January 22, 2013 - 2:38am
BY MICHAEL LAURILA
The NHL is back — four words that all hockey fans have been waiting to hear all winter. And with the return of “the show,” comes the return of the Michigan hockey Alumni of the Week blog.
Michigan has a storied history of producing NHL players, and we’ll be keeping track of a couple of former players each week who finished with notable performances.
The first player to start this young NHL season by coming in hot is 2007 graduate, forward Andrew Cogliano, who plays for the Ducks. Anaheim beat the Canucks 7-3 on Saturday, and Cogliano contributed two assists in just 16 minutes and 23 seconds of playing time. In just his second season with the Ducks after spending four years with the Oilers, the third-line forward has proven his worth in the NHL.
Continuing with the class of 2007, defenseman Jack Johnson of the Columbus Blue Jackets found himself in the thick of things during the Blue Jackets 3-2 shootout victory over the Predators on Saturday.
Johnson, who was traded to the Blue Jackets from the Los Angeles Kings last season, logged just under 26 minutes on the ice, but failed to tally a point. He was called upon to take one of the shootout shots and failed to sneak one by Predator goalie Pekka Rinne. Despite Columbus’ last-place standing from 2012, Johnson will likely be one of their best defenseman.
Bringing up the list for this week, is 2005 graduate David Moss. The Phoenix Coyote forward tallied his first goal of the season on three shots on goal during the Coyotes’ 6-4 loss against the Blackhawks on Sunday. Though Phoenix has lost its first two games of this young season, Moss, who’s playing his inaugural season with the Coyotes after spending his entire career with the Calgary Flames, looks to be a solid offensive addition in Phoenix.
This list might be very short, but there are many more former Michigan hockey players out there in the league. Each week, we’ll try to highlight different players, especially the alums who continue to produce at high levels.