Brent Sopel’s journey to the NHL really began in Saskatoon, where he played his major junior with the WHL’s Blades. Sopel is hoping he can help spark some other major league dreams by giving back to his community.
Sopel held a hockey camp in Saskatoon this past week that carried a fee of $950 per player. However, Sopel surprised the families of the 30 girls participating in the camp by waiving the registration fee and refunding it to the families. His hope, he told CBC, was that his gesture could help him promote future camps.
“Essentially, what I want is them to go back and build this camp little by little, year by year, just by the word of mouth, that they had a great time,” Sopel told CBC. Read more
There aren’t many players on Canada World Championship roster that went overseas with hopes of taking home a million-dollar jackpot for Hockey Canada, but thanks to the team’s incredible play over the past two weeks, they’ve done exactly that.
For the first time in World Championship history, the tournament’s media and marketing sponsor, Infront Sports & Media, offered up a $1 million jackpot to any club that could make it through the entire tournament winning every single game they played in regulation. Infront likely weren’t planning on the Canadian roster being one of the most talented World Championship rosters ever assembled, but that’s exactly how things shook out, and now Hockey Canada is $1 million richer.
Meg Hishmeh and her son, Blake, will spend Mother’s Day doing exactly what they’ve done for the better part of the past month. Blake will do four hours of therapy at a rehabilitation hospital in Denver, then they’ll watch the hockey games together.
Don’t worry, the story will have a happy ending when 18-year-old Blake is discharged May 20 and returns to finish up his high school year in New Jersey. And with him will be Meg, who took a break from her job as World’s Busiest Hockey Mom™ to help usher her son back to what it is expected to be a full recovery from a traumatic brain injury after a back flip off a jump at the Breckenridge Ski Resort in Colorado went horribly awry during spring break. Blake was airlifted from the ski hill and spent eight days in intensive care before being transferred to the rehab hospital on April 14. Read more
Colin DeAugustine isn’t currently committed to a school to play college hockey. The exposure he’s about to get for his save of the year candidate may very well change that.
DeAugustine, 19, plays for the USHL’s Youngstown Phantoms and this past Friday in a game against the Waterloo Black Hawks, he made one of the most incredible stick saves you’ll see this season, next season and probably any season in the future: Read more
A dream season for Shannon Szabados keeps getting better. With wins over Huntsville and Knoxville, Szabados was named the SPHL Player of the Week for the second time this season.
In her two victories, Szabados, who plays for the SPHL’s Columbus Cottonmouths, posted a 1.00 goals-against average and monster .970 save percentage. In Tuesday game against Huntsville, Szabados stopped 34 of the 35 shots she faced and turned aside 16 of 17 attempts Friday against Knoxville. Read more
New York Islanders center Ryan Strome notched two points on Saturday in a 3-0 win over the Devils, earning him second star of the game honors. And as good as that was, his two younger brothers had even better finishes in the past few days.
South Carolina Stingrays goaltender Jeff Jakaitis was chasing down the modern day professional shutout record heading into Saturday’s contest against the Cincinnati Cyclones, but he will have to settle for minor professional’s all-time mark.
The Cyclones’ Steven Hodges scored on Jakaitis, who came into Saturday’s contest with a streak of 319:32 of consecutive shutout hockey, little more than two minutes into Saturday’s game. His final shutout mark stands at 321:46 and breaks the minor professional record set earlier this season by AHL netminder Matt Murray.
Even though Jakaitis didn’t quite reach the pro record – 332:01 set by Brian Boucher when he was a member of the Phoenix Coyotes in 2003-04 – but he did earn himself another major ECHL mark: he’s now tied for the most consecutive wins by a goaltender at 13. His four shutouts in a row coming into Saturday night were also an ECHL record. Read more
Frank Littlejohn was most recently a Beast. Truth is, he’s been many beastly incarnations since he began his pro hockey career 16 years ago. He’s been a Glaciercat, an IceHawk, a Falcon, a River Rat, a River Otter, a Mallard, a Jackal and an IceGator. And that doesn’t cover half the teams he’s played for over the course of his hockey travels. He’s ranked as high as General, a Baron and a Privateer, but he’s also been a Lumberjack. He’s been a Nailer and a Checker, literally and figuratively. He’s even covered off the winter weather conditions as a Chill, a Blizzard and a Frostbite.
This issue of The Hockey News is known as our Rookie Issue, which showcases the players you’ll be seeing starring in the best league in the world for years to come. But for every Aaron Ekblad and Filip Forsberg, there are guys like Frank Littlejohn, who at 37 waits for the phone to ring with a minor league coach or GM on the other end, wondering whether he might be able to suit up and continue chasing the dream. Read more