Duggan Chosen for University of Wisconsin Hall of Fame

Meghan Duggan, the newly hired Devils’ Manager of Player Development, will be entering the University of Wisconsin’s Athletic Hall of Fame. She will enter in the Contemporary category for 2021, Amanda Stein reports.

In her blog post, Stein listed Duggan’s collegiate accomplishments. During Duggan’s time with the Badgers, they won three NCAA championships – Stein notes that she was captain of the 2011 champs; she is second in assists (130) and third in total points (238) as well as third in plus/minus rating (+164) in Badgers’ history. In addition, Stein notes that she was the 2011 Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award winner – given to the top women’s player in the NCAA – in 2011, the year she captained the national champions.

Stein also notes her Olympic accomplishments: three medals (which includes the gold medal team that she captained at the 2018 Winter Olympics).

Congratulations to Meghan Duggan on this great accolade!

In other news around the NHL, Reuters reported five days ago that “(t)he Canadian government has approved a travel exemption for the National Hockey League on Sunday [June 6] that will allow teams to cross the Canada-U.S. border for the Stanley Cup playoffs without the mandatory 14-day quarantine.”

This will only affect the Vegas Golden Knights-Montreal Canadiens series as of now.

The statement put out by the Canadian government said that “[t]his decision was made in conjunction with the Public Health Agency of Canada, with the approval of provincial and municipal public health officials, including Ontario, Quebec, Manitoba and Alberta.” The provinces included in the decision were the ones with teams participating in the playoffs.

The statement continued that “[t]he NHL’s COVID Playoff Protocol will permit cross-border travel that is safeguarded by strict quarantining, a bubble, daily testing and a comprehensive protocol that will apply to all travelling NHL players and personnel.”

Teams will only be able to travel from country to country in private planes and, once in “Canada players will live in a modified bubble that will be limited to the team hotel and arena, and there will be no contact with the public.” In addition, “[p]layers will be tested daily as well as before they board planes and when they land.”

This was done so that the Canadiens, the eventual playoff winner of the North Division over the Winnipeg Jets, would be able to participate in a series with the eventual West Division winners without needed to relocate temporarily. This exemption will continue should the Canadiens reach the Stanley Cup Final.

The Vegas-Montreal third round series gets underway on Monday, June 14 in Las Vegas. The series will shift to Montreal for game three on Friday, June 18.

Riveters Win Championship; Devils Sign Goalie Cam Johnson

The Metropolitan Riveters are the champions of the NWHL. They defeated the Buffalo Beauts 1-0 yesterday at RWJ Barnabas Hockey House in Newark to win the Isobel Cup – their first in franchise history.

In front of a sellout crowd, according to Marisa Ingemi of ESPN.com, the Riveters got a goal from Alexa Gruschow and a shutout performance from goaltender Katie Fitzgerald (who was named MVP according to Ingemi). According to Dan Rice of NWHL.zone – the league’s official website – she made 28 saves. She was able to stare down Buffalo goalie Amanda Leveille in what was a classic goalie’s duel. The Beauts were trying for their second title, which would have made them the first NWHL team to repeat.

The Riveters won their first championship in the league’s third season of existence. The Boston Pride won the first year.

Ingemi said that in addition to the live sellout at the Hockey House, “the livestream broadcast of the game exceeded 45,000 live viewers.” The Riveters’ Miye D’Oench was quoted by Ingemi as saying “It was amazing – the crowd was bumping. We appreciate every single person who came. It was such a great atmosphere. This is what women’s hockey should be like.”

Coach Chad Wiseman was quoted by Ingemi as saying “I don’t know how to express how that feels. From the first season at the Aviator [a recreational sports complex on Long Island] with no dressing room throwing our stuff all around, and now we’re playing at an NHL facility.”

Ingemi said “for all the players have been through, from playing in a second-bit rink to winning the title with the support and backing of an NHL club, the New Jersey Devils, (winning the championship) symbolizes progress.”

Congratulations to the Metropolitan Riveters on their well-deserved Isobel Cup championship. Let’s hope their NHL brothers can do something similar later this spring.

In Devils related news, the team announced yesterday that they have signed goalie Cam Johnson to a one-year entry-level contract.

The contract kicks in in 2018-19. He was a college free agent (just like Keith Kinkaid – who was signed as an undrafted free agent out of college) “who just completed his senior season at the University of North Dakota” according to the Devils’ press release.

The press release said that he “will travel to Binghamton and sign an AHL amateur tryout contract with the club on Tuesday.”

The 23 year-old Johnson played 102 games at North Dakota, going 56-26-12 in his four seasons there. He had 12 shutouts and is North Dakota’s “all-time leader in career goals-against average (2.10), ranks second in career shutouts (12), fourth in wins (56) and career save percentage (.916).” In NCAA playoff/NCHC conference playoff games, he is a career 10-3.

The press release stated that his best season was 2015-16. That season, he had career highs in wins (24), shutouts (five), goals against average (1.66) and save percentage (.935) in 34 games played. That was also the year UND won the NCAA National Championship. Personally, he was named to the NCHC Second All-Star Team, NCAA West Second All-American Team and NCAA All-Tournament Team. The press release notes that he was named to the NCHC All-Academic Team all four of his college seasons.

The 6-foot, 1-inch, 200-pound native of Troy, Michigan played with the Fargo Force and Waterloo Black Hawks of the USHL for two seasons prior to moving to the University of North Dakota.