D Taylor Aronson, who was playing midget hockey with the Los Angeles Jr. Kings just two years ago, has signed a three-year deal with the NHL’s Nashville Predators. Aronson turns 19 on Thursday. . . . Aronson, now in his second season with the Portland Winterhawks, was selected by Nashville in the third round of the 2010 NHL draft. . . . According to CapGeek.com, Aronson’s contract calls for AHL salaries of US$60,000, $62,500 and $65,000, with the NHL salary at $600,000 each season. The signing bonus is $225,000, payable in three $75,000 segments. . . . Aronson was one of eight Winterhawks selected in the NHL’s 2010 draft.
The Moose Jaw Warriors have added Mike Vandenberghe to their coaching staff. Vandenberghe, who with his wife lives in Regina Beach, Sask., started this season as an interim assistant coach with the Brandon Wheat Kings, filling in for the injured Dwayne Gylywoychuk. A defenceman through a four-season WHL career with the Wheat Kings and Medicine Hat Tigers (he also played three games with the Warriors), Vandenberghe joins head coach Dave Hunchak and assistant Trevor Weisgerber with the Warriors. . . . Vandenberghe was with the Wheat Kings when they made their B.C. Division tour earlier this season. And guess what? Yes, the Warriors open a B.C. Division tour on Thursday against the Vancouver Giants. . . . The Warriors actually open the road trip tonight in Calgary against the Hitmen; this is the first of seven games in 12 days.
Matthew Gourlie of the Moose Jaw Times-Herald reports that the Moose Jaw Warriors have added D Matthew Franczyk, 17, to their roster. Franczyk, from Winnipeg, was a fifth-round pick by Moose Jaw in the 2008 bantam draft, but was dealt to the Swift Current Broncos for F Preston Amundson, 17, over the summer. Franczyk got into just one game with the Broncos before returning to Winnipeg and the MJHL’s Winnipeg South Blues. The Broncos dropped him from their list and the Warriors added him. . . . The Warriors are missing four players who are at Christmas tournaments -- F Quinton Howden (Canada) and F Antonin Honejsek (Czech Republic) are at the World Junior Championship; F Brayden Cuthbert and D Morgan Rielly are at the U-17 World Hockey Challenge -- so will add D Spencer Morse and F Brandon Potomak for games on their road trip. Both were second-round selections in the 2010 draft. Morse is playing with the minor midget AAA Calgary Blackhawks, while Potomak, from Aldergrove, B.C., plays at the Pursuit of Excellence academy in Kelowna.
F Lyndon Martell, 17, has joined the Regina Pats. He had been with the BCHL’s Prince George Spruce Kings. The Pats acquired Martell, F Shayne Neigum and a 2011 third-round bantam pick from the Kamloops Blazers for F Thomas Frazee, 20, on Dec. 14. . . . In 17 games with the Spruce Kings, Martell had 14 points, including five goals.
The Portland Winterhawks have three players at the World Junior Championsip -- F Ryan Johansen (Canada) and F Nino Niederreiter and F Sven Bartschi (both Switzerland -- and two (F Brendan Leipsic and D Darrick Pouliot) at the U1-7 World Hockey Challenge. . . . Portland has added F Brayden Low and F Adam Smith, a pair of 2009 bantam picks, to help fill out the roster. Low has 18 points in 27 games with the junior B Richmond, B.C., Sockeyes, while Smith had one point in 10 games with the BCHL’s Cowichan Valley Capitals.
Hey, remember Craig Hartsburg, the head coach of the Everett Silvertips? If you do, you’ll recall that he had some heart surgery in November and has yet to return to the team’s bench. Nick Patterson of the Everett Herald reports that Hartsburg is progressing nicely and should be back early in January. . . . Patterson also reports that Everett will be without D Chad Suer (broken jaw) indefinitely. He was injured just before the Christmas break. . . . Also missing from Everett’s roster are D Rasmus Rissanen (Finland, World Junior Championship), D Nick Walters and F Jari Erricson (U-17 World Hockey Challenge), and F Campbell Elynuik (shoulder). . . . The Silvertips have added D Gabe Minville, 18, from the SJHL’s Humboldt Broncos and D Kieran Friesen, 18, from the junior B Princeton, B.C., Posse. . . . The Silvertips also have F Ryan Chynoweth, their top pick in the 2010 bantam draft (24th overall), and he may get into a game or two. The son of Kootenay Ice president/GM Jeff Chynoweth, Ryan plays for the midget AAA Lethbridge Hurricanes.
And, finally, a few words from Medicine Hat Tigers F Emerson Etem, who is with the U.S. team at the World Junior Championship in Buffalo. Sometime on Monday, Etem took time to tweet this:
“much needed day off, buffalo is a ghost town!! the worst city ever, it makes medicine hat look like paradise, never thought ide say that”
Buffalo TV station WGRZ posted a three-paragraph story on its website that included that tweet. And the comments took off from there. You’ll find them right here and some of them are hilarious.
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