Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Wednesday . . .

F Eric Schneider (Tri-City, 1995-96) signed a two-year contract extension with Munich (Germany DEL). He had 21 goals and 35 assists in 52 games for Munich this season. . . . F Sean O'Connor (Moose Jaw, 1999-2002) signed a one-year contract extension with the Augsburger Panther (Germany DEL). He had six goals and six assists in 33 games for Augsburg this season.
Mike Williamson, the head coach of the Calgary Hitmen, has been named head coach of the Canadian team that will compete in the 2011 IIHF World U-18 championship in Dresden and Crimmitschau, Germany, , April 14-24.
Also on the coaching staff are assistants Mark Lamb, who is the GM/head coach of the Swift Current Broncos, and Dale Hawerchuk, the director of hockey operations and head coach of the OHL’s Barrie Colts. The goaltending coach will be former NHLer Ron Tugnutt, who works with the OHL’s Peterborough Petes.
Canada opens the tournament against the Czech Republic on April 15 in Dresden. Also in Canada’s preliminary pool are Finland, Norway and Sweden.
A note from Rich Hammond at points out that Ron Hextall, the Los Angeles Kings assistant GM, completed his first marathon on Sunday when he ran in the Los Angeles Marathon. According to Hammond, runners competed in “cold, dismal conditions.” . . . Hextall, who played goal for the Brandon Wheat Kings (1981-84), was joined by his wife Diane and Kings broadcaster Daryl Evans. The three ran together and finished in four hours 37 minutes 11 seconds. . . . Diane is the former Diane Ogibowski of Minnedosa, Man. In her day, she was one of Canada’s top female figure skaters.
The Red Deer Rebels made it official Wednesday. They are preparing a bid on the 2013 Memorial Cup tournament.
“It’s something that has been discussed for awhile,” Brent Sutter, the Rebels’ owner, told Greg Meachem of the Red Deer Advocate. “Before even considering a bid, you have to feel confident that you will have a quality team at the time, a team that will be able to compete in such a prestigious event.
“I had lengthy discussions with Jesse (Rebels head coach/vice-president of hockey operations) and also with (director of scouting/player development) Randy Peterson, and they both felt very confident and comfortable that we’d be able to compete.”
The Lethbridge Hurricanes also have said they will bid on the host rights, while it is widely believed that the Saskatoon Blades also will be involved.
According to Meachem’s story, “If five or more cities bid for the event, the WHL will review preliminary bid information and shortlist the bids to a maximum of four by June 15.”
JUST NOTES: Deven Dubyk of the Medicine Hat Tigers is the CHL’s goaltender of the week. Dubyk put up back-to-back shutouts over the Calgary Hitmen last weekend as the Tigers rested starter Tyler Bunz. . . . Those were Dubyk’s first career shutouts. . . . The Tri-City Americans won’t have F Adam Hughesman (knee) back for the opening of their series with the Vancouver Giants. Hughesman, who has been out for a month, is back skating and might return for Game 3. . . . Vancouver F James Henry (knee) didn’t practise Wednesday. . . . The Giants also will be without D Joel Rogers, 20, who suffered a concussion on the weekend on a hit by Kelowna Rockets F Evan Bloodoff. Elliott Pap of the Vancouver Sun reports that Rogers “almost certainly won't play again this season.” That was Rogers’ second concussion in a two-month period. Bloodoff drew a four-game suspension.
Darren Zary of the Saskatoon StarPhoenix has a story right here about the Rosetown Redwings, who are 31-0 as they chase a Hardy Cup (senior B) championship. And there are lots of names here that will be familiar to WHL fans.
Here, for your reading enjoyment, is a great little piece from the Washington Post on the time Liz Taylor took part in the coin flip prior to an NFL game between the Washinton Redskins and the host Dallas Cowboys.
Be prepared to chuckle when you read it. It’s right here.
The WHL held its draft lottery Wednesday morning and the Kamloops Blazers were the winners. They had just one of the 21 balls in the lottery, but their ball came up, allowing them to move up two spots to fourth.
Here then, courtesy of Greg Harder of the Regina Leader-Post, is the order of selection for the first round of the draft, which is scheduled for May 5 in Calgary:
1. Calgary Hitmen
2. Swift Current Broncos
3. Lethbridge Hurricanes (From Regina)
4. Kamloops Blazers
5. Lethbridge Hurricanes
6. Seattle Thunderbirds
7. Everett Silvertips
8. Prince Albert Raiders
9. Edmonton Oil Kings
10. Prince George Cougars
11. Brandon Wheat Kings
12. Chilliwack Bruins
13. Swift Current Broncos (From Kootenay/Vancouver)
14. Moose Jaw Warriors
15. Kelowna Rockets
16. Regina Pats (From Tri-City)
17. Kootenay Ice
18. Medicine Hat Tigers
19. Spokane Chiefs
20. Vancouver Giants (From Portland)
21. Red Deer Rebels
22. Brandon Wheat Kings (From Saskatoon)
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