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Wolves Weekly Press Notes

WOLVES HEADLINERS

--- DEREK MacKENZIE: Named the Wolves captain last season, becoming just the fourth player in franchise history to earn the honor ... Registered 69 goals, 78 assists, 147 points and 379 penalty minutes in 325 games with Chicago, leading all active players ... Posted 10 goals, 22 points and 48 penalty minutes in 36 games with team last year

--- DARREN HAYDAR: Ranked fifth in the American Hockey League with 92 points and seventh with 57 assists in 80 games with the Milwaukee Admirals last season ... Tallied 20 points (6G, 14A) in 10 contests against the Wolves last year, the most by an opposing player in a single season in Chicago franchise history ... Paced the AHL with 18 goals and 35 points in 21 postseason tilts, helping the Admirals to the Calder Cup Finals.

STANDING PAT

Veteran Play-By-Play Announcer PAT FOLEY makes his Wolves debut on Sat., Oct. 7., when the team enters its fourth season of televising every regular-season game - including all 40 home contests - as well as every playoff game, live on Comcast Cable.

WOLF TRACKS

--- Chicago tied for the AHL lead with a franchise-high 22 short-handed goals last season; the Wolves, who paced the league with 14 shorties on the road, netted two short-handed markers in a game three times this season.

--- The Wolves named TODD NELSON their new assistant coach during the offseason; during his first two years as a head coach, NELSON captured back-to-back United Hockey League Championships in 2004 and 2005 with the Muskegon Fury.

--- The Wolves lit the lamp 278 times last year, their most in five seasons and fifth-best in the AHL.

--- Chicago recorded 92 power-play goals last year, the third-highest total in team history and six shy of matching the franchise record.

--- The Wolves allowed an average of 28.21 shots per game last season, the third fewest in the AHL and surrendered 2,257 shots on goal, the fewest in franchise history.

THE PRE-GAME SHOW

Center JARED ROSS paced the Wolves with five assists and six points during the team's five-game preseason slate while defenseman NATHAN OYSTRICK led the club with three goals.

WOLVES PRESEASON REWIND (4-1-0-0)

Sat., Sept. 30 (at) Chicago 6, Milwaukee 1
--- The Wolves finished the preseason with their fourth straight win, a 6-1 victory against the Milwaukee Admirals at the Hoffman Estates Community Center and Ice Arena.
--- Centers CORY LAROSE and STEVE MARTINS each notched two goals and an assist while left wing Brett Sterling dished out three assists.
--- Netminder Michael Garnett registered 19 saves on 20 shots.

Thu., Sept. 28 (at) Chicago 3, Grand Rapids 2
--- Chicago nailed down its third straight preseason win with a 3-2 victory against the Grand Rapids Griffins at West Meadows Ice Arena in Rolling Meadows, Ill.
--- Defensemen BRIAN FAHEY and JUSTIN KURTZ and forward JORDAN LAVALLEE each lit the lamp.
--- Goaltender BRENDAN CUTHBERT collected the win, recording 14 saves on 16 shots after replacing MICHAEL GARNETT (16-16). Wed., Sept. 27 Chicago 3, (at) Milwaukee 1
--- The Wolves reeled off three unanswered power-play goals in the second period to knock off the Milwaukee Admirals, 3-1, in preseason action at the Mullett Center in Hartland, Wisc.
--- Center JARED ROSS led the charge for Chicago (2-1-0-0) with two points (G, A), while forward CHAD PAINCHAUD and blueliner NATHAN OYSTRICK also found the back of the net.
--- Netminder DAN TURPLE registered the win with six saves on seven shots before being replaced by DAVE CARUSO (7-7) at 30:36.

Sun., Sept 24 (at) Chicago 3, Peoria 0
--- Goaltenders BRENDAN CUTHBERT and MICHAEL GARNETT combined for a 19-save shutout as Chicago earned a 3-0 preseason victory against the Peoria Rivermen at Glacier Ice Arena in Vernon Hills.
--- Defenseman TROY MILAM collected a power-play goal and two assists while newcomers COLTON FRETTER and CHAZ JOHNSON also found the back of the net for Chicago.
--- CUTHBERT picked up the win with 11 saves while GARNETT posted eight saves.

Sat., Sept 23 (at) Peoria 4, Chicago 2
--- The Wolves fell in an early hole and couldn't climb out as the Peoria Rivermen handed them a 4-2 defeat in their preseason opener at Carver Arena.
--- Defenseman NATHAN OYSTRICK collected a power-play goal and an assist while right wing YURI MOSCEVSKY netted the squad's only other tally.
--- Netminders DAVE CARUSO (12) and DAN TURPLE (eight) combined for 20 saves in CARUSO's loss.

Sat., Oct. 7 at Peoria Rivermen Carver Arena 7:00 p.m.

ALL GAMES TELECAST LIVE ON COMCAST

To watch or listen to the action live online, log on to www.chicagowolves.com
 

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Burke unsure of destination

Sean Burke practiced with his Springfield Falcons teammates at Forest Park's Cyr Arena yesterday.

Then he left to make travel plans, even though he's still not sure where those plans might take him.

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Boughner named in lawsuit

On a day when he learned an AHL franchise is moving into his backyard, Windsor Spitfires president and head coach Bob Boughner was hardly bothered to hear he was named in a lawsuit filed Monday against NHLPA officials.

Detroit Red Wings defenceman Chris Chelios, Edmonton goalie Dwayne Roloson and former Los Angeles King Trent Klatt are suing NHLPA executive director Ted Saskin and the union's executive during the lockout over a variety of allegations stemming from the lockout.

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Penguins trim roster heading into season opener

With big-time help on the way from Pittsburgh and Edmonton and their exhibition schedule complete, the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins cut eight players from their AHL roster on Monday.

Center Kurtis McLean and defensemen Paul Bissonnette, Grant McNeill and Curtiss Patrick were all assigned to the ECHL’s Wheeling Nailers.

Edmonton prospects Troy Bodie and Liam Reddox were sent to the ECHL’s Stockton Thunder.

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Muckler pleased with depth in system

As the Ottawa Senators turn their attention toward Wednesday night's season opener at Toronto, general manager John Muckler said he heads into the 2006-07 campaign feeling much better about the organization's overall talent pool.

"Our depth's stronger this year than it was last year," Muckler said by phone Monday, after Ottawa finalized its roster by sending six players to Binghamton. "Much stronger.

"I didn't feel that we had a lot of depth last year. I'm satisfied with what we have this year."

That depth includes center Josh Hennessy and defenseman Michal Barinka -- two Binghamton-bound prospects acquired this summer in the three-team deal that sent star winger Martin Havlat to Chicago.

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Penguins to open NHL season with 3 teens

Jordan Staal and Kristopher Letang made the Pittsburgh Penguins' opening day roster Monday, joining with Sidney Crosby to give the rebuilding team a franchise-first three teens on the roster.

With Evgeni Malkin added in once he recovers from a dislocated shoulder - he turned 20 slightly more than two months ago - the Penguins may have their youngest roster in their 40-season history as they try to bounce back from four consecutive last-place finishes.

Staal, who turned 18 last month, was the No. 2 pick in the June draft and still could wind up playing most of the season in junior hockey. But with Malkin likely to miss the first few games of the season, the 6-foot-4, 215-pound Staal gives the Penguins depth, size and a scoring threat at center until Malkin returns.

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Bears enjoy respite before roster cuts come

If the Hershey Bears announced any cuts yesterday, they only occurred on the golf course.

That makes today hockey cut day for Hershey's roster to take opening-night shape. Hershey begins the regular season Saturday at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.

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Tough road for AHL in Canada

Do you really think the American Hockey League is going to fly in Essex County?

Ask the people of Cornwall. Or Quebec City. Or St. Catharines. Or Moncton. Or Saint John. Or St. John's. Or Cape Breton. Or Halifax. Or Newmarket. Or Charlottetown. Or Edmonton. Or Fredericton. Or Sherbrooke.

All of these Canadian cities were home to AHL franchises in the past two decades. Not one of them still is and nine of them ceased to exist in the last 10 years.

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Rivermen make final cuts before opener

It was one last cut Monday, then on to preparing for the 2006-07 American Hockey League season opener for the Peoria Rivermen.

The AHL club, loaded over the weekend by NHL parent club St. Louis with the additions of veteran skill forwards Trent Whitfield, Magnus Kahnberg, Denis Pederson and Mike Glumac, cleaned up their roster by releasing two centers and a wing.

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Iowa Scene

The Iowa Stars on Monday assigned defenseman Jared Nightingale and forward Tuomas Mikkonen to the Idaho Steelheads and released forward Kyle Bruce to cut their American Hockey League roster to 21 players.

The Steelheads open their ECHL training camp Tuesday in Boise.

The Stars open the regular season at 7 p.m. Saturday in San Antonio.
 

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Players taking to new coach

They've survived their first training camp under Paul Maurice and the Maple Leafs are taking a liking to him.

And they've noticed the differences from Pat Quinn.

"Pat was more of a players' coach who let us police ourselves," defenceman Bryan McCabe said. "(Maurice) is starting to hold guys accountable to the system right away. Nobody is going to get away with anything, including myself, Mats (Sundin), Darcy (Tucker). We do something wrong and we are going to hear about it. That's how you learn.

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Players File Suit Against Union

Detroit's Chris Chelios and other members of the NHL Players' Association asked a federal court Monday to help oust the union's executive director and for millions of dollars in damages.

The lawsuit filed in Chicago said executive director Ted Saskin and others "flouted the constitution and governing law to maintain their control" over the union.

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Aeros sign NHL veteran G Steve Shields

HOUSTON, Texas - The Houston Aeros have signed goalie Steve Shields, a veteran of 246 National Hockey League games, to a professional tryout, the team announced this morning. Shields is expected to practice with the Aeros today.

Shields, 34 (7/19/72), played just nine games in 2005-06 due to injury. He went 1-2-1 with a 4.28 gaa in five games for NHL Chicago, and 2-2-0 with a 2.25 gaa in four games for AHL Chicago. Prior to the NHL lockout, the 12th year pro posted a 12-13-9 mark with a 2.76 gaa in 2003-04 with Florida.

The 6-foot-3, 210-pound native of North Bay, Ont., attended the University of Michigan, where he roomed with Aeros assistant coach Cam Stewart. Shields has also played in the NHL with Buffalo , San Jose, Anaheim and Boston, with a career 80-104-40 record and a 2.67 gaa. Shields, who won a Calder Cup title with Rochester in 1996, sports a 39-34-4 career AHL mark with a 3.41 gaa in 84 games with Rochester and Chicago.

The Aeros open up the 2006-07 American Hockey League season at Toyota Center on Saturday at 7:35 p.m. against the Grand Rapids Griffins. Buy tickets! The team will honor 1994-95 Aeros Mark Freer, Graeme Townshend, Al Conroy and Steve Jaques. The first 3,000 fans will receive an Aeros camouflage hat. Pre-season party outside Toyota Center begins at 5:30 p.m., featuring two of Houston 's premier mobile entertainers, Olyn D. Taylor (DJ Specialist) and Lloyd C. Lively (Lively DJs). There will be great music, games, prizes and fun in front of Toyota Center.

Sunday at 5:05 p.m., the Aeros take on the Iowa Stars. "Mr. Hockey" ® Gordie Howe returns to Houston to have his No. 9 raised to the Toyota Center rafters. Buy tickets! It's also an Aeros Family Day. Get four tickets, four Aeros pucks, $20 in Toyota Bucks and free parking, all for just $67. Or call 713.974.PUCK to order your Family Day. It's also magnetic schedule night, compliments of FramesDirect.com. The pre-game party Sunday begins at 3 p.m.!
 

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Antropov, Kubina out

The Maple Leafs' opening-night roster became a little clearer yesterday thanks to those who dole out punishment at the league level and the brittle nature of forward Nik Antropov.

Defenceman Pavel Kubina won't play tomorrow night after he was suspended one game for cross-checking Jiri Hudler of the Detroit Red Wings on the face during the pre-season finale.

General manager John Ferguson was disappointed with the decision but will live with it. Kubina, who was assessed a major and a game misconduct on the play, will forfeit $26,737.97 US in pay.

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Hamel earns spot on Ottawa's roster...

Big club sends six players down to Binghamton

Early Monday morning, as Denis Hamel was preparing for another practice in Ottawa, Senators head coach Bryan Murray pulled him aside.

Last year, he was the final player cut from Ottawa's training camp. This time around, the news was decidedly better.

For the first time since 2002, Hamel will start the season in the NHL.

"That was enough to make me smile this morning," said Hamel, a veteran left wing who scored a franchise-record 56 goals for Binghamton last season.

"I've been working hard the last three years to get at least one chance to play NHL games in the regular season," he said. "And now they told me for sure I'll start the season there, so I just have to prove to them I can play here all year."

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Vancouver's loss is Manitoba's gain

The rich just got a little richer.

With the 71st American Hockey League season fast approaching, the Manitoba Moose received word that centre Rick Rypien, rookie winger Jannik Hansen and slick defenceman Patrick Coulombe had been assigned by the parent Vancouver Canucks.

Coulombe, who had 44 goals and 229 points in 297 Quebec Major Junior Hockey League games, was close to cracking the Canucks roster and is a power play specialist who joined the Moose for the playoffs but did not see any game action.

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Moose Sign Five to PTO's

Today, the Manitoba Moose, the AHL affiliate of the Vancouver Canucks, announced they have signed Mike Ayers, Tyler Beechey, Mike Keane, Dustin Wood, and Patrick Yetman.

Ayers, 26, enters his first season with the Moose. Last year, he split time between the AHL's Syracuse Crunch and the Dayton Bombers of the ECHL. The Hingham, MA native appeared in 23 games with the Crunch where he compiled a 12-8-1 record with a 2.66 goals against average and a .918 save percentage. In 25 games in Dayton, Ayers was 8-14-2 with a 3.43 goals against average and .894 save percentage. In 26 career AHL games, Ayers is 13-8-2 with a 2.60 goals against average and a .920 save percentage.

Beechey, 25, is also entering his first season in Manitoba after two seasons in the Toronto Maple Leafs organization. The Edmonton, AB native appeared in 47 games last season with the Marlies, scoring 13 goals and 31 points along with 27 penalty minutes. In his five-year pro career, Beechey has played in 60 AHL games, scoring 17 goals and 41 points and collected 33 penalty minutes.

Keane, 39, is entering his second season with the Moose. Last year, the Winnipeg, MB native served as captain of the team and scored three goals and 14 points in 69 games. He was named co-winner of the team's Julian Klymkiw Award for community service. In his 19-year pro career, Keane has won three Stanley Cups (Montreal '93, Colorado '96, Dallas '99) and played in 1,230 NHL games where he's scored 171 goals and 484 points as well as 947 penalty minutes. He has seen action in 147 career AHL games with Manitoba and Sherbrooke where he's scored 28 goals and 82 points and collected 136 penalty minutes.

Wood, 25, is entering his first season with the Moose organization. Last year, the Scarborough, ON native played in 64 games with the Houston Aeros where he scored a goal and seven points along with 48 penalty minutes. He was traded to Syracuse late in the year where he appeared in 14 games and collected three assists along with 14 penalty minutes. In his four-year career, Wood has played in 239 AHL games with Houston, Syracuse, Utah, and Springfield where he's scored five goals and 23 assists for 28 points and 125 penalty minutes.

Yetman, 25, returns to North American after three seasons in Germany with Kaufbeuren ESV. The St. John's, NF native has appeared in 37 games in the AHL with Hartford and Springfield where he's scored eight goals and seven assists for 15 points and six penalty minutes.

The Manitoba Moose will continue to prepare for their 2006-07 regular season opener with a practice tomorrow, Monday, October 2nd at 10:00 a.m. at River Heights Arena. The Moose will open their sixth season in the American Hockey League Wednesday, October 4th in Wilkes-Barre against the Penguins at 6:05 p.m. The game can be heard live on CJOB 680 AM beginning at 5:35 p.m.
 

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Rampage announce player transactions

SAN ANTONIO (October 3, 2006) - The San Antonio Rampage, the Phoenix Coyotes top affiliate, have announced the following player transactions:

Released from training camp:

Andrew Martin - G

Dusty Demianiuk - D

Dave Pszenyczny - D

Steve Weidlich - D

Bobby Chaumont - RW

Karl Gagne - LW

John Hecimovic - RW

Brett Lutes - LW

Kyle Musselman - RW

Leo Thomas - F

Yannick Tifu - C

The Rampage also announced that the club has returned left wing Kevin Cormier to Rimouski of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL) and that the Coyotes have assigned center Liam Lindstrom to the Phoenix RoadRunners of the ECHL.

San Antonio's roster is now at 28 players, including defensemen Travis Roche and Matthew Spiller who must clear waivers before being assigned to San Antonio, and the additions of right wing Enver Lisin and defenseman Keith Yandle. Both were assigned by the Coyotes to the Rampage yesterday.

The Rampage open the 2006-07 regular season, at home, on Friday, Oct. 6 against the Grand Rapids Griffins.
 

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Dream still intact

Given his abrupt, frustration-fueled departure from the franchise following the 2003-04 season, Manitoba Moose fans might have thought they had seen the last of Brandon Reid.

A sniff of National Hockey League life over his three previous years with the Vancouver Canucks organization wasn't enough for the speedy centre, so he packed his bags and went to Europe, first to Germany in 2004-05 and then to the Swiss League last winter.

Now, he's landed in Winnipeg again, still property of the Canucks and still itching to get back to the NHL.

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Up-tempo Moose

The biggest problem the Manitoba Moose might face this season is trying to get all their players into a loaded lineup.

The numbers will be reduced sooner rather than later but with the American Hockey League season starting tomorrow, the Moose are still carrying 29 players (though two are on the shelf with injury).

Moose head coach Scott Arniel is expecting his team to feature a balanced attack.

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