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Prospects experience cherry festival

Monday, 07.9.2012 / 10:40 PM ET / News
By Rick Bowness  - Public Relations Coordinator
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Prospects experience cherry festival
Forwards Julien Cayer and Andrej Nestrasil are joined by 39 other Red Wings' prospects at the National Cherry Festival in Traverse City on Monday night. (Photo by Rick Bowness/Detroit Red Wings)

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. – After three days of grueling on-and-off ice training sessions, Red Wings development camp participants were able to enjoy an evening away from Centre Ice Arena on Monday as they made a special appearance at the popular National Cherry Festival. All 41 players attending this month’s camp were on hand for the proceedings, signing autographs and mingling with event patrons, including nine-year-old hockey fanatic Joey Marshall.

“It was neat to meet all of the players,” said Marshall, a Grandville, Mich., minor hockey defenseman on vacation with his parents. “I got all of their autographs. They were very nice.”

Traverse City has played host to the National Cherry Festival every summer since 1926, coincidentally the same year Detroit played its first NHL game. A celebration of cherries, tourism and community involvement, the festival attracts over 500,000 visitors annually and is a source of tremendous pride for the citizens of Grand Traverse County.

“It was really great of the players to come out and show their support for the festival,” said longtime Traverse City resident and Wings’ fan Kyle Douglas. “Everyone loves the team up here and getting to see them in person is a real thrill for us.”

For their part, the Wings’ prospects have nothing but fantastic things to say about their camp’s host city.

“I’ve actually been blown away by this town,” said goalie Jake Paterson, a Toronto native. “It’s a really nice spot. Our hotel is right on the beach and it’s just gorgeous up here, I can’t say enough good things about it.”

While Paterson has spent quite a bit of time in Michigan as a member of the OHL’s Saginaw Spirit, fellow prospect Teemu Pulkkinen is making his first visit to the Great Lakes State this week.

“It’s been nice,” the Finnish-born forward said. “I like it here. The weather has been good and the people are very nice.”

Participating in his second development camp, Slovakia native Tomas Jurco echoes his fellow European’s sentiments.

“It’s been lots of fun,” Jurco said. “We’ve got lots of stuff do here after we’re done training and practicing. It’s a beautiful city.”

Detroit’s prospects will square off in an exhibition contest on Tuesday night at Centre Ice Arena, with Team Lidstrom and Team Zetterberg set to go head-to-head beginning at 7 p.m. Tuesday’s game will be preceded by a special tribute to Bryan Rufenach, a former Wings’ draft pick and Toledo Walleye/Grand Rapids Griffins defenseman who tragically passed away earlier this year. More information on Wings development camp can be obtained by clicking HERE.

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EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 248 187 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 214 184 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 259 206 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 237 199 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 245 224 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 231 211 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 232 208 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 217 204 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 209 201 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 198 213 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 227 248 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 212 223 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 176 209 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 183 219 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 206 257 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 153 269 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
H. Zetterberg 77 17 49 -6 66
P. Datsyuk 63 26 39 12 65
T. Tatar 82 29 27 6 56
G. Nyquist 82 27 27 -11 54
J. Abdelkader 71 23 21 3 44
N. Kronwall 80 9 35 -4 44
R. Sheahan 79 13 23 -3 36
D. Helm 75 15 18 7 33
D. DeKeyser 80 2 29 11 31
S. Weiss 52 9 16 -2 25
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Howard 23 13 11 .910 2.44
P. Mrazek 16 9 2 .918 2.38

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