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Stanley Cup Final
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Prospects

Four rookie tournaments highlight start of September

Tuesday, 09.03.2013 / 3:00 PM / Prospects

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

Several rookie tournaments set to begin throughout North America this week are a further indication the start of the 2013-14 NHL season is right around the corner.

In addition to the Traverse City Prospects Tournament in Michigan, which includes eight teams, there are three rookie events taking place.

The Tampa Bay Lightning, Nashville Predators, Florida Panthers and Boston Bruins will participate in the Florida Rookie Tournament, which is set to begin Friday. Many eyes will be squarely on a trio of highly regarded first-round picks from the 2013 NHL Draft: center Aleksander Barkov (No. 2) of the Panthers, left wing Jonathan Drouin (No. 3) of the Lightning, and defenseman Seth Jones (No. 4) of the Predators.

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Future NHL stars on display at Traverse City tourney

Tuesday, 09.03.2013 / 12:55 PM / Prospects

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

The NHL's future stars will make their presence felt at the 15th Traverse City Prospects Tournament at the Centre Ice Arena in Traverse City, Mich., from Sept. 5-9.

In fact, there's a good chance fans in attendance might catch a glimpse of a future Calder Trophy winner as the NHL's rookie of the year. It happened in 2010 when Carolina Hurricanes forward Jeff Skinner, the No. 7 pick in that year's NHL Draft, scored two goals and finished with seven points in four tournament games before scoring 31 goals and 63 points in 82 games with the Hurricanes en route to winning the Calder.

It's hard to believe that 11 years ago a 22-year-old Swede named Henrik Zetterberg, the Detroit Red Wings' seventh-round draft pick in 1999, participated in the developmental tournament. Zetterberg has gone on to win the Conn Smythe Trophy as MVP of the Stanley Cup Playoffs after the Red Wings defeated Pittsburgh in the 2008 Final and now serves as Detroit's captain.

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Prospects Thomas, Clendening share special bond

Monday, 09.02.2013 / 10:00 AM / Prospects

Tal Pinchevsky - NHL.com Staff Writer

Every young hockey player hopes for that pivotal moment when a scout notices their play and sees enough promise to give them an opportunity to play the sport at the next level.

For Chicago Blackhawks prospect Adam Clendening, that scout just happened to be a 20-year NHL veteran who has experienced just about everything the game had to offer.

It was longtime NHL player Steve Thomas who discovered Clendening, even taking the then-15-year-old defenseman into his home. But the lasting legacy of that chance encounter may be the incredibly close bond Clendening developed with Thomas' son, Montreal Canadiens prospect Christian Thomas.

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Privitera hat trick secures bronze for Dubuque

Saturday, 08.31.2013 / 12:15 PM / Prospects

NHL.com

Alexx Privitera scored a hat trick and Brett Boeing had three assists when the Dubuque Fighting Saints of the United States Hockey League secured a 4-1 victory over Dynamo Shinnik of Belarus in the bronze medal game of the 2013 Junior Club World Cup on Saturday at Omsk Arena in Omsk, Russia.

The Fighting Saints, who finished the tournament 3-2, become the second team from the USHL to medal in the tournament in two seasons. In 2012, the Waterloo Black Hawks took home the silver medal. The Fighting Saints will now return home to Iowa in the United States to prepare for their preseason opener on Sept. 8 against the Green Bay Gamblers at Mystique Community Ice Center.

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Top prospects come together at Rookie Showcase

Wednesday, 08.28.2013 / 6:14 PM / Prospects

Tal Pinchevsky - NHL.com Staff Writer

TORONTO -- More than two dozen of the NHL's top prospects realized every kid's fantasy this week: They posed for their first hockey cards.

The NHL Players' Association's annual Rookie Showcase gave some of the League's top young players a chance to get to know one another. But the primary focus of the event Monday and Tuesday was letting the players don their NHL uniforms and pose for their first trading cards.

"My dad always collected cards. We always had boxes full in the basement. I just think it's pretty cool having your own card made. It's exciting," Chicago Blackhawks prospect Mark McNeil told NHL.com.

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Players announced for All-American Prospects Game

Monday, 08.26.2013 / 10:47 AM / Prospects

NHL.com

USA Hockey on Monday announced the division of players that will comprise the second annual CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game on Sept. 26 at Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh.

While all 40 players participating in the game are eligible for the 2014 NHL Draft in Philadelphia, there are currently 28 listed on NHL Central Scouting's Futures List as a potential first-, second-, or third-round draft pick. Nine players on the Futures List are currently starring for the United States Under-18 National Team Development Program in the United States Hockey League: forwards Anders Bjork, Jared Fiegl, Dylan Larkin, Sonny Milano and Alex Tuch; defensemen Ryan Collins, Jack Glover and Jonathan MacLeod; and goalie Blake Weyrick.

"This event has quickly grown into a great opportunity for America's best young players to showcase their skills at a national level," said Jim Johannson, USA Hockey's assistant executive director of hockey operations. "The Pittsburgh Penguins have been a terrific partner in putting on this game, which will feature the future stars of the NHL."

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Dubuque scores 2-0 win at Junior Club World Cup

Monday, 08.26.2013 / 9:00 AM / Prospects

NHL.com

Christian Frey made 35 saves and Andrew Gaus connected for the decisive goal midway through the third period when the Dubuque Fighting Saints of the United States Hockey League scored a 2-0 victory over Vitkovice Steel of the Czech Republic on Monday during the second day of the 2013 Junior Club World Cup in Omsk, Russia.

"I think it was a total team effort … yes, Christian stood tall, but a lot of guys were willing to block shots and step in the way," Dubuque head coach Matt Shaw told the league's website. "It was a well-deserved win for us. We're learning how to play the way we want to play."

Gaus' goal 9:38 into the third, with both sides skating four aside, gave Dubuque (1-1-0) a 1-0 edge. Brett Boeing fed Gaus along right wing and the forward skated into the Vitkovice zone before firing a shot that eluded goalie Rene Svoboda through the five-hole.

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Dubuque, Sudbury drop Club World Cup openers

Sunday, 08.25.2013 / 12:47 PM / Prospects

NHL.com

The Dubque Fighting Saints allowed four power-play goals in their first game at the 2013 Junior Club World Cup on Sunday, losing to HC Riga of Latvia 5-2 at Omsk (Russia) Arena.

Dubque, of the United States Hockey League, went ahead 2-1 after two goals from Robby Darrar.
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Dubuque of USHL preparing for junior World Cup

Friday, 08.23.2013 / 12:45 PM / Prospects

NHL.com

Eight players are back to help the Dubuque Fighting Saints attempt to defend their United States Hockey League title, but that journey will begin in a very unfamiliar environment.

The Fighting Saints, winners of the 2013 Clark Cup, will represent the USHL in the 2013 Junior Club World Cup in Omsk, Russia. The tournament features a junior team from eight countries, including Canada, the United States, Finland, Sweden and Belarus. Dubuque will play three games in four days of group play, starting Sunday against HC Riga of Latvia. If the Saints finish in the top two of a pool that includes Vitkovice Steel of the Czech Republic and the host Omsk Hawks, they will advance in the tournament to play two more games.

Dubuque arrived in Russia on Thursday and lost a 4-1 exhibition contest to CSKA Red Army in Moscow on Friday. Seamus Malone, a returnee from the title-winning squad and a University of Wisconsin commit, had the team's goal.

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Undrafted Ikonen hopes he left an impression

Saturday, 08.10.2013 / 8:37 PM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. -- Finland forward Juuso Ikonen came here a year ago as an 18-year-old forward with hopes of using the national junior evaluation camp as a first step toward being drafted by an NHL team.

That didn't work, as the 5-foot-9, 169-pound left wing wasn't among the 211 players to hear his name called in June at the 2013 NHL Draft.

He was back in Lake Placid again this week, again hoping to use this camp as a chance to showcase himself for NHL scouts.

When he entered the spotlight Saturday, he certainly left a lasting positive impression, scoring in the 10th round of a shootout to lift his team to a 3-2 win against Sweden at Herb Brooks Arena.

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Quote of the Day

I always feel the pressure to produce offensively. It's disappointing and frustrating when you can't help out your team the way you're supposed to.

— Rangers forward Rick Nash on scoring twice in a 5-1 Game 4 victory against the Lightning on Friday