THE MacBETH REPORT:
F Paul Deniset (Kamloops, Swift Current, Vancouver, Prince Albert, 1989-2002) signed a contract for the rest of this season with the Belfast Giants (Northern Ireland, UK Elite). He had 18 goals and 20 assists in 21 games for Amiens (France, Ligue Magnus) last season.
Monday in the Western Hockey League:
EDMONTON OIL KINGS—Traded F Cam Reid, 20, to Portland Winterhawks for 2012 eight-round bantam draft pick.
LETHBRIDGE HURRICANES–Traded F Cam Braes, 20, to Moose Jaw Warriors for a 2012 first-round bantam draft pick and a 2013 second-round bantam draft pick.
MOOSE JAW WARRIORS–Traded D Tyler Vanscourt, 19, to Vancouver Giants for a 2012 fifth-round bantam draft pick.
TRI-CITY AMERICANS–Traded D Riley Guenther, 17, to Prince Albert Raiders for a 2013 fifth-round bantam draft pick.
VANCOUVER GIANTS–Traded F Levi Bews, 17, to Swift Current for a 2012 sixth-round bantam draft pick.
VICTORIA ROYALS—Traded F Kevin Sundher, 19, to Brandon Wheat Kings for D Jordan Fransoo, 18, F Dakota Conroy, 17, and a 2012 first-round bantam draft pick.
DRAFT TRACKER (since Dec. 27):
Trades made: 13
Bantam draft picks: 13
Deadline: Tuesday, Jan. 10, 3 p.m. MT
The Brandon Wheat Kings added F Kevin Sundher, 19, from the Victoria Royals but it cost them a 2012 first-round bantam draft pick, as well as D Jordan Fransoo, 18, and F Dakota Conroy, 17. . . . Sundher, a third-round selection by the Buffalo Sabres in the 2010 NHL draft, has 64 points in 40 games this season, leaving him seventh in the WHL scoring race. . . . From Surrey, B.C., Sundher was the seventh overall pick in the 2007 bantam draft, taken by the Chilliwack Bruins. He goes to Brandon with 240 points in 254 career regular-season games. He is the franchise’s all-time leading scorer and is second in games played. . . . “It’s been a crazy day,” Sundher said in a Wheat Kings news release. “The (Royals were) just heading out for the prairies and I was pulled off the bus and told about the trade. I play to win and I'm looking forward to joining a team that has a chance to go far." . . . Fransoo, a seventh-round pick by the Ottawa Senators in the 2011 NHL draft, is in his sophomore season. From North Battleford, Sask., he has 11 points in 41 games this season. A good skater with a big shot, he was a fifth-round bantam pick by Brandon in 2008. . . . Conroy, a third-round bantam draft pick in 2009, Conroy has eight points in 37 games this season. He is from Edmonton and is projected as a top-six forward in time. . . . The Wheat Kings hope to have Sundher in their lineup Wednesday against the visiting Saskatoon Blades. . . . Interestingly, the Royals are scheduled to play in Brandon on Saturday.
The Moose Jaw Warriors picked up a top-six forward with the acquisition of F Cam Braes, who turns 21 on Thursday, from the Lethbridge Hurricanes. But it cost them a first-round pick in the 2012 bantam draft and a second-rounder in 2013. That may seem like a steep price to pay for a player who is in his final season of eligibility. But obviously the Warriors felt they needed at least one more forward — a first-line centre — in order to keep up with the Eastern Conference-leading Edmonton Oil Kings. . . . Braes, from Shawnigan Lake, B.C., was the Hurricanes’ captain. He has 203 points, including 99 goals, in 320 regular-season games with Lethbridge. This season, he has 45 points, 24 of them goals, in 44 games. . . . He was a third-round selection in the 2006 bantam draft. . . . Only Shane Peacock (336) played more games in a Hurricanes’ uniform than Braes.
The Prince Albert Raiders acquired D Riley Guenther, 17, from the Tri-City Americans for a fifth-round pick in the 2013 bantam draft. Guenther, from Calgary, had one assist and six penalty minutes in 10 games with the Americans. He played last season with the midget AAA Calgary Northstars. . . . The Americans selected him in the third round of the 2009 bantam draft.
The Vancouver Giants acquired D Tyler Vanscourt, 19, from the Moose Jaw Warriors for a 2012 fifth-round bantam draft pick that originally belonged to the Prince George Cougars. He had a goal and three assists in 14 games with Moose Jaw after being acquired from the Prince Albert Raiders. All told, he has 21 points in 40 games this season. . . . Vanscourt is from Corona, Calif., and was a seventh-round selection of the Kootenay Ice in the 2007 bantam draft.
The Swift Current Broncos acquired F Levi Bews, 17, from the Vancouver Giants for a 2012 sixth-round bantam draft pick. . . . Earlier this season, Bews went from the Saskatoon Blades to the Giants in a four-player deal. . . . He was a second-round pick, 42nd overall, by the Blades in the 2009 bantam draft. . . . The Giants had assigned him last week to the AJHL’s Okotoks Oilers. . . . In 38 WHL games this season, he has nine points, three of them goals. . . . Bews is from Longview, Alta.
The Portland Winterhawks have dealt a 2012 eighth-round bantam draft pick to the Edmonton Oil Kings for the rights to F Cam Reid, 20, who is with the St. Cloud State Huskies. . . . A sophomore, Reid has 15 points, including six goals, in 22 games this season. Last season, in 37 games, he had 29 points, eight of them goals, in 37 games. . . . The Nashville Predators selected Reid, who is from Delta, B.C., in the seventh round of the 2009 NHL draft. . . . Before heading to St. Cloud State, Reid played 167 BCHL games with the Victoria Grizzlies and Westside Warriors, putting up 138 points. . . . Reid’s WHL rights originally belonged to the Vancouver Giants, who selected him in the seventh round of the 2006 bantam draft. The Giants sent him to Edmonton in lieu of the Oil Kings selecting a player off their roster in the expansion draft prior to the 2007-08 season. . . . Reid’s arrival in Portland — and he is leaving school — will leave Portland with four 20-year-olds, meaning one of D William Wrenn, F Oliver Gabriel or F Dillon Wagner will have to go. Or it could be that Gabriel, who suffered a shoulder injury on Dec. 30 and hasn’t play since then, could be headed to the long-term injury list.
Reid told Mick Hatten of the St. Cloud, Minn., Times that he got a call from Portland on Sunday night, telling him he had 24 hours to make a decision to stay or join the Winterhawks.
“They offered to have me play center on the first line with their top two players,” Reid said. “I talked it over with my parents, and it was something I couldn’t pass up or say no to.”
That being the case, Reid will join Ty Rattie, the WHL’s scoring leader, and Sven Bartschi on Portland’s top line.
Regina Pats D Brandon Underwood, who hasn’t played since Dec. 4 when he broke a bone in a foot while blocking a shot, has been cleared to skate again. He still is a week or two from getting back in the lineup. . . .
The Portland Winterhawks have signed F Alex Schoenborn, 16, who is from Minot, N.D. He is expected to finish the season with the Omaha Jr. Lancers, an under-16 AAA team that plays in the North American Prospects league. He has 27 points in 13 games with the Lancers. . . . The Lancers are coached by David Wilkie (Seattle, Kamloops, Regina, 1999-94). . . .
Eric Welsh of the Chilliwack Progress has spoken with D Jesse Pauls, 19, who retired from the Victoria Royals last week. That story is right here. . . .
The Portland Winterhawks will play host to the Kelowna Rockets twice this week, on Wednesday and Friday. The Winterhawks go into the series having won their last 14 home games, two shy of the franchise record that was set in 1993-94. . . .
Don Nachbaur, the head coach of the Spokane Chiefs, is on the verge of becoming the sixth coach in WHL history to win 500 games. Nachbaur is at 499 going into two straight games with the Everett Silvertips. They’ll play in Spokane on Wednesday and in Everett on Friday. . . . Ken Hodge (742), Ernie McLean (548), Pat Ginnell (518), Lorne Molleken (543) and Don Hay (541) also have more than 500 victories. . . . Nachbaur also has served as head coach of the Seattle Thunderbirds (202 victories) and Tri-City Americans (229). He has three times been named winner of the Dunc McCallum Memorial Trophy as coach of the year, once with each team.
An interesting observation from columnist Cam Cole of the Vancouver Sun, following the move by Brad Marchand of the Boston Bruins to submarine Canucks defenceman Sami Salo in a game on Saturday:
“It’s a curious thing, but a current listing of NHL villains will turn up several members of Canada’s world junior squads over the past 15 years or so, which may reveal an unflattering pattern to the way Hockey Canada carefully constructs its rosters. Though some confined their borderline sociopathic behaviour primarily to their junior days, these Team Canada alumni/incendiary devices include Matt Cooke (1998), Raffi Torres (2001), Jordin Tootoo (2003), Steve Downie (2006-07), Brad Marchand (2007-08) — how’s that for a start to the all-cheap-shot-team? — and, more recently, Patrice Cormier (2009-10) and Zack Kassian (2011).
“Cooke, mind you, has renounced his evil ways and joined the choirboys, and Cormier and Kassian haven’t really got their pro careers properly warmed up yet.”
Paul Kelly, the executive director of College Hockey Inc., was in Winnipeg on the weekend and Arctic Ice Hockey was able to get an interview. Perhaps the battle between College Hockey Inc. and the CHL is heating up again. That complete interview is right here.
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