Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Mayor Sam Adams (centre) of Portland was at the Winterhawks' game last night
and purchased a Free Mike J t-shirt. His Honour later tweeted (@MayorSamAdams):
"I just bought one of these 'Free Mike J' t-shirts here at the #VMC from the great
@Winterhawks Boosters @PWHBC #pdx"
Ceske Budejovice (Czech Republic, Extraliga) exercised its contract option with F Ladislav Kohn (Brandon, Swift Current, 1993-95), keeping Kohn under contract with the club through the end of this season. Kohn's contract, signed in October, was to expire at the end of December but had a club option to extend it through the end of this season. He has two goals and eight assists in 14 games this season. Last season, Kohn had five goals and 14 assists in 37 games as an alternate captain with Trinec (Czech Republic, Extraliga) and one goal and three assists in eight games with Ambri-Piotta (Switzerland, NL A).
F Kris Beech (Calgary, 1996-2001) signed a "game-by-game" contract with AIK Stockholm (Sweden, Elitserien). He had two goals and six assists in 21 games earlier this season for Pardubice (Czech Republic, Extraliga). AIK currently has eight players out with injuries, including two at Beech's centre position. Beech, released by Pardubice on Nov. 16, is expected to practice with AIK today and will play in their game Thursday, if the paperwork is completed in time. AIK,  currently in 11th place in the 12-team Elitserien halfway through its schedule, fired their head coach, Per-Erik Johnsson, on Monday and replaced him with former Vancouver Canuck D Anders Eldebrink. . . .
F Dana Tyrell (Prince George, 2004-09) signed an NHL lockout contract with Banska Bystrica (Slovakia, Extraliga). He had five assists in 26 games with the Tampa Bay Lightning and four goals and five assists in 18 games with the Norfolk Admirals (AHL) last season.
The Swift Current Broncos are touring B.C. with a starting goaltender, an injured backup and a No. 3 who has been brought in from the junior B North Delta Devils.
Wait! There’s more.
Eetu Laurikainen, the 19-year-old starting freshman, will be leaving for his native Finland after a Saturday game against the Royals in Victoria.
Landon Bow, a 17-year-old freshman from Thompson, Man., has been backing up Laurikainen. But Bow went down in a goal-mouth collision duriing a 5-0 victory over the visiting Brandon Wheat Kings on Saturday. Bow is hurting and wasn’t able to dress last night in Kamloops.
So they brought in Steve Myland, 18, from North Delta.
Mark Lamb, the Broncos’ general manager and head coach, said Bow wasn’t able to skate on Monday but he’s hopeful he’ll be ready by the weekend.
“We’re hoping,” Lamb said. “He’s not limping or anything so he should be all right.”
But what happens if Laurikainen is gone and Bow still can’t play?
Well, the Broncos could maybe bring in Travis Child of Killam, Alta. He was a second-round selection in the 2012 bantam draft.
“There’s a couple of of other options,” Lamb said. “Hopefully, we don’t have to get to that.”
The Broncos lost two forwards in Tuesday’s 2-1 loss to the Blazers in Kamloops. Josh Derko and Levi Bews both were taken to Royal Inland Hospital with apparent leg injuries.
After the game, Lamb allowed that “it doesn’t look good.”
Latvia’s preliminary 32-man roster for its national junior team includes three WHLers – D Rinalds Rosinskis of the Prince George Cougars, F Edgars Kulda of the Edmonton Oil Kings and F Roberts Lipsbergs of the Seattle Thunderbirds. . . . The Latvians will hold a camp in Broceni from Dec. 10-22. . . . Latvia is in the big tournament for the fourth time in five years. . . . G Andrey Makarov of the Saskatoon Blades is the lone WHLer on the Russian roster, while D Seth Jones of the Portland Winterhawks is the only WHLer on the U.S. roster. . . . The U.S. team will hold a camp in Tarrytown, N.Y., Dec. 16-18, and will name its final 23-man roster on Dec. 23 after it continues its camp in Helsinki, Finland. . . . When Makarov leaves Saskatoon, the Blades will bring in G Patrick Johnston to support Alex Moodie. Johnson plays for the SJHL’s Melfort Mustangs. Makarov (ill) didn’t practice Tuesday but is expected to start tonight against the visiting Spokane Chiefs. . . . Daniel Nugent-Bowman of the Saskatoon StarPhoenix reports that F Brett Stovin (shoulder) will be in the Blades’ lineup after an eight-game absence.
D Keegan Lowe of the Edmonton Oilers is expected to miss a third straight game tonight with an ankle injury. The Oil Kings play the Hurricanes in Lethbridge tonight. . . . With D Griffin Reinhart and D David Musil to leave shortly for national team camps and with D Martin Gernat out with a shoulder problem, the Oil Kings hope to get Lowe healthy so that he can return by next week. . . . Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal also reports that F Travis Ewanyk (knee) didn’t make the bus ride to Lethbridge.
In Prince Albert, the Spokane Chiefs scored three goals in the game’s last 3:03 and beat the Raiders, 7-4. . . . F Collin Valcourt broke a 4-4 tie at 16:57, with F Liam Stewart adding insurance at 17:35 and F Connor Chartier getting the empty-netter at 19:48. . . . F Mike Aviani had three goals and an assist for Spokane, while F Todd Fiddler, who started his WHL career with the Raiders, had a goal and two assists and was plus-4. . . . The Chiefs had a 4-1 lead late in the second period, only to have the Raiders come back and tie it on F Austin Daae’s first goal and two from F Dakota Conroy. . . . It was the first hat trick of Aviani’s career. He didn’t score at all in the first nine games of November, then scored twice as the Chiefs opened their East Division swing with a 7-2 victory in Swift Current on Friday. . . . Aviani, who had 13 goals in 70 games last season, has 15 in 28 games this season. . . . The Chiefs are 3-0-0 on their East Division tour. . . . Prince Albert F Jonas Knutsen left the game after hitting his head on the ice as a first-period scrap with Spokane F Carter Proft ended. Knutsen is scheduled to leave the Raiders today and join Norway’s national junior team for the IIHF Division I Group A U20 championship in Amiens, France. He told Dave Leaderhouse of the Prince Albert Daily Herald that he was knocked out and that he received a couple of stitches, both other than that he was OK. “I have to do a skate (today), but I leave real early so I am going to see Bruno (Raiders general manager Bruno Campese) right now and see what he says,” Knutse told Leaderhouse. . . .

In Cranbrook, the Calgary Hitmen scored the game’s last six goals and beat the Kootenay Ice, 6-1. . . . F Greg Chase scored twice for the Hitmen, while F Victor Rask and F Brooks Macek each had a goal and two assists. . . .

In Prince George, G Brett Zarowny stopped 33 shots to lead the Cougars to a 2-1 victory over the Moose Jaw Warriors. . . . F Jarrett Fontaine and F Daulton Siwak scored late in the first period to give Prince George a 2-0 lead. . . . F Sam Fioretti, with his 18th, got Moose Jaw on the board at 1:57 of the second. . . . Cougars F Troy Bourke, who hadn’t played since Nov. 9 due to an undisclosed injury, returned to action with one assist. He missed nine games. . . . The Cougars ended a three-game home losing streak. . . .

In Kamloops, the Blazers scored twice in the game’s last two minutes and beat the Swift Current Broncos, 2-1. . . . F Coda Gordon scored a PP goal for the Broncos at 2:46 of the second period. . . . With G Eetu Laurikainnen putting on a 30-save show, the Broncos lost in hearbreaking fashion. . . . Kamloops G Cole Cheveldave made two brilliant saves during a Swift Current PP in the second-half of the third period to keep his team’s hopes alive. They were the first shots he saw in the period. . . . F Colin Smith then tied the game at 18:16 and D Sam Grist got the winner at 18:47. . . . As mentioned above, Swift Current forwards Josh Derko and Levi Bews both were taken to hospital with apparent leg injuries during the game. . . .

In Portland, the Winterhawks erased a 4-1 deficit and beat the Everett Silvertips, 7-5. . . . Portland has won seven in a row. It also has won 12 straight at home. . . . Portland F Brendan Leipsic, named the WHL player of the month earlier in the day, had four goals, three of them in a row. With his side trailing 4-1, he scored three times. . . .  Leipsic, who has 20 goals, ran his point streak to 16 games. . . . His first three goals came at 8:46, 16:55 and 18:37 of the second. . . . It was Portland’s second four-goal game this season. F Ty Rattie did it in Swift Current on Oct. 13. . . . Portland D Seth Jones had three assists. He’s on an six-game point streak. . . . Despite scoring seven times, Portland had only seven players with points. . . . Everett F Trent Lofthouse gave his side a 5-4 lead at 2:08 of the third. . . . Leipsic tied it at 16:09, on a PP, and D Troy Rutowski got the winner at 16:49. . . . F Reid Petryk had three assists for Everett. . . . The Silvertips are 0-3 against Portland this season. Everett has lost its last 13 games in Portland.

F JC Lipon, Kamooops

From Portland F Brendan Leipsic (@leip28), the WHL’s player of the month: “Great character win for the guys, also great seeing the best owner in the league tonight. #pesky hawks”
From Vancouver Giants radio voice Jeff Paterson (@patersonjeff): “#WHL named Portland Winterhawk Player of Month. League tried to call him to tell good news then remembered it had confiscated his phone”
And now for something completely different.
Perhaps you have wondered what WHL players do on a night when they aren’t involved in a game.
Well, on Tuesday night, many of them were gathered around TV sets. In fact, if the players had their way this particular night would be a black night on the schedule every single season.
Well, here’s a few hints from Twitter:
From Seattle Thunderbirds G Brandon Glover (@BGlover31): “Lots of talk about guys finding future ‘wives’ on Victoria Secret fashion show tonight .. They must have amazing personalities .. Yeah?? Idk”
From Calgary Hitmen D Kenton Helgesen (@Helgesen3): “Definitely got the Victoria secret fashion show recording tonight #dimes”
From Seattle Thunderbirds D Griffin Foulk (@gfoulk95): “Can't wait to pick a future wife tonight #vsfashionshow #dimeshow”
Former WHLers are caught in the web, too. Here’s ex-Kamloops G Daryl Reaugh (@Razor5Hole): “As a service to my followers, a reminder — @VictoriasSecret: The #VSFashionShow starts at 10/9c tonight on @CBS. #stockingstuffers”
Saskatoon Blades F Josh Nicholls (@JNicks20): “These girls are all fine pieces of ace . . . trust me I know from experience #VSFashion Show”
Edmonton Oil Kings F TJ Foster (@TJFosterr): “Why does such a douche bag get to perform at the VS fashion show. Biebs needs to figure his style out. Other than that I’m enjoying it”
Saskatoon Blades D Graeme Craig (@craigstand6): “Is there a girl missing a tooth? #meanttobe #VSFashionShow”
Lethbridge Hurricanes G Ty Rimmer (@Rimms35): “This has got to be the best thing on TV since . . . ever #VSFashionShow”
Red Deer Rebels D Brandon Underwood (@BUND3RWOOD): “These girls are making Rihanna look like a dog #VSFashionShow”
Edmonton Oil Kings F Curtis Lazar (@CurtisLazar95): “Finally the #VSFashionShow is over so I can now watch the Grinch!! #christmas #featurepresentation”

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