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With former minor leaguer James Gasseau at its helm, LA Hockey brings diverse talent to uncharted grounds

Updated: October 7, 2011, 10:48 AM ET
By Molly Knight | ESPN The Magazine

This story appears in the Oct. 17 issue of ESPN The Magazine.

ON A BALMY AUGUST DAY, Matt Nieto is skating up a sweat alongside a few dozen eager kids from LA Hockey Club. Five years ago, Nieto was just like them, a Southern California boy who dreamed of a future in hockey.

His home turf alone makes him atypical for the sport, but Nieto's background is even rarer -- his parents are Mexican. Neither factor stopped him from realizing his dream. In June, the Sharks ...

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