Ex-RPI stars Murley, Cavosiesee paths cross again with Rats
ALBANY Their pro careers have taken them in different directions since starring as linemates for three seasons at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute more than six years ago.
At least for now, Troy’s Matt Murley and Marc Cavosie of Cohoes are together again.
The two journeyman forwards were among 18 players on the ice for the Albany River Rats, who opened training camp with on- and off-ice workouts Tuesday morning.
Both will be in the lineup tonight when the Rats host Bridgeport at the Times Union Center in their lone preseason game, which also marks the debut of new head coach-GM Jeff Daniels.
Though they share both a local and college connection, Murley and Cavosie come to camp under very different circumstances. Signed to a one-year deal by Albany’s NHL parent club, the Carolina Hurricanes, Murley, 28, is expected to shoulder the offensive load this season.
Cavosie, 27, surpassed in age on the team only by Murley, is the lone skater on the current roster not
under contract, invited on a free-agent tryout, trying to earn a job.
“I’m going to take a good look at him,” Daniels said. “I’ve heard nothing but great things about him. Obviously, the way the numbers are, he’s going to get a good look [tonight], and get plenty of ice time to show his stuff.
“At this point, I’m not sure what Carolina’s doing, in terms of numbers and who we’re going to see over the next little while. We’ll have to see how it plays out.”
Cavosie joined the Rats last spring for the stretch and playoffs, scoring 16 points in 23 regular-season and postseason games. An opportunity with the AHL’s Lake Erie Monsters fell through late this summer, and Cavosie decided against going overseas, where he played in 2006-07.
“I could have gone to Europe, and felt secure and paid the bills, but it’d kind of be giving up on my dream,” Cavosie said. “I figured I’d rather stay and take a hit, financially, and have no regrets. I’m just going all out, and, hopefully, it pays off.
“It could be a situation where I could bring some leadership and some experience. I’m going to keep my fingers crossed and try to play well, and coach thinks I’m good enough to make the team.”
Cavosie, who captured a Calder Cup as a rookie with Houston in 2003, has 111 points in 268 AHL games for the Aeros, Rats and Philadelphia. He scored 109 points (48-61) in 97 games for RPI from 1999 to 2002.
“I know Marc, and he probably played the best hockey of his life when he was at RPI the last couple of years,” Murley said. “When he came here last year, I followed him, and I know he did really well. I think he feels comfortable playing around here. Like me, when you’ve got family and friends around, it helps you play better.
“It’s fun. I skate with him all summer and hang out, and we’re always talking about what’s going on. It’s good to be out there and see him. I hope he does really well and the coaches like him. Marc’s won the Calder Cup. You can’t buy that kind of experience.”
Murley had 175 points in 137 games over four seasons for the Engineers. In their time together, he and Cavosie combined for 235 points (105-130) in 198 games.
“He’s obviously a tremendous player, and he’s shown what he can do before,” Cavosie said. “It’d be nice to play with him again.”
Of the 23 players on Albany’s current training camp roster, all but five were on the ice. Right wing Jerome Samson is day-to-day with a minor injury, while Noah Babin, Mark Flood and Brett Bellemore were all expected to arrive later Tuesday and play tonight. . . .
All tickets are $5, with net proceeds going to benefit the Junior River Rats youth program. . . .
Also absent is last year’s playoff captain, center Pat Dwyer, who is home in Wisconsin for the birth of his son. . . .
Veteran free-agent forward Jeff O’Neill ended his tryout bid with Carolina. “I played with him, and he was a good friend of mine,” Daniels said. “I’m sure he made the best
decision for him and his family.”