AHL Western Conference Notebook, January, 2016: Checkers chasing IceHogs, Rantanen brings gold to San Antonio

by Sean Shapiro
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Esa Lindell - Texas Stars

Photo: Texas Stars defenseman Esa Lindell received his first NHL call-up to the parent Dallas Stars and played in his first NHL game against the Los Angeles Kings (courtesy of John Rivera/Icon Sportswire)

Back in October, the Charlotte Checkers were homeless.

With renovations ongoing at Bojangles Coliseum, the Checkers didn’t play a home game until mid-November.

“I think we really bonded during that time,” Checkers defenseman Trevor Carrick said. “When you spend that much time playing away from home, it really builds a team.” Read more»

With Spengler Cup win under his belt, Checkers’ Carrick prepares for AHL All-Star Game

by Sean Shapiro
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Trevor Carrick - Charlotte Checkers

Photo: Charlotte Checkers defenseman and Carolina Hurricanes prospect Trevor Carrick is currently eighth in scoring among AHL defensemen with 23 points in 35 games (courtesy of Kevin Sousa/Icon Sportswire)

Hectic, overwhelming, exciting, honored.

Those were the words Trevor Carrick used a handful of times when he was trying to explain what life has been like for the Carolina Hurricanes‘ defensive prospect over the past month. Read more»

Prospect Impressions: Bennett, Fabbri making mark in NHL, a trio of goals from the NCAA ranks, and more prospect highlights

by David Hahn
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Jimmy Vesey - Harvard University

Photo: Harvard University forward and Nashville Predators prospect Jimmy Vesey was a finalist for the Hobey Baker Award in 2015, and is likely to be in the mix when the 2016 nominees are announced (courtesy of Richard T. Gagnon/Getty Images)

In this week’s Prospect Impressions, a trio of NCAA hockey’s brightest young stars create highlight-reel goals. Robby Fabbri and Sam Bennett prove the OHL is in their past, and plenty more highlights await. Read more»

Blues’ deep goaltending pool has Copley a part of Chicago Wolves goaltending rotation

by Sean Shapiro
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Pheonix Copley - Chicago Wolves

Photo: Chicago Wolves goaltender and St. Louis Blues prospect Pheonix Copley played NCAA hockey before turning pro, guarding the net for Michigan Tech University for two seasons before turning pro in 2013-14 (courtesy of Ross Dettman/Chicago Wolves)

Pheonix Copley was a key piece in one 2015’s biggest trades, and he wasn’t even aware it happened.

When the St. Louis Blues shipped T.J. Oshie to the Washington Capitals in exchange for Copley, Troy Brouwer, and a third-round pick, the goalie was embarking on a four-day fishing trip with his family in Alaska. Read more»

Prospect Impressions: Kapanen’s golden goal, Nedeljkovic shines, Pu’s classy celebration

by David Hahn
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Tyler Moy - Harvard University

Photo: Harvard University forward and Nashville Predators prospect Tyler Moy is trying to equal or improve upon a solid 2014-15 season that led to his being drafted by the Predators (courtesy of Richard T. Gagnon/Getty Images)

The 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship came to a conclusion last week, with Finland garnering the gold medal in overtime thanks to Kasperi Kapanen. Alex Nedeljkovic was a big reason why the United States picked up a bronze medal, making a huge “spiderman” save in the process. Plenty more highlights await in this week’s Prospect Impressions. Read more»

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