Saturday, October 03, 2015

UND Begins the 2015-16 Season

Tonight, a new season begins. Through two periods of play these three players stood out for UND.

Brock Boeser (1g-1a—2pts)
Shane Gersich (2g-0a—2pts)
Johnny Simonson (2g-0a—2pts)

The d-core has been very active in leading the rush up ice. For the fans that hate the dump and chase, there hasn’t been a lot of dump and chase. 

Friday, October 02, 2015

Grand Forks Herald: Former Bismarck Mayor Marlan “Hawk” Haakenson UND can't use my trade names

First, what's this guy's end game? President Robert O. Kelley isn't budging either. Maybe I am wrong, but I don't see him putting North Dakota on the nickname ballot.

I know I am not a lawyer, nor did I stay in a Holiday Inn Express last night. But I don't see how one guy, who happens to be an NDSU guy, can derail the whole nickname process.

If I was the University of North Dakota, I would just ignore him. Don't like it, sue us in court. This would be tied up in the courts for years.
Per the Grand Forks Herald:
Former Bismarck Mayor Marlan “Hawk” Haakenson urged UND President Robert Kelley to add “North Dakota” to the ballot for a new nickname, saying he will not authorize the school to use four names he has registered as trade names.

In a handwritten letter sent Sept. 28, Haakenson said he owns rights to four names, having added “Roughriders Sports Team” to three names he registered earlier in September. “I will not sell the rights to use my trademarks. I will not let anyone use them.”

Haakenson also has registered trade names for Fighting Hawks, North Stars and Nodaks.

“You have time to add ‘North Dakota’ to your ballot, as an overwhelming percentage of your qualified voters have asked you to do. That’s the right thing to do,” he wrote. “You give the appearance of rigged ballot and vote.”
I know I have said this 100 times. I love the Fighting Sioux nickname. I also realize that this fight should have taken place about 5-7 years ago. It seems like some have been late to the party. The Fighting Sioux nickname is gone and not coming back. If UND had refused to change the Fighting Sioux nickname, there's no way that UND would be able to host a NCAA regional.

I also don't really like any of the nickname choices that we get to vote on. I could accept, Nodaks, Rough Riders/Roughriders (Not really sure how they will end up spelling this), and Fighting Hawks. These are the best choices in my opinion. I honestly don't know which of the three I will vote for. My friend Mafia Man from Sioux Sports, actually kind of swayed me towards Fighting Hawks. This seems to be the option that is trending as of late.

Again, I am pro-Fighting Sioux nickname, I will always be. I am worn out with the argument surrounding the nickname. I am (reluctantly) ready to move on, I will vote for a nickname in October. That being said, I will always wear my Fighting Sioux gear with pride when the opportunity arises. Last Wednesday, I wore a golf shirt with the Fighting Sioux logo on it to the hockey presser. I didn't even realize I was wearing it. Just came out of the wash that way.

NHL Hockey: Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook Points Totals

According to the Sporting News: Point totals and division odds for the 2015-16 NHL season have been released at the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook.

Looking at the numbers, I believe that the Wild are probably a little low.  Looking at the expected finish of the Bruins, they're not expected to finish very high this season.


DUCKS 104.5
BLUES 102.5
KINGS 100.5
WILD 97.5
STARS 96.5
JETS 95.5

New Yorks Times Article on Hakstol

Apparently, former University of North Dakota head coach Dave Hakstol is making an impression on the Flyers fans this fall. Reading some of the stories that have been posted online, it would appear that Hak has more or less brought the same techniques and concepts to the NHL.
Per Dave Caldwell, New York Times Sports:
Hakstol, 47, represents a radical culture change. A native of Warburg, Alberta, a prairie town of 789 that also produced Dallas Stars Coach Lindy Ruff, Hakstol was a defenseman who never made it past the International Hockey League in five professional seasons.

The Flyers are essentially the same team that last year finished 33-31-18, the 24th-best record in the 30-team league and 14 points out of a playoff berth.

What Hakstol says he will do is get the Flyers playing at a faster pace — partly because everyone is, especially elite Eastern Conference teams like the Rangers and the Tampa Bay Lightning. Despite a power-play unit that ranked third in the N.H.L., the Flyers were 21st in scoring last year.

“This is a hard-working team,” Hakstol said in a low, flat voice. “I believe it always has been. This game starts and ends with energy and work ethic and guys that are good teammates. That’s the baseline. The game is played at a high pace now, and we want to think in this room that we have the ability to get up the ice a little bit quicker, the ability to create a little bit more in the offensive zone and getting everybody involved.”

Thursday, October 01, 2015

Wild Claim Chris Porter off of Waivers

The Minnesota Wild have claimed former Fighting Sioux forward Chris Porter off of waivers from the Philadelphia Flyers. Porter is a former teammate of Wild forward Zach Parise.
Jeff Neiburg, Daily News Staff Writer - The Flyers lost a little bit of organizational depth Thursday afternoon when one of the two players they put on waivers yesterday failed to clear.

Chris Porter, who scored two goals in three preseason games, was claimed off of waivers by the Minnesota Wild. Colin McDonald, who the Flyers also waived yesterday, cleared.

Michael Russo talked to Zach Parise about the move:

“He’s a player who I think can help us and I’m happy for him that he gets to come back here and play,” Parise said of Porter, 31, an energy-winger who played against the Wild last season for St. Louis.

“He’s a big guy, he’s fast, he plays physical, so I think that’s going to fit in well with us and with Carts. He knows what his job is out there. There are no gray areas. He knows what he’s supposed to do. Just as important, he’s a great guy.”

Sure, why not? Crookston Times Letter: Prairie Dogs is a great nickname for UND

This one is too hilarious not to share with the blog readers, feel free to share your thoughts. This nickname suggestion is almost as bad as Sundogs. Close, but Sundogs still takes it for all-time bad nickname suggestions.

Per the Crookston Times:
I'd like to add my suggestion to that list of five, Prairie Dogs. Why Prairie Dogs? Because they're social animals, they keep a sharp lookout for their enemies, and they alert one another to danger by making loud barking or chirping noises. Also, just think about it. What are the prairie states? They're Montana, North Dakota, and Minnesota, and they border the prairie provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba. Go! Prairie Dogs! Go!

If you're curious about why I took such an interest in this "Name Game," I can tell you why. I grew up in Crookston, Minnesota and played ice hockey at Cathedral High School with Johnny Noah who died this month. Johnny was 87, and so am I. Johnny and other guys from Cathedral played for the first UND Big Ten hockey team which was coached by our former football and hockey coach, Don Norman. Of course, this was way back in the forties and early fifties, but it sure left an impression on me, and so did Johnny Noah who also played on the U.S. Olympic team.
By Chuck Dowdle
Cambria, California

WHKY: North Dakota opens season against the Rensselaer Engineers


The University of North Dakota women's hockey team will open its regular season on the road in upstate New York. North Dakota will face RPI in an ever-important non-conference game right out of the gate.

When playing in the WCHA, non-conference games can make or break a team's post-season hopes. This weekend is no exception and North Dakota hopes to win its first game in Troy, N.Y. this weekend. Veterans returning to this ice for the green and white understand that importance of this weekend. "We know what it's like to drop games early and, I guess, be punished for it at the end of the season," senior, forward Layla Marvin said.

Head coach Brian Idalski said that the focus is to win hockey games, but that the team needs to be patient with where its at at this stage in the season.

The last time the teams met at the Houston Field House, RPI swept North Dakota. Last season, the Engineers traveled to The Ralph for the season opener where North Dakota took the game 7-1.

Last weekend North Dakota struggled offensively in their exhibition against the University of Manitoba Bisons. The lone goal credited in the second to Anna Kiponen. The puck came off the skate of a Bisons player before entering their net. North Dakota gave all three goaltenders a workout during the exhibition.

Live stats will be available for tomorrow's game (5:00 p.m. CST) and Saturday (1:00 p.m. CST) match-up at RPI Athletics. You can also follow @UNDWHockey on Twitter for updates.

North Dakota will continue its caravan on the road through October 16th. The first home game of the season will be a Saturday afternoon match-up against the gritty, Bemidji State Beavers on October 17th.

Travis Zajac Subject trade rumors

Apparently, former Fighting Sioux forward Travis Zajac is the subject of trade rumors.

Per Travis Yost of TSN:
This past weekend, rumours swirled about Toronto's alleged interest in New Jersey Devils centre Travis Zajac. The connection here is obvious. Zajac, a former first-round pick in 2004, was drafted and developed by none other than new Leafs general manager Lou Lamoriello.

For a team mostly devoid of talent right now, it's understandable why the beggars-can't-be-choosers crowd fanned the flames of this trade rumor. The Leafs have a huge hole down the middle of the lineup, and Zajac's been, at the very least, a pillar of stability for a New Jersey team venturing into a rebuild.

That's perhaps the only defensible point of this proposed trade. For starters, I can't see how Zajac fits into Toronto's plans either – he's a 30+ veteran with a massive contract, both in terms of average annual value ($5.75 million) and dollars owed ($28.75 million) through the 2020 season.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Chris Porter Waived by the Flyers

Former Fighting Sioux forward Chris Porter has been waived by the Philadelphia Flyers. According to, Porter is expected to clear waiver and report to the AHL Phantoms.

Michael Russo thinks that Porter would make sense in Minnesota.

Also, as I wrote earlier this offseason, Chris Porter may make sense and he is one of the guys open for the taking suddenly because Philadelphia put the former Blues energy forward on waivers today.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Grand Forks Herald Letter: Still time to put UND/North Dakota option on ballot

Whether we want to admit it or not, President Robert O. Kelley isn't going to change his mind. His mind has been made up. While I am in favor of being simply being UND/North Dakota, but it's not going to happen. We will not get our way. If you like the UND/North Dakota option, consider voting for Nodaks.

Per the Grand Forks Herald:
Now, UND's president won't allow a vote on the UND/North Dakota option. Months ago, he said he would consider putting
that option back on the ballot, but few people believe he had any intention of doing so.

Meanwhile, nearly 70 percent of UND students voted for the "no nickname" option on the ballot. Public numbers are similar. Once again, our leadership betrays its people.

Additionally, UND has employed fear-mongering tactics such as suggesting that the NCAA could come back and punish UND for what fans say. Seriously? Whatever happened to free speech? And will the NCAA really come out and say "UND must have a nickname"? I don't read that condition in the NCAA-UND agreement or NCAA's bylaws. It's just not necessary.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Preseason Division I Men's Poll

September 28, 2015

(First Place Votes)
Last Poll
Boston College
Boston University
( 6)
28- 8-5
North Dakota
( 1)
Minnesota State
( 1)
29- 8-3
( 6)
( 1)
( 1)
( 1)
( 2)
Michigan Tech
Bowling Green
St. Cloud State
St. Lawrence
Others receiving votes: Robert Morris 63, Notre Dame 45, Rochester Institute of Technology 39, Michigan State 37, Northeastern 31, Vermont 23, Penn State 19, New Hampshire 18, Ferris State 11, Wisconsin 5, Bemidji State 4, Union 3, Alaska 1, Brown 1, Dartmouth 1.

More proof that the college hockey season is here. UND is fourth in the USCHO preseason poll. With the 10 incoming freshmen that might be a bit high. There's a lot of talent on that roster though.

Zane McIntyre Sent to Providence

Former UND goalie Zane McIntyre was sent to the Providence Bruins of the American Hockey League. The shocker was that Malcolm Subban was sent down, too. Earlier in the summer, Subban was penciled in as the number two goalie behind Tuukka Rask.
Ryan Dadoun, Pro Hockey Talk -- Boston announced that goaltenders Zane McIntyre and Malcolm Subban have been reassigned to AHL Providence, ending their individual campaigns to secure Boston’s number two slot behind Tuukka Rask.,

While neither goaltender was the favorite to win the backup job, either one would have been an intriguing choice. Subban, 21, is a former first round pick (24th overall, 2012) and has two strong seasons in the AHL under his belt. McIntyre, 23, is just starting his pro career, but he was the 2015 Richter Award winner as the NCAA’s top goaltender for his work with the University of North Dakota.

Oh Boy!

Ruthmary Arnason Unruh of Grand Forks, ND wrote this doozy of a letter to the editor. In my opinion, she's living in a pure fantasy world. Sure Nodaks is unique, but Sundogs isn't. Thank God, every online poll that I have seen has Sundogs in fourth or fifth.

NODAKS—Imagine this:
•A bold outline of the state of North Dakota
•A background of green and white (stripes, checks, lightning bolts, etc.)
•The word "NODAKS" in big letters covering the state—in a bold, funky font
•The eternal flame aglow in the letter "D" like the existing UND symbol
•This is a personal favorite. We are truly Nodaks.

SUNDOGS—Picture this:
•The word SUNDOGS in a creative brilliant font
•A burst (like the sun) around the letters UND of SUNDOGS
•Color bursts (sundogs) on either side of the word SUNDOGS (probably green and white flashes with a sparkling, classy look)
•The eternal flame aglow in the letter "D" or "O."

Come on, UND fans: Look forward. Visualize. Imagine. Pledge your loyalty.

Stand up and Cheer for a great new UND look.

North Dakota—Here's to you!

Friday, September 25, 2015

Chris Porter Making His Case

Like many of you, I have been watching Dave Hakstol's NHL coaching debut in Philly with great interest. Another story that has began to emerge is the impression that former Fighting Sioux forward Chris Porter has made in the City of brotherly love. There's a chance that Porter could end up as the extra forward when Philly breaks camp.
“We’ll see what happens [Friday] and if things shake out a little bit more, we’ll get down,” Hextall said. “It’s important to get the numbers down for practices. I think playing the lines is important.

“We have four games left, and we’ve talked about our big guys playing in quite a few. In the past, we brought some guys from Allentown. I don’t know if we will or not. We can still do that if we have one game — bring a couple guys in for a preseason game.”

Right now, Chris Porter is making a case for himself as the extra forward. Coincidentally, Porter is playing on Scott Laughton’s line with Brayden Schenn. (Tim Panaccio,
Don't expect any special treatment because he's from North Dakota.
General manager Ron Hextall signed the free agent as a depth player in August.

“He’s a guy we’ve had our eye on for a few years,” Hextall said of Porter. “I think when there’s a North Dakota guy, it can always go back to Hak, but we talked about him actually in pro meetings before Hak.

“We talked long and hard about depth players. He was one of the guys very high on our radar. He’s going to get no special treatment because of North Dakota. There’s no doubt about that.”

Porter is expected to play left wing tonight on Laughton’s line. He realizes this is another audition to make the final roster. (Tim Panaccio,

Sifting Through the Herald Letters to the Editor

Wow! Seriously. We're picking a nickname for a sports team. Sundogs screams weakness and isn't something we can all rally around. Based on the history of this nickname choice it would further divide the UND fan base. Thank God she only has one vote.
Per the Herald Editorial Page:
To UND promoters and fans: "Sundogs" is a nickname with enormous potential.

Forget the dorky image of a shaggy dog with green eyes that was printed in the Herald previously. Our "Sundog" is a mythic—or should I say "Legendary"—creature made of light and ice!

Whether a head-only image or full-figure pack running, the Sundogs should have clean lines, pointed ears and—most especially—penetrating and diamond-shaped eyes made only of brightness (no pupils).

Forget "rainbows." Instead, think of strobe-light eyes for arena fixtures whenever possible and a special iridescent fabric for them on uniforms of any color (e.g. Kelly green included).

Sportscasters could talk about the Sundogs 'blinding/hypnotizing" opponents with their exceptional play—or "fading away" if they lose.

Besides being unique to UND, "Sundogs" can be an extremely powerful brand if we use our imaginations.

Lynn Lindholm
Grand Forks
Lindholm is a retired UND faculty member.
Here's another fan that's not a fan of the nickname selection process.
Per the Grand Forks Herald:
Over time, this process has reminded me of medieval Europe, when the aristocracy of the feudal system ruled the countrysides.

All the peasants had to live outside of the castle walls, where they were subjected to whatever whims those inside the walls decided was best for all people of the kingdom.

As I have followed the stories on the nickname selection in the Herald, one thing was completely clear from all the polls conducted. Remaining "UND/North Dakota" was the overwhelmingly dominant choice in all of the polls.

Steve Molvig
Lovelock, Nev.
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