11-12 Preview: #8 Providence Friars

Hockey East Preview: #8 Providence Friars

2010-11 Storyline: Tim Army fired after Friars miss Hockey East playoffs for third straight season.

2011-12 Storyline: Will Providence see an immediate impact from the hiring of Nate Leaman?

Player To Watch: Alex Beaudry

Player Missed Most: Kyle MacKinnon

Newcomer To Keep An Eye On: Barrett Kaib

Random Fact: One of the Friars top returning scorers is none other than Derek Army, son of Tim Army who was dismissed as coach after last season.

Usual Beer The Triangle Pre-game Spot: The Abbey

It’s probably no surprise that the bottom three schools in my Hockey East predictions all happen to be breaking in new coaches this year. However, I would say that Providence not only made the best hire of the conference, but perhaps the best in the country. For a guy only in his mid-30s, Leaman’s resume is stellar. In Union’s 12 seasons in Division I before Leaman took over they had just two winning seasons and never had more than 18 wins. In his last three seasons as head of the Dutchman Leaman led them to win totals of 19, 21, and 26, with last year’s effort bringing the school its first ever regular season ECAC title and NCAA berth.

In the short time he’s been in Providence Leaman has already pulled in a number of quality recruits and even lured back Alex Velischek, the talented defenseman who bolted to the USHL mid-season. They’ll have to come to campus ready to contribute though because the team is going to have a very tough time finding scoring. The Friars only had two players with double digits in goals last year and they both graduated. Derek Army is the top returning goalscorer with only 6. The team can have a little more confidence on defense where they have some good young talent in players like Mark Adams and of course a dependable goaltender in senior Alex Beaudry. With a lack of returning scorers, Beaudry will have to steal a few if Providence wants to end their postseason drought.

They’ll Finish Lower Because: The team is unable to find the back of the net.

They’ll Finish Higher Because: Beaudry ends his career by putting the team on his back.

Fear The Triangle Fearless Hockey East Predictions
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8. Providence Friars
9. Northeastern Huskies
10. Lowell River Hawks

The Albany Times-Union has a feature on former UMass captain Matt Anderson who’s attending training camp for the Devils.



  1. Cronin apparently stole the Huskies’ #9 preseason writeup on his way out the door.


    • Yeah, Windows Live Writer apparently decided Providence is the same as Northeastern and just swapped them. Should be fixed now.


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