Saturday, May 7, 2011

Friday . . .

F Karel Hromas (Everett, 2004-06) signed a one-year contract with Chomutov (Czech Republic 1.Liga). He had seven goals and four assists in 52 games for Sparta Prague (Czech Republic Extraliga) this season. . . .
D Justin Kurtz (Brandon, 1993-97) signed a one-year contract with the Black Wings Linz (Austria, Erste Bank Liga). He had seven goals and 33 assists in 48 games for the Fischtown Pinguins Bremerhaven (Germany 2.Bundesliga) this season.
The WHL’s championship final opened in Portland on Friday night, with F Ty Rattie tipping in a shot on a PP just 55 seconds into OT to give the Winterhawks a 4-3 victory over the Kootenay Ice. . . . Rattie tipped in a shot by C Craig Cunningham after a faceoff in the Kootenay zone. The second assist went to D Derrick Pouliot, a 16-year-old who quarterbacks one of Portland’s PP units. He was the first overall pick in the 2009 bantam draft. . . . The Ice had its playoff winning streak snapped at 11 games, one shy of the WHL record. . . . Rattie has goals in three straight games. . . . Kootenay had a late PP after Portland F Brad Ross was penalized for high-sticking at 17:28 of the third. . . . Portland’s final PP came after Ice D James Martin went off for tripping at 19:04. He dumped Portland F Ryan Johansen. . . . Ice F Kevin King forced OT with an unassisted goal at 11:11 of the third period. The goal came moments after play was delayed while a broken pane of glass was replaced. . . . The game’s first five goals all came in the first period. . . . F Sven Bartschi scored Portland’s first two goals, with Ice D Hayden Rintoul scoring between those goals. . . . Ice F Joe Antilla tied it 2-2 at 17:50 of the first, with Portland F Nino Niederreiter giving his side a 3-2 lead with 3.9 seconds left in the first. . . . Portland G Mac Carruth stopped 39 shots, nine more than the Ice’s Nathan Lieuwen. . . . The Winterhawks were 1-for-6 on the PP; the Ice was 0-for-5. . . . The referees were Pat Smith and Derek Zalaski. . . . Attendance was 7,595. . . . Game 2 is scheduled for tonight in Portland. . . . The Ice remains without F Brock Montgomery (mononucleosis) remains out, while the Winterhawks are still without D Brett Ponich (knee) and F Oliver Gabriel (shoulder). Ponich is back skating but isn’t yet ready to return.
Two minors:
Kootenay D Brayden McNabb
Portland F Tayler Jordan
In Victoria, the Salmon Kings were laid to rest on Friday as RG Properties announced that it won’t operate the ECHL franchise next season. And, just like that, the franchise, which spent seven seasons in Victoria, is dead and buried.
RG Properties, which manages the Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre in Victoria, owned the ECHL franchise. It announced Friday that it “has withdrawn from the League with the full approval of the ECHL Board of Governors.”
According to a Salmon Kings news release: “The withdrawal effectively ends the Salmon Kings organization. The players have been awarded free-agency, and given the opportunity to choose the future direction of their hockey careers.”
The focus now has shifted to the former Chilliwack Bruins franchise, which is soon to be renamed the Victoria Tide or something like that. Andrew A. Duffy of the Victoria Times Colonist has that story right here.
“Forget hunting for steroids and performance-enhancing substances: This is the real issue. Even if its not as sexy or black-and-white moralistic,” writes Jeff Blair in The Globe and Mail. Yes, he’s writing about Dr. Charles Tator and others and the research they are doing on concussions. If you’re a parent, or if you are playing a contact sport, you should give this a read. It’s right here.
Meanwhile, James Mirtle of The Globe and Mail sat down with Brian Levine, senior scientist at the Rotman Research Institute at Baycrest in Toronto, and talked about the work they are doing with the NHL alumni association. That interview is right here.
F Adam Chorneyko (Kamloops, Lethbridge, Saskatoon, 2004-09) scored at 4:35 of the third OT on Thursday night in Loveland, Colo., giving the Colorado Eagles a 2-1 victory over the Rapid City Rush in the fifth-longest game in Central league history. . . . The Eagles hold a 3-1 lead the Turner Conference final 3-1 with Game 5 in Rapid City, S.D., tonight. . . . The New York Rangers have signed Czech F Roman Horak to a three-year NHL contract. Horak played the last two seasons with the Chilliwack Bruins. He had 78 points, including 26 goals, in 64 games this season. Horak, who turns 20 on May 21, was a fifth-round pick in the 2009 NHL draft. . . . Former WHL D and coach Mark Ferner has been named head of Canada West for the 2011 World Junior A Challenge. Ferner is in his fourth season as GM/head coach of the BCHL’s Vernon Vipers, who have a chance to win their third straight national title this weekend in Camrose, Alta. A host community for the 2011 WHC has yet to be announced. . . . Former WHLer Dalyn Flette was named the RBC Cup’s top goaltender and most valuable player on Friday in Camrose, Alta. Flette now plays for the host Camrose Kodiaks. . . .
In the OHL, D Matt Petgrave scored early in the first OT period Friday, giving the visiting Owen Sound Attack a 6-5 victory over the Mississauga St. Michael's Majors. Attendance was 4,053. . . . Mississauga holds a 2-1 lead in the championship final with Game 4 scheduled for Sunday afternoon in Owen Sound.
A Friday morning tweet from Willy Palov of the Halifax ChronicleHerald: “Announcement coming on Monday at Lewiston Maneaics will move to Summerside, PEI.” . . .
That was followed by this from QMJHL_Fanhouse: “Lewiston to Summerside relocation rumors are heating up once again. Usually smoke leads to fire but we'll see.” . . .
However, Charles Reid of the Charlottetown Guardian reports that it isn’t that simple. His story is right here.
THE COACHING GAME: Mel Pearson Jr., an assistant or associate coach for 23 seasons with the Michigan Wolverines, is the new head coach of the Michigan Tech Huskies. Pearson is a Michigan Tech alum. A native of Vancouver, Pearson is the son of the late Mel Pearson Sr., who played (1955-57) and coached the Flin Flon Bombers for two full seasons (1973-75) and part of one other (1975-76). . . . As expected, the QMJHL’s Halifax Mooseheads have named Dominique Ducharme as their head coach. He spent the last three seasons as a head coach with the Montreal Junior.
Tweet of the day, from @mpysyk03: Congrats to @backhandsauce07 for finally graduating high school! And also happy 25th birthday buddy! You did it!
Taking Note on Twitter

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