NAHL Alumni Update: NHL rosters sees rise in NAHL alumni
As the National Hockey League (NHL) opens its 2022-23 season, the NAHL alumni presence on opening night rosters continues to remain steady and significant.
The NAHL is pleased to announce that a total of 38 NAHL alumni are listed on opening night rosters of NHL clubs, which is up from a season ago.
The list also includes former NAHL Coach of the Year Jon Cooper, who enters his ninth full season as the head coach of the Tampa Bay Lightning. Cooper began his NAHL coaching career with the Texarkana Bandits in the 2003-04 season. He coached in the NAHL a total of five seasons. In 2004-05 and again in 2007-08, he was honored as the NAHL Coach of the Year.
Former NAHL coach John Hynes begins his fourth season as head coach of the Nashville Predators. Former NAHL coaches Mike Vellucci (Pittsburgh Penguins) and Jay Varady (Detroit Red Wings) also begin their seasons as Assistant Coaches in the NHL.
Earlier this summer, a total of 80+ NAHL alumni attended NHL Development Camps and the league also saw five NAHL players selected in the 2022 NHL Draft.
NCAA Weekly Honors
Atlantic Hockey Goalie of the Week: Chad Veltri, Niagara (Corpus Christi IceRays) - Niagara’s Chad Veltri was a key to Purple Eagles starting their season 2-0 for the first time in the program’s Division I era as the senior netminder stopped 61-of-67 shots in a pair of 4-3 road wins at RV/RV Omaha over the weekend. The Pittsburgh, Pa., native turned away 31 Maverick shots in Friday’s series-opening win before turning in a 30-save performance in the series finale on Saturday. This is Veltri’s fourth career AHA weekly honor.
Atlantic Hockey Rookie of the Week: Jay Ahearn, F, Niagara (Johnstown Tomahawks) - Niagara’s Jay Ahearn scored two goals in two games to help the Purple Eagles to a road sweep of RV/RV Omaha over the weekend. The Staten Island, N.Y., native scored in his collegiate debut Friday night, followed by a game-tying goal Saturday that helped Niagara to a comeback win against the Mavericks. This is his first career AHA weekly honor.
ECAC Rookie of the Week: Nick Young, D, Union (St. Cloud Norsmen/Lone Star Brahmas) - Defenseman Nick Young (Fr., Union) scored the first goal of his collegiate career on Friday to get the Dutchmen on the board in an eventual loss to UConn. He finished the weekend with five blocked shots and played a pivotal role in keeping the Huskies on their toes in Saturday’s narrow 4-3 loss.
NCHC Goalie of the Week: Ludvig Persson, Miami (Lone Star Brahmas) - Persson repeated as Goaltender of the Week after backstopping Miami to a split at No. 15 UMass Lowell. He racked up 73 saves in the two games, including 38 saves Friday when the RedHawks topped the River Hawks, 3-1. Persson nearly had a shutout Friday, as the only goal allowed came with 40 seconds left in the game and a UML extra attacker on the ice. He made 35 more saves in Saturday’s 4-2 defeat.Persson compiled a .936 save percentage against UMass Lowell and posted a 2.54 goals-against average. He also helped Miami’s penalty kill go 7-for-8 on the weekend, including eight short-handed saves Friday and 12 short-handed saves in the series. Persson led Miami to its first unbeaten start through three games since the 2012-13 season. On the season, the Swede is now 2-1-1 with a .938 save percentage and a 1.98 GAA.