Photo: U.S. NTDP defenseman Steve Santini will begin his college career in the fall when he suits up for Boston College (courtesy of Ken McKenna/HF)
While he might not sport the offensive credentials that some of his fellow defensemen in the 2013 NHL Draft class possess, U.S. NTDP defender Steve Santini has shown enough in other areas of his game to be considered a potential first round pick in this draft.
Photo: Portland Winterhawks defenseman Seth Jones has drawn media attention since Day 1 of the 2012-13 season, and the 2013 NHL Combine was no exception as the potential first overall selection held court in this media scrum (courtesy of Ken McKenna/HF)
With the 2012-13 CHL season now officially in the books, attention has turned to the 2013 NHL Draft that takes place on June 30th in Newark, NJ. As it happens, the players generally considered to be the top 3 prospects for this draft – Portland Winterhawks defenseman Seth Jones, and Halifax Mooseheads forwards Nathan MacKinnon and Jonathan Drouin – all happen to be players that competed in the CHL this past season.
Photo: Providence College goaltender and Calgary Flames prospect Jon Gillies (R) received a good education as the backup to Team USA goaltender John Gibson (L) at the 2013 World Junior Championship (courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Not many freshmen have a lot of success at the NCAA Division I college hockey level. But Providence College goalie Jon Gillies did more than just have a successful freshman season, as he was one of the best goalies in the country.
Photo: USA defenseman Connor Clifton is moving from one high-achieving program to another as he’ll be leaving the U.S. NTDP to play for Quinnipiac University beginning in the fall of 2013 (courtesy of Scott A. Schneider/Getty Images)
Winning four straight gold medals at any high-level competition is a difficult undertaking, but Team USA had done just that heading into the 2013 U18 World Junior Championship in Sochi, Russia. But winning “one for the thumb”, so to speak, proved to be a challenge just out of the reach of the American squad as they were defeated by Canada in the U18 gold medal game, 3-2.
Photo: Team USA forward Shane Eiserman is taking part in his first U18 tournament after completing his first season as part of the U.S. NTDP (courtesy of Scott A. Schneider/Getty Images)
Early on at the 2013 U18 World Junior Championship, it looked as though Team USA might not have enough to make a run at a fifth consecutive gold medal at this tournament. But the team has come together as the U18 has progressed and, after a wild, 4-3 shootout win over host Russia in the semi-finals, the USA will in fact do battle for another gold medal.