THE MacBETH REPORT:
F Brad Leeb (Red Deer, 1994-99) signed a one-year contract with the Coventry Blaze (England, UK Elite). He had three goals and six assists in 44 games with the Nuremberg Ice Tigers (Germany, DEL) last season. Leeb joins his brother Greg (Spokane, 1994-98), who signed with Coventry three weeks ago. The brothers also played the past four seasons together in Nuremberg. . . .
F Kyle Bailey (Portland, Lethbridge, 2002-07) signed a one-year contract with Alba Volan Szekesfehervar (Hungary, Austria Erste Bank Liga). He had 16 goals and 17 assists in 27 games with University of New Brunswick Varsity Reds (CIS) and was pointless in five games with Rochester Americans (AHL) last season. Bailey was captain of UNB the last three seasons and capped his final university season by leading the Varsity Reds in scoring; winning the 2011-12 UNB Red Black Award for overall contribution as a player, student, and community member for the third time; winning the 2011-2012 Atlantic University Sports Godfrey Award recognizing leadership, academics, and community service for a second straight year; and winning the 2011-12 Dr. Randy Gregg Award as the CIS hockey player who best combined hockey, academics, and community service, all accomplished while in graduate school working on his MBA degree. Bailey finished his university career as the third-leading career scorer at UNB.
The Prince Albert Raiders have signed F Leon Draisaitl, who was the second overall selection in the CHL’s 2012 import draft. Draisaitl, from Cologne, Germany, had 56 points, including 21 goals, in 35 games last season for Jungadler Mannheim’s U-18 team. The previous season, he had 192 points, including 97 goals, in 29 games for the U-16s. He has represented Germany in U-18 and U-17 competitions.
THE COACHING GAME:
Josh Hepditch is the new head coach of the junior B Creston Valley Thunder Cats of the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League. A product of the minor hockey system in Fredericton, N.B., he played four seasons with the QMJHL’s Moncton Wildcats and five at the U of New Brunswick. He went on to play for the Central league’s Allen Americans. . . . In Creston, Hepditch replaces head coach Brent Heaven, who now is an assistant coach with the BCHL’s Trail Smoke Eaters. . . .
Reports indicate that Scott Pellerin will be named the next head coach of the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, the AHL affiliate of the NHL’s New York Islanders. . . . Pellerin has been an assistant coach with the AHL’s Manchester Monarchs, an affiliate of the Los Angeles Kings, since 2006. . . . Pellerin, a native of Shediac, N.B., spent four seasons playing at the U of Maine where he was teammates with Islanders GM Garth Snow. . . . Brent Thompson, Bridgeport’s last head coach, has moved into an assistant’s role with the Islanders. . . .
Dwight McMillan has indicated that 2012-13 will be his final season as head coach of the SJHL's Weyburn Red Wings. The team made the announcement on its website, announcing at the same time that he had signed a one-year contract. This, folks, is a big deal. Why? Well, consider that he has been with the team for almost every season since its inception in 1961. Back then, he was a rookie player. He took over as the head coach of the junior B Red Wings in 1967 and became head coach of the junior A team in 1972. Other than two seasons in the 1980s, he's been the coach ever since. He has won well over 1,000 games in the SJHL and two national championships. . . . McMillan's final season will be his 25th consecutive winter behind the Red Wings' bench.
So what happens when a WHL team moves from a bandbox into a new facility? If you’re the Moose Jaw Warriors, who said hello to Mosaic Place and goodby to the Crushed Can (aka the Civic Centre), the gate receipts, including playoffs, more than double. Here’s Matthew Gourlie of the Moose Jaw Times-Herald, reporting on the Warriors’ annual general meeting that was held Tuesday: "The Warriors’ gate receipts totalled $1,651,235 last season which nearly doubled the $881,357 from the season previous. The deep playoff run to the Eastern Conference final also earned them $580,109 in receipts, but their direct playoff expenses were $228,109." . . . In the end, Gourlie reported, "The Warriors announced net earnings of $394,646 and have retained earnings of $923,702 at the end of the fiscal year." . . . At the meeting, Dave Kiefer and Dean Lang were re-elected to three-year terms on the board of directors, while Darrell Markin was elected to replace governor Darin Chow on the board. Chow, who is moving to Yorkton where he will serve as a judge, is to remain the Warriors’ governor. . . . Warriors president Chad Taylor also told Gourlie that the Warriors have been promoted within the WHL and no longer are considered small market. Instead, they now are a "mid-market team." . . . "We’ve always been in the bottom classification. It’s based on revenues and season ticket base," Taylor said. "We’ve moved up into the next category which is a bit of a pat on the back from the other owners. It’s a good thing."
For more, lots more, on the annual meeting, check out Gourlie’s story right here.
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