Monday, October 4, 2010

Monday . . .

Some WHL teams have been working at shedding 20-year-old players, in order to get down to the maximum of three by the Oct. 14 deadline.
Not the Prince George Cougars.
They added F Sena Acolatse via the trade route on Sunday.
On Monday, the Cougars added F Taylor Stefishen to their roster.
Stefishen, a sixth-round pick in the 2005 bantam draft, played the last two seasons for the Ohio State Buckeyes, an NCAA Division 1 team.
A 6-foot-0, 185-pounder from North Vancouver, he had 21 points and 14 penalty minutes in 42 games with the Buckeyes.
The Nashville Predators selected him in the fifth round of the NHL’s 2008 draft. He is a younger brother to F Adam Stefishen, who had 20 points and 195 penalty minutes with the Cougars in 2000-01.
With Acolatse, who also can play on the back end, and Stefishen, the Cougars are carrying five 20-year-olds. The other three are G Morgan Clark, F James Dobrowolski and F Parker Stanfield.
The Cougars next play Wednesday when they face the Kootenay Ice in Cranbrook. It will be interesting to see who is in head coach Dean Clark’s lineup.
Dallas Thompson, the Cougars’ general manager, apparently stops by this site on occasion.
You might recall a recent piece here wondering why the WHL didn’t go to four or five 20-year-olds, from the present maximum of three.
Asked late last night via email whether he had dropped any of his 20-year-olds, Thompson responded:
“What do you mean drop? You said we should have 4 or 5. Now I have 5!”
Then he added: “Just taking note!”
Gotta love a WHL general manager who has a sense of humour.
The Vancouver Giants have an opening for an import player.
F Casper Carning, 19, has left the Giants and returned to Sweden. He had two assists and two penalty minutes in six games.
According to Steve Ewen of the Vancouver Province, Carning told Giants GM Scott Bonner “that the situation wasn’t working out and he was returning home to Goteborg, Sweden.”
The Giants had selected Carning in the 2010 CHL import draft.
According to Ewen, the Giants “had pegged him as a top-six forward and gave him a chance to win a scoring-line spot, but he didn’t play with the type of urgency or intensity that coach Don Hay demands.”
For more, check out The Dub Hub.
Slovakian F Marek Tvrdon, the Giants’ other import, has four goals in six games.
The Giants are able to go out and get another import player, but that player will have to have been selected in the CHL import draft.
At present, only one WHL team shows three imports on their rosters.
The Swift Current Broncos show Slovakian F Juraj Roznik, who turns 18 on Oct. 14, Czech F Stepan Novotny, 20, and Czech D Richard Nedomlel, 17.
The Tri-City Americans’ roster includes Russian G Alex Pechurskiy, 20, Belarussian D Nikita Kardashev, 18, although Kardashev hasn’t yet appeared in a game. The Americans also selected Russian Russian D Nikita Nesterov, 17, in the 2010 import draft. But he has yet to get clearance to play over here.
The Brandon Wheat Kings’ injury list grew and grew and grew on Monday.
Before the day was done the Wheat Kings had added three players to it, all with long-term injuries.
LW Michael Ferland is to have knee surgery Thursday in Winnipeg. He will be out indefinitely. Ferland, 18, was injured in Brandon’s training camp on Sept. 3. He attended the Calgary Flames’ training camp — he was a fifth-round pick in the NHL’s 2010 draft — where he received treatment. Cleared to play on Sept. 19, he was in Brandon’s lineup for three games, before reinsuring the knee Wednesday in a 5-2 victory over the Warriors in Moose Jaw.
RW David Toews, 20, suffered a high ankle sprain in Brandon’s 4-3 loss to the Blades in Saskatoon on Sunday and could miss up to eight weeks. Toews, who joined the Wheat Kings from the U of North Dakota, had six points in six games. He was a third-round selection by the New York Islanders in the 2008 NHL draft.
D Jordan Fransoo, 17, suffered a broken foot on Sept. 24 during the Wheat Kings’ season-opening 5-4 victory over the Regina Pats. Initial X-rays were negative, with the break showing up in later X-rays. Fransoo actually played in the club’s first six games, picking up three points. A fifth-round bantam draft pick in 2008, Fransoo is out indefinitely.
The Wheat Kings already were without D Rene Hunter (hip Flexor) and RW Jens Meilleur (broken hand).
At the same time, the Wheat Kings got their roster down to 30 players by reassigning RW Dakota Conroy, 16, to the midget AAA Edmonton Southside Athletic Club. He was a third-round pick in the 2009 bantam draft.
Brandon is carrying four goaltenders, 10 defencemen and 16 forwards, including C Brayden Schenn, 19, who is with the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings.
Hey, how about the King brothers?
F Wheaton King, whose name ranks right up there Steele Boomer among present-day WHLers, is off to a fine start with his hometown Brandon Wheat Kings.
King had one goal in 10 games before being returned to the midget AAA Wheat Kings a year ago. And you know that had to hurt, what with the big Wheaties being the host team for the Memorial Cup.
King, 18, has come back in the right frame of mind, however, and has five points in five games.
And, as Rob Henderson of the Brandon Sun points out, King’s brother Sanfred is off to a great start, too.
Sanfred, 20, now is with the Kindersley Klippers and he goes into the week tied for the SJHL scoring lead, with 14 points.
Greg Harder of the Regina Leader-Post reports that Pats G Damien Ketlo will miss up to 10 days with a shoulder injury suffered in a Friday night fight with G Cam Lanigan of the Edmonton Oil Kings.
Yes, Ketlo initiated the scrap, which makes one wonder whether Lanigan will offer up a re-match.
Ketlo will miss at least a couple of games, meaning Dawson Guhle will get to carry the mail.
F Brad Ross of the Portland Winterhawks is the WHL player of the week. He had six points, five of them goals, and an assist in four games last week. . . . Deven Dubyk of the Medicine Hat Tigers is the WHL’s nominee as CHL goaltender of the week. He was 2-0-0-0 with a 1.00 GAA and a .971 save percentage in 2-1 and 4-1 victories over the Red Deer Rebels.
The Red Deer Rebels have reassigned F Mark McCoy, 16, a fifth-round pick in the WHL’s 2009 bantam draft. Greg Meachem of the Red Deer Advocate reports that McCoy will play for the AJHL’s Spruce Grove Saints or the midget AAA Southside Athletic Club. He was with SSAC last season. . . . McCoy scored a goal in the Rebels’ home-opening 8-1 victory over Edmonton Oil Kings. But the Rebels’ coaching staff was concerned as to whether it would be able to get McCoy, as a 16-year-old, into the WHL-mandated 40 games.
The ECHL’s Reading Royals have signed F Derek Hulak (Regina, Saskatoon, 2005-10). Hulak, who played out his WHL eligibility last season, was the Blades’ captain. He had 84 points, including 31 goals, in 72 games last season. He started out this season in the rookie camp of the NHL’s Phoenix Coyotes.
——— reports that F Nino Niederreiter’s three-year contract with the New York Islanders could be worth a maximum of US$8.475 million. . . . It carries an AHL salary of $67,500 for each of three seasons, with the NHL salary at $900,000 per season. There are $1.925 million in bonuses each season, while the $270,000 signing bonus is payable in three annual installments. . . . The Islanders selected Niederrieter, who played last season with the Portland Winterhawks, with the fifth pick of the 2010 NHL draft.
By comparison, F Ryan Johansen, the fourth overall pick who was returned by the Columbus Blue Jackets to the Winterhawks last week, signed a three-year deal with a maximum value of US$6.195 million. . . . Johansen’s contract. like Niederreiter’s, calls for AHL salaries of $67,500, with a $900,000 annual salary in the NHL. The difference is in bonuses -- Johansen’s has $1.075 million in bonus clauses each season.
The ECHL’s Las Vegas Wranglers have received three former WHLers on assignment from the AHL’s San Antonio Rampage. F Tyler Mosienko (Kelowna, 2000-05), F Ned Lukacevic (Vancouver, Spokane, Swift Current, 2001-06) and F Justin Bernhardt (Regina, Kelowna, Prince Albert, 2003-09) are were reassigned on Monday. . . . Mosienko, who played in Las Vegas from 2006-09, played last season with the Nuremberg Thomas Sabo Ice Tigers in Germany. . . . Lukacevic played 61 games with the Wranglers last season, while Bernhardt played in 29 games there.
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