Friday, July 23, 2010

Catching up . . .

F Alex Rodgers, who played out his WHL eligibility last season with the Prince George Cougars, will attend the U of Alberta in Edmonton and play for the Golden Bears in 2010-11. . . . Rodgers, who is from Salmon Arm, had 61 points for the Cougars last season, as he had career highs in goals (20), assists (41) and points. . . . He played a total of 258 regular-season games, split between the Kamloops Blazers, Vancouver Giants and Prince George. . . . Rodgers joins 10 other WHLers in the Golden Bears’ 2010 recruiting class, the others being G Kurtis Mucha, G Linden Rowat, D Jarrett Toll, D Jesse Craige, D Drew Nichol, F Mitch Czibere, F Zack Dailey, F Johnny Lazo, F Matt Meropoulis and F Lindsay Nielsen.
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Dan Plaster is the new radio voice of the Regina Pats, whose games are heard on 620 CKRM. Plaster, the Pats’ director of communications, replaces Rod Pedersen, the Pats’ radio voice for the last 15 seasons. . . . Plaster has been the colour analyst on road games for the past two seasons. . . . Meanwhile, Harvard Broadcasting and the Pats have agreed to terms on an extension that keeps the team on CKRM through 2012-13. . . . There’s more on play-by-play voices further down.
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The Calgary Flames will hold open their development camp on Monday at the Pengrowth Saddledome. WHLers on the camp roster are G Cam Lanigan (Edmonton), D Joey Leach (Kootenay), D Giffen Nyren (Calgary), F Carter Bancks (Lethbridge), F Spence Bennett (Portland), F Lance Bouma (Vancouver), F Michael Ferland (Brandon), F Patrick Holland (Tri-City), F Ryan Howse (Chilliwack), F Gaelan Patterson (Saskatoon), F Max Reinhart (Kootenay) and F Mitch Wahl (Spokane).
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David Anning, an assistant GM/assistant coach with the Dauphin Kings for the past two seasons, is the new GM/head coach of the MJHL’s Winnipeg Saints. Anning joined the Kings after serving the Saints as an assistant coach and director of marketing. He also played for the Saints and served as team captain. . . . The Kings won the MJHL’s 2009-10 championship, beating the Saints in the final. . . . Anning replaces Keith Cassidy. It would seem that the Saints’ board and Cassidy, who got the Saints into the MJHL final in his only season with them, have agreed to disagree, and you know who never wins in those situations. So, at least for now, Cassidy is on the outside looking in.
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G Justin Leclerc (Lethbridge Kamloops, 2005-10) will attend Waterloo University and play for the Warriors in 2010-11. Leclerc was released by the Kamloops Blazers in November and surfaced with the Winnipeg Saints, who went onto the MJHL final.
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Rick Wilson, a veteran NHL assistant coach and a former Prince Albert Raiders player and coach, has been told it’s OK to look for work. Wilson, an associate coach with the Lightning, is still under contract to the NHL team. . . . At the same time, the Lightning dumped Cap Raeder, who had worked with goaltenders throughout the organization for the last two years, and Jim Johnson, the head coach of its AHL affiliate, the Norfolk Admirals, since January.
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The Prince George Cougars will be back on 993 The Drive for 2010-11, the 17th season in which the games have been carried on a radio station belonging to the Jim Pattison Broadcast Group. . . . The parties have agreed to an extension that will carry them through 2012-13. . . . However, Ron St. Clair is out as the radio voice of the Cougars. He will be replaced by Andy Neal, who is the Cougars’ director of corporate sales and broadcasting. He has worked with St. Clair on broadcasts for the last two seasons. . . . St. Clair now is the sports director at CKPG, but won’t be handling play-by-play duties.
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The move in Prince George means that more teams will have new radio voices in the fall than will have new head coaches. The Cougars are at least the fifth team that will have a new voice on the airwaves when a new season arrives. Also changing are the Regina Pats (Dan Plaster in, Rod Pedersen out), Edmonton Oil Kings (AJ Jakubec out, replacement not named), Kamloops Blazers (Kirk Fraser out, replacement not named) and Vancouver Giants (Morley Scott out, no replacement named). . . . At the same time, only the Oil Kings, Kootenay Ice, Medicine Hat Tigers and Spokane Chiefs have undergone coaching changes. So far . . .

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