Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Kreider Stays Put at NHL Trading Deadline

More than 50 players were dealt on or just before this year's NHL trading deadline on Monday. A number of former college players were involved, although left wing Chris Kreider (Boston College) of the New York Rangers wasn't one of them.

Kreider, 28, who helped Boston College to a pair of national titles in his three years with the Eagles, instead signed a seven-year contract extension at $6.5 million annually with the Rangers, who drafted him 19th overall in 2009. He is currently enjoying his fifth 20-goal NHL campaign.

In 520 career NHL regular-season games to date, all with the Rangers, Kreider has tallied 157 goals and 159 assists for 316 points to go with 441 penalty minutes. He has also posted 23 goals and 37 points in 77 career Stanley Cup Playoff contests.

Other former NCAA players did change teams this week, including forward Danton Heinen (Miami), who went from defending Eastern Conference champion Boston to Anaheim, and center Erik Haula (Minnesota), who went from Carolina to Florida. Also included in the Haula deal was defenseman Chase Priskie (Quinnipiac), who had spent his entire rookie professional season with Charlotte (AHL).

A list of recent NHL transactions is available here.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

CCHA to Return in 2021-22

The Central Collegiate Hockey Association appears to be coming back—at the expense of the current Western Collegiate Hockey Association.

Bemidji State, Bowling Green, Ferris State, Lake Superior State, Michigan Tech, Minnesota State and Northern Michigan will be leaving the WCHA to start up the new CCHA in 2021-22, according to several published reports. The original CCHA disbanded in 2013, after more than 40 years of prestigious NCAA Division I men's hockey, following the formation of both the new Big Ten Hockey Conference and the National Collegiate Hockey Conference, and the loss of CCHA member schools to those two leagues plus the WCHA.

The logo, commissioner, playoff format and other details of the new CCHA have yet to be determined. The seismic shift to the WCHA at the end of next season will leave Alaska Anchorage, Alaska (Fairbanks) and Alabama-Huntsville without a conference home. All three were previously Division I independents in the late 1980s and early 1990s. The only current NCAA Division I men's ice hockey independent is Arizona State.

Monday, February 17, 2020

Devils Deal Greene and Coleman

A pair of former Miami (Ohio) Red Hawks are now former New Jersey Devils.

The Devils traded longtime captain and senior defenseman Andy Greene to the New York Islanders on Sunday, shortly before dealing forward Blake Coleman to the Tampa Bay Lightning. Both players were dealt for draft picks, with Green going to Long Island for David Quenneville plus a second-round draft choice in 2021, while Coleman went to Tampa Bay for Nolan Foote along with a conditional first-round draft choice from Vancouver in 2020 or 2021. Both Green and Coleman had spent the entirety of their NHL careers with the Devils.

Greene, 37, had served as the Devils captain since the 2015-16 NHL campaign, after spending the previous three seasons as an assistant captain. A member of New Jersey’s 2012 Eastern Conference championship club, he had recorded two goals and nine assists for 11 points in 53 games so far this season. He has also collected 49-197246 points and 259 penalty minutes in 923 career NHL regular-season games, plus nine points and 22 PIM in 50 Stanley Cup Playoff contests, after signing with the Devils as a free agent in 2006. A native of Trenton, Mich., Greene played the four seasons prior (2002-2006) at Miami, where he posted 27-87114 points and 256 PIM in 159 outings, and led the Red Hawks to two NCAA Tournament appearances and a CCHA regular-season title.

A third-round draft choice (75th overall) of New Jersey in 2011, Coleman, 28, was second on the Devils so far this season with 21 goals and fourth with 31 points. In 237 career NHL regular-season games since 2016, he has registered 57-3794 points and 188 PIM, to go with two goals in five Stanley Cup Playoff appearances. In four seasons at Miami (2011-2015), Coleman produced 60-47107 points and 276 PIM in 143 outings, while leading the Red Hawks to an NCHC tournament championship and an NCAA Tournament berth as a senior assistant captain.

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Clarkson Outlasts Princeton, 3-1

Connor McCarthy set up the first goal of the evening, and then salted away the game with a late goal of his own in Clarkson's 3-1 win at Princeton in ECAC Hockey play on Saturday night at Hobey Baker Rink.

The fifth-ranked Golden Knights (22-6-2 overall, 15-3-0 ECAC Hockey) also got 32 saves from goaltender Frank Marotte in winning their fifth straight contest overall, and seventh in their last eight outings. Princeton has now lost five of its last six games, despite 29 stops from Tigers netminder Jeremie Forget.

Following a scoreless opening period, Josh Dunne connected on a power play midway through the second stanza to give Clarkson a lead it would never relinquish. Brian Hurley then tallied what proved to be the game-winning goal just over seven minutes later, also with a man advantage.

Jeremy Germain scored from the slot a little over two minutes into the third period to pull Princeton (4-17-4, 2-13-3) within a goal, before McCarthy iced matters by wristing home a shot from the left faceoff circle 10 minutes later. Clarkson finished 2-for-3 on the power play, while negating all three Princeton man-advantage attempts.

Clarkson will host Harvard and Dartmouth next weekend, while Princeton will visit Union and RPI.

Saturday, February 8, 2020

Brian Bellgraph 1972-2020

Rest in peace, my friend. Say hello to Ron Mason and Jerry Marshall from Michigan State for me. You are and will be greatly missed
#sticksoutforbrian #USAHockey #WesternMichigan

Friday, February 7, 2020

BC's Wood Tallies Two for Devils in Win

Miles Wood (Boston College) helped make it New Jersey's night on Thursday in Philadelphia.

Wood tallied the final two goals of the game, the first on a breakaway and the second on a partial one, to help the visiting Devils to a 5-0 whitewash of the host Flyers. His first goal was a wrist shot past Brian Elliott (Wisconsin) on a breakaway, while the second was a backhand in close through Alex Lyon (Yale). Both scores came in the third period of play.

Wood, a product of the Nobles school in Massachusetts, now has 10 goals in 53 games with New Jersey so far this season, the second year in a row he has scored ten goals and the third consecutive season has attained double digits in goals at the NHL level. He now has 47 goals and 92 points in 253 career NHL regular-season games, along with 310 penalty minutes, all with the Devils, who drafted him 100th overall in 2013.

The son of former NHL forward Randy Wood (Yale), Miles Wood recorded 10 goals and 35 points along with 76 PIM in his only season at BC, where he helped the Eagles to the 2016 NCAA Frozen Four in Tampa before making his pro debut soon after with New Jersey.

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Dogfight Next Week for 68th Beanpot

It'll be an all-dog affair next Monday night on Causeway Street when two-time defending champion Northeastern and Boston University meet at TD Garden to decide the 68th annual Beanpot Tournament.

Northeastern (15-7-2 overall) overcame an early one-goal deficit to top Harvard, 3-1, on Monday evening, with Brendan van Riemsdyk's goal late in the second period standing up as the game-winner. Craig Pantano stopped 27 shots for the Huskies, who will seek their first-ever Beanpot three-peat next week, while Jack Drury tallied the lone goal for the Crimson.

In the nightcap, BU (10-8-7) trailed rival Boston College by a 3-1 count after 40 minutes, but scored three straight goals en route to an unofficial 5-4 overtime victory and a berth in next week's title game. Officially, the result will count as a tie for NCAA purposes, following a scoreless five-minute overtime period. In an extended 20-minute sudden-death session, recent acquisition Wilmer Skoog connected in front for the Terriers to send them to the title tilt, although all statistics from that period will not count officially. David Cotton scored twice in regulation for BC (16-7-1), which last won the tournament in 2016 and will meet Harvard (10-7-4) in next week's consolation contest.