CORPUS CHRISTI, TX – The Corpus Christi IceRays returned from Taylor, Michigan where they hosted a competitive Pre-Draft Camp at the Taylor Sportsplex with lots of work to do preparing for the 2014 North American Hockey League Draft which is scheduled to take place on June 3rd.
“It was really good, great to see some of the younger and possibly the future of the IceRays,” said IceRays captain Kyle Froese, who participated in the camp. “Coach Becanic and the rest of the organization put on a great camp that I think the players definitely enjoyed and benefited from.”
Festivities kicked off on Friday morning with a meeting before the puck dropped on games that carried all the way through Saturday evening with the All-Star taking place on Sunday morning.
“The Pre-Draft was a great experience,” said Brad Flynn, the newest member of the hockey operations staff. “The elements of the players game that really stuck out to me was the Hockey IQ and skill level of the players who attended. The decisions to decide the All-Star Game were very challenging, and those decisions will only get tougher for the main camp invites.”
Players from all over the world converged to the Sportsplex while one of the voids that needed to be filled was the NA3HL Tender. For head coach John Becanic, it was an easy choice after watching camp.
“Overall I would consider the camp a big success,” said the second year head coach. “We had over 75 participants traveling as far away as Finland and the Czech Republic. We were very excited about several of our tendered players who attended the camp as well as some of the younger players that have the potential to be part of our future. One of our goals was to identify a player that would be able to sign our NA3HL tender to. We found that in defensemen Brendan Murphy. Brendan played for the Peoria Mustangs last year and had an excellent camp. We think he has the potential to help us on the PP with his ability to get pucks on frame from up top.”
In addition to being able to look at potential future members of the IceRays, it was the first time the new staff was able to put their minds together while beginning to assemble the 2014-15 Corpus Christi IceRays.
“It was great to have our new staff assembled for the first time and get the opportunity to share ideas and thoughts on the direction we will be going with this year’s group,” said Becanic. “We are excited as we close in on the NAHL draft as we feel that we have recruited some high end talent to fill some of the voids in our lineup. We will discuss our roster after the draft in more detail.”
For head scout Rick Ellison, the talent exceeded his expectations and the IceRays now hope to pull numerous players from the Pre-Draft Camp and hand them invites to the Main Camp from July 16-20 at the same Sportsplex in Taylor, MI.
“The quality of the players at the pre-draft camp exceeded my expectations,” said Ellison. “Overall the compete level was very high with virtually every player exhibiting the strong skill and compete attributes to be considered a draft candidate or a main camp invite. We were also pleased with the younger players who we will put on our tender prospect list for 2014-15. We are fortunate to have had such a strong camp as I expect we will be offering approximately 20 players main camp invites.”
The camp was in preparation of the 2014 NAHL Draft which takes place on June 3rd. Fans can follow all the draft picks on the league’s twitter account @NAHLhockey. The IceRays will also be tweeting their picks by following @goicerays. If fans wish to listen audio of the event, they can tune in on Fasthockey.com.
Season tickets for the 2014-2015 season of IceRays hockey are on sale NOW. Call the front office at 361-814-7825 for details or check out the pricing and seating chart online at www.goicerays.com.
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