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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - USA Hockey announced today it will stage the first-ever All-American Prospects Game on Sept. 29, 2012, at First Niagara Center in Buffalo, New York.
The All-American Prospects Game will include 40 of the top American-born prospects eligible for the 2013 National Hockey League Entry Draft.
"It's a concept we've been talking about for a couple of years and we're excited to bring it to life in partnership with the Buffalo Sabres," said Dave Ogrean, executive director of USA Hockey. "The talent level on the First Niagara Center ice on Sept. 29 will be exceptional. We view this game as an opportunity to gain additional exposure for hockey and help influence growth of the sport through showcasing the future stars of the game."
"We're extremely pleased to have this inaugural event come to Buffalo," said Ted Black, president of the Buffalo Sabres. "We've had a tremendous working relationship with USA Hockey and I know our fans will embrace All-American Prospects Game."
USA Hockey expects to announce the players selected to compete in the game in late June or early July.
"Players will come from junior hockey and college hockey, as well as the high school and prep school ranks," said Jim Johannson, assistant executive director of hockey operations for USA Hockey. "We'll be in contact with NHL Central Scouting as we build the final list of players invited to compete in this inaugural event."
Johannson noted more information will be forthcoming, including how the teams will be divided and who will coach the teams.
Ticket information is expected to be released in May.
NOTES: Of the first 40 Americans selected in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, 17 came from the United States Hockey League; seven were from U.S. high/prep schools; six played U.S. college hockey; six came from the Ontario Hockey League; four played in the Western Hockey League; and one competed in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League ... Under the current structure, players born between Jan. 1, 1993 and Sept. 14, 1995, will be eligible to be selected in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft.