Sunday, July 29, 2012

Jayson Megna Leaves UNO for NHL

Sophomore forward Jayson Megna announced on Friday that he's planning to sign with one of three NHL teams and will not play for the UNO Mavericks this upcoming hockey season. That's a blow for UNO as Megna would have been the Mavs second leading returning scorer next season. As a freshman, Megna scored 13 goals and 31 points, earning him a spot on the WCHA all-freshman team.  Among the teams pursuing Megna are Boston, Pittsburgh, and Winnipeg. That's the second high-profile defection from the Mavs this offseason; captain Terry Broadhurst signed with the Chicago Blackhawks in the spring.

Megna told the Omaha World-Herald it'll be tough to leave his brother Jaycob behind in Omaha, but he's been told he has a chance to open the season on an NHL roster. Hard to criticize that decision in that light.

Wisconsin hockey blogger Chuck Schwartz also reports that assistant coach Brian Renfrew is also planning to leave UNO for the NHL.
All these defections point out the double edged sword UNO hockey has been facing under Dean Blais; highly talented people are coming to the program, but they don't always remain. The paranoid in me wonders if something is up behind the scenes in the program.  None of these moves by themselves really look out of line by themselves, but it's more the sum of all of the parts. It's irrational speculation, mind you...but it still makes you wonder.

Dean Blais' comments to the World-Herald are a little more concerning; suggesting that the Mavs could "still be respectable" this season. I think UNO fans are hoping for something more than "respectable", though in Blais' perspective, "respectable" might still be better than anything UNO has seen before.

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