By: Ken Oda, minotauroshockey.com
The Minotauros now know when they are going to play this season, now they look to answer who. The NAHL released the schedule for the 2014-2015 season on Friday (see below); and tomorrow the league will hold it’s annual draft starting at 1:00 p.m. Central Time. The Tauros will select sixth overall in each of the first 13 rounds of the draft.
The season opens for the Tauros as usual with the NAHL Showcase in Blaine, MN; September 17th through the 20th with four games against teams from other divisions. Then on September 26th the Minotauros will open a renovated Maysa Arena by hosting the rival Austin Bruins. The home opener against Austin will be the first Tauros game in the Maysa since the final game of the playoffs which saw the Tauros and Bruins play the longest game in the NAHL’s modern era. The Tauros lost that game when the Bruins scored 16:57 into the third overtime.
After hosting the Bruins, the Minotauros head on the road for four games in Alaska; the first pair against the Kenai River Brown Bears followed by a pair in Fairbanks against the defending Robertson Cup champion Ice Dogs. After returning from the last frontier the Tauros settle into a schedule that sees mostly divisional opponents. There are no changes to the Central Division this season, it remains a five team unit with Aberdeen, Austin, Bismarck, Brookings, and of course the Tauros.
Other than the Alaska teams, the Tauros will face two other teams from outside of the Central Division (excluding the Showcase). The Tauros play a home and home set with both the Minnesota Magicians and Minnesota Wilderness. The Wilderness come to Minot on November 14th and 15th, and the Magicians on January 23rd and 24th.
Bismarck makes their first of six appearances at the Maysa on November 22nd this year. Their last trip to the Maysa (March 17th) kicks off what will be a difficult run which sees the Tauros play six games over the season’s final 12 days. That run finishes with a pair of games in Bismarck on March 27th and 28th.
As for the NAHL Draft, the Tauros select sixth overall. With 17 players remaining on the protected list either from last season’s roster or from signed tenders, the Tauros will pick in each of the first 13 rounds of the draft. Head Coach/GM Marty Murray has been active on draft day in the past, unafraid to make trades for more picks or players, so do not be shocked if the Tauros make moves tomorrows. For draft picks and all other Tauros news, be sure to follow us on twitter and to check back to minotauroshockey.com. The NAHL will also be streaming the draft live on fasthockey.com for those who wish to follow along with every pick.
2014-15 Minotauros Schedule