Time to let Baumgartner go

by Jeff Charlesworth
on
Unless you’ve been a Capitals fan for about five or six years, you would think that Nolan Baumgartner is just another minor league defenseman that never made it. To those following the Caps in 1994, Baumgartner was the potential cornerstone of our defense corps and future star. After four years of minor pro without breaking through to the NHL full-time, it seems that he won’t live up to the expectations heaped upon him. Since he is a Free Agent this off-season, it may be time to consider letting him leave to continue his career elsewhere.

Earlier this season, Washington GM George McPhee traded away Alexandre Volchkov and Jaroslav Svejkovsky – first round picks from 1996. Capitals fans were outraged, and they wondered how he could give up on two good, young players. Last month at the Entry Draft, McPhee dealt 1995 first-rounder Miika Elomo to Calgary. Although many fans were skeptical about the deal, they didn’t take it as hard as the previous trades. McPhee has been able to make those trades without losing face because it was David Poile who drafted those players and tabbed them as future stars. Now the time has come to part ways with Baumgartner, even though he was once seen as a “can’t miss” prospect.
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Tim Hambly Future Watch

by Erik Freeman
on
Welcome to a new installment of Future Watch. Featuring Tim Hambly, a star high school defenseman in Minnesota. Hambly, a White Bear Lake native is one of the top high school defenseman in Minnesota. He is a offensive defenseman with good vision and soft hands. Hambly is very effective at getting the puck out of his own zone and is a sound one on one defender. Physical play is something he needs to work on. With continued hard work in the weight room he should be able to put some more bulk onto his 6-0 165lb frame. After playing in the prospects tournament in Toronto for the Minnesota Blades, Hambly also competed in the Minnesota Model Camp. The biggest event of his summer was the Select 17 festival at St. Cloud. Hambly played solid hockey and got some exposure playing in front of college scouts all over the country. Hambly is considering any offers from Yale, Minnesota-Duluth, Minnesota, St. Cloud State, Wisconsin, or North Dakota. Overall, Hambly is one of the top defenseman in Minnesota and is looking to lead his high school team to the prestigious Minnesota State Tournament.

2000 USHL Season in Review

by Jason Shaner
on
The 1999-2000 United States Hockey League season was one to remember. The league welcomed two new teams in the Cedar Rapids Roughriders, formerly the North Iowa Huskies and the Sioux Falls Stampede, who in their first season took the league by surprise taking 2nd place overall in the regular season. Dan Ellis of the Omaha Lancers posted an impressive 11 shutouts in a 34-win campaign. Peter Sejna of the Des Moines Buccaneers tallied an amazing total of 94 points in 58 games. This season by far saw more balance in the league than ever before. There was no easy win. Each night there was a battle for 2 points and most night’s games went down to the final buzzer. Here is a recap of the season for each team in this top notch Junior A Hockey League.

1. Green Bay Gamblers:

The Gamblers won the coveted Clark Cup as the playoff champion defeating the Waterloo Black Hawks, Des Moines Buccaneers and the Twin Cities Vulcans on their way. They would lose in the National Junior A Championship game to the same Vulcans. Green Bay played a hard nose style of hockey. With solid defenseman such as Jeff Finger, Dan Calzada and Dan Boeser, they were hard to beat. Green Bay’s defense would only be part of their dominating play this year with strong forwards as Aaron Smith, John Eichelberger and Brett Engelhardt. Not to be outdone was goalie Jure Penko who played consistently night in and night out. Green Bay put on a show every game as they earned another championship banner to hang in the rafters at the Brown County Auditorium.
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Sens News and Notes for the Week of July 17th

by Nathan Estabrooks
on

Vanner a star

Shaun Van Allen, a popular late line center with the team took a multi-year deal with the Dallas Stars last week. Although much criticized for his lack of speed Van Allen is a smart defensive player with an ability to win a good percentage of face-offs. Sens will miss most the veteran leadership the Saskatchewan native brought to the dressing room. He was an important force in uniting European and North American players. Vanner won’t pot you 20, but he’s the perfect replacement for Guy Carbonneau. The Senators insulted Van Allen by only offering a one-year deal.

July 2001 – Assistant Coach Wanted

For the third year in a row the Senators assistant coach in charge of defense and penalty kills has skipped town. First it was Mike Ramsay who went to Philadelphia, a year after that Mike Murphy left of the league head office and now Andre Savard departs for the Habs. Savard was a scout for many years in the Sens system and leaves Bytowne for a similar front office position with Montreal. Leading the list of replacements is Claude Julien who was recently interviewed for the head coaching position in Grand Rapids when Guy Charron left for Anaheim. Julien is head coach of the Hull Olympiques and was rumoured for the assistant’s position the last two years when Ramsay and Murphy left. Charron would have been the natural choice to fill the vacancy.

Barrass-who?
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Blues summer vacation- Not a vacation for all

by Chris Irvine
on

It may be a vacation for many including players, families and many others but not quite a vacation for the likes of Larry Pleau. Pleau has been very active throughout the summer and the following is a recap of his moves thus far.

The first bit of news was the announcement to some veterans that they would not be a part of the blues future. These players included: Center Bob Bassen, Right Wing Stephane Richer, and Defensemen Dave Ellet and Rudy Poeschek. It was also made clear that minor leaguers Jim Campbell and Derek King would not be offered contracts and would become unrestricted free agents.

Next was the signing or releasing of the 98 draft picks. For junior draft picks, you retain their rights for two years after the draft, for European draft picks, you retain their rights for four years after the draft and for college players remain your rights until their college eligibility is up. In keeping with the rules, no decision had to be made at this time on defensemen Christian Backman, Andrei Trochinsky, Yvegeny Pastukh and John Pohl. For the remaining players in the system the blues elected to sign only defensemen Matt Walker of the Kootenay Ice of the WHL. For others, Maxim Linnik, Brad Voth and Brad Twordik were all released. Along with the 98 draftees, 21 year old James Desmerais was not given a contract and became a free agent, he was selected in the final round of the 99 draft.
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