Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Tuesday . . .

If you haven’t noticed, a lot of the hockey community has gathered in Toronto at something called the World Hockey Summit; in other words, there is more navel-gazing taking place.
Why is it that we are so committed to finding so many things wrong with hockey and then meeting and meeting . . . and meeting some more . . . as we search for fixes?
Is so much of it not simply common sense? Isn’t it common sense that if you introduce body checking at a young age, it will lead to an increased number of concussions in that age group? Is it not common sense that an accumulation of concussions is going to lead to problems down the road?
And if it is common sense, well, then, why does it take so long for us to come up with solutions?
Anyway . . . from what I’ve read to date, there hasn’t been a whole lot new come out of Toronto. There’s been talk, as mentioned, of concussions and head injuries and body checking and the KHL and how the sport is struggling to reach previous levels of success in Czech Republic and Slovakia. (A horrifying drop in registrations may have something to do with that. I‘m thinking registration likely is skyrocketing in soccer and tennis.)
And there will be talk . . . and more talk . . . before it’s all over.
Anyway . . . Bruce Arthur of the National Post has a good look at what might be expected from the Molson-sponsored -- you expected anything else? -- World Hockey summit right here.
---
Jason Christie (Saskatoon, 1986-90) is the new head coach of the Central league’s Bloomington Prairie Thunder. The Peoria JournalStar reports that he will be introduced as the club’s head coach on Wednesday. Christie is a former player and coach with the Peoria Rivermen, then of the ECHL. He also has coaching experience in the AHL as an assistant coach with the Chicago Wolves.
---
The Saskatoon Blades show 86 players (50 forwards, 28 defencemen and eight goaltenders) on their training camp roster. Players register Wednesday, with on-ice sessions beginning Thursday. . . . But two players on that roster aren’t likely to attend. . . . Slovakian F Andrej Stastny, Saskatoon’s first-round pick in the CHL’s 2010 import draft, suffered a serious elbow injury -- it is either broken or dislocated, or both -- earlier this month. Stastny, 19, will be out for up to six weeks. However, the Blades have yet to secure his release from the Slovak Ice Hockey Federation as he apparently has signed a contract with one of that country’s U-20 teams. . . . As well, D Tommy Sipancik, 16, is out with a concussion. A third-round pick in the 2009 bantam draft, he is from the major midget Vancouver Canadians.
---
F Garrett Mitchell, 19, is new captain of the Regina Pats. Mitchell, who is from Regina, was a second-round pick in the 2006 bantam draft. He has 60 points and 325 penalty minutes in 194 games with the Pats. . . . The Washington Capitals selected him in the sixth round of the NHL’s 2009 draft. . . . The Pats open camp on Saturday, 9 a.m., at the Co-operators Centre.
---
Jack Michaels, the radio voice of the ECHL’s Anchorage Aces for eight seasons, is the new play-by-play man with the NHL’s Edmonton Oilers. He and Bob Stauffer, the host and analyst, will work all Oilers games on 630 CHED. . . . Regan Bartel, who handles play-by-play of Kelowna Rockets’ games, had interviewed for the Oilers’ position.
---
Mike Flanagan has resigned as head coach of the NAHL’s Wichita Falls Wildcats in order to sign on as an assistant coach with the AHL’s Norfolk Admirals. Flanagan was the Wildcats’ interim head coach for the last 20 games in 2009-10. His connection with Norfolk? He and Admirals head coach Jon Cooper worked together with the NAHL’s St. Louis Bandits. . . . Rick Brodsky, who owns the Prince George Cougars, is one of the Wildcats’ owners.
---
The USHL’s Green Bay Gamblers have hired Eric Rud as their GM/head coach. Rud, who had been an assistant coach at St. Cloud State, replaces Jon Cooper, now the head coach of the AHL’s Norfolk Admirals. Rud has been an assistant with the St. Cloud State Huskies for the last five seasons.
---
F Troy Ofukany (Kelowna, Regina, Red Deer, 2004-08) has re-signed with the Central league’s Odessa Jackalopes, who acquired him late last season in a deal with the Wichita Thunder. . . . Ofukany had three goals and an assist in Odessa. Two seasons ago, as a rookie, he had 36 points with Wichita.
---
The Swift Current Broncos have signed a five-year lease with the City for the use of the Credit Union iPlex. The Broncos and the City previously had been working on one-year deals. . . .
According to the Southwest Booster: “The contract . . . has a per game rate of $1,294, plus any percentage increase to ice rental rates determined by City Council during their annual facility rate process. The Broncos paid $1,294 per game this past year, and for the 2010-2011 season they will be paying that per game rate plus an additional five per cent which was passed onto the team as part of the facility rate increases approved by Swift Current City Council at Monday's meeting.”
You may recall that the Broncos got punted from the building for the first round of last season’s playoffs because the world women’s curling championship took place in the iPlex. Under terms of the new lease, the Broncos can only be removed from the facility once a year and for that to happen the incoming event must be of at least five days in duration and has to be scheduled at least a year in advance.
Other teams heading into lease negotiations, if they haven’t already started, include the Brandon Wheat Kings, Regina Pats and Saskatoon Blades.
---
D Jordan Hale, who won’t be back with the Brandon Wheat Kings as a 20-year-old, appears ready to play for the AJHL’s Camrose Kodiaks. Hale, who is from Lacombe, Alta., would seem a good fit for the Kodiaks, who are the host team for the 2011 RBC Cup, the national junior A tournament.
---
News that leaked last week now is official -- John Becanic has joined the coaching staff of the Vancouver Giants. He will work as an assistant coach alongside head coach Don Hay and assistant Chad Scharff. . . . Becanic has spent the last seven seasons in the WHL. He was an assistant with the Seattle Thunderbirds last season, after being fired as head coach by the Everett Silvertips following the 2008-09 season. All told, he was with Everett for six seasons, the last two as the head guy. . . . The Giants open camp Friday at the Ladner Leisure Centre.
---
The Portland Winterhawks brought fans and media together at a local eatery on Tuesday. On hand were seven of the eight players who were selected during the NHL’s 2010 draft. Who was missing? The New York Islanders have kept first-round pick Nino Niederreiter in the big city; in fact, he isn’t expected in Portland at all before the start of another season. I am hearing that he will open the season with the Islanders, who are hoping his presence will help them sell tickets. That, of course, is purely speculation, especially considering that he hasn’t signed, but you can bet that Portland GM/head coach Mike Johnston is operating as though Niederreiter won‘t be back. . . . Players report to Portland for physicals on Wednesday, with on-ice sessions beginning Thursday. The Winterhawks wrap up scrimmages with third vs. fourth on Sunday at 9 a.m., and the championship game at 10:45 a.m. It’s all at Memorial Coliseum. All, that is, except Niederreiter.
---
Jeffrey Guay, a former assistant coach with the QMJHL’s Lewiston Maineiacs, has filed suit, claiming breach of contract. The Lewiston Sun Journal has that story right here.
---
On the first day they were available, the Kootenay Ice sold a whole bunch of tickets for that Jan. 15 outdoor game against the Chiefs in Spokane. Matt Coxford of the Cranbrook Daily Townsman reports that “by closing (Monday), the Ice had sold more than 85 tickets in once section of Avista Stadium at $45 a seat.” Coxford’s story is right here.

0 comments:

Stories from NHL.com

Stories from ESPN.com

Hockey News from Google

Loading...

  © Design byThirteen Letter

Back to TOP