It was a memorable spring for several former Miamians, as ex-RedHawks won hockey championships in the top three North American pro leagues this playoff season.
Goalie Jeff Zatkoff will have his name etched on hockey’s most coveted trophy, the Stanley Cup, after a the backup’s Pittsburgh Penguins beat San Jose in a six-game title series that wrapped up on Sunday.
The RedHawks were guaranteed a Stanley Cup champion, as Tommy Wingels skated for the Sharks in all six games of that final.
Forward Trent Vogelhuber also skated a trophy, winning the Calder Cup with the AHL Cleveland-based Lake Erie Monsters, the Columbus Blue Jackets’ top affiliate.
Gary Steffes was an integral member of the ECHL Allen Americans, who won their second consecutive Kelly Cup.
Zatkoff picked up one of Pittsburgh’s 16 postseason wins, posting a .908 save percentage. He went 4-8 in the regular season with a 2.79 goals-against average and a save percentage of .917.
Zatkoff has 16 career wins in 1,940 regular-season minutes, and he has one shutout. He played three seasons for Miami in 2006-09.
Vogelhuber went 2-5-7 this playoff year after recording 11 goals and 16 assists in 70 games in the regular season. He has played parts of five seasons with Lake Erie, racking up 24 markers and 35 helpers for 59 points.
Steffes scored 13 goals in the playoffs for the second straight season and has 29 career playoff postseason tallies in 65 ECHL games. He went 22-23-45 in the regular season and has scored 84 times in the last three seasons with Allen.
Other season highlights…
NHL – Forward Reilly Smith made quite an impression in his first year with Florida, scoring a career-high 25 goals and notching four more in six postseason games. Smith has 150 career points and has missed just one game the past three seasons.
Defenseman Alec Martinez also set a career high, racking up 31 points including 10 goals for the Los Angeles Kings. Martinez is 39-69-108 in 337 career games.
Defenseman Dan Boyle became the first former RedHawks to reach 600 NHL points, as he went 10-24-34 this season for the New York Rangers. Boyle is Miami’s all-time leader in NHL games played (1,093), assists (442) and points (605), and he second to Brian Savage in goals with 163.
AHL – Forward Andy Miele set several personal milestones this season, eclipsing 100 goals, 200 assists and 300 points for his AHL career. Miele went 18-44-62 this season with Grand Rapids, giving him 106 goals, 205 assists and 311 career points. He has played 355 AHL games in five seasons, averaging 0.88 points per game.
Forward Pat Cannone established career highs in goals (20) and points (52) with Chicago this season. Cannone has scored 80 career goals in the AHL and surpassed the 200-point mark for his career, finishing this regular season with 203.
Forwards Riley Barber and Austin Czarnik may be on different teams now, but they both proved they can roll up the points in the pros. Barber scored 26 goals and added 29 assists for 55 points for Hershey in his first AHL action. Czarnik went 20-41-61, giving him 63 career points in 71 games for Providence including his three-game stint at the end of 2014-15.
Forward Carter Camper was a playoff stud, racking up six goals and 10 assists in 19 games as Barber’s teammate with Hershey. The Bears lost to Lake Erie in the Calder Cup final.
ECHL – In addition to his playoff scoring, Steffes reached 150 points for his ECHL career this regular season. He has 84 goals and 59 assists for 153 points in three seasons with Allen. Steffes has scored 150 goals and dished for 126 assists in six minor league seasons between the CHL, the ECHL and the AHL.
While Steffes led all former Miamians in the ECHL, forward Alex Wideman also had a strong showing, going 15-24-39 in 58 games with Evansville.
Below is a list of 2015-16 stats for Miamians playing in the pros around the world, and RedHawks’ pro stats can always be accessed at this link:
2015-16 STATS – FINAL REGULAR SEASON
|Reilly Smith||Florida Panthers||F||82||25||25||50||19||31|
|Alec Martinez||Los Angeles Kings||D||78||10||21||31||16||40|
|Dan Boyle||NY Rangers||D||74||10||14||24||0||30|
|Tommy Wingels||San Jose Sharks||F||68||7||11||18||-10||63||Chris Wideman||Ottawa Senators||D||64||6||7||13||4||34|
|Andy Greene||New Jersey Devils||D||82||4||9||13||7||26|
|Curtis McKenzie||Dallas Stars||F||3||0||0||0||-1||0|
|Jeff Zatkoff||Pittsburgh Penguins||14||728||4||7||2.79||.917||0|
|Andy Miele||Grand Rapids||F||75||18||44||62||18||77|
|Trent Vogelhuber||Lake Erie||F||70||11||16||27||13||65|
|Gary Steffes||San Jose||F||2||0||1||1||-1||2|
|Alden Hirschfeld||Grand Rapids||F||5||0||1||1||1||2|
|Chris Joyaux||St. John’s||D||8||0||1||1||-3||6|
|Will Weber||San Antonio||D||2||0||0||0||0||0|
|Connor Knapp||Lehigh Valley||2||113||1||0||5.31||.821||0|
|Will Weber||Fort Wayne||D||64||3||8||11||10||103|
|Justin Mercier||Val Gardena (Italy)$||F||39||20||24||44||0||72|
|Matt Tomassoni||Frankfurt (DEL-2)%||F||52||11||31||42||13||38|
|Dan Stewart||Fife (EIHL)+||D||59||14||20||34||0||75|
|Ryan Jones||Cologne (DEL)#||F||41||15||15||30||3||55|
|Mitch Ganzak||Belfast (EIHL)+||F||63||9||18||27||0||146|
|Cody Murphy||Vasteras (Sweden)@||F||52||9||13||22||11||16|
|Mike Glumac||Zagreb (KHL)&||F||58||8||3||11||-4||30|
|Chris Bergeron||Bowling Green||WCHA||39||23||11||5||.654|
|Reilly Smith||Florida Panthers||F||6||4||4||8||7||0|
|Tommy Wingels||San Jose Sharks||F||18||2||0||2||4||21|
|Dan Boyle||NY Rangers||D||4||0||1||1||0||0|
|Alec Martinez||Los Angeles Kings||D||1||0||0||0||0||0|
|Curtis McKenzie||Dallas Stars||F||1||0||0||0||0||5|
|Andy Miele||Grand Rapids||F||9||2||5||7||7||12|
|Trent Vogelhuber||Lake Erie||F||15||2||5||7||6||8|
|Will Weber||Fort Wayne||D||16||0||3||3||2||22|
|Justin Mercier||Val Gardena (Italy)$||F||5||3||7||10||2|
|Ryan Jones||Cologne (DEL)#||F||11||3||2||5||4|
|Matt Tomassoni||Frankfurt (DEL-2)%||F||4||0||0||0||-3||18|
Last updated: 6-4-2016
*-no longer with team
$-Val Gardena is in the Italian League Serie A, the top league in Italy.
%-Frankfurt is in the German Deutsche Eishockey Liga and plays in DEL2, the second highest league in Germany.
#-Cologne is in the German Deutsche Eishockey Liga (DEL), the top league in Germany.
@-Vasteras is in HockeyAllsvenskan, the second highest league in Sweden.
+-Fife and Belfast are in the Elite Ice Hockey League, the highest league in the United Kingdom.
&-Zagreb is in the Kontinental Hockey League, the top league in Russia, its territories and surrounding countries.
Miami’s own John Walton with the call of Joel Ward’s overtime winner in game seven that sent the Washington Capitals past the defending Stanley Cup Champion Boston Bruins. What a shame. Boston sucks.
Oh, and I know I need to give a little love to Miami’s “other” radio play-by-play man, Chris Kerber, who has been with the St. Louis Blues for 11 years. Chris, no offense intended, I just happened to grow up with John. I’ll grab some of your calls during the second round where Los Angeles Kings’ defenseman, and former Miami standout, Alec Martinez provides the opposition.
Go Caps, Blues and Kings!