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The Czech Under-20 team coming off a slow start

by Robert Neuhauser
on
The 2000-2001 Under-20 teams schedule brought the five national teams to Omsk, Russia, first. The Czech republic, Finland, Russia, Slovakia and Sweden participated in the tournament, held in the first week of September. The home Russian fans had to be delighted as the very strong Russian squad captured the victory. The Russian team full of possible NHL stars prepares for the home WJC in December/January and their attitude to this tournament was quite serious. The win came after a strong showing, but the Scandinavian teams (Finland and Sweden) looked in a good shape, too. It’s not easy to say, but the Czechs lost their first three games and only in their last game they swept Slovakia, 5:0. As a result, there was a fourth place. There is only one tournament left before the WJC comes round, so it’s time to change something. The Czechs are the last U-20 world champion and they want to defend this title. But not with the play they showed in Omsk.
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Rookie goalie shines for Pens

by Erik Johnson
on
It’s not a suprise that a former Quebec League goalie is pushing for a spot in the nets for the Pens this year. It is suprprising, however, that his name isn’t Aubin. While JS Aubin is battling team management for a new contract, Sebastian Caron has been making the most of his opportunity to get plenty of game time in early this preseason. After an excellent 30 min, 31 save performance in the preseason opener against the Blue Jackets, Caron followed that up with a solid 18 save performance against the defending Cup champion New Jersey Devils in Wilkes-Barre on Sat. While the Pens are expected to sign a goalie or 2 within the next week or so, that isn’t stopping Caron from doing everything he can to be on that plane to Toyko to start the season with the Pens.
The Pens, however, would like Caron to play a full season for AHL affiliate Wilkes-Barre/Scranton before he competes for a job on the NHL roster in 2001-02. But given his performances so far this preseason, they won’t have any problem using him as needed.

Caron, a 3rd round pick in 1999, was the most valuable goaltender in last year’s Memorial Cup tournament, leading his Rimouski Oceanic to the title.


Pens rookies lose to Devils

The Pens rookie squad lost 6-2 to the Devils rookies on Sat in Wilkes-Barre. Dylan Gyori and Alexei Kolkunov scored for the Pens.


Pens make roster moves

The Pens sent the following players back to their respective junior teams.

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Portland Winterhawks on Comeback Trail

by Tom Hoffert
on
The Portland Winterhawks went from Memorial Cup Champions to WHL lightweights in two seasons, yet looked solid in front of their hometown crowd Friday night. Three seasons after winning the Junior Hockey’s most coveted prize, and many painful losses later, this year’s Winterhawk team may surprise the WHL’s elite teams with a fresh and inspired effort. After losing the team’s tremendous leadership core of Brenden Morrow, Andrew Ference and others to professional hockey, Portland seemed to lose the intensity and commitment required to play their tough 72 game schedule last season. As with all great organizations however, management made the necessary changes in coaching, nurtured their draft picks, and now look close to regaining the form that made them Canadian Hockey League Champions.

The 2000-2001 Winterhawks will be under the youthful reigns of former Hawk defenseman Mike Williamson. Coach Williamson took over for Harold Snepsts towards the end of last season in the midst of various communication problems between Coach Snepsts and the players. Williamson did an excellent job to right the ship and leave players motivated for their summer workouts. In August, GM Ken Hodge and Williamson together selected Troy Mick to be Assistant Coach of the Winterhawks. Coach Mick will provide this year’s Hawks with veteran leadership as well as a winning attitude.

Here’s the quick notes on the game Friday night, September 15th, at Memorial Coliseum between the
Portland Winterhawks and the Tri-City Americans . . .
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Islanders trim roster

by Bill Bennett
on

Three players were released, including pro tryout defensemen Ryan Bast and Lee Sorochan.

C Adam Edinger from Bowling Green was also released, which was a bit of a surprise.

Prospects C Justin Mapletoft (Red Deer-WHL) and D Adam Johnson (Tri-Cities-WHL), who both have a year of junior-eligibility remaining,
were returned to their junior teams.

Fifth round selection Dimitri Upper was returned to Russia.

Players who were farmed out to the minor leagues included: RW Petr Mika (Lowell- AHL), RW Trent Hunter (Springfield-AHL) and D Dan Trebil (Chicago-IHL).

The surprise move today was that Dmitri Nabokov was given permission to seek other opportunities
with the Islanders retaining his rights.

Nabokov was acquired from Chicago in an exchange for 1996 third overall selection Jean Pierre Dumont and from the early stages of this trade the fans were wondering if this player, who had the skills, also has the desire ?

Islanders ninth overall selection Mike Rupp re-entered the draft and was selected by New Jersey.

DiPietro On Shelf as Islanders Preseason Begins with Losses.

by Bill Bennett
on
Isles GM Mike Milbury regardless of the injury is standing behind his comments through most of the summer: “It’s a tough break for the kid, but it
doesn’t eliminate his chances of making the team. He’ll still get a look from us. If it happens for Rick right away, it happens. We all think it’s
going to happen sooner or later, but there is no urgency. It would be fun and it’s exciting. He’s a first overall pick. But if the timing isn’t
right, it’s not right.”

If Rick DiPietro is ready to play the only realistic chances he will get are against the Rangers or New Jersey in the final two preseason games in early October.

DiPietro will be sent to the IHL if he does not make the team.

The Islanders began the preseason Thursday and Friday against Philadelphia.

Both games were typical early preseason with lots of penalties called so the NHL can send the politically correct message that it never follows up on once November rolls around. The Islanders lost both games by scores of 4-2 in Trenton, and 2-1 in Philadelphia.

A few notable items that fans should like from the first two games:

Oleg Kvasha: Has been impressive. Got big minutes for an early preseason game on Thursday, and
deflected in the Isles only goal on Friday before a spearing penalty ended his night. Looked lost playing the point on the power play.

Mark Parrish: Had lots of chances and played well in Trenton.

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Sens News and Notes for the Week of September 18th

by Nathan Estabrooks
on

Cuts

Notables relieved from camp include Julian Vauclair, Alexandre Giroux, Jason Maleyko, Layne Ulmer and Antoine Vermette. Vauclair was sent back to Europe while the others will most likely be playing in the CHL this year. Giroux has a shot with Grand Rapids.

Injuries

John Gruden suffered a bruised tailbone but is expected to continue training camp. John has been fingered as a possibility on this years blue line. In last year’s camp Gruden was also injured. Chris Phillips suffered a minor groin pull and most likely will wait out the exhibition games.

Surprises

After looking timid in the rookie camp Martin Havlat has bloomed into a budding star. This weekend against the Oilers Havlat had a spin-a-rama and a goal scorer’s missile. At this point Havlat will make the regular season roster and depending on how he performs in the first 10 games has an outside chance to stay with the big team. You should expect Havlat to be playing somewhere in the CHL this season.

In the first exhibition game of the season Chris Neil found himself on line with Alexi Yashin and dropped the gloves with Florida heavyweight Paul Laus. The former Centennial has turned more then a few heads in camp. For a team looking to add toughness Neil is just sort of player needed. Probably a mid-season call up with an outside chance of catching on. Next year is his year
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Vancouver 2 – DIF 1

by pbadmin
on
This game was absolutely NHL class. Djurgarden scored the first goal and put
up a strong defense without loosing their famous offensive game. The
referees stopped the play too often.

Last season Djurgarden let in the fewest goals and scored the most in the
Elitserien season and won the playoff finals against Modo (my favorite team),
then they lost a couple of players (Espen Knutsen C -Columbus, Tommy
Soderstrom G, retires) but hav gained some new ones.

In the first period Djurgarden showed much better skating and better passing
and a good powerplay. Vancouver was more physical. In the second period
Vancouver showed that they have better endurance and can hold better in a 60
min game. They had many powerplays and were close to scoring a goal several times.
This turned in the third period where DIF often got the man advantage and
had several scoring chances. Vancouver skated much better in the final parts of
the game, although the shot stats are favoring DIF.

Felix Potvin had a good game.
Both Sedin brothers got hit several times that resulted in powerplays for
Vancouver. This didn’t affect their game in the least as they still played the same
not allowing themselves to becoming careful and hesitant. They don’t tackle too much but they won’t be beaten by hard
play.

Stats Van - DIF:

1st period
0-1 14.10 F Bouchard (N Kronwall) Five on three
Shots 6-12
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Filip Novak: Biggest Surprise in Camp

by Brandon LeBourveau
on
Glen Sather selected Filip Novak in the 2nd Round of the 2000 Entry
Draft, the Rangers first selection of the day and also Sather’s first draft
pick with the Rangers. When drafted, the scouts said Novak was an offensively
gifted defenseman who can rush the puck up the ice. They also said he wasn’t
very good defensively, and his size (6’0 174) would hold him back a bit.
However, they felt confident enough in selecting the Czech native, and what a
selection it has turned out to be.

At 18 years old, all indications said Novak would not be with the team
when they left training camp in Burlington, Vermont to New York to start the
exhibition games, but Novak has played so well in camp that Rangers’ Head
Coach Ron Low said it’s “Scary”, referring to how well Novak looked in the
scrimmages and practices. Novak’s chances of making the team are still slim,
as other defensemen such as Tomas Kloucek and Dale Purinton have played great
as well, but he will be given every chance to make the team. All 3 defenseman
could make the team, but that would mean the Rangers would have to trade away
a couple of their defenders to make room. It’s more likely only 2 of
Purinton, Novak and Kloucek will make the team.

Filip didn’t play in the Rangers 5-1 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers in
their first exhibition game yesterday, but he should play this Tuesday when
the Rangers host the Flyers at the Garden. The rest of the upcoming preseason Read more »

The Weekend Warrior

by Randy Nicholson
on

Another in a series of weekly articles summarizing activity in Leafland during the previous 7 days – with some personal observations, commentary, prospect updates and fun thrown in for good measure.

Pivotal season for Sundin: 2000 / 2001 will be a very important year for Maple Leafs’ team captain and perennial leading scorer, Mat Sundin … he will surely be determined to prove that he can take the club to greater play-off glory and has never had such a strong supporting cast during his time in Toronto … Sundin will also be playing for his next contract as his existing multi-year pact concludes at the end of this season … for what its worth, both sides have already indicated a strong desire to extend their association for the long haul … an appropriate annual stipend remains the only detail yet to be worked out … don’t be too surprised if the terms on Sundin’s next contract are dictated more by the team’s overall success this season rather than by his own personal accomplishments … although questions concerning Mats’ determination and leadership are constantly being raised by many “experts” covering the team, these same doubts stuck to Steve Yzerman and Mike Modano as well until they eventually became Stanley Cup champions …
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Wings Trim Roster as Traverse City Training Camp Comes to a Close

by Jessica Haskin
on
The Detroit Red Wings had their final practice this morning at 10:00
a.m. Steve Duchense suited up for the first time this week and
practiced with the team, although he wont be able to play any games for
2 more weeks.

Chris Chelios who didn’t practice yesterday due to a sore back was back
skating today and said that he was fine for tonight’s game.

An intrasquad scrimmage at 7:00 this evening at the Van Andel Arena in
Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Manny Legace was very relaxed this morning, as were most of the players,
Legace was standing by the boards waiting for his turn in net. He
decided that while he was waiting he’d “practice” throwing his stick
down in disgust. The more people laughed at his actions the more
animated he became. He had to stop though when it was his turn to
really practice, stopping the pucks. But when he let one in all his
“practice” had paid off and he threw his stick up in the air in disgust.

After practice was over management, volunteers, and about half the
players had a group photo on the ice. The other half of the players
were coming but got off the other rink too late.

Ken Wregget stopped and signed autographs as he was going to the locker
room, giving a young boy his stick. The young boy was elated and Ken
Wregget mad a new friend, and fan.

As the players got ready to go there were all the good-bye’s until next Read more »