Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Indy hockey links: June 3

A cornucopia of links related to local hockey: catching up with former Turner Cup champion coach Darryl Sutter, a look at the ECHL teams' protected lists for next season and more ECHL news (including the Kelly Cup Final in Cincinnati and a familiar foe heading to Toledo). Also, updates on the new USHL commissioner and four players with Ice ties participating in the NHL Combine.


  • In the NHL, the Los Angeles Kings and New York Rangers will meet for the Stanley Cup. There is one local connection on the two teams -- Kings coach Darryl Sutter. One of the six Sutter Brothers to play in the NHL, Darryl coached the Indianapolis Ice in their dominant 1989-90 IHL West Division and Turner Cup championship season. Since being hired by the Kings midway through the 2011-12 year, Sutter has led his team to one Stanley Cup and is four wins away from another. The Los Angeles Times has a piece on how the Kings follow their coach's lead
  • On Monday, the ECHL released its member teams' protected lists -- the players with which each team has the right to negotiate. On June 15, each team must submit its end-of-season 20-player roster. After that point, the signing period begins, and the Indy Fuel can begin signing deals with players. 
    • Among familiar faces on the ECHL teams' protected lists for next year: former Ice players Loren Barron (Evansville), Joe Hartman & Mike Embach (Fort Wayne), Will MacDonald (Gwinnett), Cody Reichard & Corey Fienhage (Orlando), Brandon Blandina (Reading), Cody Lampl (Toledo) and Brent Gwidt & Colin Vock (Utah). Also, Evansville has protected Matt Krug -- not the former Ice player, but the brother of Torey (ex-Ice, now Boston Bruins) & Adam (Ice assistant coach). 
  • The ECHL's Kelly Cup Final heads right down I-74 this weekend with games 4, 5 and 6 between the Alaska Aces and Cincinnati Cyclones. Alaska leads the best-of-7 series 2-1, winning Game 3 by a 2-0 score in Anchorage on Monday night. The next three games will be Friday, Saturday and Monday at U.S. Bank Arena in Cincinnati. Alaska won the first game 5-3, Cincinnati won Game 2 by a 2-1 score. 
  • The Toledo Walleye recently announced Derek Lalonde as their new coach. Lalonde had spent the last three seasons with the USHL's Green Bay Gamblers, winning a Clark Cup in 2012. 
  • The Ice were in the news a bit over the last week. The Clark Cup champions have been granted dormancy status for the 2014-15 season. This blog has linked both of these stories already, but Paul Skjodt went on WXIN to discuss the team's future. New USHL commissioner Bob Fallen states getting the Ice back into the league is a priority
  • As noted, the USHL has a new commissioner. Bob Fallen, an executive with Reebok/CCM, takes over the reins of the league. He builds on a strong foundation built by Skip Prince, who is taking an administrative position in the University of Texas athletic department. 
  • Four players with Ice ties participated in the NHL scouting combine this past weekend. Two were current players -- defensemen Josh Jacobs and Ryan Mantha, who helped anchor the blue line for the Clark Cup champs. Also participating were former player (and Indiana native) Blake Siebenaler and affiliate player Mitch Slattery, who played one game for the Ice this past season. They were among 119 players invited. The NHL Draft will take place June 27-28 in Philadelphia. 

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