Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The big news on Monday, of course, was the resignation of Paul Kelly as the executive director of College Hockey Inc.
Kelly’s resignation seems to have caught most everyone by surprise.
Todd Milewski, the executive editor of USCHO News (uscho.com), reported that “Kelly was given a choice Monday to resign or be fired as executive director of College Hockey Inc., sources said, and he chose the former.”
No one is talking, at least not yet, but in a text to Pierre LeBrun of ESPN and TSN, Kelly wrote: “Time to move on. I told them I’d give them 2-3 years to get the entity established and operational. It’s been 28 months and it’s time for a new challenge.”
I don’t pretend to have any idea what happened but have to wonder if Kelly perhaps came to the conclusion that without NCAA rule changes he was beating a dead horse.
The situation that is the recruiting battle between the NCAA and CHL will go on forever exactly as it is if the NCAA doesn’t loosen its eligibility regulations. And that isn’t going to happen any time soon. That’s because the NCAA makes rules that govern all of its sports, from football to basketball to hockey to golf to tennis et al. It isn’t about to begin designing special rules for a specific sport.
It was North Dakota head coach Dave Hakstol who earlier this month told Brad Schlossman of the Grand Forks Herald that “we are going into a back-alley brawl. They are bringing guns. We’re coming with no weapon and one hand tied behind our back.”
Perhaps Kelly got tired of playing the role of a one-armed man wrestling with a bear.
Milewski’s complete story is right here.
Further to yesterday’s note about the epidemic of WHL injuries. . . . Last weekend, the Prince George Cougars played without an AP in their lineup for the first time in a month. At one point they were missing 10 regulars with injuries, a number that now is at six. . . .
D Austin Madaisky of the Kamloops Blazers will sit for two games after being suspended by the WHL for a cross-checking major he incurred in a 5-4 loss to the visiting Calgary Hitmen on Saturday. Madaisky was penalized for a hit on F Alex Gogolev; the Hitmen scored twice on the resulting PP. . . . Madaisky will miss a Wednesday visit by the Victoria Royals and a game in Vancouver against the Giants on Friday.
In Swift Current, F Brad Hoban scored the only goal of the circus and the Broncos beat the Moose Jaw Warriors, 5-4. . . . The Broncos got the game’s first goal, with Hoban scoring his 15th goal on a PP at 7:13 of the first. They then exchanged goals until Moose Jaw F Quinton Howden tied it at 4 with his 28th goal at 7:52 of the third. . . . Swift Current freshman F Coda Gordon got his 28th goal and his seventh in four games. Gordon and Kamloops Blazers F Tim Bozon lead all WHL freshmen in goals. . . . Broncos captain Taylor Vause had a goal, his 34th, and two assists. . . . Howden also had two assists for the Warriors, while F Kenton Miller added two goals, giving him 28, and a helper. . . . The Broncos were 3-7 on the PP; the Warriors were 0-4. . . . The Broncos, with two straight victories, are 15 points out of a playoff spot with 11 games remaining. . . . The Warriors lead the East Division by 10 points over the Saskatoon Blades. . . .

In Edmonton, the Oil Kings erased a 3-0 first-period deficit and scored a 5-4 shootout victory over the Medicine Hat Tigers. . . . F Tyler Maxwell and F Martin Gernat scored in the circus for the Oil Kings to end it. . . . F Dylan Wruck’s 20th goal pulled Edmonton into a tie at 19:23 of the third. . . . F Emerson Etem had given the Tigers a 4-3 lead with his 52nd goal at 17:19. . . . Edmonton D Mark Pysyk had a goal, his fifth, and two assists. . . . Tigers D James Bettauer had a goal, his 19th, and two assists. . . . F Curtis Valk had a goal and an assist in his return from injury, but the Tigers were still without G Tyler Bunz, F Hunter Shinkaruk and D Kale Kessy. . . . Tigers G Kenny Cameron stopped 36 shots. . . . Edmonton G Tristan Jarry came on in relief of Laurent Brossoit with his side down 3-0 and stopped 16 of 17. . . . The Oil Kings closed to within one point of the Kamloops Blazers, who lead the WHL’s overall standings and stretched their Central Division lead to eight points over the Tigers. . . . Terry Jones of the Edmonton Sun was in attendance and, judging by this column, he liked what he saw. . . .

In Portland, F Ty Rattie got his 50th goal and 100th point on the same play as the Winterhawks beat the Prince George Cougars, 7-2. . . . Rattie finished with two goals and an assist, and now is one point off the WHL scoring lead that is held by F Mark Stone of the Brandon Wheat Kings. . . . Rattie is the first Portland skater with 50 goals since F Josef Balej had 51 in 2001-02 and the first with 100 points since F Todd Robinson finished with 109 in 1997-98. . . . Portland F Sven Baertschi scored twice, giving him 25. He also continued his pace of two points per game, as he now has 80 in 40. . . . Portland F Oliver Gabriel had two assists as he ran his point streak to 11 games. . . . Baertschi is on a 10-game tear. . . . Portland G Mac Carruth picked up his WHL-leading 37th victory. . . . The Cougars and Winterhawks meet again tonight in Portland. . . . The victory lifted Portland, which has won seven straight games, into first place in the U.S. Division, two points ahead of the Tri-City Americans, and to within a point of the Kamloops Blazers, who lead the Western Conference and the overall standings. . . . The Cougars remain 10th in the conference but are just two points out of a playoff spot.
F Jordan Wyton, Moose Jaw.
Today’s good read is a good read every week. It’s from Elliotte Friedman of Hockey Night in Canada and it’s right here.
You absolutely don't want to miss this. . . . Preacher accuses Buzz Aldrin of being a liar and not having landed on the moon. Aldrin lands moonshot on preacher’s chin. It’s right here. . . . Had a WHL referee been present he would have given Aldrin two for instigating, five for fighting and a misconduct. Preacher gets two for roughing.
A tweet was sent out last night from @GMilIerTSN: “EDM F Ales Hemsky has been traded to NSH for D-man Ryan Ellis + 2012 1st (Conditional) more details to come.”
It turned out to be fake.
So be careful what you read/believe over the next six days.
Meanwhile, Roy MacGregor of The Globe and Mail takes a look at the week ahead right here.

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