VandeVelde re-signs with Philly

Former UND center Chris VandeVelde is staying with the Philadelphia Flyers’ organization.

VandeVelde re-signed with the Flyers this week, inking a one-year, two-way deal. The deal is worth $575,000 if he’s playing in the NHL and $150,000 if he’s in the AHL according to CapGeek.

VandeVelde played 18 games for the Flyers last season, tallying one assist. He played 41 games for the AHL Adirondack Phantoms, tallying 10 goals and 24 points.

For his career, the former Moorhead High star has played in 46 NHL games with the Oilers and Flyers, scoring a goal and tallying four points.

New deal coming for Toews?

Former UND star Jonathan Toews is not a free agent this summer. But the Chicago Blackhawks want to make sure that he doesn’t become one a year from now.

Chicago general manager Stan Bowman says he is negotiating with Pat Brisson, the agent for both Toews and Patrick Kane with hopes of signing both players longterm in the near future.

The big question: How much will Toews and Kane get from the Blackhawks?

They signed identical five-year, $31.5 million deals in 2010 and both are set to expire next season. They will be unrestricted free agents if nothing gets done. But all signs point to something happening.

It wouldn’t be surprising if they both sign identical deals again — something that Zach Parise and Ryan Suter did with the Minnesota Wild.

Speculation is that Toews and Kane could become among the NHL’s highest-paid players ever. But at the same time, they probably don’t want to handcuff the Blackhawks from putting quality players around them.

So, what do you think Toews will get?

Greenes get to watch this Cup run

Former UND captain Matt Greene won his first Stanley Cup two years ago.

His parents didn’t get to watch a single game.

Jim and Darcy Greene were on a research trip to Benin, a small country in West Africa. They would go to an Internet Cafe and try to get the Kings’ website to load just to see game scores. They were en route back to America during the clinching Game 6.

This time, they got to watch.

The Kings flew families of players to Madison Square Garden for Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final, then flew them back to Los Angeles for Game 5. So, Greene’s family was able to join him on the ice to celebrate after the Kings clinched the title with a double overtime goal in Game 5.

“It was a lot better this way,” Jim said with a laugh.

Greene hammering out Cup plans

Matt Greene is working on plans for his day with the Stanley Cup.

That day will happen in Grand Forks.

The former UND captain will bring the trophy to his old college city in mid-August. The date is expected to be Aug. 11 or Aug. 12. He is still working on the details of his trip and day with the Cup. They are expected to be announced at a later date.

Here’s the story on the Herald’s site.

Greene’s deal = $10M

Matt Greene re-signed with the Los Angeles before the start of the free agency period and has listed the details of his contract.

Greene will make $10 million over the next four seasons, getting an equal $2.5 million share each year. The contract will bring Greene’s career earnings to roughly $30 million.

The former UND captain just completed a five-year deal with the Kings, helping them to a pair of Stanley Cups. He was an alternate captain on both Cup-winning teams.

Greene, 31, has played 504 games in the NHL with the Edmonton Oilers and the Kings, scoring 13 goals, tallying 69 points and registering 583 penalty minutes. He also has played 79 NHL playoff games in his career, going to three Cup Finals.

Also of note, the Kings lost defenseman Willie Mitchell in free agency today.

Chorney signs with Pens

Former UND defenseman Taylor Chorney is heading to the Pittsburgh Penguins — the same organization where his father, Marc, played from 1980-84.

Chorney signed a one-year, two-way deal with the Pens worth $550,000, according to TSN.

Chorney previously has played for the St. Louis Blues and Edmonton Oilers. He has suited up for 61 NHL games, scoring a goal and adding six assists. The defenseman last played in the NHL during the 2011-12 season.

Frattin headed back to Toronto

Former Hobey Baker Award finalist Matt Frattin is headed back to his original NHL team, the Toronto Maple Leafs.

After spending last season on the move — from Toronto to Los Angeles to Columbus — the Blue Jackets have sent Frattin back to Toronto in exchange for Leafs forward Jerry D’Amigo.

The Leafs still had to sign Frattin — a restricted free agency whose rights were retained with a qualifying offer — and they did just that on Tuesday. Frattin’s deal with the Leafs is for two years.

Frattin made his NHL debut with the Leafs at the end of the 2010-11 season. He played the next two seasons with the Leafs as well. Last year, he was traded to the Kings before the start of the season, then dealt to the Blue Jackets at the trading deadline.

For his career, Frattin has played in 126 NHL games and has tallied 17 goals and 35 points.

Malone signs with Carolina

Former UND forward Brad Malone is on the move.

Malone signed a two-year deal with the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday, the opening day of the NHL’s free agency period. Malone’s contract will be worth $1.3 million — $600,000 this upcoming season and $700,000 in 2015-16.

The contract is a one-way deal according to, which means Malone should have a great opportunity to play quite a bit in the NHL this season.

Malone started to cement himself in the NHL at the end of the season, playing in six of seven playoff games for the Colorado Avalanche. During the regular season, he played in 32 games and scored three goals and had five points.

For his career, Malone has played 54 regular-season NHL games, scoring five goals and tallying nine points.

Wrapping up the draft

Three UND recruits ended up getting selected in the NHL Draft this season with Nick Schmaltz going in the first round, Austin Poganski going in the fourth and Shane Gersich going in the fifth.

As previously stated, I’m no longer listing Ryan Mantha as a recruit, no matter which team drafts him (it was the New York Rangers in the fourth round). The reason: According to multiple sources, he’s an academic casualty. That’s why it didn’t matter who drafted him.

That left Poganski and Gersich as the two UND draftees on Saturday.

Poganski is coming right away. His goal will be to produce more in the second half of the year than the first half, which he will have an adjustment to make.

Gersich is heading to Omaha of the USHL for a year before coming to campus. He said on Saturday that he will be a senior next season. He did consider trying to accelerate his education last year.

Regardless, his path is one that the Washington Capitals are happy about.

Washington assistant general manager Ross Mahoney said that Gersich went from a highly offensive role at Holy Family High School as a sophomore to a more defensive role with the NTDP as a junior.

Gersich was playing behind first-round picks Alex Tuch and Sonny Milano — and soon-to-be first-round pick Jack Eichel. Gersich wasn’t a power-play guy. He had more of a checking role and didn’t put up big numbers.

Mahoney thinks Omaha is the best destination for Gersich next season. He should get more opportunity to play an offensive role and the Caps (and UND) want to see him re-discover that. Mahoney said he knows that it’s in Gersich, because he has seen it.

Had Gersich gone to college this season as a young player with a deep roster, his role would have once again been limited and who knows if he would have been able to re-discover his offense or how that would have affected development.

As it is, Gersich is taking the patient route and that could pay dividends for Omaha, UND and Washington in the end.

“We’re looking, as of now, at an excellent third-line center,” Mahoney said. “You’re always hoping they can move higher in the lineup. (Gersich) is a very good two-way player. He’s very intelligent. We would like to see him get the skill that he showed a year ago. We’d like to see him build more on that game after playing more of a checking role with the Under-18 team.

“He will end up playing in the USHL, then heading to North Dakota, which will be really good for him there. It’s a really good program. We’re happy with the path that he has chosen.”

With Minot’s Alex Schoenborn (Portland, WHL) going in the third round of the draft, someone asked in the comments for a list of North Dakotans and East Siders that have been selected, so here it is. Let me know if I’m missing anyone.

North Dakota high school players in NHL Draft

Alex Schoenborn, Minot, 2014 (3rd, 72nd, SJS)
Luke Johnson, GFC, 2013 (5th, 134th, CHI)
Keaton Thompson, DL, 2013 (3rd, 87th, ANA)
Paul LaDue, GFC, 2012 (6th, 181st, LAK)
Ryan Potulny, RR, 2003 (3rd, 87th, PHI)
Danny Irmen, RR/FN, 2003 (3rd, 78th, MIN)
James Massen, BHS, 2001 (6th, 194th, NJD)
Andy Schneider, RR, 2001 (5th, 156th, PIT)
Grant Potulny, RR, 2000 (5th, 157th, OTT)
Mike Hanson, Minot, 1994 (11th, 269th, NJD)
Mike Peluso, BHS, 1994 (10th, 253rd, CGY)
Brent Brekke, Jamestown, 1991 (9th, 188th, QUE)
Mike Markovich, GFC, 1989 (6th, 121st, PIT)
Chad Johnson, GFC, 1988 (6th, 117th, NJD)
Dave Hanson, GFC, 1984 (4th, 79th, PHI)
Lee Brodeur, GPR, 1984 (4th, 65th, MTL)
Tim Loven, RR, 1982 (11th, 213rd, TOR)
Brian Williams, FN, 1982 (9th, 187th, MTL)
Mark Berge, RR, 1978 (11th, 182nd, PHI)
Dennis Johnson, GFC, 1972, (5th, 74th, DET)

East Siders in the NHL Draft

Gage Ausmus, EGF, 2013 (5th, 171st, SJS)
Tucker Poolman, EGF, 2013 (5th, 127, WPG)
Craig Mack, EGF, 1983 (7th, 132nd, QUE)
Tim Mishler, EGF, 1982 (5th, 96th, WPG)

Poganski, Gersich go on Day 2

PHILADELPHIA — One day after UND recruit Nick Schmaltz was selected in the first round by the Chicago Blackhawks, two more UND recruits were picked at the NHL Draft.

The first to go was Austin Poganski. The incoming freshman was selected by the St. Louis Blues in the fourth round (No. 110 overall). Shane Gersich quickly followed, going to the Washington Capitals in the fifth round (No. 134).

Poganski will play for UND next season. Gersich will go to Omaha for one year before coming to UND. Both chatted with the media after their selections. Comments will be posted later.

UND’s draft board

Nick Schmaltz, Chicago Blackhawks, first round, No. 20
Austin Poganski, St. Louis Blues, fourth round, No. 110
Shane Gersich, Washington Capitals, fifth round, No. 134