One of the biggest moves so far this season was the trade between Chicago and Cedar Rapids. Here's a quick recap: Chicago traded Richard Bachman (first overall pick in 2006 USHL Entry Draft) to Cedar Rapids for Pat McGann and Andy Miele. At first glance, it appears Cedar Rapids definitely got the short end of this deal. Let's look at it a little closer. Bachman is a highly regarded goalie who wasn't impressing many in Chicago. Mark Carlson may have saw something that Chris Imes didn't, and Bachman has played very well so far for Cedar Rapids since the trade. McGann was unimpressive for the Riders this season and many felt that he needed to go. Miele was 2nd on the team in points, but with the emergence of guys like Robin Bergman and David Boehm, Miele became expendable.
Chicago also released veteran forward Brandon Coccimiglio from the team. Rumor has it, his dad didn't want him to play in Chicago anymore. Jared Hummel also left the team earlier. The Steel added Gabe Heller in place of Hummel and Jonathan Milhouse in place of Coccimiglio. Ben Beaudoin was traded to the Southern Minnesota Express (NAHL) and that's too bad because it looked like he was on pace for a nice season for the Steel.
Des Moines and Lincoln made a trade the other day. Lincoln traded defenseman Ryan Ruikka for a draft pick. Ruikka will be fine as long as Des Moines doesn't make him their captain anytime soon. Des Moines added John Vadnais two years ago after he was released by Lincoln, and he became captain of the Bucs last year. He was hurt early in the season and missed the rest of the season. This year, the Bucs captain, Bobby Reiners, was injured and will miss the remainder of the season. He also played for Lincoln before being traded to Green Bay, then Des Moines.
Omaha appears to be in revamping mode. They released Garrett Suter, who separated his shoulder and is likely to miss the rest of the season, and added Joe Cucci. Cucci is coming from Northeastern University, after spending time in the EJHL. In another move, the Lancers have released 4th year forward Ryan Raven. I'm not sure about where he will end up at this point, but I'm sure another USHL team wouldn't mind having his big frame.