Disabled Hockey Discipline Announces USA Hockey’s National Special Needs Hockey Team

By Michael Svac, USA Hockey Central District Disabled Hockey Representative

During the USA Hockey Special Hockey Classic at the Ice Vault Arena in Wayne, New Jersey, the U.S. National Special Hockey team was announced. Six players from the Chicago Blackhawks Special Hockey (CBSH) team were included on the 2019-2020 U.S. National Team roster.

The following CBSH team members will join Team USA and compete in the inaugural International Disabled Hockey World Cup scheduled for May 2020:  Jared Muka, Steven Schamberg, Nikolai Krumrey, Joey Hodge, Eric Vlasic and Ryan Mueller.

In addition to the CBSH players that were announced last week, CBSH Head Coach Steve Drews was included in the excitement and will join the team on the bench as the assistant coach to the National team.

“The event was stunning,” said Melanie Freeman, team manager for CBSH. “Every player received a replica 1980 USA Hockey team jersey with their name on the back.”

The inaugural International Disabled Hockey World Cup (view flyer) will take place May 11-17, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The event provides athletes with disabilities the opportunity to play for a world championship as these disciplines do not have enough teams or are not recognized by the international body to participate in the Paralympics.

The tournament will feature women’s sled hockey, men’s development sled hockey, deaf/hard of hearing hockey, blind hockey, special hockey and amputee hockey. Each discipline will contain four teams that will compete in a minimum of four tournament games. For more information, please email disabledhockey@usahockey.org.

The event will be hosted by the City National Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Click here for more information on eached disabled hockey discipline.


CBSH is dedicated to providing children and adults with developmental disabilities the opportunity to play hockey. CBSH team members range in age from 5 to 55, and include both male and female athletes. The team is comprised of players that have Autism, Down syndrome or other intellectual disabilities. CBSH strives to promote and emphasize the development of sportsmanship, team spirit, increased confidence, pride, and team unity while having a great time in the process! For more information about CBSH, please feel free to contact Melanie Freeman at mfreeman@chicagospecialhockey.com or 847-858-9012.

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