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Stars 2007 Development Camp On Tap

by Staff Writer / Dallas Stars

The Dallas Stars announced today that the club's annual summer development camp for its draft picks and top prospects will begin on Monday, July 23, at the Dr Pepper StarCenter in Frisco. The Stars will have more than 30 of their top young players on hand for the week-long camp, which will culminate with a skills competition that is open to the public on Saturday, July 28.

Austin Smith
The daily schedule for the development camp includes on-ice and off-ice workouts, and all practice sessions are open to the public. The youngsters will skate from 9:30 to 11 each morning, and a second session will take place from 2-3:30 p.m. on both Monday and Friday.

The development camp will be the first time fans can see Dallas native Austin Smith in a Stars' sweater, as the Stars' 2007 fifth-round draft pick is scheduled to attend. Smith will be joined at the development camp by Dallas' three most recent first-round draft picks: Ivan Vishnevskiy (2006), Matt Niskanen (2005) and Mark Fistric (2004). Niskanen and Fistric were instrumental members of the Iowa Stars' blue-line as the club made a run into the second round of the 2007 AHL Calder Cup Playoffs, while Vishnevskiy starred for the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.

B.J. Crombeen and John Lammers are scheduled to participate in the development camp, and both players are coming off a Kelly Cup championship with the Idaho Steelheads, Dallas' development affiliate in the ECHL. Crombeen spent much of last season refining his skating and puck skills with Assat Pori in the Finnish Elite League, while Lammers split the season between Idaho and the AHL Iowa Stars.

James Neal was Dallas' second-round selection (No. 33 overall) in the 2005 Entry Draft and skated in the 2006 version of the Stars' summer development camp. After a highly-successful 2006-07 season that saw him win a gold medal with Team Canada at the World Junior Championships and lead his Plymouth Whalers to the OHL title and the Memorial Cup, Neal will be joined by his younger brother, Michael, a fifth-round pick by the Stars in last month's Entry Draft.

In addition to Smith and Michael Neal, five other 2007 draft selections will be in attendance: Nico Sacchetti (2nd round, No. 50 overall), Colton Sceviour (4th round, No. 112 overall), Jamie Benn (5th round, No. 129 overall), Ondrej Roman (5th round, No. 136 overall) and Luke Gazdic (6th round, No. 172 overall).

Other notable players scheduled to attend the camp are: Matt Nickerson, former member of the NAHL Texas Tornado; and Marty Sertich, the 2005 winner of the Hobey Baker Award, the 'Heisman Trophy of college hockey.'

Marty Sertich
Les Jackson, Dallas' assistant general manager, heads up the club's expansive scouting staff and plays a key role in organizing the annual development camp for the team's best and brightest prospects.

"Development camps like this one are extremely beneficial for young players, and it helps them realize that being drafted is just the first step in realizing their goal of playing in the NHL," said Jackson. "These players face a three-to-four year development process that is a critical stage of their future. It is important that they recognize the sacrifice and commitment necessary to become an NHL player, and we feel these camps expose them to that.

"Through this camp, we try to instill in these players that the journey from where they currently stand to the professional level will take time, patience and hard work. As an organization, we can guide and support them along the way. But the effort and desire they exhibit in learning the game and improving their individual skills are the most meaningful, and this camp is a good first step in that."

Fans are encouraged to come see the Stars of the future, as well as to come out and get their first taste of hockey for the new season!

The Stars' 15th training camp in Dallas will open on Friday, September 14 at the Dr Pepper StarCenter in Frisco, and the club will begin its seven-game preseason schedule at home against St. Louis on September 18. Dallas will also host Colorado (Sept. 20), Phoenix (Sept. 27) and Tampa Bay (Sept. 29) in preseason action. Please continue to visit for more preseason and regular season schedule information.

The 2007 development camp schedule (*) is as follows:

The 2007 Development Camp Schedule*:
9:30 - 11:00 a.m. On-Ice Workout 9:30 - 10:45 a.m. On-Ice Workout
2:00 - 3:30 p.m. On-Ice Workout    
    FRIDAY, JULY 28  
TUESDAY, JULY 24   9:30 - 11:00 a.m. On-Ice Workout
9:30 - 11:00 a.m. On-Ice Workout 2:00 - 3:30 p.m. On-Ice Workout
9:30 - 11:00 a.m. On-Ice Workout 10:45 a.m. - Noon Free Skills Competition
* Schedule is subject to change.      



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