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Where are they now?
Saturday, 10 July 2004
Niklas Sundblad
The early 1990s a huge onslaught of European hockey players move to the NHL. Though Swedes were no strangers to the NHL, they joined the Russians, Czechs, Finns and other Eastern European players. In the first round of the 1992 entry draft, the Calgary Flames selected a Swedish right winger Niklas Sundblad as the #19 pick overall. Sundblad was a highly regarded prospect and began playing with the St John Flames in 1993. After three seasons in the AHL, he got his chance to play in the NHL with the Flames. He only played 2 games in the 1995-96 season and did not record any points. The next seaon he moved back to Europe and played for TPS Turku in the Finnish league, followed by seasons in the Swedish and German leagues. He played the 2003-04 season with Malmo IF of the Swedish Elite League.

Posted by hplayerz at 11:21 AM EDT
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Brent Bilodeau
Brent Bilodeau was drafted in the first round, 17th overall in 1992. The Montreal Canadiens were looking for a big tough defenseman and this 6"4' specimen fit the bill. Bilodeau was drafted from the Seattle Thunderbirds of the WHL and had racked up his fair share of penalty minutes. He moved from junior to professional hockey in 1993-94, playing the next two seasons with the Fredicton Canadiens. He did not get a chance to move up to the big club in Montreal and from that point began his journey through the minor leagues. He played for numerous teams in the AHL, IHL, WCHL and ECHL. He spent the last three seasons with the Johnstown Chiefs of the East Coast Hockey League and has yet to play a game in the NHL.

Posted by hplayerz at 11:12 AM EDT
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Jason Muzzati
Jason Muzzati was a standout goalie with the Michigan State University Spartans of the NCAA. He was drafted in the first round, #21 overall of the 1988 NHL entry draft by the Calgary Flames. Muzzati played 3 years of NCAA hockey and then moved to the minors for some seasoning and also played a year with the Canadian National Team. He got is break in 1993-94 with the Flames, playing one game. He would only play a total of two games with the Flames before being claimed on waivers by the Hartford Whalers (since known as the Carolina Hurricanes). He spent two seasons in Hartford followed by short stints with the New York Rangers and San Jose Sharks.

After hanging around in the North American minor league system for almost a decade, Muzzati moved his trade to Europe in 1998-99. He played the 2003-04 season with Milan in the Italian league.

Posted by hplayerz at 10:57 AM EDT
Updated: Saturday, 10 July 2004 11:32 AM EDT
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Steve Bancroft
The year was 1989 and the Toronto Maple Leafs had three picks in the first round of the NHL amateur entry draft. They selected all three players from an OHL street about 2 hours east of Toronto, the Belleville Bulls. Aside from all the jokes about only having a "limited" travel budget for their scouts, the Leafs were obviously big fans of Scot Thornton, Rob Pearson and Steve Bancroft. Thornton has had a good NHL career, Pearson had a few productive years but Bancroft has gotten lost in the subsequent years.

Steve Bancroft was a big defenseman who played three years of OHL hockey with the Bulls. He then went on to play with various teams in the AHL and IHL. He would never play a game with the Maple Leafs, eventually landing in the NHL for a single game stint with the Chicago Blackhawks in 1991-92. His journey from there took him through numerous hockey organizations playing in the AHL and IHL. He got another shot at the NHL in 2001-02 with the San Jose Sharks, playing 5 games and tallying up 1 assist. After that he went back to the AHL, playing the 2003-04 season with Ottawa's minor league affiliate, the Binghamton Senators.

Posted by hplayerz at 10:48 AM EDT
Updated: Saturday, 10 July 2004 11:28 AM EDT
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Sunday, 4 July 2004
Nick Stajduhar
In the first round of the 1993 amatuer entry draft, the Edmonton Oilers hockey club selected a big 6'3" defenseman 16th overall from the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League. Nick Stajduhar was an offensive defenseman who put up 86 points in 52 games during his final year of junior. Nick's professional career saw him playing with the Cape Breton Oilers of the AHL and the Canadian National Team. His NHL stint was limited to 2 games with the Edmonton Oilers and in 1996 he began drifting from one minor league team to the next. He played for several teams in the ECHL, AHL, UHL, CHL, WCHL and IHL; finishing his pro-career in 2000-01 with the Houston Aeros of the IHL.

Posted by hplayerz at 10:53 AM EDT
Updated: Saturday, 10 July 2004 11:33 AM EDT
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Friday, 2 July 2004
David Cooper
From 1990-93, a highly touted Western Hockey League defenseman was playing his junior hockey for the Medicine Hat Tigers. David Cooper was a big, mobile, puck carrying defenseman who could score and in Alberta, comparisons were already being made between him and some other great defenseman who had played for the Oilers. But during his draft year of 1992, he fell to the 11th pick in the first round and was taken by the Buffalo Sabres. Cooper never played an NHL game for the Sabres but instead spent the next few years with the Rochester Americans of the AHL.

In 1996 he signed with the St John's Maple Leafs and had a couple of very short stints totaling 30 games with the big club in Toronto. He began playing in Europe in 2001 and even spent a year playing in Russia. His last known stop was this season, playing for the Iserlohn Roosters in Germany.

Posted by hplayerz at 10:19 AM EDT
Updated: Saturday, 10 July 2004 11:24 AM EDT
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Thursday, 1 July 2004
Scott Scissons
Scott Scissons was a stand-out center with the Saskatoon Blades of the Western Hockey League (WHL). Touted as an excellent two way player, he was drafted in the 1st round, 6th overall by the New York Islanders in 1990. Scissons only managed two career games with the New York Islanders and spent the majority of his short pro-hockey career in the minor leagues. He had a couple of stints with teams in the AHL and IHL, before retiring in 1994-95.

Posted by hplayerz at 11:32 PM EDT
Updated: Saturday, 10 July 2004 11:03 AM EDT
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Ryan Sittler
In the 1992 NHL entry draft, the Philadelphia Flyers took the son of former hockey great Darryl Sittler as their first round pick, 7th overall. Ryan Sittler was a big left-winger on his way to the University of Michigan and the Philadelphia Flyers hoped, great things in the NHL. But Sittler wasn't able to follow in his old man's footsteps, never having played a game in the National Hockey League.

After Michigan, he went back and forth between the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League and a bunch of teams in the East Coast Hockey League. The Flyers seem to have given up on him by 1995 when Sittler had a short stint with the St John's Maple Leafs, minor league affiliate of the team (Toronto Maple Leafs) his father is best known to have played for. Ryan Sittler's professional hockey career seems to have ended in 1998-99 with the Charlotte Checkers of the ECHL.

Posted by hplayerz at 1:16 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, 2 March 2005 9:18 AM EST
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Peter Ing
I remember back in 1990-91 when the Toronto Maple Leafs were a pretty crappy team. But one player I really liked was a young goalie Peter Ing, who had just taken over for Allan Bester. Ing played over 50 games for the Leafs in the 1990-91 season. He was traded just before the 1991-92 season from with Vincent Damphousse, Luke Richardson, Scott Thornton, future considerations and cash to the Edmonton Oilers for Glenn Anderson, Craig Berube and Grant Fuhr (G).

After the trade to Edmonton, Ing only played 12 NHL games for the Oilers, spending the next 2-3 seasons in the minors. In 1994 he got a shot with the Detroit Red Wings but only played 3 games before heading back to the minors. His last professional game seems to have been during the 1995-96 season with the Cincinnati Cyclones of the IHL.

Posted by hplayerz at 1:10 PM EDT
Updated: Saturday, 10 July 2004 11:00 AM EDT
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Welcome to the new site
Welcome to the "Where are they now" web site. I like many long time hockey fans have wondered what ever happened to hockey players I followed in the past. Some of these were players who got a taste of the NHL, other pretty much played in the minor leagues and some I knew of because of the hockey cards I used to collect. With this site I am going to try and go back to look at some players that stick in my mind and see what they are upto now.

Posted by hplayerz at 12:58 PM EDT
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