The free agent, 28, played 126 games (21 points, 18 assists) over five partial seasons with the Minnesota Wild.
The Minneapolis Star-Tribune is reporting that former Colorado College defenseman and unrestricted free agent Nate Prosser will not be re-signed by the Minnesota Wild.
He played for his home state’s team for the past four-plus seasons. He recorded 21 points in 126 NHL games.
The Elk River, Minn. native also played 96 games (31 points) in the American Hockey League during that span.
Petersen, 35, retired last month as a player after a 14-year career that culminated with the AHL championship with the Texas Stars, where new Vancouver assistant Doug Lidster worked as an assistant.
Petersen played 550 games in the AHL with Texas, the Iowa Stars, the Edmonton Road Runners and the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, totaling 374 points (226 assists) He competed in two all-star games (2001, 2008) and made the league’s all-rookie team in 2001.
In addition, Petersen skated in 398 games in the National Hockey League with Dallas, Edmonton and Pittsburgh for 81 points (48 assists).
The Minneapolis native represented the United States at the 2007 IIHF World Championships, tallying 2-1-3 in seven tournament appearances. He was also a member of Team USA at the IIHF World Junior Championships in both 1997 (silver) and 1998.
Selected by Pittsburgh out of Colorado College in the ninth round, 244th overall, at the 1998 NHL Draft, Petersen registered 128 points (69 assists) in 138 NCAA games from 1996-2000. He was named to the WCHA’s All-Rookie Team and helped the Tigers reach the Frozen Four as a freshman in 1997.
Colorado Springs native Ben Holmstrom signed a one-year, two-way contract with Carolina over the weekend. The deal will pay Holmstrom $600,000 in the NHL or $200,000 in the American Hockey League (AHL) for the 2014-15 season.
“Ben has served as Adirondack’s team captain and brings more veteran leadership to our system,” GM Ron Francis said of the former UMass-Lowell captain.
Holmstrom, 27, completed his fifth professional season in 2013-14, appearing in 75 games with the Adirondack Phantoms. The 6-foot-1, 197-pound center totaled 32 points (19 assists) and 146 penalty minutes, ranking fourth among Phantoms skaters in points and fifth in goals and penalty minutes. Holmstrom was recalled by the Philadelphia Flyers on April 23 and served as a practice squad player during the team’s opening-round playoff series against the New York Rangers.
The former college free agent signee made his NHL debut on March 3, 2011, and has appeared in seven career NHL games. He has served as Adirondack’s captain for the past three seasons, and ranks third in Phantoms history in games played (256), second in goals (49) and fourth in assists (73) and points (122).
Colorado College’s Mike Haviland delved into his past to hire an assistant with 25 years of coaching experience.
Gene Reilly, who graduated from Elmira (N.Y.) College a year before Haviland played there, is the final assistant to join the program under the new hockey coach.
Reilly has won 14 professional, college and junior titles as either an assistant or head coach. He has eight years of college assistant experience including the 1999 NCAA championship with Maine.
“He has won at all levels,” Haviland said. “Gene is a guy with an attention to detail and passion that is second to none.”
Reilly worked the past two seasons as a professional scout for the NHL’s Carolina Hurricanes but left for the chance to work with Haviland.
“The most important thing for me is to be with quality people and Mike is a quality person with a winning track record,” Reilly said in a press release. “I really enjoyed my time in Carolina and the wonderful people who I worked with in the pro scouting staff.”
He spent 2008-12 as an assistant coach/director of player development with Austria’s Red Bull Salzburg, where he was involved in four titles.
His college experience includes serving as an assistant with Maine (1998-2001), Harvard (2003-4) and Northeastern (2004-8).
While at Maine, the Springfield, Mass. native, 52, took over as interim coach at the start of the 1999-2000 season when the late Shawn Walsh was battling cancer.
Reilly left to be an assistant with the American Hockey League’s Grand Rapids Griffins for the 2000-01 season and Binghamton the next.
“There’s so much that goes on behind the scenes with practices, scouting, and watching tapes; Gene stepped in and did a tremendous job,” then-Griffins coach Bruce Cassidy said after being named the 2002 AHL coach of the year.
He returned to the college ranks at Harvard for one season and spent the next four rebuilding the Northeastern program.
His experience prepares him well for CC, Haviland said.
“He has developed guys and understands how academics work at CC,” he said. “He understands the college game’s ins and outs very well.”
Reilly coached from 1988-98 in the Eastern Junior Hockey League, winning three championships. He played two seasons in Sweden, including one as player-coach.
Some of the future professionals who played for him include Bill Guerin, Scott Lachance, Ron Hainsey, and Chris Clark.
“I think he is a great fit for the college and the staff,” Haviland said.
The new director of hockey operations position is filled with a July 15 announcement identifying the recent former CC player scheduled. All three finalists for that job are former Tigers, Haviland said.
Former CC standout RJ Enga, 42, was hired as an assistant two weeks ago. Haviland, 46, was hired in May after longtime coach Scott Owens resigned on April 6 following a 7-24-6 season.
He hasn’t made his decision yet but is leaning toward ending his 14-year professional career after his Texas Stars battle the St. John’s Ice Caps for the Calder Cup championship in the American Hockey League.
Injuries limited him to 33 regular-season games (11 points, six assists) and a broken foot sustained while blocking a power-play shot ended his playoff run at seven games (one assist).
Now, he is watching the Stars, which are tied 1-1 with St. John’s headed into Game 3 on Wednesday in Newfoundland.
“My friends are asking me when I plan to hang it up,” he said. “With the NHL in the rearview mirror it is something you have to consider.”
He last played a single game with the Dallas Stars during the 2012-13 season and 39 the season before. His best NHL season was 18 points (10 assists) in 2001-02 in 79 games with Pittsburgh. His NHL career totals are 81 points (48 assists) on 398 games. He played three seasons in a row (2008-11) with Dallas.
This marks the final year of his contract with the Stars organization, which used him as a mentor in Austin for the team’s prospects. It’s a role he was happy to embrace.
‘This is the world’s best developmental league so it is important to help the younger guys adjust and get them ready for the NHL,” Petersen said.
Former Tiger defenseman Kris Fredheim and Cody Lampl are on the St. John’s roster but neither has played in the Calder Cup Finals. Fredheim suffered a shoulder separation and broken sternum in January that limited him to nine playoff game (one assist) since. His contract is up after this season as well and he is unsure where he may end up next season. He made his NHL debut during the 2011-12 season with the Wild, playing three games (no points).
Defensemen Kris Fredheim and Cody Lampl play for the St. John’s Icecaps, the Eastern Conference champion, against the Texas Stars, which includes veteran center Toby Petersen. Fredheim has one assist and a plus-3 rating in nine playoff games (out of 16 played by his team) while Lampl has not played.
Fredheim had five points (four assists) in 48 regular-season games while Lampl had no points in 38 contests.
Petersen, playing his 14th professional season, has one assist in seven postseason contests. He recorded 11 points (six assists) in 33 games this past regular season.
Calder Cup Game 1 is at 6:30 p.m. MDT Sunday night and can be watched live at theahl.com.
Former Denver associate coach Steve Miller resigned from his coach/GM role with the USHL expansion Madison Capitols after he ““decided to return to Colorado and pursue other interests at this time.”
His family lives in Denver so he may be interested in commuting to Colorado Springs for work at CC as an assistant. The Madison Capitols announced Luke Strand was hired to replace him.
Strand, 41, spent this past season as the general manager for the Sioux City Musketeers where he helped lead the team to a 38-19-3 record, equaling the team record for victories in the USHL Tier 1 era (2002-present). He was previously the coach of the Musketeers for two seasons (2009-11) and compiled an overall 58-47-15 record which included a playoff berth in 2011.
Two college hockey hockey players were diagnosed recently with cancer. Here is a link to a fundraiser for Alaska-Fairbanks player Justin Woods with more details on his fight here. Here is an article on Providence junior Drew Brown.
In today’s no-surprise news, Union coach Rick Bennett received a contract extension after winning the NCAA title.
Former Tiger Cody Lampl is enjoying his part-time minutes in the AHL.
Three National Collegiate Hockey Conference players were recognized for their academic performance this past season.
St. Cloud State senior forward Nic Dowd, Denver sophomore forward Gabe Levin and North Dakota junior defenseman Nick Mattson garnered Capital One Academic All-District honors, the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) announced. The trio was named to the academic all-district men’s at-large team.
It convinced him the private school could be a good fit. Fans, alumni and players hope the Stanley Cup-winning assistant coach’s hopes are proven right after the hire was announced on Friday.
Haviland coached former Tigers defenseman Gabe Guentzel in Norfolk during the 2012-13 season and worked with Capitals blue-liner Jack Hillen during a rehab stint with Washington’s American Hockey League affiliate in Hershey, Pa. this past season.
Former CC center Mark Cullen was one of his assistant captains in Norfolk during the 2005-6 season.
“Meeting those three showed me the kind of players and men CC produces,” Haviland said. “When the job came open, I reached out quickly. CC is one of the top Division I programs in the country and I thought it would be a great fit.”
Haviland, whose 15 years in the pro coaching ranks include serving an assistant with the 2010 NHL champion Chicago Blackhawks, is the 14th coach in the 75-year-old program’s history on Friday.
The 46-year-old replaced former longtime coach Scott Owens, who resigned after 15 seasons at his alma mater following a 7-24-6 campaign. Haviland beat out current CC assistants Joe Bonnett and Eric Rud, among others, for the job, which came open in early April.
The new coach signed a multi-year deal with CC late Thursday and declined to disclose financial details, as per college policy, when interviewed Friday morning.
“They certainly took care of me and my family,” he said. He and his fiancée Kristin have a blended family with six children.
The likely pay range is $200,000 to $275,000 a year, judging from the top five reported salaries in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference.
Haviland has coaching experience at the Division III level. As an assistant with small, liberal arts-oriented Elmira (N.Y.) College, he helped his alma mater to a 51-12-2 record and two ECAC Division III championships from 1996-1998. He recorded 51 points (27 goals) in 23 games during his final season with the Soaring Eagles.
He said that experience taught him how to keep the student part of student-athlete at the forefront.
“I want to help develop them on and off the ice,” he said.
It was one reason school president Jill Tiefenthaler signed off on the hire.
“We are very fortunate to find a candidate who is both a teacher and mentor, as well as someone who will take our program in exciting new directions,” she said. “Mike is dedicated to his players and excited about being part of our community. He will be a transformational motivator and leader for our student athletes.”
Administrators also hope for considerable success on the ice.
“We have aspirations of winning national championships, and I am confident we have found the right coach to turn our vision into reality,” athletic director Ken Ralph said.
“My intention is to win a national championship and I believe we will,” Haviland said.
This past season, Haviland led the Hershey Bears to ninth place in the Eastern Conference, just two points shy of the playoffs despite a 39-27-5-5 record in his first year at the helm. A Manhattan native who grew up in Middletown, N.J., Haviland served as assistant in charge of forwards in Norfolk the previous season (37-34-4-1).
Before then, he was a Blackhawks assistant in charge of special teams from 2008-12. The Original Six franchise went 187-101-40 over those four years and hoisted the 2010 Stanley Cup. In 2012, following his dismissal from Chicago, he was a finalist for the vacant Capitals job that went to the now-fired Adam Oates.
“Mike has won championships at multiple levels and has always produced winning programs,” Ralph said.
Haviland spent four seasons coaching (172-81-325) the ECHL’s Trenton Titans (2004-05) and Atlantic City Boardwalk Bullies (2001-04) and won two league titles (2003, 2005).
He moved up to AHL Norfolk (93-51-10-6) for two seasons (2005-7). The then-Blackhawks affiliate broke single-season wins and points records, which earned him the 2007 Coach of the Year award.
He moved on to Rockford (Ill.) when the Blackhawks affiliated with that team. The IceHogs went 44-26-4-6 and advanced through two playoff rounds that season before he joined Chicago as an assistant.
As a player, Haviland was selected by the New Jersey Devils in the 1990 NHL draft. His experience includes AHL Binghamton (1989-90) and the ECHL (1990-91) with Richmond and Winston-Salem.
The NCAA Midwest Regional MVP led UND with 17 goals and 22 assists this past season.
“We are very pleased to have reached a contract agreement with Rocco,” Florida general manager Dale Tallon said in a press release. “He is a hard working forward who possesses speed along with great vision on the ice. We look forward to his continued growth and development within our organization.”
He is the seventh to leave an NCHC school early, joining Nebraska-Omaha junior forward Josh Archibald (43 points, 29 goals), AHL Penguins, SCSU junior goalie Ryan Faragher (20-9-4, 2.79 gaa, .905 saves), Anaheim; Duluth junior Caleb Herbert (31, 19 points), Capitals; ) UNO junior defenseman Jaycob Megna (10, 10 assists), Ducks; Western Michigan junior defenseman Jordan Oesterle (17, 15 assists), Oilers; and CC freshman defenseman Gustav Olofsson (eight, four goals), Minnesota.
In all, 26 college players have left early this offseason.