The hockey season (for me) officially begins tonight when the Sioux Falls Stampede (USHL) have their first preseason game. As previously mentioned, the Herd will begin the preseason by playing tonight against the Sioux City Musketeers in Brookings, SD. They will play again tomorrow against the Des Moines Buccaneers in Luverne, MN. I love the idea of playing some preseason games outside of USHL cities because it exposes this wonderful game to a broader audience. With both Brookings, SD and Luverne, MN being less than an hour away from Sioux Falls it is reasonable to believe that some hockey fans from these cities may come into Sioux Falls to see some games in the future after being exposed to them during these preseason games. You can read more about this weekends preseason games here.
Also, here are a couple of additional links relating to the Sioux Falls Stampede:
- You can find a list of all the 15 former Sioux Falls Stampede players participating in NHL training camp here. Most notable on this list include: T.J. Oshie (STL), Thomas Vanek (BUF), Alex Goligoski (PIT), Chad LaRose (CAR), Dan Sexton (ANA), Nate Prosser (MIN), and SCSU's own Andreas Nodl (PHI).
- Former Stampede player Joe Finley was recently featured in an article in the Washington Post. Finley will be participating in training camp with the Washington Capitols as he seeks a position with the Capitols AHL affiliate the Hershey Bears.
- Former Stampede player Nate Prosser recently helped the Wild prospects win the championship in the Traverse City Prospects Tournament. Wild Assistant GM Brent Flahr gave Nate Prosser (along with Tyler Cuma) the award for the "Best Defensive Player". This is great for Prosser as the number 1 question coming into Wild training camp is who will be the seventh defensemen. Nate Prosser is definitely a viable option for the position.
- Finally, here is a link to an article by the Argus Leader in Sioux Falls about the Stampede's preparation for the 2010-2011 season. Interesting pieces include that Coach Hartzell has again put his players through Navy Seal training and that 13 Sioux Falls Stampede alums are currently captains of the Division 1 hockey teams.