Brief demotion does the trick for Wild’s Greenway
Rather than focus exclusively on the Minnesota Wild’s top prospects, we’re taking a look at the best players from across the State of Hockey every week.
From college to the pros, check out our recap of all the week’s events in Minnesota hockey, as we check in with college players, Wild prospects and State of Hockey alums.
Let’s take a look at our three stars of the week in the latest edition of the State of Hockey Tracker.
Jordan Greenway, F, Minnesota Wild/Iowa Wild (NHL/AHL)
Greenway spent a few games down in Iowa after struggling out the gate in his first full NHL campaign. After posting his first pro hat trick and four total points in two games, it was right back to Minnesota. The 21-year-old picked up an assist Friday in Iowa's 6-5 win over the Colorado Eagles, then scored three goals in a 6-1 rout the following night. That was enough for the brass back in Minnesota. Sent down following the Wild's 4-1 win over the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday, Greenway was back in the lineup by Monday night. It took him less than eight minutes to muscle a rebound past Vancouver Canucks goalie Jacob Markstrom for his first regular-season NHL goal.
Sam Hentges, F, St. Cloud State (NCHC)
The NCHC's Rookie of the Week, Hentges powered St. Cloud State to a 7-0 win over Boston College on Thursday with his first career hat trick. The New Brighton, Minn., native opened the scoring six minutes into the first period, then stretched the Huskies' lead to 4-0 in the second period. He was back at it in the third, pushing SCSU's lead to 6-0. The Wild's seventh-round pick earlier this year, Hentges has jumped straight from the USHL to a top-six role with the Huskies, where he's currently playing left wing on SCSU's top line with center Blake Lizotte and right wing Patrick Newell.
Luke Kunin, F, Iowa Wild (AHL)
It looks like Kunin is finally getting back up to speed after recovering from ACL surgery. He scored twice in Iowa's 6-5 overtime win over Colorado on Friday, getting on the board midway through the first period to put the Wild up 2-1. He forced overtime with less than seven minutes to play in the third period, hammering home a rebound with Greenway camped out in front of the net. He was back at it Saturday, assisting on Greenway's first two goals. The 15th overall pick in 2016, Kunin has appeared in just 19 NHL games since leaving the University of Wisconsin following his sophomore season, but should find his way back to Minnesota soon.
AROUND THE RINK
-- The Minnesota Whitecaps are off and running in their inaugural NWHL season. The Whitecaps improved to 6-0 over the weekend with back-to-back home wins over the Buffalo Beauts. Meanwhile, the Whitecaps have three of the league's top-five scorers. Elk River, Minn. native Jonna Curtis leads the league with nine points, while Minnesota Duluth alum Katie McGovern ranks second with eight and Gophers alum Kate Schipper is tied for third with seven.
-- Gophers alum Justin Kloos tied his AHL career high with three points in the Iowa Wild's win over the Eagles on Friday, scoring the game-winner in overtime.
-- Minnesota's third-round pick last year, freshman forward Jack McBain finally made his Boston College on Oct. 25 after missing time with an illness.
-- Minnesota Duluth forward Nick Swaney, the Wild's seventh-round pick in 2017, registered his first shorthanded goal Friday in a win over Notre Dame.
-- East Grand Forks, Minn.'s Colton Poolman powered North Dakota to a 3-1 win over Minnesota in Paradise, Nevada on Saturday, scoring two goals. A junior, Poolman should be a popular undrafted free agent next year after attending the Vancouver Canucks' development camp over the summer.
-- Providence forward Brandon Duhaime, the Wild's fourth-round pick in 2016, scored twice for his first career multi-goal game in the Friars' 5-0 win over Boston University on Friday.