The straight odds for winning their second ever Ray Miron President’s Cup as playoff champs in the Central Hockey League have been reduced from 10:1 in 2013-14 to 7:1 in 2014-15. With the loss of the Denver Cutthroats, St. Charles Chill and Arizona Sundogs, the Rapid City Rush are one of just seven remaining teams in the CHL. The Rush are definitely strong in net with the signing of two Ontario Hockey League grads to share duties between the pipes. Danny Battochio returns to Rapid City after a year in Kazakhstan while Wayne Savage joined the Rush after the CIS season ended in 2013-14.
An updated article on this player is available here: Danny Battochio
Battochio played three years in the OHL from 2003-04 to 2005-06, all with the Ottawa 67’s. Undrafted to the OHL and undrafted to the NHL, Danny proved his talent in 2004-05, playing 40 games for the 67’s during the regular season and leading the club to the Robertson Cup finals. Battochio played all 21 playoff games for Ottawa as the team fell to the London Knights in five games. With London hosting the Memorial Cup tournament, the 67’s got a second life and reached the semi-final game before losing out to Sidney Crosby and the Rimouski Oceanic.
Danny excelled off-ice, as well. In 2004-05 and 2005-06, he was awarded the Roger Neilson Award as the OHL’s top academic University or College player. In 2005-06, he was also honoured with the Bobby Smith Trophy as the OHL’s scholastic player of the year.
After attending St. Francis Xavier University for three years, Battochio turned pro in 2009-10 with Rapid City. That year, he was named CHL Rookie of the Year. Danny played in all but one playoff game for the Rush with Rapid City capturing the championship over the Allen Americans in the finals.
This past season, 2013-14, Battochio played in Kazakhstan for Beibarys Atyrau. He is back with the Rush for the 2014-15 season.
Savage played four years in the Ontario Hockey League from 2004-05 to 2007-08 with the Toronto / Mississauga Majors. Wayne was a fifth round pick by Toronto at the 2003 OHL Priority Selection, 94th overall. Undrafted to the NHL, Savage also went the route of higher education.
He played for the University of Prince Edward Island in 2008-09 and 2009-10 before taking a off to play in the CHL. Savage returned to UPEI for 2012-13 and 2013-14.
In that 2010-11 season, Wayne played 45 games for the Fort Worth Brahmas and was named to the CHL’s All-Rookie Team. He joined the Rapid City Rush at the end of the 2013-14 season for five regular season games and two more in the playoffs.
Rapid City Rush
A Central Hockey League expansion team for the 2008-09 season, the Rush won the Ray Miron President’s Cup in just their second season in the league. Rapid City has reached the post season in each season except for their first. In 2013-14, the Rush placed fourth in the ten team league and were bounced from the playoffs in the opening round.
The Rush play home games at the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center in Rapid City, South Dakota. The venue seats 5,132 for hockey and opened for business in 1977.