great Lakes road trip:
  • Jonathan Toews and TJ Oshie made Bleedin' Blue's list of the top 5 forwards in the Central Division.
  • As part of's 30 in 30 series, Travis Zajac was featured as the New Jersey Devils' x-factor for this coming season. Zajac played in only 15 regular season games last year after suffering an offseason Achilles tendon injury, but he was very good during New Jersey's run to the Stanley Cup Finals. 30 in 30 also asks how the Devils might go about replacing Zach Parise, both in the lineup and as captain.
  • Danny Kristo was ranked #7 in's listing of the Montreal Canadiens' top 10 prospects.
  • Former Sioux standout Troy Murray is the current feature in the Chicago Blackhawks' 85 Years of Blood, Sweat, and Cheers series. Murray, who in 1980-81 led North Dakota in scoring as an 18-year old freshman, is currently Chicago's radio analyst, and his 99 point effort with Chicago in 1985-86 still stands as the most prolific offensive season produced by a UND alum at the NHL level. In case you missed them, Jonathan Toews was featured in the 85 years series last December and Ed Belfour was featured in November.
  • The recently re-signed Chris VandeVelde scored seven goals in 68 AHL regular season games last year, but scored six times in just 14 postseason contests. The Edmonton Journal examined what was behind his playoff goal scoring surge
  • The Brandon Sun ran a feature on David Toews earlier this week, and the Brandon Wheat Kings featured the piece as part of its Alumni Spotlight series. The younger Toews is currently without a contract for this upcoming season.
  • The United States of Hockey took an in-depth look at the defensemen who will be participating in the USA Hockey WJC evaluation camp beginning this weekend, and incoming recruit Jordan Schmaltz possesses offensive skills that could prove to be indispensable to Team USA.
  • The roster for the CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game has been released and two UND recruits/North Dakota natives are on the list. Luke Johnson and Keaton Thompson will be participating in the inaugural showcase event that takes place September 29th in Buffalo, NY.
  • The NCAA approved a few rules changes for the upcoming season.