THE MacBETH REPORT:
G Garrett Zemlak (Saskatoon, Prince Albert, 2006-10) was released by the Braehead Clan (Scotland, UK Elite). In 35 games with the Clan, Zemlak had a 3.95 GAA and an .833 save percentage while going 12-17-0-0. . . .
F Tyler Redenbach (Prince George, Swift Current, Lethbridge, 2001-05) has been assigned on loan by HIFK Helsinki (Finland, SM-Liiga) to Pelicans Lahti (Finland, SM-Liiga) for the rest of this season. He had three goals and nine assists in 23 games this season and hasn’t played in a game since Nov. 20. Redenbach became the odd-man out with HIFK after the club signed Washington Capitals F Mathieu Perreault to a lockout contract, got ex-Phoenix Coyotes F Joel Perrault back from injury, and then signed former AHL F Corey Elkins to replace Perreault, who returned to North America at Christmas.
The biggest story of deadline day may well have come out of Prince George where the Cougars chose not to trade C Alex Forsberg, 17, who decided not to return after the Christmas break.
Forsberg, the first selection in the 2010 WHL bantam draft, likely will finish this season with the SJHL’s Humboldt Broncos.
Dallas Thompson, the Cougars’ general manager, had said he wouldn’t trade Forsberg unless he got a substantial return. Thompson was true to his word.
“(We) needed to make a good deal for our organization and it wasn’t there,” Thompson told me via email. “Him not being here played a huge factor in the offers, bottom line.”
The Cougars have added D Jordan Harris, 16, the 10th overall selection in the 2011 bantam draft, to their roster. He had been with the midget AAA Prince Albert Mintos for whom he had 12 points and 24 penalty minutes in 21 games.
The Cougars also returned D Sam Ruopp, 16, to the midget AAA Regina Pat Canadians. A fourth-round pick in the 2011 draft, he got into six games with the Cougars.
In the first trade of deadline day, the Everett Silvertips dealt D Nick Walters, 18, and F Taylor Sanheim, 16, to the Brandon Wheat Kings for D Ayrton Nikkel, 17, and a conditional 2015 sixth-round bantam draft pick. (The pick is conditional on Sanheim playing for the Wheat Kings.)
Nikkel had nine assists and 87 penalty minutes in 42 games with the Wheat Kings this season. He was a second-round selection by the Saskatoon Blades in the 2010 bantam draft. The Wheat Kings acquired him in a trade two years ago in which F Brayden Schenn went to the Blades. . . . Last season, as a freshman, Nikkel had 10 points and 72 penalty minutes in 59 games.
Walters, a fourth-round pick by the St. Louis Blues in the NHL’s 2012 draft, played 145 games with Everett. From St. Albert, Alta., he has 10 points and 70 penalty minutes in 35 games this season. . . . Walters was the eighth overall selection in the 2009 bantam draft.
Sanheim, from Elkhorn, Man., is playing for the Yellowhead Chiefs of the Manitoba midget AAA league. He has 51 points in 43 games, leaving him fifth in the league scoring race. . . . Sanheim’s twin brother, Travis, was selected by the Calgary Hitmen in the ninth round of the 2011 bantam draft.
The Wheat Kings later dealt F Alessio Bertaggia, 19, who played for Switzerland at the World Junior Championship in Ufa, Russia, to the Spokane Chiefs for Czech F Marek Kalus, 19, F Rhett Gardner, 16, a third-round selection in the 2013 bantam draft and a fifth-round pick in 2014.
(There was some confusion involving the draft picks. Brandon’s news release and the WHL website both indicated both picks were in 2013; Spokane’s release indicated one in 2013 and one in 2014. Spokane general manager Tim Speltz informed me that the trade agreement reads “a 3rd in 2013 and a 5th in 2014.)
Bertaggia, who also played for Switzerland at the 2012 WJC, is Brandon’s leading scorer, with 34 points, including 16 goals, in 30 games. In 94 career games, he has 84 points, including 40 goals.
While in Europe preparing for the 2013 WJC, Bertaggia signed a two-year contract with EV Zug of the Swiss National League A that will take him through 2014-15.
(This deal is interesting in that it moves Bertaggia to the Western Conference where he once skated – illegally, as it turned out – with the Portland Winterhawks. That was during training camp prior to the 2010-11 season. On Sept. 3, 2010, I posted this blog entry that included photos of Red No. 23.
Kalus, meanwhile, has four assists in 11 games this season, after earning 42 points, 20 of them goals, in 68 games last season. He missed the early portion of this season with an undisclosed injury. He has 54 points, 24 of them goals, in 101 career WHL games.
Gardner, who is with the midget AAA Moose Jaw Generals, was selected by Spokane in the second round of the 2011 bantam draft but has refused to report to the Chiefs. He has 31 points, including 15 goals, in 20 games. Gardner played for Team West at the U17 World Hockey Challenge that ended last weekend in Quebec.
Interestingly, the Chiefs also haven’t been able to land F Tanner MacMaster, their first-round selection in the 2011 bantam draft. He is with the AJHL’s Camrose Kodiaks and a story in the Calgary Herald in mid-December indicated that “in a recent interview, the deftly talented centre hinted he would be committing to a school any day, even though he won’t be headed south of the border until the 2014-15 season.”
The Saskatoon Blades started their busy day by acquiring F Collin Valcourt, 19, from the Spokane Chiefs for a first-round selection in the 2015 bantam draft and a fifth-rounder in 2013. . . . A native of Red Deer, Valcourt was in his third season with the Chiefs. This season, the 6-foot-2, 205-pounder had 23 points, including 13 goals, and 70 penalty minutes in 41 games.
The Blades also got F Erik Benoit, who turned 19 on Dec. 30, from the Kootenay Ice for a fourth-round pick in the 2013 bantam draft. Benoit, a Calgary native in his third season with the Ice, had 18 points in 33 games this season. (That fourth-round pick is one the Blades acquired earlier from the Swift Current Broncos for D Brent Lernout.)
The Blades also acquired F Michael Ferland, 20, from Brandon for a first-round selection in the 2013 bantam draft. Ferland, who is under contract to the AHL’s Calgary Flames, played earlier this season with the AHL’s Abbotsford Heat and the ECHL’s Utah Grizzlies before being assigned to Brandon. He has two points and four penalty minutes in four games with the Wheat Kings this season. Last season, he had 96 points, including 47 goals, in 68 games with Brandon.
After trading away first-round picks in the Valcourt and Ferland deals, the Blades, at the moment, don’t have a first-round selection in any of the next three bantam drafts.
The acquisition of Ferland left the Blades with four 20-year-olds, one of whom – team captain Brenden Walker – was acquired from Brandon over the summer.
The Blades then alleviated that situation by dealing F Adam Kambeitz, who had been acquired earlier in the season from the Red Deer Rebels, to the Seattle Thunderbirds for a a third-round pick in the 2014 bantam draft. Kambeitz had 21 points in 33 games with the Blades.
The Thunderbirds then released F Brendan Rouse in order to get down to three 20-year-olds. Rouse had 29 points in 42 games this season.
The Vancouver Giants promptly claimed Rouse, a native of Langley, B.C., off waivers. His arrival will leave the Giants with three 20-year-olds on their roster.
The Regina Pats dealt F Colten Mayor, 19, to the Calgary Hitmen for F Carson Samoridny, 18, and a fourth-round selection in the 2013 bantam draft. . . . Mayor, who was acquired from the Red Deer Rebels earlier in the season, had 19 points in 33 games with Regina. He played three season in Red Deer before ending up in Regina, and has 84 points in 201 career games.
The 6-foot-3, 205-pound Samoridny had 15 points in 40 games with the Hitmen. Last season, he had two assists in 33 games with the Everett Silvertips.
Mayor and Samoridny both are from St. Albert, Alta.
The Seattle Thunderbirds picked up F Andrew Johnson, 18, from the Moose Jaw Warriors for a fourth-round selection in the 2013 bantam draft. Johnson, from Saskatoon, was in his third season with the Warriors, He had 15 points in 42 games this season. In 159 career games, he has 68 points, 27 of them goals.
A look at WHL trades since Jan. 1:
Jan. 1: Medicine Hat trades D Dylan Busenius, 19, F Jayden Hart, 18, and a 2014 sixth-round bantam draft pick to Prince Albert for F Logan McVeigh, 18, D Zach Hodder, 19, F Connor Hobbs, 15, and a 2013 second-round bantam draft pick.
Jan. 2: Vancouver trades F Kale Kessy, 20, to Kamloops for F Rob Trzonkowski, 18, and a 2015 fifth-round bantam draft pick.
Jan. 3: Everett trades F Trent Lofthouse, 18, to Victoria for a 2014 sixth-round bantam draft pick.
Jan. 3: Victoria trades G Jared Rathjen, 18, to Vancouver for a 2013 eighth-round bantam draft pick.
Jan. 7: Victoria trades D Jesse Zgraggen, 19, to Calgary for a 2013 fourth-round bantam draft pick.
Jan. 7: Lethbridge trades F Jay Merkley, 17, to Swift Current for F Josh Derko, 19, and a 2014 third-round bantam draft pick.
Jan. 9: Vancouver trades F Trevor Cheek, 20, to Edmonton for a 2013 second-round bantam draft pick.
Jan. 9: Kootenay trades D Mike Simpson, 18, to Lethbridge for a 2013 fifth-round bantam draft pick.
Jan. 9: Vancouver trades D Stewart Coyle, 17, to Spokane for a 2016 sixth-round bantam draft pick.
Jan. 9: Edmonton trades F Klarc Wilson, 19, to Prince George for a 2014 third-round bantam draft pick.
Jan. 10: Everett gets D Ayrton Nikkel, 17, and a conditional 2015 sixth-round bantam draft pick from Brandon for D Nick Walters, 18, and F Taylor Sanheim, 16.
Jan. 10: Spokane gets F Alessio Bertaggia, 19, from Brandon for F Marek Kalus, 19, F Rhett Gardner, 16, a 2013 third-round bantam draft pick and a 2014 fifth-round pick.
Jan. 10: Seattle gets F Andrew Johnson, 18, from Moose Jaw for a 2013 fourth-round bantam draft pick.
Jan. 10: Calgary gets F Colten Mayor, 19, from Regina for F Carson Samoridny, 18, and a 2013 fourth-round bantam draft pick.
Jan. 10: Saskatoon gets F Collin Valcourt, 19, from Spokane for a 2015 first-round bantam draft pick and a 2013 fifth-round pick.
Jan. 10: Saskatoon gets F Michael Ferland, 20, from Brandon for a 2013 first-round bantam draft pick.
Jan. 10: Saskatoon gets F Erik Benoit, 19, from Kootenay for a 2014 fourth-round bantam draft pick.
Jan. 10: Seattle gets F Adam Kambeitz, 20, from Saskatoon for a 2013 third-round bantam draft pick.
The Brandon Wheat Kings will be without D Ryan Pulock, their captain, for a couple of weeks after he was found to have a chipped bone in one wrist. The injury will keep Pulock, 18, out of the CHL Top Prospects Game in Halifax on Jan. 16. . . . Pulock was injured in Tuesday’s 7-2 loss to the visiting Calgary Hitmen. . . . The CHL replaced Pulock with D Jordan Subban of the OHL’s Belleville Bulls. He is the younger brother of G Malcolm Subban and D P.K. Subban. . . . Brandon also will be without F Richard Nejezchleb for at least two weeks after he suffered a lacerated hand on Tuesday. . . .
The Wheat Kings also have added F Quintin Lisoway, 17, to their roster. A ninth-round selection in the 2010 bantam draft, Lisoway has two points in 10 games with the Wheat Kings this season. Lisoway is from Neepawa, which is just north of Brandon, and has been with the MJHL’s Steinbach Pistons for whom he had 21 points in 27 games. . . . Brandon also assigned D Riley Van Horne, 16, to the AJHL’s Grande Prairie Storm. A fifth-round selection in the 2011 bantam draft, Van Horne, who is from Calgary, had three assists and two penalty minutes in 23 games with Brandon. . . .
The Moose Jaw Warriors have added D Dallas Valentine, 16, to their roster for the rest of the this season. He had nine points in 27 games with the midget AAA Leduc, Alta., Oil Kings. . . .
The Vancouver Giants have added F Jason Trott, 20, from the AJHL’s Whitecourt Wolverines. Trott played in 68 regular-season games with the Portland Winterhawks over the last two seasons, picking up eight points and 50 penalty minutes. The native of Anmore, B.C., had 10 points and 95 penalty minutes in 17 games with Whitecourt. . . .
The Medicine Hat Tigers have signed D Scott Allan, 16, who is playing for the Banff Academy Bears of the Heritage Junior Hockey League. Allan, a 6-foot-3, 167-pounder, is from Thornton, Colo. . . .
The Regina Pats assigned F Adam Rossignol, 19, to an unnamed BCHL team, while also releasing F Filip Vasko, 19, who likely will return home to Slovakia. Vasko was on his third team this season, having started with the Kelowna Rockets and then been dealt to the Red Deer Rebels. . . . Rossignol had 14 points, including nine goals, in 44 games with Regina. . . . Vasko, who was bothered by a knee injury, didn’t get into any games with the Pats. . . .
The Spokane Chiefs announced that F Adam Smith, 18, will stay with the club for the remainder of this season. He came in on a tryout basis earlier in the week. . . . The Chiefs also assigned D Adam Power to the junior B Spokane Braves of the Kootenay International Junior League and F Tyson Predinchuk, 17, to the SJHL’s Melville Millionaires. . . . Power, from Post Falls, Idaho, got into eight games and picked up one assist with the Chiefs after coming back from an undisclosed injury. . . . Predinchuk had five assists in 25 games with the Chiefs. . . .
The Lethbridge Hurricanes have assigned D Connor Sutton, 18, to the AJHL’s Okotoks Oilers. Sutton had one goal in 12 games with the Hurricanes. . . .
In a move that won’t become official until sometime today, the Kootenay Ice, with a roster down to five defenceman, has added D Landon Peel, 18, who was with the MJHL’s Swan Valley Stampeders. Peel was a third-round pick by the Regina Pats in the 2009 bantam draft. He had two assists in 26 games over three seasons with Regina. With the Stampeders, the 6-foot-1, 170-pounder had 32 points, including nine goals, in 38 games.
So . . . how are the Portland Winterhawks doing under interim head coach Travis Green. Don’t tell him, but the team is 15-1 since GM/head coach Mike Johnston was suspended by the WHL for the rest of this season.
Paul Buker of The Oregonian has more right here.
From Edmonton Journal sports writer Evan Daum (@evandaum): “Saskatoon didn't sell the farm today, they sold the entire province of Saskatchewan to take a run at the Memorial Cup”
From Swift Current Broncos F Shae Howorko (@Whorzy13), who has yet to play this season: “So I guess my concussion isn't getting better! #AreYouKiddingMe”
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