The Frozen Four — the NCAA men’s ice hockey national championship — is coming to Tampa this week. Amalie Arena will host the semifinals Thursday night and the title game on Saturday.
Here’s what you need to know about the event.
What teams are playing in the Frozen Four?
No. 1 Minnesota is back in the event for the second straight year and the 23rd time in program history. The Gophers also came to Tampa for the 2012 Frozen Four. No. 2 Quinnipiac is in the semifinals for the third time ever and still looking for its first title; the Bobcats also played at Amalie Arena, in 2016. No. 3 Michigan is playing in its third Frozen Four in five years and aiming for an NCAA-record 10th national championship. Boston University wasn’t among the top four seeds but earned its berth with wins over Western Michigan and Cornell by a combined score of 7-2.
What is the Frozen Four schedule?
Minnesota faces Boston at 5 p.m. in the first semifinal. Michigan and Quinnipiac will play in the second game at 8:30. The winners meet Saturday at 8 p.m. Tickets can be purchased here.
What channel is the Frozen Four on?
All games will be shown on ESPN2.
What’s Tampa’s Frozen Four history?
In 2016, North Dakota beat Quinnipiac 5-1 to win its eighth national title. That’s notable because Brad Berry became the first coach ever to win it all in his first season. In 2012, Boston College topped Ferris State in the final. It was the fifth national title for Jerry York (the only coach ever with more than 1,000 career wins). One of the notable Boston College participants: Brian Dumoulin, who has since won the Stanley Cup twice with the Penguins.
Who is the Frozen Four favorite?
Minnesota. The Gophers have played like the No. 1 overall seed, winning their regional games by a combined score of 13-3. They also have two of the three finalists for the Hobey Baker Memorial Award — hockey’s version of the Heisman Trophy. Forward Logan Cooley, a Coyotes prospect and last year’s No. 3 overall NHL draft pick, is second nationally with 57 points, and forward Matthew Knies (a Toronto prospect) is tied for four with 21 goals. DraftKings gives Minnesota the best odds at plus-150 (meaning a $100 bet wins an extra $150).
Who are other Frozen Four players to know?
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Michigan phenom Adam Fantilli, an 18-year-old Canadian, is regarded as one of the top prospects in this year’s draft. He is the other Hobey Baker Award finalist and leads the nation with 64 points in 35 games. Teammate Luke Hughes was the No. 4 overall pick in 2021, and the New Jersey Devils’ general manager has said Hughes will join the team once the college season ends. Boston’s Lane Hutson is seventh nationally with 48 points — a very high number for a freshman defenseman; he was a second-round pick by Montreal last year. Quinnipiac goalie Yaniv Perets broke the Division I record for best goals against average (1.17) last season and leads the country this year, too (1.463).
Are there any Frozen Four participants with Tampa Bay or Florida ties?
Yes. At least two players are Lightning draft picks: Minnesota wing Connor Kurth (sixth round, 2022) and Michigan forward Dylan Duke (fourth round, 2021). The Wolverines also have a pair of Floridians on their roster. Defenseman Seamus Casey is from Fort Myers, and forward Gavin Brindley is from Estero. Casey and Duke both assisted on the overtime goal that beat Penn State to send Michigan to the Frozen Four.
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