Monday, April 11, 2011

Tri-City general manager Bob Tory helps Brian Williams
put on an Americans' jersey on Monday.

(Photo courtesy Tri-City Americans)
G Brett Jaeger (Medicine Hat, Vancouver, Saskatoon, 2001-04) signed a one-year contract with Hvidovre (Denmark AL-Bank Liga). He had a 2.59 GAA and a .915 save percentage in 57 games with the Coventry Blaze (UK Elite) this season. . . .
F Petr Vala (Seattle, 1997-98) signed a tryout contract with Zell am See (Austria Nationalliga). He had seven goals and two assists in 35 games this season, split between Dukla Trencin and Zilinia (both Slovakia Extraliga). . . .
D Victor Bartley (Kamloops, Regina, 2003-09) signed a one-year contract with Djurgården Stockholm (Sweden Elitserien). He had 11 goals and 23 assists in 52 regular-season games and two goals and seven assists in 10 Elitserien Qualifying Series games with Rögle Ängelholm (Sweden Allsvenskan) this season; Rögle did not qualify for promotion to Elitserien. Djurgården's general manager, Janne Järlefelt, said when announcing the signing: "Bartley was perhaps the best Allsvenskan defenseman over the whole season. He is also young and we believe he can continue to develop with us in Djurgården Hockey. He is good on the power play, has a very good shot, and is a good skater."
The WHL office finalized a pair of suspensions on Monday.
F Brad Ross of the Portland Winterhawks will sit for three games for the charging major he incurred for a hit on Kelowna Rockets F Zach Franko in Game 1 of the Western Conference semifinal on Thursday.
Ross sat out Game 2 in Portland on Sunday and will miss Games 3 and 4 in Kelowna tonight and Wednesday.
The teams are tied 1-1 going into tonight.
Franko hasn’t played since the first-period hit. He was left with at least a broken nose and an abrasion on his face. He also is believed to have a concussion.
Meanwhile, D Tyler Schmidt of the Tri-City Americans was hit with a one-game suspension for a clipping major he picked up in the third period of Game 2 of their series with the Spokane Chiefs on Sunday. Schmidt will sit out Game 3 tonight in Kennewick, Wash.
This series also is tied 1-1.
The Tri-City Americans have signed another highly touted Californian.
F Brian Williams, who is from Claremont, Calif., was an eighth-round selection in the 2010 bantam draft.
Williams was the first native-Californian drafted by Tri-City since it took Jason Beeman in the second round in 2001. According to an Americans press released, Williams “was projected as a top five pick prior to the 2010 draft but fell after he expressed interest in pursuing an NCAA scholarship.”
The 5-foot-9, 160-pound Williams had 34 points in 34 games with the Los Angeles Selects U-16 club. He was a teammate with G Eric Comrie, who signed with the Americans on Thursday.
Williams has joined the Americans and will stay with them for the remainder of this season.
F Tyler Pitlick of the Medicine Hat Tigers hasn’t played since suffering a broken ankle on March 1. He won’t play in the second round of the playoffs — the Tigers hold a 2-0 lead over the Red Deer Rebels — but he is making progress.
On Monday, after seeing a doctor, Pitlick tweeted: “Well I got the news I was hoping for I got rid of the crutches, doc wants me to lose the walking cast by the weekend #greatday"
The Rebels and Tigers are to meet in Game 3 tonight in Medicine Hat.
F Linden Vey of the Medicine Hat Tigers is the WHL’s player of the week. He had nine points, including four goals, in three games, all of them victories. . . . Medicine Hat’s Tyler Bunz is the WHL nominee as the CHL’s goaltender of the week. He went 2-0 with a 0.50 GAA and a .986 save percentage. . . . Steve Papp, who is one of the WHL’s top referees, has been selected to work the RBC Cup in Camrose, Alta., from April 30 to May 8. The RBC Cup is the national junior A championship. Papp, a veteran WHL official, is certified as a level VI referee, which qualifies him to officiate at national and international championships.
NHL Central Scouting released its final pre-draft rankings on Monday.
If you haven’t seen them yet, they’re right here.
There has been an interesting debate going on in some areas of the Internet of late, all because of Mark Cuban, who owns the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks and HDNet, for starters.
The other day, Cuban, on his blog, penned a piece that began this way:
“I’m going to make this short and sweet. In the year 2011, I’m not sure I have a need for beat writers from, Yahoo,  or any website for that matter to ever be in our locker room before or after a game.  I think we have finally reached a point where not only can we communicate any and all factual information from our players and team directly to our fans and customers as effectively as any big sports website, but I think we have also reached a point where our interests are no longer aligned. I think those websites have become the equivalent of paparazzi rather than reporters.”
That entry is right here.
On Monday, Ken Berger of took Cuban to task. Berger’s piece is right here.
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