Monday, July 9, 2012

F Derek Ryan (Spokane, 2003-07) signed a two-year contract with Villach (Austria, Erste Bank Liga). He had 25 goals and 24 assists in 50 games with Alba Volan Szekesfehervar (Hungary, Austria Erste Bank Liga) last season. Ryan had agreed to a one-year contract extension with Alba Volan in April but was released from it on Friday.
According to the Edmonton Sun, F Rhett Rachinski and D Brennan Yadlowski, both of whom played out their WHL eligibility last season, have decided to attend the U of Alberta and play for the Golden Bears. . . . Rachinski, who is from Edmonton, played 244 games with the Oil Kings. Last season, he had 50 points, including 27 goals, in 72 games. . . . Yadlowski played 324 regular-season WHL games, splitting them between the Lethbridge Hurricanes and Everett Silvertips. Last season, he had 24 points and 91 penalty minutes in 59 games with Everett. It was Yadlowski, you may recall, who was responsible for one of last season’s highlights. He drew a 10-game suspension after paying an in-game visit to the Portland Winterhawks dressing room in a Feb. 3 game.
There is speculation again about the possibility of a WHL franchise ending up in Fort McMurray, Alta., after Mayor Melissa Blake told a Canada Day gathering that a downtown arena definitely is part of the city’s redevelopment plan.
Furthermore, construction and what is expected to be a 5,000-seat arena could start within the next 12 months.
The AJHL’s Fort McMurray Oil Barons play out of the 2,300-seat Thickwood Heights Arena.
The WHL, however, doesn’t appear to be in Fort McMurray’s future.
At least one WHL owner has looked into putting a franchise into Fort McMurray. He has told me that he was told by the WHL office at the time that the league isn’t interested in the northern Alberta community, primarily because it is a five-hour bus ride from what would be its closest rival, the Edmonton Oil Kings.
That particular owner had begun to put together the pieces that would have resulted in the building of a new arena with private funds. However, that all fell apart with the WHL saying it wasn’t at all interested in putting a team in the city of more than 60,000 people.
The Victoria Royals have a new bus, and it looks like a beaut.
Cleve Dheensaw of the Victoria Times Colonist has that story right here.
He finishes the story with this: “It is believed to be the best bus in the WHL.”
Hmmm . . .

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