Denver head coach George Gwozdecky announced today that sophomore forward Larkin Jacobson and sophomore goalie Juho Olkinuora will each be suspended for the team's first four games of the season--including the team's exhibition game against the University of British Columbia-- for a violation of team rules in separate incidents.
Neither loss is particularly crippling for the Pioneers. Last year, Jacobson earned the ignominious honor of playing in the most games(22) of any WCHA player without registering a point. Olkinuora was impressive last season, earning the starting job while Sam Brittain was out due to injury. But with Brittain healthy again, the Pioneers should be one of the strongest teams in the WCHA in goal, even without Olkinuora competing for the spot. Plus, it just wouldn't feel like hockey season if I didn't get to say once again that maybe this is the opportunity Adam Murray needs to finally reach the potential he first showed at the NTDP.
This is not the first discipline issue at Denver in recent memory. Last February, forward Dan Olszewski was suspended indefinitely from the team for a violation of team policy, which now appears to be permanent, as Olszewski is not listed on the Pioneers roster for the upcoming season.