USA Hockey Selects Backes, Stempniak for Worlds

Monday, 04.16.2007 / 11:13 AM CT / St Louis Blues - News
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USA Hockey Selects Backes, Stempniak for Worlds
ST. LOUIS - USA Hockey announced today that Blues forward Lee Stempniak and David Backes were named to the 2007 United States Men’s National Team for the IIHF Men’s World Championships to be held from April 27-May 13 in Moscow, Russia.

"(Stempniak) has had a tremendous year for St. Louis," said Mike Sullivan, head coach of the U.S. squad. "He's been a tremendous player for them all year long. He's deserving of this opportunity. This team was formed, it's been formed with the mindset of trying to go over there with the best group of players that will give us a chance to win a gold medal, and he certainly fits that bill."

Stempniak, 24, set career highs in all offensive categories this season in goals (27), assists (25) and points (52). He ranked first on the team with 27 goals and was second on the team with 52 points (27g, 25a). Stempniak was one of four Blues players to skate in all 82 games and played in his 100th career NHL game on Jan. 10 at New Jersey. He also played in the NHL’s YoungStars game this past season in Dallas. The West Seneca, New York native was originally drafted by the Blues in the fifth round, 148th overall in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft.

"He's been a pretty darn good NHL player," said Brian Burke, GM for Team USA. "I think with Lee, he slipped under the radar. St. Louis made a great pickup to get him and he's turned into a quality NHL player. We're excited to have him."

Backes, 22, played in 49 games for the Blues this season, recording 23 points (10g, 13a) along with 37 penalty minutes. He made his NHL debut, while recording an assist on Dec. 19 at Pittsburgh. The Minneapolis, Minnesota native scored his first NHL goal on Dec. 21 vs. Los Angeles. He finished the season ranking second on the Blues with 92 hits. He was originally St. Louis’ second round selection, 62nd overall, in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft.

"(Backes) was a no-brainer for us," Burke said. "This is a guy that every single manager that saw him play this year felt that he had made a dramatic step forward as a player."

Team USA begins play in the 2007 IIHF World Championship on Friday, April 27 at 8:15 a.m. (St. Louis time) against Austria. The United States will play a pre-tournament game against Sweden on Wednesday, April 25, at the Globe Arena in Stockholm. Opening faceoff is set for 12 p.m. (St. Louis time).

Blues Head Coach Andy Murray will be behind the bench for Team Canada and defensemen Eric Brewer, Barret Jackman along with forward Jamal Mayers will represent Canada at the tournament.

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  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 ANA 76 47 22 7 222 213 101
2 NSH 75 46 21 8 214 180 100
3 STL 74 46 21 7 226 182 99
4 CHI 73 44 23 6 207 167 94
5 MIN 74 42 25 7 211 183 91
6 VAN 74 43 27 4 212 199 90
7 WPG 75 39 24 12 212 197 90
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2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
V. Tarasenko 74 35 35 29 70
A. Steen 72 24 38 6 62
J. Schwartz 67 24 31 16 55
D. Backes 73 25 29 7 54
T. Oshie 66 19 32 13 51
P. Stastny 66 14 29 6 43
A. Pietrangelo 74 6 35 -2 41
K. Shattenkirk 49 8 32 18 40
J. Lehtera 67 11 28 19 39
P. Berglund 69 8 12 -6 20
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
B. Elliott 24 12 3 .921 2.16
J. Allen 19 6 4 .906 2.45

 
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