Week 2 of the 3ICE season is here. Four teams will be hitting the ice for the first time. Team Murphy, Team Bourque, Team Mullen, and Team LeClair all look to start their season 2-0 as 3ICE brings their tour to Hershey, Pennsylvania. Two semi-final games will be played to establish the final and consolation games. One point will be given to the winner of each semi-final game, with zero points going to the loser.
A lot of different storylines are present in this week’s matchup. Two teams feature a father-son duo, an American Hockey League legend returns home to Hershey, and Ray Bourque makes his 3ICE coaching debut. The overall victor of this week will share first place in the standings alongside Team Patrick. The stage is set, so what do the semi-final matches look like?
The first semi-final on Wednesday is Team Murphy against Team Bourque. This will be the first game Ray Bourque, coach of Team Bourque, will coach in his 3ICE career. To help ease the nerves, his son Chris Bourque is on his team. It’s a heart-warming family moment as both makes their 3ICE debut. The game is also Chris Bourque’s return to Hershey after announcing his retirement from professional hockey in April 2022. He played nine seasons for the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League (AHL). He scored 586 points in 604 regular season games with the Bears and was an alternate captain for many seasons. Bourque is back with his father, hoping to make his return to the city memorable.
Team Murphy is looking to spoil Bourque’s welcome-back party. Coach Murphy returns behind the bench this season, looking to improve from last year. His team had an 8-9 record in 2022, good for 11 points during the 3ICE regular season. Injuries derailed Murphy’s team last season, costing him a chance at the Patrick Cup. This year could be different. Murphy and his team are ready to do damage with a clean bill of health and a loaded roster.
The night’s second game will feature Team Mullen taking on Team LeClair. Team Mullen, like Team Bourque, features a father-son duo. Joe Mullen will coach his son, Patrick Mullen, this season. Mullen’s first season was fantastic. His team won the regular season. Despite not winning the Patrick Cup, Mullen did win a personal award — he was presented with the Eddie Johnston Coach of the Year Award, given to the league’s top coach. Team Mullen is star-studded. They have Joe Whitney, the league’s top scorer from last season, former NHLer Paul Carey, and Parker Milner, last year’s playoff MVP.
Team LeClair finished 3rd in 3ICE’s inaugural regular season standings. John LeClair, the team’s coach, will look to lead his team over Team Mullen and move on to the championship match of the Hershey Tour. Former NHL defenseman Ian McCoshen headlines the squad, with Brandon Hawkins, Brayden Watts, Max Milosek, Colin Theisen, Tim Coffman, and perhaps the best name in all of 3ICE, Colton Saucerman rounding out the team. Expect speed, skill, and hard work from Team LeClair.
The winners of each semi-final match will face off. Both teams will look to secure the valuable extra two points awarded to the winner of the final. The losers of each semi-final round will play in the consolation game, where the winner will snag a half-point to go toward their season standings. Chris Bourque will want to make his return to Hershey memorable. Expect him and Team Bourque to come out flying against Team Murphy. At the same time, Coach Mullen looks to continue his regular season dominance from last year against Team LeClair. Game one starts at 4 PM Eastern Standard Time and will be broadcast live by CBS Sports, TSN and TVA Sports.
The 3ICE season began on June 28 in Pittsburgh, and will be broadcast live by CBS Sports, TSN and TVA Sports. The season will run for six weeks before the championship game takes place on Aug. 12 in Philadelphia. Stay tuned for more content about 3ICE as the season progresses, and make sure to tune into 3ICE this summer to enjoy the best part of hockey each and every week.