Lots of birthdays today
Dave Fortier: Defenseman who had one goal and 15 assists for the Racers in 1977-78 over 54 games. They would come at the end of a major-league career that included 259 NHL/WHA games with the Maple Leafs, Islanders and Canucks before joining the Racers. He was the 23rd overall selection in the 1971 NHL Draft by Toronto. He was known as a physical defender. A native of Sudbury, Ontario, he is 60.
Al McLeod: A defenseman who had 11 assists over 25 games in the Racers' final 1978 season. He played 368 major league games between 1973-79, primarily in the WHA. He played for the Detroit Red Wings, Phoenix Roadrunners and Houston Aeros before joining the Racers. A native of Medicine Hat, Alberta, he is 62.
Mark Teevens: Right wing who scored 30 goals and 22 assists for the first Ice team in 1988-89, playing in 78 games. He was the Penguins' fourth-round selection in 1984, but played just three pro seasons in North America before heading over to Europe. He was a huge scorer in Europe, putting together a 65-goal season in Germany in 1990-91, and then a 55-goal season two years later. A native of Ottawa, he is 45.
Jeff Sirkka: Physical defenseman who played 140 games for the Ice from 1990-92, totaling nine goals and 29 assists in addition to 349 PIMs. Sirkka played 13 seasons of pro hockey, primarily in the IHL. After his stint with the Ice, he played for the Denver/Utah Grizzlies, Kansas City Blades, Long Beach Ice Dogs, Orlando Solar Bears and Cincinnati Cyclones in the IHL, as well as Rochester, Portland and Hershey in the AHL and his final three years in the WCHL and ECHL, retiring after the 2001-02 season with ECHL Cincinnati. He won the Calder Cup with Portland in 1994 and the Turner Cup with Denver in 1995. He currently resides in suburban Denver. A native of Sudbury, Ontario, he is 43.Andrei Kozyrev: The Blackhawks' ninth-round pick in 1996, Kozyrev played 74 games with the Ice from 1997-99, totaling one goal, three assists and 109 PIMs. After that stint, the defenseman returned to his native Russia to play nine more professional seasons, totaling 15 pro seasons in all -- 13 in Russia and two in North America, retiring after 2008. A native of Tomsk, Russia, he is 38.
Eric Soltys: Goalie who served as a backup briefly in the 1999-2000 season with the Ice, appearing in one game. After his brief stint in pro hockey, he began coaching in college, junior and the minor pro levels, matriculating to head coach of SPHL Huntsville in 2008-09. A native of Needham, Mass., he is 36.
Jason Bourgea: Ice forward who had nine goals and 12 assists in the 2008-09 season, playing 50 games. He also had two assists to help lead the Ice to the Clark Cup championship. He currently plays for Dartmouth College, where he has totaled three goals and two assists in 23 games as a collegian. A native of South Burlington, Vermont, he is 22.