In a little over two days, the Rockford IceHogs, members of the American Hockey League and proud affiliate of the Chicago Blackhawks, will hit the ice to open the 2012-13 season. On Thursday, the team released their opening night roster.
The Hogs begin the ‘12-13 regular season on Saturday with a trip to the Allstate Arena for the first of back-to-back contests against the Chicago Wolves. The puck hits the ice at 7 p.m. on Saturday night.
Of the 26 players listed on the IceHogs roster, 81% have worn an IceHogs sweater in the past. The lineup features only five new faces, starting with veteran defenseman and 2008 Stanley Cup Champion Brett Lebda, along with fellow blueliners Adam Clendening and Klas Dahlbeck, and forwards Marcus Kruger and Brandon Saad.
Ten of Rockford's skaters donned a Blackhawks sweater during the 2011-12 campaign.
Center Martin St. Pierre returns to Rockford after skating with the IceHogs during the 2007-08 season. St. Pierre's 64 points ranked 10th in the AHL in scoring during 2011-12, and his 53 assists were third best in the league.
After appearing in all 82 games with the Blackhawks last season, defenseman Nick Leddy returns to Rockford, where he skated in 22 tilts in 2010-11.
The full roster is set at 26 skaters, including 15 forwards, nine defensemen and two goaltenders.
Listed below is the IceHogs Opening Day Roster:
Forwards (15): Kyle Beach, Brandon Bollig, Wade Brookbank, Rob Flick, Jimmy Hayes, Marcus Kruger, Peter LeBlanc, Jeremy Morin, Philippe Paradis, Brandon Pirri, Brandon Saad, Andrew Shaw, Ben Smith, Martin St. Pierre and Brandon Svendsen.
Defensemen (9): Adam Clendening, Klas Dahlbeck, Shawn Lalonde, Joe Lavin, Brett Lebda, Nick Leddy, Dylan Olsen, Ryan Stanton and Ben Youds.
Goaltenders (2): Carter Hutton and Alec Richards.
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