Some good news for a talented guy, as Trenton’s Ryan Ginand has been named the ECHL Player of the Week. In addition, James Reimer, who skated a few times at Sun National Bank Center while manning the pipes for the Reading Royals, made his NHL debut last night. Mix that in with me opening up my first box of hockey cards in a few years, and you’ve got yourself a good hockey day, kids. All the info can be found below…and don’t miss my first of three report cards as well.
(PR) PRINCETON, N.J.- Trenton Devils forward Ryan Ginand is the Sher-Wood Hockey ECHL Player of the Week for December 13-19.
The 24 year old scored three goals and added three assists for six points as the Devils went 2-0-0 last week.
Ginand scored three goals and an assist and was a +2 in a 4-2 win at Elmira on Friday and then tallied two assists in a 6-3 home win against Toledo on Sunday. His hat trick on Friday was the third of his career following two three or more goal performances with Trenton last season.
A native of Milford, Mass., Ginand leads the Devils this season with 13 goals and 30 points in 24 games. As a rookie last season, Ginand had 27 points (14g-13a) in 40 games with the Devils.
Prior to turning pro, Ginand played four seasons at Northeastern University scoring 82 points (46g-36a) in 132 games.
On behalf of Ryan Ginand a case of pucks will be donated to a Trenton youth hockey organization by Sher-Wood Hockey, the exclusive puck supplier of the ECHL. Since beginning its sponsorship of the award in 2000-01, Sher-Wood Hockey has donated more than 23,000 pucks to youth hockey organizations in ECHL cities.
Runners Up: Wes Goldie, Alaska (3gp, 4g, 2a, 6 pts) and Kevin Deeth, Utah (3gp, 2g, 3a, 5 pts).
Also Nominated: Bobby Robins (Bakersfield), Patrick Asselin (Kalamazoo), Greg Collins (Las Vegas), Mike Hedden (Toledo) and Tim Kraus (Victoria).
(PR) PRINCETON, N.J. – Former Reading Royals and South Carolina Stingrays goaltender James Reimer became the 456th player to play in the National Hockey League after the ECHL when he made his debut with the Toronto Maple Leafs in a 6-3 loss against the Atlanta Thrashers on Monday.
The 22 year old made four saves on four shots in 14:09 of playing time for the Maple Leafs whose lineup also included former ECHL player Francois Beauchemin. Former ECHL coach Graeme Townsend is the Maple Leafs’ skating coach.
The Reading Royals are the ECHL affiliate of the Maple Leafs and the Toronto Marlies of the American Hockey League. Former ECHL coach Gord Dineen is an assistant coach with the Marlies.
Reimer went 16-7-3 with two shutouts, a 2.85 goals-against average and a .919 save percentage in 28 regular-season games with Reading and South Carolina in 2008-09. He also appeared in eight Kelly Cup Playoff games with the Stingrays going 4-3 with a 2.17 goals-against average and a .929 save percentage and was named Most Valuable Player of the 2009 Kelly Cup Playoffs as the Stingrays captured their record third Kelly Cup championship. The Winnipeg, Manitoba native has seen action in 40 AHL games with Toronto over the last four seasons posting a record of 22-13-3 with three shutouts, a 2.46 goals-against average and a save percentage of .920.
Thirteen ECHL players have made their NHL debut this season: former Idaho Steelheads goaltender and 2010 ECHL All-Star Richard Bachman (Dallas on Dec. 11), former Las Vegas Wranglers right wing Adam Cracknell (St. Louis on Dec. 15), former Cincinnati Cyclones goaltender Mark Dekanich (Nashville on Dec. 18), former South Carolina Stingrays left wing Stefan Della Rovere (St. Louis on Dec. 1), former Atlantic City Boardwalk Bullies and Idaho Steelheads defenseman Brian Fahey (Washington on Oct. 16), former South Carolina Stingrays goaltender and 2010 ECHL All-Star Braden Holtby (Washington on Nov. 7), former Texas Wildcatters left wing Matt Kassian (Minnesota on Nov. 5), former Ontario Reign center Dwight King (Los Angeles on Nov. 17), former Phoenix RoadRunners and Utah Grizzlies goaltender Nathan Lawson (New York Islanders on Dec. 18), former Trenton Titans defenseman Olivier Magnan (New Jersey on Oct. 22), former Trenton Devils center Brad Mills (New Jersey on Oct. 30), former Alaska Aces right wing Ryan Reaves (St. Louis on Oct. 11) and former Reading Royals and South Carolina Stingrays goaltender and 2009 Kelly Cup Playoffs Most Valuable Player James Reimer (Tortonto on Dec. 20).
The ECHL had a record 79 players on NHL opening-day rosters, surpassing the 78 from a year ago and marking the eighth year in a row that there have been over 50 former ECHL players on opening-day rosters. Every ECHL team has an affiliation with an NHL team and the league has affiliations with 27 of the 30 NHL teams, marking the 14th consecutive season that the league has had affiliations with at least 20 teams in the NHL.
There have been 456 players who have played in the NHL after playing in the ECHL including a record 52 who made their debut in 2008-09. The ECHL has had 264 players reach the NHL since 2002-03 when it changed its focus to become the primary developmental league for the NHL and the AHL. The ECHL had 97 players reach the NHL in its first 10 seasons and 215 in the first 15 years. There have been 200 ECHL players who have played their first game in the last six seasons for an average of more than 33 per year.
There are 30 coaches with an ECHL background working behind the benches of teams in the NHL including Washington Capitals head coach Bruce Boudreau, New York Islanders interim head coach Jack Capuano, Philadelphia Flyers head coach Peter Laviolette and St. Louis Blues head coach Davis Payne while former ECHL player Dan Bylsma is head coach of the Pittsburgh Penguins. It is the sixth consecutive season that there have been 11 or more coaches with an ECHL background working in the NHL. Boudreau, who coached Mississippi for three seasons winning the Kelly Cup championship in 1999, was named NHL Coach of the Year in 2007-08 becoming the first former ECHL coach to receive the award.
There are 21 former ECHL officials are working as part of the NHL officiating team in 2010-11 with referees David Banfield, Francis Charron, Chris Ciamaga, Ghislain Hebert, Jean Hebert, Marc Joannette, Mike Leggo, Wes McCauley, Dean Morton, Dan O’Rourke, Brian Pochmara, Kevin Pollock, Kyle Rehman, Chris Rooney, Justin St. Pierre and Ian Walsh, and linesmen Steve Barton, Brian Mach, Tim Nowak, Bryan Pancich and Jay Sharrers.
The ECHL was represented for the 10th year in a row on the Stanley Cup champion with Chicago Blackhawks assistant coaches Mike Haviland and John Torchetti, developmental goaltending coach Wade Flaherty, senior director of hockey administration Al MacIsaac, general manager of minor league affiliations Mark Bernard and scout Ryan Stewart. There were 35 former players and 14 former coaches on 15 of the 16 teams competing in the National Hockey League’s Stanley Cup Playoffs, marking the fifth year in a row that there have been at least 30 former ECHL players and the seventh consecutive season that over 25 players with ECHL experience have competed in the NHL postseason.
The first ECHL player to play in the NHL was Johnstown Chiefs goaltender Scott Gordon, who played his first game with the Quebec Nordiques against Buffalo on Jan. 30, 1990. The 100th player honor is shared by Jean Sebastien Aubin and Manny Legace, who both made their debut on Oct. 21, 1998 with the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Los Angeles Kings, respectively. The 200th player was Brett McLean with the Chicago Blackhawks on Dec. 10, 2002 while the 300th was David Liffiton with the New York Rangers on Apr. 11, 2006 and the 400th was Phil Oreskovic on Mar. 9, 2009 with the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Former ECHL broadcasters working in the NHL include John Ahlers and Steve Carroll of the Anaheim Ducks, Tom Callahan of the Nashville Predators, Dave Goucher of the Boston Bruins, Chris Kerber of the St. Louis Blues, Jack Michaels of the Edmonton Oilers, Dave Mishkin of the Tampa Bay Lightning, Bob McElligott and John Michael of the Columbus Blue Jackets and Rob Simpson, who is a producer/host for The NHL Network.
Ryan Stanzel and Jeremy Zager, who were both recipients of the ECHL Media Relations Director of the Year award, are working in the communications department for the Minnesota Wild and the Los Angeles Kings, respectively. Former ECHL assistant director of communications Joe Siville and Kelly Murray are now with the Philadelphia Flyers and the Washington Capitals, respectively, while former ECHL director of communications Jason Rothwell is the creative director for the Columbus Blue Jackets.