Tuesday, Aug. 8, 2006 | 7:24 a.m.
Hometown: White Bear Lake, Minn.
Height: 6 feet
Weight: 190 pounds
Resume: As a junior in 2004, helped Minnesota-Duluth reach the Frozen Four in Boston, where the Bulldogs lost to Denver in a national semifinal collected two goals and two assists at Utah on Jan. 1 played 31 games with the Wranglers of the Double-A level ECHL and 45 games for Omaha of the (Triple-A) American Hockey League last season.
Keep your head up.
Of all the drills that Las Vegas Wranglers defenseman Tim Hambly went through last week in his first development camp for the Calgary Flames, the aforementioned demand differed most from his usual regimen.
The instruction for some puck-handling exercises was not to look down.
"Not even for a split second," Hambly said. "You kept your eyes up the whole drill. More than half the guys were losing the puck, beating it around. It wasn't nearly as smooth as in a game.
"The coaches said, 'If you screw up, don't worry about it.' You had to keep your head up to know what's going on around you as much as possible. It was pretty tough, not looking down for even a split second."
1. Gulutzan discovery
Wranglers coach and general manager Glen Gulutzan unearthed Hambly, who did not get drafted out of college, two seasons ago, and Hambly played the last eight games of 2004-05 for Las Vegas. "This summer, he's been on me about guys I played with in Minnesota. We've talked at least 10 times," Hambly said. "And he wants to make sure I'm doing everything I can to progress."
2. Chosen four
Hambly, Adam Pardy, Steve Marr and Chris Neiszner were the chosen four from the Wranglers who were invited to the weeklong workout before Flames brass in Calgary. "Yeah, there were some nerves running through the system," Hambly said. "But it was exciting, with all the prospects and coaches, even reporters, out there. It was fun."
3. Power week
The development players worked out, at different drills, three times each day. Power skating and staying low were the main morning themes. "Making sure you get the most length out of your stride," Hambly said, "and working on quick starts and quick feet. It definitely took a toll on the body."
4. Return to Las Vegas
Hambly returned to Las Vegas, for a playoff series the Wranglers would win against Idaho, last spring after Omaha's season ended in San Antonio. "I definitely had a good time in Las Vegas," he said. "Fans there said I was going in the right direction, and they hoped I wouldn't be there very long. It was great to see those fans during the playoffs."
Before leaving the camp to attend a friend's wedding in Calgary, Hambly had a three-on-one meeting with new Flames coach Jim Playfair and two scouts. "(Playfair) said he had never seen me play and that it was good for him to see me skate," Hambly said. "The next step is a big step, but that's the dream."