As college hockey’s 2020-21 regular season draws to a close this weekend — and before the tournament action begins next weekend — there are still a few games left this weekend featuring a pair of LA Kings prospects that should not go unnoticed.
This week's College Hockey Rankings (with LA Kings prospects):
3. Minnesota (Faber) ⬆️ 1
8. St. Cloud (Hrenak) ⬇️ 2
N/R UMass Lowell (Lee and Meehan)
📺 Reg season finale this weekend — Minny v Michigan (full of 2021 draftees), SCSU v UMD
Full Top 20 https://t.co/mWwlFMaTjN
— John Hoven | The Mayor (@mayorNHL) March 1, 2021
No. 3 Minnesota at No. 7 Michigan
Both games of their two-game set are scheduled to be televised. Friday’s game is scheduled at 5pm PST and will be on FS North-Plus (DirecTV 668-1), while Saturday is a 2pm PST start on the Big Ten Network (DirecTV 610).
The importance here should be easy to understand. Minnesota features Kings prospect Brock Faber on the blueline. He was one of the top performers for Team USA at the recent World Junior Championship and could be turning pro as early as next year. He’s also scheduled to be featured very (very!) high up the list on our next edition of the Kings Prospect Rankings… spoiler alert.
This game isn’t all about Faber, though. Michigan features perhaps this year’s best freshman class in the nation. Some of their 2021 NHL Draft eligible players include Matty Beniers, Kent Johnson, and Owen Power. If you’re into the Draft, this is a must-watch game.
Prior to the Penn State series, #Gophers freshman and @LAKings prospect Brock Faber joined the Mayor's Manor podcast (@MayorNHL) to talk about life at the 'U' and learning he was about to be drafted from Coach Motzko.
— Minnesota Men’s Hockey (@GopherHockey) November 22, 2020
No. 8 St. Cloud will host No. 9 Minnesota Duluth on Saturday
Unfortunately, this game will not be televised in SoCal. Even so, the stakes are high in this one, as the winner will secure second place in the NCHC.
UMD picked up a much needed win vs. St. Cloud last weekend to keep themselves in the conversation for a playoff berth. St. Cloud isn’t going to roll over in the rematch; these are fierce rivals and they often play some of the best games you can find anywhere in college hockey.
UMD won two national championships with Mikey Anderson on the blueline, plus they’ve played in the last three national championship games. In net for the SCSU Huskies will be Kings prospect David Hrenak – he of the ‘karate kid’ story from Kings Of The Podcast (linked below).
In a fun Kings-related note, the loser of this game will finish 3rd in the conference and play Western Michigan in the opening round of the NCHC Tournament next weekend. Former Kings coach Andy Murray is now the bench boss for Western Michigan.
Further, because the top four teams advancing in the NCHC Tournament are reseeded after the first round, there’s a chance St. Cloud and UMD could play again on March 16 in the tourney finale.
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