Friday, August 20, 2010

Thursday . . .

THE MacBETH REPORT:
F Mike Wirll (Brandon, Prince Albert, Prince George, Lethbridge, 1997-2003) signed a contract through the end of October with Skövde (Sweden Division 1). He had 19 goals and 12 assists in 18 games for Gislaved (Sweden Division 1) last season. Wirll was released from a try-out contract with Västerås (Sweden Allsvenskan) last week. Skövde has six exhibition games remaining before its regular season starts on Sept. 19 and plays 14 league games before the end of October.
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There is a lot on the Internet about a seemingly impending sale of the NHL’s Dallas Stars. But Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning Stars, who has been on top of this story from the start, doesn’t sound as though anything is imminent. His latest blog report is right here. . . . It is believed, of course, that Portland Winterhawks owner Bill Gallacher and Tom Gaglardi, the majority owner of the Kamloops Blazers, are the last bidders standing.
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D Riley McIntosh, 20, has signed with the BCHL’s Coquitlam Express. McIntosh spent the last four seasons in the WHL, with the Kelowna Rockets and Tri-City Americans and Kelowna Rockets. . . . He totaled 17 points, including one goal, and 137 penalty minutes in the WHL. . . . McIntosh is from Coquitlam.
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If you’re not tired of the CHL versus NCAA — or is it NCAA versus CHL? — stuff by now, Western College Hockey blog has a piece on the debate right here. . . . I am thinking of declaring a moratorium on stories about this subject because — let’s be honest — nothing is going to change.
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It’s great to see Clint Malarchuk back in the game. Malarchuk has been named the goaltending consultant with the NHL’s Atlanta Thrashers. Malarchuk (Portland, 1978-81) worked with the Columbus Blue Jackets from 2006-09, and also has been with the Florida Panthers.
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The Brandon Wheat Kings have confirmed the hiring of Mike Vandenberghe as an “interim assitant coach.” According to the Wheat Kings’ news release: “Vandenberghe’s appointment comes two weeks after assistant coach Dwayne Gylywoychuk suffered a broken back in a serious fall at the Keystone Centre.” . . . Vandenberghe joins owner/GM/head coach Kelly McCrimmon and assistant coach Darren Ritchie on the Brandon bench. . . . Gylywoychuk has been an assistant coach in Brandon for eight seasons. . . . Vandenberghe and Gylywoychuk both are former Wheat Kings defencemen. . . . “Mike will help fill the void in Dwayne’s absense,” McCrimmon said in the news release. “As a former Wheat King, he will be a good fit with Darren and Dwayne . . . and as a former defenceman, he will fill an important role with our young defence.”
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The Brandon Wheat Kings have confirmed that F Mark Mieritz, 19, will be on hand when the club opens training camp on Sept. 1. Mieritz, ,who is from Denmark, was taken by Brandon in the first round of the 2010 CHL import draft. He played the last two seasons with Frolunda juniors in Sweden. . . . The Wheat Kings also announced that, as of Thursday afternoon, they had sold 2,154 season tickets. Last season, they sold more than 3,600; of course, they were the host team for the Memorial Cup.
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And still more Brandon news (sheesh, Rick Dillabough must have been the busiest man in show business on Thursday) . . .
The club has confirmed what has been know for a while — F David Toews, 20, who is leaving the U of North Dakota, will join the Wheat Kings. Toews, the younger brother of Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews, played two seasons with the Fighting Sioux, totaling 26 points, including nine goals, in 55 games. David was a third-round selection by the New York Islanders in the 2008 NHL draft. . . . The addition of Toews leaves Brandon with six 20-year-olds on its roster. The others are F Shayne Wiebe, D Mark Schneider, D Darren Bestland, G Andrew Hayes and G Jacob DeSerres. . . . The Wheat Kings revealed that D Jordan Hale, 20, won’t return. He had 11 points and 83 penalty minutes in 70 games last season. . . . As well, D Brodie Melnychuk, 19, has agreed to a tryout deal with the NHL’s Anaheim Ducks.
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Former WHL head coach Rich Kromm is the new head coach of the Central league’s Evansville IceMen. Kromm, who coached the Calgary Hitmen (2002-04) and Portland Winterhawks (2007-08), spent last season as head coach of the IHL’s Muskegon Lumberjacks, who went 51-20-0-5. Kromm, 46, got a two-year contract with the IceMen.
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And now for another update on the search for a radio voice for the Edmonton Oilers. . . . Dennis Beyak needed an answer by Wednesday and the Oilers couldn’t, or wouldn’t, give him one. So he has taken his name out of the hat. . . . Robin Brownlee has the story right here.

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