20 ECHL Players Compete In Deutschland Cup

PRINCETON, N.J. – The ECHL was represented by 20 players, including Timo Helbling and Raffaele Sannitz who helped Switzerland capture the gold medal, in the Deutschland Cup played Nov. 8-11 in Hannover, Germany.

Team USA had eight ECHL players including Curry, who started and made 34 saves in a 3-2 shootout loss in the championship game. Curry is 4-1-0 with a 2.81 goals-against average and a .905 save percentage in six games for Las Vegas.

Daisuke Obara and John Tripp tied for third with two goals and for seventh with three points while Las Vegas rookie goaltender John Curry (pictured) finished third with a .933 save percentage. Rene Vydareny tied for third with a plus-minus rating of +4 while Andy Hedlund and Steve Saviano tied for sixth at +3. Ratislav Stana, Obara and Curry were each named best player of the game for their teams during the tournament.

In addition to Curry, the ECHL was represented on the United States roster by goaltender Adam Hauser, defensemen Andrew Canzanello and Hedlund and forwards Dan Hacker, Dwight Helminen, David Lundbohm and Saviano.

Japan had former ECHL defensemen Kengo Ito and Aaron Keller and forwards Obara and Takahito Suzuki.

Slovakia had former ECHL goaltender Stana, defenseman Vydareny and forward Frantisek Skladany while Germany had defenseman Chris Schmidt and Tripp and Denmark had goaltender Peter Hirsh.

ECHL Players in 2008 Deutschland Cup

Denmark – Peter Hirsh (Bakersfield, 2003-04)

Germany – Chris Schmidt (Mississippi, 1996-99) and John Tripp (Roanoke, 1997-98; Johnstown, 1998-2000 and Pensacola, 2000-02)

Japan – Kengo Ito (Charlotte, 2003-04), Aaron Keller (Peoria, 1996-97), Daisuke Obara (Peoria, Charlotte and Augusta, 2003-04) and Takahito Suzuki (Charlotte, 2002-03)

Slovakia – Ratislav Stana (Richmond, 2000-02), Frantisek Skladany (San Diego, 2005-06) and Rene Vydareny (Columbia, 2001-02)

Switzerland – Timo Helbling (Toledo, 2002-03) and Raffaele Sannitz (Dayton, 2004-05)

United States – Andrew Canzanello (San Diego, 2004-05), John Curry (Las Vegas, 2007-08), Dan Hacker (Idaho, 2005-06), Adam Hauser (Jackson, 2002-03 and Reading, 2003-04), Andy Hedlund (Trenton, 2001-03), Dwight Helminen (Charlotte, 2004-05), David Lundbohm (Florida, 2004-05) and Steve Saviano (Florida, 2004-06)

Premier ‘AA’ Hockey League Fast Facts
• Affiliations with 26 of the 30 teams in the National Hockey League, marking the 11th consecutive season that the league has had affiliations with at least 20 teams in the NHL.
333 former ECHL players have played in NHL.
• There were 69 former ECHL players on NHL opening-day rosters and there have been 188 former ECHL players who have played their first game in the NHL in the past six seasons.
• Twenty-six former ECHL players made their NHL debut in 2006-07, including two who played in both the ECHL and the NHL as goaltender Yutaka Fukufuji played for Reading and Los Angeles while defenseman Bryan Young skated for Stockton and Edmonton. Dave McKee played for Augusta and dressed for five games as the backup goaltender for Stanley Cup champion Anaheim.
• Four former ECHL players have made their NHL debut this season: former Johnstown Chiefs and Fresno Falcons goaltender Dmitri Patzold (San Jose on Oct. 7), former San Diego goaltender Tyler Weiman (Colorado on Oct. 4), former Charlotte right wing Craig Weller (Phoenix on Oct. 4) and former Phoenix RoadRunners center Daniel Winnik (Phoenix Coyotes on Oct. 4).
• Record 51 former ECHL players played their first NHL game in 2005-06.
• ECHL has been represented on last seven Stanley Cup champions.
• 14 Former ECHL coaches on NHL staffs.
• ECHL has been represented on last 18 Calder Cup champions.
• ECHL has affiliations with 26 of the 29 teams in the American Hockey League and for the past 18 years there has been an ECHL player on the Calder Cup Champion.
• The Stockton Thunder and the City of Stockton will host the Chase Chevrolet ECHL All-Star Game presented by Jackson Rancheria and Bud Light at Stockton Arena on Jan. 23, 2008 and the Chase Chevrolet ECHL All-Star Skills Competition presented by Jackson Rancheria and Bud Light on Jan. 22, 2008.
• In the last five seasons the ECHL has had more call-ups to the AHL than all other professional leagues combined with over 2,000 call-ups involving more than 1,000 players since 2002-03.
ECHL and its member teams contributed nearly $3 million for charity and relief funds in 2006-07.
• Further information on the ECHL is available from its website at ECHL.com.