Four Minnesotans have been selected for the 2014 CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game. Defenseman Jack McNeely (Lakeville), and forwards Alec Baer (St. Louis Park), Paul Bittner (Crookston) and Brock Boeser (Burnsville) were selected to play in the third-annual contest.
The prospects game is set of Sept. 25 at First Niagara Center, home of the Buffalo Sabres. In all, 42 prospects have been tapped to play in the game and all are eligible for the 2015 NHL Entry Draft. Twenty-three players appeared on the 2014-15 NHL Central Scouting Futures List, comprised of players who could potentially be selected in the first three rounds of the draft.
For the complete USA Hockey release, go here.
The Minnesota State Fair is in full swing and the Wild fans will have a chance to get-together with a couple of their favorite players.
Wild forwards Justin Fontaine and Erik Haula will appear at the Minnesota State Fair at the Wild booth, in the Fan Central Building at the corner of Dan Patch and Underwood, to sign autographs. Fontaine will appear from 3 - 4 p.m. on Wednesday. Haula will sign autographs from 3 - 4 p.m. on Friday.
While at the team’s booth, fans can inquire about the Wild State Fair 5-Game Pack and pick up new Wild gear.
Fans can listen to Wild GM Chuck Fletcher and Head Coach Mike Yeo, as they make media stops at the Fair. Yeo will be there tomorrow to talk hockey at the KFAN 100.3 FM booth at 11:30 a.m., the 1500 ESPN booth at noon, the Star Tribune booth at 1:30 p.m., the Cities 97 booth at 2 p.m., and the 105.1 FM The Ticket at 4:45 p.m. Fletcher will be make stops on Friday with KFAN 100.3 at 11:30 a.m. and the 1500 ESPN booth at noon.
Our home city of Saint Paul was recently crowned the “Most Romantic Getaway” in North America by USA Today 10Best, and the Wild will help the city prove its point in the “Chance for Romance” contest.
Singles from around the country will have the chance to be paired by celebrity matchmaker Kailen Rosenberg. Contestants nationwide will be submitting their 2 minute videos between now and this Friday. Kailen Rosenberg will be doing interviews and pairing 10 couples from 20 states during the month of September. The 10 couples will be announced October . The winning couple will be chosen by popular vote from October 1st through October 15 through USA TODAY 10Best. The couple will fly to Minnesota for their whirlwind romantic first date in St. Paul October 30 - November 2.
One couple from Minnesota, and one from across the U.S., will be selected to have a weekend in Saint Paul, including Wild suite tickets, and a stay at the Saint Paul Hotel.
Single folks can sign up for the contest here.
The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has reached Wild owner Craig Leipold, who accepted the challenge over the weekend. Leipold then challenged his three oldest sons. In case you were wondering, no that isn’t the Lighthouse dumping the bucket over Leipold’s head. Check out the video below:
Last week, the Minnesota Wild issued the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge to Season Ticket Holders. Here are the responses:
Vicki Brousseau - Columbia Heights:
Eva McClellan - Saint Paul:
Kevin Klos - Richfield:
The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has worked its way through social media and into the Wild offices. Last week we highlighted a few of the players who accepted the challenge, and this week we’ll look at some of the Wild staff that have accepted. Of course, the Lighthouse isn’t afraid of a little ice water, so we had no problem taking on the Pioneer Press writer Chad Graff’s bath water challenge. But the challenge worked its way up a little higher on the Wild food chain. Check out the videos below.
Wild GM Chuck Fletcher and Assistant GM Brent Flahr:
Wild COO Matt Majka:
Wild Forward Erik Haula:
Wild CFO Jeff Pellegrom:
Wild Director of Media Relations Aaron Sickman:
Wild Videographer Dusty Peterson:
Wild Radio Host Kevin Falness:
Wild Radio Play-by-Play Announcer Bob Kurtz:
Wild Radio Color Commentator Tom Reid:
It looks like a lot more staffers will be getting wet, as the Tampa Bay Lightning issued the challenge to the Minnesota Wild. Two things to point out: First, you’re only supposed to pass the challenge onto three (the Lightning challenged the TB Rays, TB Bucs, Orlando Magic and Wild) and there is no ice in their buckets (maybe it melted in the Florida sun). But this is all for charity, so I’m sure my co-workers will have a response.
The Ice Bucket Challenge has taken off virally, raising awareness and funds for Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), often referred to as "Lou Gehrig's Disease," a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord.
It was only a matter of time before the challenge reached the Sate of Hockey and the Minnesota Wild. Hockey, after all, is played on ice.
Nordy Wild got into the action last night, accepting the challenge from FOX Sports North Color Commentator Mike Greenlay. Along with the ice shower, he presented a check for $1,000 to the ALS Association of Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota. Check out Nordy’s video, along with Greenlay’s, and Wild players Zach Parise, Josh Harding, Jason Zucker, and FOX Sports North Play-by-Play Announcer Anthony Lapanta and Studio Analyst Wes Walz. Yes, the Lighthouse gets called out by the Pioneer Press’s Chad Graff and will be iced out later this afternoon.
Graff (Notice how there's no ice in his bucket. We call shenanigans!):
Wild 2014 first-round draft pick, Alex Tuch, netted a hat trick at the U.S. National Junior Evaluation Camp against Sweden. Tuch led the U.S. to a 7-1 win against the Swedes.
The camp is a weeklong mix of games and practices between the U.S., the Czech Republic, Finland and Sweden at the Lake Placid Olympic Center’s USA Rink. The U.S. plays Finland at 3 p.m. State of Hockey Time today and finishes the camp against the Czech Republic on Saturday, Aug. 9. Full schedule of events can be found, here.
The US Hockey Hall of Fame has announced its 2014 class, which includes Saint Paul native Jeff Sauer. Also in this year’s class is Karyn Bye Dietz, Brian Rafalski and Lou Vairo. For the full story, click here.
From the USAHockey.com statement:
Jeff Sauer, who grew up in Saint Paul, Minn., and now calls Middleton, Wis., home, has spent more than 40 years coaching hockey, and has had nothing but success in his varied endeavors. Sauer’s 31-year NCAA Division I men’s college coaching career featured 655 wins (seventh all-time) and two national championships, both of which came at the University of Wisconsin (1983, 1990). Sauer led Wisconsin to three NCAA Men's Frozen Four appearances, 12 NCAA tournament berths, six Western Collegiate Hockey Association playoff titles and two WCHA regular-season crowns in 20 seasons (1982-2002). He also spent 11 years (1971-82) as head coach of the men's ice hockey team at his alma mater, Colorado College, where he was twice named WCHA Coach of the Year (1972, 1975). Throughout his college career, he served as head coach for multiple U.S. squads, including the 1995 U.S. Men’s National Team and U.S. teams that participated in the 1990 Goodwill Games, 1989 Pravada Cup and 1997 Tampere Cup. The 2014-15 season is Sauer’s fourth campaign as head coach of the U.S. National Sled Hockey Team. He led the U.S. to the gold medal at the 2012 International Paralympic Committee Ice Sledge Hockey World Championship. Two years later, he was at the helm of the gold-medal winning 2014 U.S. Paralympic Sled Hockey Team in Sochi, Russia. Additionally, Sauer is president of the American Hearing Impaired Hockey Association. He helped select the last five U.S. Deaflympic Ice Hockey Teams, while leading the team as head coach in the last three Winter Deaflympics, including a gold medal at the 2007 Deaflympics in Salt Lake City, Utah. Sauer has been honored with USA Hockey’s Distinguished Achievement Award (2000), the American Hockey Coaches Association’s John “Snooks” Kelly Founders Award (2004) and the NHL’s Lester Patrick Trophy (2011). He has also been inducted into the Wisconsin Hockey Hall of Fame, Wisconsin Athletic Hall of Fame, the Colorado Springs Sports Hall of Fame and the Colorado College Athletic Hall of Fame.
The Minnesota Wild will face the defending Stanley Cup Champion, Los Angeles Kings, for the first time on Sunday, Oct. 19 at STAPLES Center. The game, originally scheduled for 3 p.m. State of Hockey Time, is now set to start at 2 p.m. CST.