Monday, July 08, 2013

UNH Players at 2013 NHL Development Camps

UNH Senior Kevin Goumas
UNH Senior Eric Knodel
UNH Sophomore Brett Pesce

With the 2013 NHL Draft completed, the mid-summer season of player development camps is in full swing. Each NHL team invites young players who they have drafted, as well as free agents who are considered pro prospects, to their summer camps. These "prospect camps" give players an opportunity to show their stuff at the NHL teams' training facilities and in front of the teams' scouts, coaches and management.

Every summer, UNH is well-represented at the NHL camps and this year is no exception. Last year, I reported on five UNH players who participated in one or more development camps. To date, I can confirm that three UNH players will attend an NHL prospect camp over the next couple weeks.

Senior Forward Kevin Goumas

Kevin Goumas, the Wildcats' leading scorer last season, will attend the Toronto Maple Leafs' Prospect Camp. The camp begins tomorrow at the MasterCard Centre, home of the Maple Leafs' training facilities. The camp includes on-ice practice sessions, "private seminars on conditioning, media awareness, personal development and nutrition" and two scrimmages.

Last summer, Goumas participated in the New Jersey Devils' Prospect Camp. Former UNH stars Mike Sislo and Phil DeSimone also attended that camp.

Goumas will join UNH Captain Eric Knodel at the Toronto Development Camp (see below). James van Riemsdyk just completed a successful first season with the Maple Leafs scoring 18 goals and 14 assists in the regular season. JvR was the leading scorer for the Leafs during their playoff run. The general manager of the Maple Leafs is Dave Nonis. His son Nick Nonis recently committed to play college hockey at UNH.

Senior Defenseman Eric Knodel

In June, 2009, Eric Knodel was selected 128th overall by the Toronto Maple Leafs in the NHL Entry Draft. The 6'6", 225 lbs. defenseman will be attending his 5th Maple Leafs' Development Camp starting tomorrow. Knodel will be an academic senior at UNH next season and was chosen as the Wildcats' Captain.

Since Knodel did not play in his freshman year at UNH, next season will be his third year of college hockey. Last season, Knodel posted a huge jump in goals scored with 10, including 5 power play goals. During the 2011-12 campaign, Knodel had 3 goals. No doubt, the UNH faithful,and the Maple Leafs, are looking forward to another productive season from Knodel.

Sophomore Defenseman Brett Pesce

It's been an exciting summer for 18-year-old, UNH defenseman Brett Pesce. On June 30th, the 6'3", 190 lbs blueliner was selected by the Carolina Hurricans in the 3rd Round of the 2013 NHL Draft. Pesce was the 66th player chosen in the draft. Here's a video interview with Brett on draft day. UNH fans might recognize UNH graduate Chantel McCabe as the interviewer. She is now the sideline reporter for the Carolina Hurricanes television broadcasts.

The Hurricanes' Player Development Camp is scheduled for July 16-20 at the PNC Arena in Raleigh, NC. It will be Pesce's first prospect camp.

UPDATE: Grayson Downing

Junior forward Grayson Downing is attending the Chicago Blackhawks' prospects camp, which began today. This is the first time that Downing has been invited to an NHL camp.

UPDATE: Nick Sorkin

Senior forward Nick Sorkin will be attending the New York Islanders' mini-camp this week. Previously, Sorkin had attended the Washington Capitals' prospects camp in the summer of 2009 and the Flyers' and Maple Leafs' camps last summer.


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