The Saginaw Spirit announced today that five players are leaving for various NHL training camps. Goal tender Evan Cormier, forward Cole Coskey, defenseman Keaton Middleton, defenseman Marcus Crawford, and forward Brady Gilmour will be away from the team until Sep. 18, when the last NHL training camp wraps up.
Cormier (a fourth round pick of the New Jersey Devils in the 2016 NHL draft) will head to the Harbor Center in Buffalo, NY where he will compete in the 2017 Prospects Challenge, a four team tournament featuring prospects from the New Jersey Devils, Buffalo Sabres, Boston Bruins, and Pittsburgh Penguins, beginning on Sep. 8, and going through Sep. 11, before Cormier joins the Devils at its main NHL training camp.
Middleton (a fourth round pick of the Toronto Maple Leafs in the 2016 NHL draft) will fly out to the Ricoh Coliseum in Toronto, ON for the Leafs' 2017 Rookie Tournament featuring prospects from the Leafs, Montreal Canadiens, and Ottawa Senators on Sep. 8-10 prior to Toronto's main camp, which is set for Sep. 15-17 at the Gale Centre Arena in Niagara Falls, ON.
Coskey will join Middleton at the Toronto Maple Leafs rookie tournament as a free agent. The 18 year old right wing from Zion, IL was 1 of just 42 American NCAA and Junior hockey players invited to the 2016 CCM/USA Hockey All American Prospects Game in Philadelphia last summer, and was among the top 200 on NHLcentralscouting.com throughout last year despite not hearing his name called at the NHL draft in June. Expect Coskey to be one of the Spirit scoring leaders this year.
Gilmour (a seventh round pick of the Detroit Red Wings in the 2017 NHL draft) will head north for the 2017 Detroit Red Wings Prospects Tournament Sep. 8-12 at Centre Ice Arena in Traverse City, MI prior to Detroit's main training camp on Sep. 15-18 which is also at Centre Ice Arena in Traverse City.
Crawford will join Gilmour up in Traverse City for the Red Wings Prospects Tournament in Traverse City. This will be the third straight NHL training camp invitation for the 20 year old puck-moving defenseman from Ajax, ON. Crawford was invited to the 2015 Ottawa Senators training camp two years ago, and joined Cormier last year after he was invited to the 2016 New Jersey Devils training camp.
Seven teams will compete in the 2017 Red Wings Prospects Tournament, including the Carolina Hurricanes, who will feature 2017 Spirit CHL Import top pick Martin Necas, a forward from Nove Mesto na Morave, Czech Republic who was drafted by the Hurricanes in the first round round (12 overall) in the 2017 NHL draft. Joining Carolina and Detroit in the tournament will be: the Chicago Blackhawks, Columbus Blue Jackets, Dallas Stars, Minnesota Wild, New York Rangers, and St. Louis Blues.
Former Spirit defenseman Filip Hronek (a second round pick of the Detroit Red Wings, 53 overall, in the 2016 NHL draft) and former Spirit forward Dylan Sadowy (a third round pick of the San Jose Sharks in the 2014 NHL draft, who was traded to the Detroit Red Wings) will join Gilmour and Crawford at the Red Wings training camp up in Traverse City.
Hronek and Sadowy helped the Grand Rapids Griffins win an AHL championship, taking home the 2017 Calder Cup last year.
The five players in NHL training camps will be out of the lineup when the Spirit host the Flint Firebirds for the third exhibition game at 7:05 pm Friday Sep. 15, at the Dow Event Center, and when they wrap up the exhibition season the following night Sep. 16, at the Dort Event Center for an away game against the Firebirds.