Daniel J. Fritsche (born July 13, 1985 in Parma, Ohio) is a Swiss-American former professional ice hockey forward. He played for Genève-Servette HC, HC Lugano and the ZSC Lions in the National League (NL) and in the National Hockey League (NHL) for the Columbus Blue Jackets, the New York Rangers and the Minnesota Wild.

Dan Fritsche
NLA, ZSC Lions vs. Genève-Servette HC, 25th October 2014 40.JPG
Born (1985-07-13) July 13, 1985 (age 34)
Parma, Ohio, USA
Height 6 ft 1 in (185 cm)
Weight 198 lb (90 kg; 14 st 2 lb)
Position Centre
Shot Right
Played for Columbus Blue Jackets
New York Rangers
Minnesota Wild
Genève-Servette HC
HC Lugano
ZSC Lions
National team   Switzerland
NHL Draft 46th overall, 2003
Columbus Blue Jackets
Playing career 2003–2015

Playing careerEdit

Fritsche began his junior hockey career with his hometown Cleveland Barons of the North American Hockey League. He then played for the Sarnia Sting and the London Knights, and won a gold medal at the 2004 World Junior Hockey Championship, playing for the United States. He won a Memorial Cup playing for the Knights in 2005. He also played youth hockey for the Parma Flyers and is one of three players to go into the NHL from there. The other two players are Brian Holzinger and Michael Rupp.

Fritsche was ranked in the top ten in nearly every pre-draft report, but shoulder concerns scared teams away. He was drafted in the second round of the 2003 NHL Entry Draft, 46th overall, by the Columbus Blue Jackets. After playing for parts of four seasons with the Blue Jackets, Fritsche was traded along with Nikolai Zherdev to the New York Rangers on July 2, 2008 for defensemen Fedor Tyutin and Christian Bäckman.[1]

On January 29, 2009, Fritsche was traded by the Rangers to the Minnesota Wild for defenseman Erik Reitz.[2] After finishing the season with the Wild, Fritsche was not tendered a qualifying offer and became an unrestricted free agent on July 1, 2009.[3]

On September 3, 2009, Fritsche was invited to the Atlanta Thrashers training camp for the 2009–10 season,[4] but was not offered a contract. On October 5, 2009, he returned to the Blue Jackets organization by signing a contract with the AHL's Syracuse Crunch.[5]

In 2010, Fritsche began playing in Switzerland's National League A for Geneve-Servette HC (GSHC).

In January 2013, he signed a three-year contract with the HC Lugano that extended him with the team through 2016. However, on November 29, 2013, Fritsche was traded to ZSC Lions, who were coached by Marc Crawford. Zurich won the 2013–14 NLA championship and Fritsche played a pivotal role in scoring four point in four games during the finals.

National teamEdit

Fritsche won gold with the US national team at the 2004 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships[6] and also represented the country at the 2005 WJC.[7] He made his debut on the Swiss Men's National Team in December 2014. According to IIHF rules, he had to play four years in Switzerland before being eligible to represent Switzerland.[8]

Personal lifeEdit

His great-grandparents emigrated from Appenzell, Switzerland, to the United States.[9]

His younger brother, Tom Fritsche, was a prospect in the Colorado Avalanche system. He was drafted 47th overall, in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. His career was cut short due to concussion. His cousin, John, plays for Fribourg-Gottéron. His uncle, John Fritsche Sr., was a longtime player in Switzerland for HC Ambri-Piotta, HC Lugano and EV Zug, played for the United States at the 1990 World Hockey Championship, and coached the Ohio Junior Blue Jackets.

Career statisticsEdit

 
Fritsche with the Minnesota Wild in 2009.

Regular season and playoffsEdit

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
2000–01 Cleveland Jr. Barons NAHL 49 23 29 52 47 1 1 1 2 0
2001–02 Sarnia Sting OHL 17 5 13 18 20
2002–03 Sarnia Sting OHL 61 32 39 71 79 5 2 2 4 4
2003–04 Sarnia Sting OHL 27 16 13 29 26 5 1 5 6 0
2003–04 Columbus Blue Jackets NHL 19 1 0 1 12
2003–04 Syracuse Crunch AHL 4 2 0 2 0 4 0 1 1 4
2004–05 Sarnia Sting OHL 2 1 1 2 0
2004–05 London Knights OHL 28 17 18 35 18 17 9 13 22 12
2005–06 Columbus Blue Jackets NHL 59 6 7 13 22
2005–06 Syracuse Crunch AHL 19 5 4 9 12 6 2 2 4 8
2006–07 Columbus Blue Jackets NHL 59 12 15 27 35
2007–08 Columbus Blue Jackets NHL 69 10 12 22 22
2008–09 New York Rangers NHL 16 1 3 4 2
2008–09 Minnesota Wild NHL 34 4 5 9 10
2009–10 Syracuse Crunch AHL 67 13 29 42 12
2010–11 Genève-Servette HC NLA 39 15 18 33 66
2011–12 Genève-Servette HC NLA 14 1 1 2 6
2012–13 Genève-Servette HC NLA 43 16 16 32 18 7 2 3 5 2
2013–14 HC Lugano NLA 12 1 3 4 4
2013–14 ZSC Lions NLA 22 6 7 13 6 18 2 3 5 10
2014–15 ZSC Lions NLA 46 9 11 20 10 3 0 0 0 0
NHL totals 256 34 42 76 103

InternationalEdit

Year Team Event Result GP G A Pts PIM
2004 United States WJC   6 2 2 4 4
2005 United States WJC 4th 7 3 4 7 22
Junior totals 13 5 6 11 26

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Columbus sends Zherdev to the Rangers". TSN.ca. 2008-07-02. Retrieved 2008-07-02.
  2. ^ "Wild acquire Fritsche from Rangers". NHL. 2009-01-29. Retrieved 2009-01-29.
  3. ^ "Wild makes qualifying offers to six RFA's". NHL. 2009-06-29. Retrieved 2009-08-29.
  4. ^ "Legacy, Popovic and Fritsche at Atlanta". (in French) RDS.ca. 2009-09-03. Retrieved 2009-09-03.
  5. ^ Kramer, Lindsay (2009-10-05). "Fritsche coming back to Syracuse Crunch". Syracuse Post-Standard. Retrieved 2009-11-01.
  6. ^ "PLAYER STATISTICS BY TEAM" (PDF). IIHF. Retrieved 2016-03-14.
  7. ^ "TEAM ROSTER USA". IIHF. Retrieved 2016-03-14.
  8. ^ "Das Debüt der Doppelbürger". bernerzeitung.ch/. Retrieved 2016-03-14.
  9. ^ Knabenhans, Anja (2014-12-21). "Arosa Challenge: Dan Fritsche gibt sein Debüt im Nationalteam". Neue Zürcher Zeitung. Retrieved 2016-03-14.

External linksEdit