Puck Drop

Puck Drop

Minnesota hockey, from ponds to pros.


Da Beauty League postponed indefinitely because of coronavirus

Members of the TRIA Orthopedics team celebrated with the John Scott Cup after winning Da Beauty League last August.

The summer gathering of NHL, minor league and college players at Braemar Arena won't go on as scheduled, but organizer Ben Hankinson is holding out hope it can run later in the year.


Potential gamebreaker for Wild is so close but yet so far

Russia's Kirill Kaprizov celebrates scoring a goal against the United States during the first period of semifinal game at the world junior ice hockey

Though the NHL and players union are still negotiating, it appears Russian phenom Kirill Kaprizov won't be eligible to play for Minnesota when the NHL returns for the playoffs later this summer.


Sweet Sweaters: From the Fabulous Four, we crown a champion

The Puck Drop Sweet Sweaters Fabulous Four

A 1970s Minneapolis West High School entry battled a Minnesota Warriors jersey, while a game-worn 1960 U.S. Olympic sweater matched up against an underdog beer-league entry. Read on to see who's the inaugural Puck Drop champion.


Gophers women's coach Brad Frost looks ahead after abrupt finish

Gophers women's hockey coach Brad Frost

Minnesota's season was canceled just before the NCAA tournament, and now the coach is planning for a new season amid the uncertainties created by the coronavirus pandemic.


Sweet Sweaters: The Fabulous Four is set

Sweet Sweaters: The Fabulous Four is set

The field of 16 has been narrowed to four, with the Brooks Regional coming down to an old-time Minneapolis vs. St. Paul battle.


Gophers 100th season celebration has Motzko excited, humbled

Bob Motzko, the new Gophers hockey coach, center, was given some pointers from former hockey head coaches including Doug Woog, left, and Don Lucia, ri

The men's hockey program has started a campaign to honor its rich history, and its coach shared his memories of what Pride on Ice has meant to him.


Minnesotan rolls with the punches in Alabama

St. Louis Park senior forward Bauer Neudecker in 2017.

St. Louis Park's Bauer Neudecker endured a broken ankle and difficult season that saw Alabama Huntsville drop then quickly reinstate its program. Now he's in the NCAA transfer portal, looking for a new hockey home.


Gophers forward Garrett Wait enters NCAA transfer portal

Gophers forward Garrett Wait (17) scored against Notre Dame goalie Cale Morris on Nov. 2 at 3M Arena at Mariucci.

The junior-to-be from Edina had three goals and seven assists over the past two seasons. He's the first player with eligibility remaining to leave the team.


Hockey updates: Good news for St. Thomas, Don Lucia

St. Thomas could be playing Division I hockey in the 2021-22 season, and the new CCHA is looking for an eighth team.

The former Gophers coach was named commissioner of the new CCHA earlier this week, while the Tommies received encouraging news on their quest to move to NCAA Division I.


Sweet Sweaters: Three regionals down, one to go

Sweet Sweaters: Three regionals down, one to go

In our last installment, a beer-league team called the Mastodons advanced to the Fabulous Four, joining a 1960 U.S. Olympic sweater. Today, we play out the Ikola Regional.


Goalie Amanda Leveille re-signs with Whitecaps

Whitecaps goalie Amanda Leveille

The former Gophers standout led the team to the NWHL championship in 2019.


New Commissioner Lucia sees St. Thomas as 'nice candidate' for CCHA

Former Gophers men's hockey coach Don Lucia

St. Thomas on Wednesday was waiting to hear if it will be allowed to move directly from NCAA Division III to Division I. If the Tommies get the OK, they have a good option for a men's hockey home.


Alabama Huntsville reverses course, will keep hockey

Alabama Huntsville will play hockey in 2020-21 after all.

A grassroots fundraising campaign raised $750,000, enabling the Chargers to continue playing for the 2020-21 season. More work needs to be done for the program to have a longer-term future.


For former U star Pat Micheletti, a very happy anniversary

Former Gophers hockey player and current broadcaster Pat Micheletti.

Five years ago this week, the former Gophers great underwent a kidney transplant, receiving a new organ from his brother, Jerry.


Sweet Sweaters: Halfway to our Fabulous Four

Sweet Sweaters: Halfway to our Fabulous Four

A tried-and-true Olympic jersey won last week in the inaugural Puck Drop Sweet Sweaters competition of favorites submitted by fans. Might we see an upset this time?


Alabama Huntsville eliminating its men's hockey program immediately

Alabama Huntsville has been an NCAA Division I team since 1988-89 and spent the past seven years in the WCHA.

Financial issues brought on by the coronavirus pandemic prompted the school to drop the Division I sport, plus two others. That leaves the WCHA with nine teams for the 2020-21 season.


Sweet Sweaters: The Tournament

Boyd Paavlova submitted this 1960 U.S. Olympic jersey, worn by his father, Rod Paavola, a member of that gold medal-winning team.

We've picked our final 16 of favorite hockey sweaters their their stories submitted by readers, and now we're playing them down to the Fabulous Four. This week, it's the Sandelin Regional.


Lessons and hope after 10 weeks of hockey's upheaval

Under an NHL Return to Play scenario that includes 24 teams, the Wild and Canucks could face off in a five-game play-in series.

We've learned terms like "social distancing'' and "flattening the curve'' since the coronavirus pandemic shut down sports in March. Now, the NHL is taking steps toward returning, a sign of hope for many.


Ex-Gophers Chorske, Millen putting their brand on St. Cloud hockey

Tom Chorske, a former standout for the Gophers and a Stanley Cup winner with the New Jersey Devils, is the general manager of the NAHL's St. Cloud Nor

Tom Chorske and Corey Millen are GM and coach, respectively, for the newly renamed St. Cloud Norsemen, a North American Hockey League team that's had problems on and off the ice.


Mankato, Duluth, Bemidji, UND: Motzko emphasizes hockey rivalries

Gophers men's hockey coach Bob Motzko.

Even before the coronavirus pandemic prompted schools to cut costs by trimming travel, Motzko wanted to play Minnesota's other Division I teams and North Dakota.