Thursday, July 1, 2010
The MacBETH REPORT:
G Alexander Pechurski (Tri-City 2009-10) has returned to Metallurg Magnitogorsk (Russia KHL). He had a 2.71 GAA and a .912 SP in 27 games for the Tri-City Americans last season. He also played in one game with Pittsburgh (1.67 GAA, .923 SP), one game with Metallurg (6.00 GA, .571 SP), and five games with Stalnie Lisi Magnitogorsk (Russia MHL, the Russian national junior league; 2.81 GAA, .917 SP). . . . Metallurg GM Valery Postnikov told the Russian website Sovsport.ru: “We loaned Alexander to the (Pittsburgh) Penguins and now the loan is over. Pechurski has a long-term contract with Metallurg. Maybe he wants to go back to North America but it’s not about his desire, it’s about our needs.” . . . Pechurski was quoted in the website Championat.ru after his one game with the Penguins in Vancouver last season: “After this season I will go to Magnitogorsk, where I have one more year left on my contract. But my dream is to play in the NHL.” . . . He turned 20 on June 4.
While everyone in Canada was focussed on NHL free-agent frenzy or Canada Day celebrations, the WHL’s Seattle Thunderbirds ran an end-around and made an offer to LeBron James.
Yes, with NBA free agents also on the move starting with July 1, the Thunderbirds made their pitch on their Facebook page.
Included in the package they are offering:
* The privilege of being grand marshall of the Kent Cornucopia Parade.
* A friendly billet family.
* Free preferred parking at ShoWare Center.
* Two free tickets to the 2010-11 home-opener against the Portland Winterhawks . . . and a 24-Flex Ticket Package.
* Lunch with Kent Mayor Suzette Cooke (pending her schedule, of course) and Cool Bird.
* Use of both Allied Waste Zambonis for personal recreation.
*James Street, which leads to ShoWare Center, will be renamed LeBron James Street.
* A suite at ShoWare Center to watch the Backstreet Boys on Aug. 5.
* Entry fee will be waived for participation in the ShoWare Shootout 3-on-3 basketball tournament on Aug. 6 and 7.
* Discounts at the Hockey Store in ShoWare Center.
And what did the Thunderbirds accomplish thmrough this move?
Well, a team that gets very little media coverage in the Seattle area — of course, it no longer plays out of Seattle; it is in Kent — got mentioned on a Seattle Post-Intelligencer blog, a Puget Sound Business Journal blog and kent.komonews.com.
The Calgary Flames appear to be going in a different direction with their scouting staff.
Calgary radio station QR77 reported Wednesday night that the NHL team won’t extend the contracts of Mike Sands, who was the director of amateur scouting, and scouts Blair Reid and Al Tuer. Reid works out of Medicine Hat, while Tuer, a former WHL general manager, head coach and player, is stationed in Vernon.
Ken King, who is president of the Flames, wouldn’t admit that anyone had been fired.
“No one has been terminated,” King said. “But our strategic thinking is a private matter.”
When I reached Tuer on Thursday night, he chose not to comment.
D Jace Coyle (Spokane, Medicine Hat, 2007-10) has signed a three-year contract with the NHL’s Dallas Stars. Coyle, 20, is eligible to return for one more WHL season. He had 46 points, including 36 assists, in 46 games with the Tigers last season. . . . Coyle, an NHL free agent, is at the Stars’ development camp in Frisco, Texas, right now. . . . Other WHLers at that camp: F Thomas Frazee (Moose Jaw), F Scott Glennie (Brandon), F Kevin King (Kootenay), F Tristan King (Medicine Hat), F Matt Tassone (Swift Current), F Tomas Vincour (Vancouver) and D Alex Theriau (Everett). . . . Also there is F Ondrej Roman, who played three seasons with the Spokane Chiefs before playing his 20-year-old season with Vitkovice in the Czech Republic.
THE COACHING GAME:
Stan Drulia is the new head coach of the ECHL`s Wheeling Nailers. He replaces
Greg Puhalski, who resigned to take over as manager of hockey operations and head coach at his alma mater, the Wilfrid Laurier University Golden Hawks in Waterloo, Ont. . . . Drulia is the13th head coach in Wheeling franchise history. Drulia, 42, is into his eighth season as a head coach. He has spent the last four seasons in Port Huron, Mich., coaching the Flags (UHL) and IceHawks (IHL).