CORPUS CHRISTI, TEXAS – Corpus Christi IceRays alumni defenseman Grant Hutton and forward Nico Sturm have been invited to participate in the first round of NHL Development Camps this week with Hutton skating with the Vegas Golden Knights and Sturm with the Winnipeg Jets. In total, three IceRays players and alumni are currently skating in NHL camps.
NHL development camp are a week-long event with players selected by the respective hosting team at the 2017 NHL Draft, top rookies, future prospects, and free agents the team may have an interest in signing. The camp is a chance for prospective players to impress NHL scouts and coaches while also gaining the chance to improve their skills prior to the 2015-16 season.
Hutton, 21, completed his second season with Miami University (Ohio) in the National Collegiate Athletic Conference (NCHC), recording nine goals and nine assists for 18 points with 34 penalty minutes through 36 games. The 6-foot-3, 205-pound defenseman earned his first collegiate goal on Oct. 7, 2016 against then-reigning NCAA Champion Providence College and went on to record the highest goals by a RedHawks defenseman since 2007-08. He was named to the NCHC Academic All-Conference Team and led all RedHawks defensemen in points while earning three multi-point games, including a pair of assists against the University of Minnesota Duluth on March 10 during the NCHC Playoffs. The Carmel, Ind. native played 85 games with the IceRays from 2012-14, recording 10 goals and 19 assists for 29 points with 105 penalty minutes and a +9 rating.
Sturm, 22, finished his freshman season at Clarkson University, recording eight goals and 13 assists for 21 points with 37 penalty minutes and a +4 rating. The Augsburg, Germany product was sixth among Golden Knights players and led his team among rookies en route to an ECAC Hockey All-Rookie Team selection. The 6-foot-3, 197-pound center was one of the best face-off performers for the Golden Knights, centered a standout rookie line and earned ECAC Rookie of the Week Honors once while picking up ECAC Honor Roll mentions three times. Sturm made his NAHL debut with the IceRays during the 2013-14 season, recording one goal and two assists for three points with two penalty minutes through 21 games.
The pair of alumni join IceRays goaltender Tomáš Vomáčka, who was drafted by the Nashville Predators on Saturday morning and is currently attending Predators Development Camp, as the three IceRays connections currently at NHL Development Camps, marking the highest turnout for IceRays players and alumni at NHL development camps in program history. Forward Tanner Lomsnes (‘14-’15) was the first IceRays player to earn an invite, joining the 2015 Dallas Stars Development Camp following his lone season with the IceRays.
16 more NHL teams will be announcing development camp rosters over the next few weeks.
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