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The Daily Skate: Will UND and Miami be targeting the same assistants?

Two National Collegiate Hockey Conference teams are looking for assistant coaches. UND head coach Brad Berry let go of assistant Matt Shaw on Tuesday, while new Miami coach Chris Bergeron opted not to retain assistants Peter Mannino and Joel Beal...

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Two National Collegiate Hockey Conference teams are looking for assistant coaches.

UND head coach Brad Berry let go of assistant Matt Shaw on Tuesday , while new Miami coach Chris Bergeron opted not to retain assistants Peter Mannino and Joel Beal, who were brought aboard last summer by previous coach Rico Blasi.

There were a number of assistant coach openings in college hockey last summer and several schools seemed to target the same potential candidates.

So, will Miami and UND be battling for the same people?

In this instance, it seems unlikely.

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For starters, Bergeron subtly indicated that he would like to bring his assistants -- Barry Schutte and Ty Eigner -- along with him from Bowling Green to Miami. Schutte and Eigner, who have been with Bergeron since 2010, could both be in the mix to be Bowling Green’s next head coach, so Bergeron is playing a waiting game now.

“I want to see what the plan is at Bowling Green in terms of what they’re going to do,” Bergeron said. “The staff there to me is like family. We’ve been through this for nine years together.”

UND also may keep it in the family.

Of the last 10 assistant coaches who have been hired at UND dating back to the early 1990s, eight of them were former UND players. The exceptions were Shaw and Mark Osiecki, who spent one year in Grand Forks and is now with his alma mater, Wisconsin.

Two schools are currently looking for head coaches: Bowling Green and St. Lawrence.

UND's Hall of Fame Games

The Herald posted UND’s 2019-20 schedule Wednesday morning .

One of the unique items in it is a U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame Game against Michigan Tech in Ralph Engelstad Arena.

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UND will have the event for three years in a row.

Last year, UND played the Hall of Fame Game in Las Vegas against rival Minnesota. This year, it will be in Grand Forks against Michigan Tech.

In 2020, UND is planning to play the Hall of Fame Game against Penn State in Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena. UND and Ralph Engelstad Arena officials are still working on finalizing the Nashville game.

UND’s other Hall of Fame games have been in 2016 (home vs. RPI), 2014 (home vs. Air Force), 2010 (at Minnesota Duluth, opening of AmsOil Arena), 2007 (home vs. Michigan State), 2003 (home vs. Minnesota Duluth), 2001 (home vs. Minnesota, opening of Ralph Engelstad Arena), 1992 (vs. Minnesota Duluth in Eveleth, Minn.), 1988 (vs. Minnesota Duluth in Eveleth) and 1978 (vs. Minnesota in Eveleth).

Seven uncommitted players on CSB list

The NHL’s Central Scouting Bureau released its final draft rankings Monday.

There are seven UND commits on the list .

College Hockey Inc., compiled a complete sortable list of college hockey-bound players , including uncommitted, potential college hockey guys.

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Are there any uncommitted players who UND may have interested in recruiting? It’s possible.

UND recently picked up Cooper Moore, a defenseman who landed at No. 88 on the list.

Of the seven remaining uncommitted players, two are defensemen and one is a goalie. UND is fairly set in those positions for the near future, so they seem unlikely.

Of the four remaining forwards, one seems to best fit the profile of a possible UND recruiting target: Tri-City Storm forward Brendan Budy, a left winger from Langley, B.C.

Budy started this season with Denver, but opted to go back to junior hockey after playing in just six games during the first half of the season. During the second half, he has exploded in Tri City to tally 31 points in 31 games.

Budy, ranked No. 155 among North American skaters, will most likely return to junior hockey next season and go to college in 2020 with three years of eligibility remaining.

UND’s staff stays mum on which players they’re interested in recruiting, so it’s impossible to know for sure, but they’ve surely seen Budy play, considering he’s a teammate of UND commit Shane Pinto. Pinto will come to campus in the fall.

Five of the seven uncommitted players are from overseas. Some feel that none of the Europeans will end up playing college hockey. The Canadian Hockey League or European pro are possibilities, too.

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The European players on Central Scouting’s list are Russian forward Egor Afanasyev (No. 16) of Muskegon, Finnish forward Marcus Kallionkieli (No. 47) of Sioux City, Finnish forward Matias Maccelli (No. 51) of Dubuque, Russian forward Alexander Yakovenko (No. 107) of Muskegon and Slovakian goalie Samuel Hlavaj (No. 5 goaltender) of Lincoln.

Budy and Canadian defenseman Chase Felgueiras (No. 179) of Humboldt in the SJHL are believed to be college-bound.

Who will have busiest draft days?

UND figures to have a big draft weekend in late June in Vancouver with seven recruits on Central Scouting’s final list.

That ranks fourth among all college hockey programs. Who else figures to have a big draft day?

Minnesota, under new coach Bob Motzko, ranks first with 11 players on the list, followed by Providence and Boston University with eight.

UND’s seven players are listed here .

Wisconsin and Boston College both have six, but may grab headlines because they both have two of the top 13 North American skaters. Wisconsin commit Alex Turcotte is ranked fourth among North American skaters, while Cole Caufield is ranked eighth. Boston College commit Matthew Boldy is ninth, while Alex Newhook is 13th.

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Harvard has five players ranked, while Western Michigan, Michigan and UConn all have four.

All eight National Collegiate Hockey Conference programs have at least one recruit on the list.

Fargo wins draft lottery

Central Illinois is going dormant in the United States Hockey League, and the league will soon hold a dispersal draft to find new homes for its players.

On Monday, the USHL held a lottery to determine the order for the dispersal draft and, according to a source, the Fargo Force earned the No. 1 overall pick. The Green Bay Gamblers will draft No. 2.

UND has one commit on the Central Illinois team: forward Stephen Halliday, who was once selected No. 1 overall in the Phase I Draft. Halliday will play at least one more year in the USHL before coming to UND. Halliday finished with 34 points in 55 games last season.

The Force, who won the Clark Cup as USHL champions last season, were eliminated in the playoffs Tuesday night by the Des Moines Buccaneers. UND commit Michael Mancinelli scored the overtime winner.

Grimaldi scores again

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Rocco Grimaldi has played in two NHL playoff games for the Nashville Predators this spring. He has two goals and the Predators have two wins.

Grimaldi scored his second goal in as many games Monday night, beating Stars goalie Ben Bishop from long range.

Back-to-back winners for Nelson

Former Warroad and UND standout center Brock Nelson and the New York Islanders are moving to the second round of the playoffs thanks to a surprising sweep of the Pittsburgh Penguins in the first round.

Nelson scored goals in three of the four games for the Islanders, including the game-winner in Games 3 and 4.

The Islanders will play Washington or Carolina next round.

Flyers hire Hakstol's successor

The Philadelphia Flyers have hired Dave Hakstol’s successor.

It is former Montreal Canadiens, Vancouver Canucks and New York Rangers coach Alain Vigneault, who was not behind any NHL bench last season.

Hakstol is currently looking for his next coaching job. The Buffalo Sabres still have not hired a head coach, and a couple of other coaching changes could be coming soon.

Hakstol was with the Flyers for three-and-a-half years, leading Philadelphia to the playoffs twice.

Warroad players make All-USA team

Two Warroad High players were named to the All-USA girls hockey team by USA Today.

Senior goalie Quinn Kuntz, who grew up in Grand Forks, was named to the second team . Kuntz is committed to Ohio State.

Junior forward Hannah Corneliusen was named to the third team .

Warroad reached the Minnesota state tournament and finished runner-up.

Sanderson plays for U17s

UND commit Jake Sanderson, who was thought to be lost for the season with an upper-body injury, returned this week for the U.S. Under-17 Team and suited up in two playoff games.

Sanderson had an assist in Tuesday’s game, but the U17s were knocked out by Cedar Rapids on Tuesday night.

This week marked Sanderson’s first games since January.

Schlossman has covered college hockey for the Grand Forks Herald since 2005. He has been recognized by the Associated Press Sports Editors as the top beat writer for the Herald's circulation division four times and the North Dakota sportswriter of the year once. He resides in Grand Forks. Reach him at bschlossman@gfherald.com.
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