Prospect Hot List: Casey Fitzgerald’s deep hockey roots

Casey Fitzgerald (Photo by Richard T Gagnon/Getty Images)

Since I did a big NCAA dig on Monday, it’s time to focus on some other circuits. Major junior playoff brackets are set and there will be some barnburners – Quebec vs. Cape Breton is intriguing, while a potential second-round match between Erie and the Soo Greyhounds is dizzying to think of. But the big story right now is Youngstown of the United States League. The Phantoms just broke a USHL record by winning 17 straight – and Chicago gave them a good game in that last one. But enough about teams, here are the players making noise in the prospect world right now.

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AHL’s Wolf Pack to wear jerseys with fans’ names on Anti-Bullying Night

Jared Clinton
The Hartford Wolf Pack will wear a special jersey on Friday to honor fans who took the Kindness Pledge. (via Hartford Wolf Pack)

Professional and minor league teams have employed many strategies when it comes to themed jerseys. But few have been as interesting or inclusive as the Hartford Wolf Pack’s threads for Friday night’s game, which will be decorated with the names of hundreds of fans who took part in Hartford’s “Kindness Pledge.”

The specialty jerseys, which will be worn on Anti-Bullying Night, are closely tied to the Wolf Pack’s Kindness Campaign because the organization believes that in order to stop bullying, overall kindness must be promoted.

“Anti-bullying and being respectful is definitely a growing issue with social media and things of that nature,” said Adam Goldberg, the Wolf Pack’s director of business development. “We thought that it would be a good opportunity for us to have this issue brought to more light with the Anti-Bullying Night.” Read more

Former NHLer Stephen Peat surrenders to police in B.C., charged with arson

Adam Proteau
Former Capitals right winger Stephen Peat. (Bruce Bennett via Getty Images)

Former NHL right winger Stephen Peat, who appeared in 130 games for the Washington Capitals from 2001-2005, surrendered to Royal Canadian Mounted Police in British Columbia last week and stands accused of arson in connection with an alleged attempt to burn down a Brookswood, B.C. home.

Originally from Princeton, B.C., Peat reported to the RCMP March 19 and has been in their custody since that time. The 35-year-old is charged with one count of arson with a disregard for human life, and one count of arson causing damage to property. He had a court appearance scheduled for the morning of March 23. Read more

Watch AHL player enter goal of the year conversation with backhand lacrosse style tally

Jared Clinton
Kael Mouillerat (via Bridgeport Sound Tigers/YouTube)

Bridgeport Sound Tigers center Kael Mouillierat made his NHL debut in February of this season with the New York Islanders, but the highlight of his year came Sunday night in Bridgeport’s 7-1 win over the Binghamton Senators.

Early in the first period, after teammate Sebastian Collberg‘s shot missed high and the puck rattled around the boards onto the tape of Sound Tigers defenseman Kevin Czuczman, Mouillierat found himself behind the Senators’ net waiting for the play to develop. Czuczman chopped the puck down to Mouillierat, who was standing alone behind Binghamton goaltender Peter Mannino. And that’s when Mouillierat used the backhand lacrosse move to shock just about everyone on the ice and in the building: Read more

‘The Force’ doesn’t work on the ice: Star Wars villain Darth Vader goes down hard at an AHL Game

Adam Proteau
Star Wars character Darth Vader (Chesnot/Getty Images)

Like every minor league team, the Los Angeles Kings’ American League affiliate in Manchester, N.H., is not above having a promotional night with non-hockey elements to draw in different groups of fans. But they got a little more than they hoped for Sunday against the Portland Pirates when one of the most iconic characters in movie history – Star Wars villain Darth Vader – took an unfortunate spill on the ice.

As part of what was billed as a birthday party for their mascot, Max the Lion, he was joined on the ice by Vader to help drop the puck in the ceremonial faceoff. Before he got there, though, this happened: (via AHL vice-president of communications Jason Chaimovitch)

Vader may be one of the film world’s all-time biggest bad guys, but his dark powers apparently can’t even keep him upright on a sheet of ice (or keep his helmet on his head). Bring your ‘A’ game next time, Anakin.

Exclusive Roundtable with Hockey Wives: who has the most “stamina?”

Amber Dowling
(W Network)

Sure, we know the guys behind the game, but after Wednesday night we’re going to know the gals behind those guys too. And judging by the promos for W Network’s incoming reality experiment Hockey Wives, we’re all going to know them pretty damn intimately.

As a primer ahead of the show’s premiere, The Hockey News asked some of the cast members to fill us in on what to expect when the puck drops Wednesday night at 10 p.m. EST. Read more

Heads up! Five infamous stick-throwing incidents

Jared Clinton
A Lithuanian junior player threw his stick at a referee. (via YouTube)

There’s little doubt that Steven Stamkos’ stick-throwing ejection wasn’t due to anything other than pure frustration at his stick breaking. However, rules are rules, and the Tampa Bay Lightning superstar given a misconduct and booted from the game in overtime.

Stamkos, however, isn’t the first player to show their frustration by pitching their stick away. He won’t be the last, either.

Whether it was a bad call, the anger resulting from defeat or simply disgust with yet another broken twig, there have been many stick-throwing incidents hockey. These are the five most infamous stick-throwing incidents: Read more

Multiple team moves sees Bulldogs go to St. John’s, IceCaps go to Winnipeg, and OHL’s Belleville Bulls to Hamilton

Former St. John's IceCaps player and current Winnipeg Jets winger Adam Lowry. (Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)

In a series of major announcements made late Thursday afternoon, three prominent Canadian American League and Ontario League teams announced they were relocating – and when the game of musical chairs stopped, Belleville, Ont., lost its OHL team after 34 years.

The moves began with the AHL announcing the sale and relocation of the Montreal Canadiens’ affiliate in Hamilton, Ont.; area businessman Michael Andlauer, who had secured majority ownership of the Bulldogs in 2004, sold the franchise to the Canadiens, who announced move the team at the end of the current season to St. John’s, Newfoundland for the next two seasons. Meanwhile, the St. John’s IceCaps team that currently plays in that city will be relocated to Winnipeg next season and serve as the AHL affiliate for the NHL’s Jets. And the OHL’s Belleville Bulls, who had been experiencing financial issues and were clamoring for a new arena for some time, were purchased by Andlauer and will play next season in Hamilton. Read more