THE MacBETH REPORT:
F Eric Johansson (Tri-City, 1997-2002) was released by mutual consent by Alba Volan Szekesfehervar (Hungary, Austria Erste Bank Liga). He had six goals and 23 assists in 41 games for Alba Volan this season.
The Tri-City Americans revealed Friday morning that G Eric Comrie won’t play again this season. Comrie, 17, is to undergo what the teams says is “minor hip surgery” in Vail, Colo., on Feb. 5. He is expected to be off the ice for up to four months.
Comrie, from Newport Beach, Calif., is in his second season with the Americans. This season, he went 20-14-3, 2.62, .915. . . . He was No. 2 among North American goaltenders in NHL Central Scouting’s mid-season rankings that were released earlier this week.
“It sucks right now,” Comrie told Annie Fowler of the Tri-City Herald. “It is better to do it while it is minor. The doctors say I will be more flexible, have better range of motion and be pain free.”
This leaves the Americans with Luke Lee-Knight and Troy Trembley as their goaltenders. Lee-Knight, 19, goes into the weekend at 2-0-2, 2.91, .868, while Trembley, 18, just joined the Americans from the SJHL’s Melville Millionaires.
Will the Americans finish the season with Lee-Knight and Trembley as their goaltenders? General manager Bob Tory said Friday afternoon that he is exploring all of his options.
Fowler reports that the only other goaltender on the American’s protected list is Evan Sarthou, 15, of the U16 Los Angeles Jr. Kings. He was a third-round pick in the 2012 bantam draft.
Will the surgery have an impact on Comrie’s NHL draft status? That is unlikely, assuming that it is, indeed, “minor surgery.”
Kelly Lovering, a familiar figure on Saskatchewan’s hockey scene, is fighting cancer for a third time. But while it may have taken a piece out of him here and there – and more surgery is scheduled for Thursday – it hasn’t touched his sense of humour.
Rob Vanstone of the Regina Leader-Post has more right here.
“We’re learning that former NFL linebacker Junior Seau committed suicide while suffering from a form of dementia often associated with repeated blows to the head,” writes Bob Molinaro of the Hampton Roads Virginian-Pilot. “But what most stories don’t mention is that in his 20-year pro career, he was never diagnosed with a concussion. It doesn’t mean, of course, he didn’t suffer any. A casual disregard for head injuries has caught up with a lot of ex-players.”
You really are going to want to check out this blog right here to see how many Pinocchios were awarded to Lance Armstrong by The Washington Post’s Fact Checker following Part 1 of the disgraced cyclist’s visit to Oprah’s confessional.
I just finished reading Dream Team, by Jack McCallum, a longtime writer for Sports Illustrated. Yes, it is the story of the 1992 U.S. Olympic basketball team, and it is a terrific read. It is hugely entertaining and just as informative as McCallum delves into how so many giant egos came together for the common good in Barcelona, Spain. . . . Yes, there are a whole lot of colourful anecdotes, some of them laugh-out-loud hilarious. But the real story here is how, as the subtitle reads, “Michael, Magic, Larry, Charles, and the greatest team of all time conquered the world and changed the game of basketball forever.” . . . Put this one on your list of must-reads.
Judy Seher, the Red Deer Rebels’ long-time billet co-ordinator is the recipient of the WHL’s Distinguished Service Award for 2012-13. She has been the team’s billet co-ordinator since 1992. . . . Seher’s son, Kurt, split four WHL seasons (1989-93) between the Swift Current Broncos and Seattle Thunderbirds.
In Brandon, F Leon Draisaitl drew three assists as the Prince Albert Raiders dumped the Wheat Kings, 3-2. . . . Prince Albert F Mark McNeill scored the game’s first two goals, both on the PP. He’s got 17 goals. . . . F Marek Kalus, acquired last week from the Spokane Chiefs, had both Brandon goals. Those are his first goals this season. . . . Prince Albert F Jonas Knutsen broked a 2-2 tie with his fourth goal at 5:39 of the third. . . . Brandon was 1-9 on the PP. The Raiders were 2-5. . . . Bruce Luebke, the radio voice of the Wheat Kings on CKLQ, reported via Twitter that he had spoken with F Tyrel Seaman, who is out with a concussion, and he “feels it’s highly unlikely he’ll return to the lineup this season.” . . .
In Regina, F Jaedon Descheneau scored twice as the Kootenay Ice edged the Pats, 2-1. . . . Descheneau, who has 12 goals, is on a nine-game point streak. . . . He tied the game at 15:03 of the second and won it at 1:16 of the third. . . . The Ice has won 10 of 11 and has moved from 12th place to ninth, four points out of the Eastern Conference’s last playoff spot. . . . There was one penalty called in the game, that to Regina D Colton Jobke for a check to the head at 19:32 of the third period. . . . Ice G Mackenzie Skapski stopped 29 shots. . . . The Pats have dropped four straight. . . .
In Saskatoon, the Blades opened a 4-1 lead and hung on for a 5-4 victory over the Moose Jaw Warriors. . . . F Lukas Sutter gave the Blades a 4-1 lead at 14:09 of the second and F Erik Benoit provided them with a 5-2 lead at 13:13 of the third. . . . The Warriors, who have lost eight in a row, made it close when F Sam Fioretti got his 22nd at 14:18 and D Spencer Morse got his first at 16:04. . . . Fioretti scored twice. . . . The Warriors had D Morgan Rielly back in their lineup after he returned earlier in the day from the camp of the NHL’s Toronto Maple Leafs. He had one assist and was minus-1. . . .
In Edmonton, F Trevor Cox had a goal and an assist as the Medicine Hat Tigers beat the Oil Kings, 2-1. . . . Edmonton has lost two in a row. . . . Cox scored his 13th goal at 14:41 of the first on a PP. . . . The Tigers went up 2-0 on F Elgin Pearce’s 20th goal at 11:03 of the second. . . . Edmonton D Keegan Lowe got his 11th at 15:16 of the second. . . . Among the Tigers’ scratches was F Hunter Shinkaruk (ill). . . . D Griffin Reinhart was back in the Oil Kings’ lineup after going to camp with the NHL’s New York Islanders. . . .
In Calgary, F Victor Rask scored moments after Prince George had a goal disallowed and the Hitmen went on to beat the Cougars, 5-3. . . . The victory lifted the Hitmen to the top of the Eastern Conference, one point ahead of Edmonton. . . . The Cougars thought they had tied the score 3-3 late in the second period. But it didn’t count and Rask, in his first game after playing for Sweden at the World Junior Championship, scored his fourth goal of the season moments later for a 4-2 lead. . . . Calgary lost D Alex Roach in the third period when a redirected puck struck him in the neck/throat area. He was treated by both trainers and a doctor before leaving the ice and being taken to hospital. Reports indicated that he was having trouble breathing. Early this morning, Carlos Sosa, who represents Roach, told me via text that Roach had been “released from hospital. Has pain but will be OK.” . . . Calgary F Calder Brooks, who has yet to play this season due to injury, took the warmup but didn’t play. . . .
In Vancouver, F Steven Hodges scored twice for the third straight game and the Victoria Royals dumped the Giants, 6-2. . . . Hodges, who has 18 goals, has four straight two-point games. . . . The Royals erased a 1-0 deficit with four straight goals. . . . F Alex Gogolev scored his 15th goal and added two assists. . . . Victoria F Tyler Soy, the eighth overall selection in the 2012 bantam draft, scored his first WHL goal. He is from Surrey so you know he had friends and family there for what was his third WHL game. . . . The Royals have won four in a row for the first time since they relocated from Chilliwack. . . .
In Spokane, G Jordon Cooke put up his 17th straight victory to lead the Kelowna Rockets to a 4-2 victory over the Chiefs. . . . Cooke, who stopped 38 shots, has won each of his last 17 starts. He last tasted defeat on Nov. 17 when the Rockets were beaten 3-2 by the host Tri-City Americans. . . . The Rockets, who are 10-0-1 in their last 11, dumped the Chiefs 5-3 in Kelowna on Wednesday. . . . F Ryan Olsen scored twice for Kelowna, giving him 23 goals. . . . Chiefs D Brenden Kichton scored his 15th goal as he ran his point streak to 10 games. . . . Among Kelowna’s scratches was F J.T. Barnett (ill). . . . Spokane F Alessio Bertaggia, who had two assists, left late in the third period after being hit by Kelowna F Carter Rigby. Bertaggia appeared to be favouring his right arm. . . .
In Everett, F Kohl Bauml had two goals and an assist to help the Silvertips to a 5-1 victory over the Seattle Thunderbirds. . . . Seattle’s losing streak has reached 15 games. . . . Seattle still holds the Western Conference’s last playoff spot. It is three points behind Everett and three ahead of Prince George. . . . F Ryan Harrison, who scored his seventh goal and added two assists, broke a 1-1 tie at 5:00 of the second period. . . . Seattle to 73 of the game’s 114 penalty minutes. . . . Seattle D Jerret Smith, a 17-year-old from Surrey, B.C., scored his first WHL goal. It came in his 44th game. . . . Everett G Austin Lotz turned aside 44 shots. . . . Seattle G Brandon Glover (flu) watched from the bench as Danny Mumaugh stopped 18 shots. . . . According to Nick Patterson of the Everett Herald: “Everett lost defenseman Austin Adam to injury when he took a hit into the boards midway through the first period.” Everett GM/head coach Garry Davidson told Patterson that Adam "had his bell rung.” . . .
In Portland, F Remi Laurencelle and F Reid Duke scored shootout goals as the Lethbridge Hurricanes got past the Winterhawks, 5-4. . . . Portland had won its previous 14 games. . . . It was Portland’s first shootout of the season, while the Hurricanes now are 2-6. . . . Lethbridge F Sam Mckechnie forced OT with his 20th goal, via the PP, at 14:03 of the third. . . . The Winterhawks held a 3-0 lead by 8:15 of the second. . . . Duke got the comeback started when he scored his sixth goal of the season — all six have come in the last five games — at 10:33 of the second. . . . Lethbridge F Harrison Harper, an 18-year-old from Calgary, scored his first WHL goal in his 35th game. . . . Lethbridge G Ty Rimmer stopped 43 shots. . . . Portland F Nic Petan, who leads the WHL scoring race, gave his side a 4-3 lead with his 30th goal at 12:50 of the third on the PP. Petan also had two assists. . . . Portland F Brendan Leipsic had a goal and an assist, extending his point streak to 13 games. . . . The Hurricanes hadn’t played in Portland since Oct. 3, 2010. . . . Among Lethbridge scratches were F Russ Maxwell, D Joel Topping and F Josh Derko. . . . Portland again scratched D Derrick Pouliot.
In Kennewick, Wash., F Colin Smith scored twice as the Kamloops Blazers beat the Tri-City Americans, 4-1. . . . Smith now has 30 goals. . . . The Blazers scored the game’s last four goals. . . . F Jesse Mychan scored for the Americans. He has six goals, with five of them coming over his last three games. . . . F Cole Ully had two assists for Kamloops, giving him six points in his last four games, all of them on the road. . . . Ully’s linemates, Matt Needham and Chase Souto, each had a goal and an assist. . . . Tri-City F Lukas Walter took a headshot major and game misconduct at 7:29 of the third period for a hit on Kamloops D Joel Edmundson. . . . Kamloops scratched F Tim Bozon and D Landon Cross, both of whom were ill.
F Lukas Sutter, Saskatoon
F Josh Winquist, Everett
F Manraj Hayer, Everett
D Colton Jobke, Regina
F Lukas Walter, Tri-City (major)
From Tri-City G Eric Comrie (@ericcomrie1): “I would like to thank everyone for there support! Looking forward to coming back next season at 100%! Really going to miss the boys!”
From Kootenay Ice G Mackenzie Skapski (@Skaps29): “i wish @ericcomrie1 the speediest recovery #great kid #evenbetter goalie”
From Portland freelance writer Scott Sepich (@SSepich): “Carruth now jawing with Hurricanes, who are celebrating in front of him. Gave a shot to Leverton. Rimmer with a salute for him on way out.”
From Victoria Royals F Tyler Soy (@_SoySauce_): “On cloud nine right now #1stTuck #bigW”
There has never been a subscription fee for this blog, but if you enjoy stopping by here, why not consider donating to the cause? Just click HERE. . . and thank you very much.