With players like Jonathan Huberdeau and Quinton Howden all having monster years in the the Canadian junior system, players like Nick Bjugstad, Kyle Rau and Drew Shore have been lighting it up here in the in the United States DI college system. Tonight, two of the top teams in the country will square off in a nationally televised game between the Minnesota Gophers and the Denver Pioneers. The Florida Panthers prospects headline this much anticipated match and we should all turn our attention to watch out future Panthers at work.
Living in South Florida it’s very difficult to watch our future prospects play a lot because not many people have the channels or packages to watch the college hockey games or the canadian junior hockey games, but luckily for us NBCSN, formally known as Versus is televising this game for the entire nation. The game is set for 10 pm time here in South Florida.
Nick Bjugstad, a sophomore at the University of Minnesota leads the #2 Gophers into #14 Denver hoping to come away with a big road win. Bjugstad currently leads the team with 33 points, with his 21 goals currently ranked 2nd in the nation. Bjugstad was selected 19th overall by the Florida Panthers back in the 2010 NHL draft. At the age of 19 years old, look for Bjugstad to continue his hot streak tonight. Also look for another Panthers prospect, Kyle Rau to continue his hot streak as well. Rau, a freshman has certainly lived up to expectations and currently has 27 points in 27 games. The 5’8” 172 pound Center hopes to overtake Joey Laggelia(Denver) for most points in the nation by a freshman.
Drew Shore, a junior at the University of Denver has been ripping it up since the beginning of the year. Although he had an amazing sophomore season in which he tallied 23 goals and 23 assists, this season he is already close to passing his career highs. In 27 games he has already accumulated 40 points, which is currently ranked for 4th best in the nation. Shore, a 2009 2nd round draft pick by the Florida Panthers has certainly exceed expectations thus far. Other Panther prospects to watch on the Denver Pioneers are John Lee and Sam Brittain.
I hope all of you are able to watch the game tonight even though it’s a little game, but hey it’s Friday and you can sleep in tomorrow. This will be a golden opportunity for the nation to watch the Panthers young stars shine on national television. Dale Tallon has done an excellent job drafting all these players and many websites and analysts have ranked the Panthers prospect pool as the best in the entire league.
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