Tuesday, October 25, 2011

F Shayne Toporowski (Prince Albert, 1991-95) signed a tryout contract with Villach (Austria, Erste Bank Liga). He had 16 goals and 17 assists in 58 games for Tappara Tampere (Finland, SM-Liiga) last season. . . .
F Pat Iannone (Kootenay, Try-City, Regina, 1999-2003) signed a one-year contract with Pontebba (Italy, Serie A). He had 11 goals and 26 assists in 38 games for Valpellice (Italy, Serie A) last season.
It is quite possible that Alberta fans will never get to watch Everett Silvertips D Ryan Murray in the comfort of their favourite team’s arena. The Silvertips open an Alberta swing against the Edmonton Oil Kings on Wednesday, but Murray didn’t make the trip. He’s at home nursing a sprained ankle that could keep him sidelined for up to five weeks.
As Nick Patterson of the Everett Herald reports:
“This isn't the first time Murray has had to stay behind while his teammates headed to Alberta. Two years ago, Murray suffered a broken thumb just before the team departed to visit the Central Division, home of all five of the WHL's Alberta-based teams. He was left behind then, too. Given that Everett only goes to Alberta every other year, it seems unlikely the 18-year-old Murray will ever play a WHL game in Alberta as a Silvertip.”
Murray is projected as an early first-round selection in the NHL’s 2012 draft and might very well be playing in The Show a year from now.
The Portland Winterhawks have been without F Sven Bartschi for the start of their monster 17-day, nine-game road trip. After the team bus arrived in Edmonton, he hopped a plane and flew back to Portland to get what is believed to be a hip injury examined. He already has missed the trek’s first two games and won’t play tonight against the Hitmen in Calgary. But he was to rejoin the Winterhawks on Monday night and it could be that the Flames’ medical staff will take a look at him, too. The Flames selected him in the first round, 13th overall, of the 2011 NHL draft and he sparkled in their training camp. Bartschi, 18, is a Swiss sophomore. . . .
The Vancouver Giants have added free-agent F Taylor Makin, 19, to their roster. Makin, from Blairmore, Alta., played one game with the Cougars this season before being released. He had 14 points and 43 penalty minutes in 48 games with the Cougars last season, and 17 points and 82 Pms in 70 games in 2009-10. . . . The Giants are at home to the Cougars tonight; the teams play a weekend doubleheade in Prince George. . . . Vancouver D Neil Manning (back), who hasn’t played since late September, may get back into the lineup on Friday in Prince George. . . .
The Medicine Hat Tigers have dealt F Kellan Tochkin, 20, to the Prince Albert Raiders for D James Bettauer, 20, and a sixth-round pick in the 2013 bantam draft. . . . Tochkin, who has signed with the NHL’s Vancouver Canucks, had eight assists in 10 games with the Tigers this season, and had just returned to their lineup after suffering a concussion on Oct.10. He has 214 points in 227 regular-season games, most of that with the Everett Silvertips, who dealt him to Medicine Hat last season. . . . Bettauer had nine points, including five goals, in 15 games with the Raiders this season. He has 39 points in 153 career games. . . .
The Swift Current Broncos have assigned D Bobby Zinkan, 16, to the midget AAA Calgary Northstars. A fourth-round pick by the Broncos in the 2010 bantam draft, the Calgary native had gotten into just one game with the Broncos. . . .
 F Brendan Gallagher of the Vancouver Giants is the WHL’s player of the week. He had seven points, three of them goals, in three games last week. . . . Eric Comrie of the Tri-City Americans is the WHL’s goaltender of the week. Comrie, 16, put up back-to-back 1-0 shutouts as the Americans swept the Cougars in Prince George on the weekend. . . .
Matthew Gourlie of the Moose Jaw Times-Herald fills us in on the Warriors’ injury situation. . . . The Warriors are at home to the Prince Albert Raiders on Wednesday night. . . . D Dylan McIlrath didn’t practice Monday. He took an elbow to the head in a Saturday game, but head coach Mike Stothers told Gourlie that McIlrath was having a “maintenance day” and that he also had a touch of the flu. . . . D Kendall McFaull (lower body) didn’t finish Monday’s practice. He has missed two games. . . . D Joel Edmundson (ankle) may play Wednesday for the first time this season. He was injured in camp with the NHL’s St. Louis Blues. . . . F Quinton Howden (concussion) is day-to-day, while F Sebastian Svendsen (knee) remains sidelined.
An interesting note in the weekly blog from Hockey Night in Canada’s Elliotte Friedman:
“Anaheim/Phoenix played Sunday night with only one referee, as Steve Kozari's eyes swelled up due to an allergic reaction. (Ugh, sounds gross. Get well, Steve.) As a result, Brad Watson did the game alone. Apparently, the players loved it.”
Friedman’s complete blog entry is right here.

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