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Tri-City Storm tender Shakopee’s Cooper Simpson for 2023-24 season

16-year-old forward Cooper Simpson becomes the 11th tender in franchise history after a breakout season at Shakopee High School


KEARNEY, Neb. — The Tri-City Storm have tendered a player for a sixth straight season as the Storm announced the signing of forward Cooper Simpson on Monday morning.

"As an organization, we are thrilled to be able to tender Cooper Simpson,” Tri-City head coach Anthony Noreen said in a statement. “He is one of the elite players in this birth class, and we believe he will thrive within our culture, and development system. We all look forward to working with him and seeing him grow.”

The 16-year-old left-shot forward will join the Storm next fall.

Simpson racked up a team-leading 37 goals and added 26 assists in 27 games at Shakopee (Minn.) High School. His 37 goals led Minnesota’s Class AA and also ranked in the top 20 in the state overall.

Simpson has a track record of production too, both at Shakopee — he scored 24 goals in 23 games as a freshman — and with the Minnesota Blades 15U AAA program. He also skated in the prestigious USA Under 15-Selects Development Camp prior to the 2022-2023 season.


"Cooper Simpson joins the Storm as one of the premier offensive talents in the 2007 birth class,” Tri-City general manager Jason Koehler said. “He has been a weapon for the past two seasons in Minnesota high school hockey, various events, and with teams on which he has played.

Take a year-by-year and team-by-team look at the USHL's tender history and what goes into the tendering process

“We are ecstatic to sign Cooper, and welcome him and his family to Kearney next season. We had a unique opportunity to have Cooper attend camp with us last summer. He thoroughly impressed our staff, and the desire for him to wear our purple jersey has finally come to fruition today. We thank Cooper and his family for trusting us with his development moving forward, and we are excited to watch him grow into a standout USHL forward, as well as a high-level college and pro prospect.”
As Koehler mentioned, Simpson skated in Tri-City’s camp in Vegas last summer, which initially put him on the organization’s radar.

Simpson becomes the 11th tender in franchise history and the eighth USHL player tendered for next season. The Storm have had success with their tenders too, the latest being Trevor Connelly (2022), who has blossomed into one of the USHL’s top rookies this season.

From roller hockey in California to an 18-game point streak in the USHL, Tri-City's Connelly has blossomed into one of the USHL's youngest and biggest offensive threats

Simpson is hoping to do the same next season and he has the shot and skill to do so.

“I am super excited to join this organization, the Tri-City Storm is a great team! I hope to help the team win a lot of games next year, and I would like to thank my parents for all of their help along the way,” Simpson said.

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As a result of the tender, Tri-City will forfeit its Phase I first-round selection in the 2023 USHL Draft, which takes place May 2 (Phase I) and May 3 (Phase II).

Teams have until April 29 to tender players.

Jordan McAlpine is a junior and prospects reporter for The Rink Live.
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