Six Bandits forwards won't return

July 03, 1996|By Phil Jackman

Any similarity between the team the Baltimore Bandits suit up to start the 1996-97 hockey season in October and the gang that went to a seventh game in the second round of the American Hockey League playoffs a couple of months ago will be strictly coincidental.

For openers, the six highest-scoring forwards, the players with the most recognizable names in the team's inaugural season here, are gone.

The number doubled in the last two days with news from the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim that they had swapped Mike Maneluk to the Ottawa Senators for right wing Kevin Brown, and the parent club didn't bother tendering contract offers to center Slava Butsayev and wing Jim Campbell.

Earlier, captain Dwayne Norris said he plans on continuing his career in Europe, and Steve King, who led the club in goals with 40, is hoping to return to the NHL in another organization after being with the Ducks since the expansion draft. J. F. Jomphe made the Anaheim roster after 47 games here and he appears set for a long career with the Ducks.

Regarding the trade of Maneluk, who Bandits coach Walt Kyle said had a decent chance of making the Ducks roster, Kyle said he views it as "even since Brown is younger and more physical and had a heck of a year in Phoenix two years ago." Brown had 19 goals and 50 points in 48 games for the International Hockey League champs in 1993-94.

As for Anaheim not making Butsayev and Campbell qualifying offers, thus making them unrestricted free agents, Kyle said, "you won't see any teams clamoring to sign those guys."

Pub Date: 7/03/96

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