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2004-05 AHL All-Star Teams announced

April 7, 2005 - American Hockey League (AHL) News Release

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … The American Hockey League announced today the 2004-05 AHL First and Second All-Star Teams, as voted by AHL players and media in each of the league’s 28 member cities.

2004-05 AHL First All-Star Team
Goaltender -- Ryan Miller, Rochester Americans (59gp, 39-15-4, 2.35, .925, 8so)
Defenseman -- Niklas Kronwall, Grand Rapids Griffins (73gp, 12+38=50pts., +5)
Defenseman -- Travis Roche, Chicago Wolves (72gp, 12+37=49pts., +24)
Left Wing -- Simon Gamache, Milwaukee Admirals (74gp, 27+55=82pts., +13)
Center -- Jason Spezza, Binghamton Senators (75gp, 29+77=106pts., +11)
Right Wing -- Chuck Kobasew, Lowell Lock Monsters (73gp, 37+34=71pts., +34)

2004-05 AHL Second All-Star Team
Goaltender -- Kari Lehtonen, Chicago Wolves (54gp, 36-16-2, 2.34, .927, 4so)
Defenseman -- Dan Hamhuis, Milwaukee Admirals (71gp, 12+38=50pts., +12)
Defenseman -- Brian Pothier, Binghamton Senators (72gp, 12+33=45pts., +8)
Left Wing -- Andy Hilbert, Providence Bruins (74gp, 37+41=78pts., +15)
Center -- Mike Cammalleri, Manchester Monarchs (73gp, 43+59=102pts., +22)
Right Wing -- J.P. Vigier, Chicago Wolves (72gp, 28+39=67pts., +25)

Each All-Star Team member will receive a custom designed crystal award in recognition of his selection to the 2004-05 AHL First and Second All-Star Teams.

2004-05 AHL First All-Star Team

Ryan Miller, Goaltender (Rochester Americans): Ryan Miller (39-15-4, 2.35, .925) has shined as the last line of defense for league-leading Rochester in 2004-05, pacing the AHL with 39 victories and tying for the lead with eight shutouts while ranking second in saves (1,685) and minutes played (3,495). The third-year pro from East Lansing, Mich., participated in the AHL All-Star Classic in both 2004 and 2005, and is trying to become the first 40-game winner in the AHL since Gerry Cheevers in 1964-65. Miller, 24, was a 1999 draft pick by Buffalo and won the Hobey Baker Award at Michigan State in 2001.

Niklas Kronwall, Defenseman (Grand Rapids Griffins): A first-round selection by Detroit in the 2001 NHL Entry Draft, Niklas Kronwall is tied for the league lead in scoring among defensemen with 50 points (12 goals, 38 assists) in 73 games with Grand Rapids. Coming off an injury-shortened 2003-04 season, the 24-year-old native of Stockholm, Sweden, is also the team leader in assists and points and one of three Griffins players to skate in every game this year. Kronwall was voted to the PlanetUSA starting lineup at the 2005 Dodge AHL All-Star Classic.

Travis Roche, Defenseman (Chicago Wolves): In his fourth season in the AHL, Travis Roche earns his first All-Star Team berth in 2004-05 with 12 goals, 37 assists and a plus-24 rating in 72 games for Chicago. A native of Grand Cache, Alta., Roche won the AHL’s Yanick Dupre Award as the league’s Man of the Year as a rookie in 2002, captured a Calder Cup championship with Houston in 2003 and skated in his first AHL All-Star Classic in 2005. Roche, 26, was an All-American and won the 2000 NCAA championship at the University of North Dakota.

Simon Gamache, Left Wing (Milwaukee Admirals): After finishing second in the AHL in playoff scoring for the Calder Cup champion Admirals last spring, Simon Gamache has set career highs with 55 assists and 82 points in 74 games with Milwaukee in 2004-05. A 24-year-old native of Thetford Mines, Que., Gamache is a former Canadian Hockey League Player of the Year and scoring champion (2001), and currently sits third in the AHL’s scoring race. The Admirals are 33-8-2-3 this season when Gamache, who participated in the 2005 Dodge AHL All-Star Classic, records a point.

Jason Spezza, Center (Binghamton Senators): Having the most productive offensive season by an AHL player since 1996, Jason Spezza leads the league with 77 assists and 106 points in 75 games for Binghamton. The 21-year-old Spezza, who played in his second career AHL All-Star Classic in 2005, is currently on a 15-game scoring streak, has recorded 32 multiple-point performances and has twice been named the CCM Vector/AHL Player of the Week. A native of Mississauga, Ont., Spezza was the second overall pick in the 2001 NHL Entry Draft by Ottawa.

Chuck Kobasew, Right Wing (Lowell Lock Monsters): After reaching the Stanley Cup Final with the Calgary Flames in 2004, Chuck Kobasew has joined Eric Staal and Colin Forbes in Lowell to form one of the top lines in the AHL this season. The 14th overall pick in the 2001 NHL Entry Draft, Kobasew, 22, is tied for second in the league with 37 goals to go with 34 assists for 71 points in 73 games, and leads the AHL with his plus-34 rating and 11 game-winning goals. A native of Osoyoos, B.C., Kobasew represented the Lock Monsters at the 2005 Dodge AHL All-Star Classic.

2004-05 AHL Second All-Star Team

Kari Lehtonen, Goaltender (Chicago Wolves): In his second AHL season, much-heralded goalie Kari Lehtonen has led Chicago to the top spot in the West Division with a 36-16-2 record in 54 appearances. The second overall pick in the 2002 NHL Entry Draft, Lehtonen ranks second in the AHL in wins, third in saves (1,596) and fifth in minutes played (3,199), and was voted the starting goaltender for PlanetUSA at the 2005 AHL All-Star Classic. Lehtonen, a 21-year-old native of Helsinki, Finland, made his NHL debut with Atlanta late last year, winning each of his four starts.

Dan Hamhuis, Defenseman (Milwaukee Admirals): A first-round pick by Nashville in the 2001 draft, Dan Hamhuis has helped anchor a standout Milwaukee defense corps this season, registering 12 goals and 38 assists for 50 points in 71 games, good for a tie for the AHL’s scoring lead among blueliners. The native of Smithers, B.C., took part in the 2005 Dodge AHL All-Star Classic after playing 80 NHL games and skating in the 2004 NHL YoungStars game with the Predators last season. Hamhuis, 22, was named the Canadian Major Junior Defenseman of the Year in 2001-02.

Brian Pothier, Defenseman (Binghamton Senators): The only two-time honoree on this year’s AHL All-Star Teams, Brian Pothier earns his second career Second Team All-Star nod (2003) with 12 goals and 33 assists for 45 points in 72 games for Binghamton this season. Pothier, a fifth-year pro from New Bedford, Mass., ranks first among AHL defensemen with 11 power-play goals this season, and represented the Senators at the 2005 Dodge AHL All-Star Classic. The former All-American at RPI has appeared in 105 career NHL contests with Ottawa and Atlanta.

Andy Hilbert, Left Wing (Providence Bruins): After an injury-plagued 2003-04 season, Andy Hilbert has rebounded to establish career highs with 37 goals, 41 assists and 78 points in 74 games with Providence this year, placing sixth in the AHL scoring race. The 24-year-old native of Howell, Mich., Boston’s second-round choice in the 2000 draft, played in his third career AHL All-Star Classic this winter, and on Feb. 4 became the all-time leading scorer in P-Bruins franchise history. Hilbert has totaled 101 goals and 108 assists for 209 points in 229 career AHL contests with Providence.

Mike Cammalleri, Center (Manchester Monarchs): One of the top scorers in the AHL all season long, third-year pro Mike Cammalleri leads the league with 43 goals and ranks second with 102 points on the year. A second-round pick by Los Angeles in the 2001 NHL Entry Draft, Cammalleri has registered a point in 62 of his 73 games played, recording three separate scoring streaks of 10 games or more. The 22-year-old native of Richmond Hill, Ont., also owns a plus-22 rating for the season and was voted a starter for the Canadian team at the 2005 Dodge AHL All-Star Classic.

J.P. Vigier, Right Wing (Chicago Wolves): A member of Chicago’s Calder Cup championship team in 2002, J.P. Vigier returned to the Wolves this season and has tallied 28 goals and 39 assists for a career-best 67 points in 72 games. The native of Notre Dame de Lourdes, Man., leads Chicago in goals, assists, points, plus/minus rating (+25) and game-winning goals (8), and is second on the club with 11 power-play markers. Vigier, 28, has been a member of the Atlanta organization since signing in April 2000, and has played 100 NHL games with the Thrashers.

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