Wednesday, March 27, 2013

A few words from the blog of Shawn Mullin, the radio voice of the Swift Current Broncos:
“As first reported by CTV’s Lee Jones, the WHL has admitted the officiating crew in (Tuesday) night’s Game 4 between the Swift Current Broncos and Calgary Hitmen missed the glove pass in overtime that led to Calgary’s winning goal. Brooks Macek gloved the puck into the Swift Current crease and Victor Rask then knocked it in to secure a controversial 1-0 victory for the Hitmen.
“I talked to a league source this afternoon (who) confirmed they are aware a mistake was made and the goal should not have counted. However, once the referees missed the call on the ice the league had no further options to deal with the goal. Glove passes are not included among the items that can be looked at in a video review.”
If you haven’t seen the play in question, it’s near the end of a highlights package right here that was posted on the Broncos’ website.
Mullin’s blog is over there on the right.
Under the present rules, as Mullin notes, this isn’t a reviewable play. Obviously, it’s time to change the rule. Any play like this that results in a goal, or what appears to be a goal, should be reviewable.
We are not referring to a possible slash or a trip in the neutral zone. This was a gloved pass that led directly to a goal.
With video replay at its disposal, the WHL must act to change the rule. The objective should be to get it right, not to force teams to live with human error when it is avoidable.
Denis Chalifoux, 42, has resigned after one season as head coach of the QMJHL’s Shawinigan Cataractes. Chalifoux cited family reasons – he wants to spend more time with his children – as the reason. Shawinigan was 15-46-7 this season. He had two years left on his contract. . . .

Bill McDonald, 60, is the new head coach of the CIS’s Lakehead Thunderwolves. He replaces Mike Busniuk, was was the interim head coach after replacing Joel Scherban four games into this season. . . . McDonald is a veteran coach with lots of experience in the Thunder Bay, Ont., area. Right now, he is an assistant coach with the Central league’s Allen Americans.

Rob Charney, who spent the last seven seasons scouting for the Prince George Cougars, lost a battle with cancer on Wednesday. Charney worked out of Winnipeg for the Cougars. . . . According to a Cougars’ news release: “The family has requested that any donations made on Rob’s behalf should go to KidSport Canada in his memory.” . . .
The OHL has suspended D Ryan O’Connor of the Barrie Colts for 10 games “for hitting an opponent in the head.” . . . O’Connor hit F Spencer Watson of the Kingston Frontenacs during a playoff game on Saturday. Watson was injured; O’Connor got a major and game misconduct. . . . The video of the hit is right here.
2013 Playoffs
 The WHL’s first-round situation:
Edmonton (1) vs. Kootenay (8)
(Edmonton leads 3-1; Game 5 on Friday in Edmonton)
Saskatoon (2) vs. Medicine Hat (7)
(Medicine Hat wins 4-0)
Calgary (3) vs. Swift Current (6)
(Calgary leads 3-1; Game 5 tonight in Calgary)
Red Deer (4) vs Prince Albert (5)
(Red Deer wins 4-0)

Portland (1) vs. Everett (8)
(Portland leads series 2-1; Game 4 on Friday in Everett)
Kelowna (2) vs. Seattle (7)
(Seattle leads 3-1; Game 5 on Saturday in Kelowna)
Kamloops (3) vs. Victoria (6)
(Kamloops leads 2-1; Game 4 tonight in Victoria, Bear Mountain Arena)
Spokane (4) vs. Tri-City (5)
(Spokane leads 2-1; Game 3 tonight in Kennewick, Wash.)
In the East, if Edmonton takes out Kootenay, the second round will feature Edmonton against Medicine Hat and the Calgary/Swift Current winner versus Red Deer.
In Medicine Hat, the Tigers scored the game’s first three goals and beat the Blades, 3-1. . . . The Blades, the Memorial Cup hosts, won’t play again until May 17 when they are to open the tournament against the OHL champions. . . . Saskatoon has been swept from back-to-back first-round series by Medicine Hat and now has lost 12 straight playoff games. . . . The Tigers never once trailed in this series. . . . Medicine Hat outscored Saskatoon 15-4 in the four games, including 7-0 in the first periods. . . . In the regular season, the Blades had won all four games with the Tigers. . . . F Curtis Valk scored at 4:23 of the first period, on a PP, and the Tigers were off and running. . . . Tigers F Boston Leier, who is from Saskatoon, had a goal and an assist. . . . F Lukas Sutter scored for the Blades at 7:36 of the third. . . . Medicine Hat G Cam Lanigan stopped 36 shots. He was 4-0, 1.00, .976 in the series. . . . Saskatoon F Jessey Astles was back from a two-game suspension. . . . The Blades had F Josh Nicholls in the lineup, after the WHL chose not to suspend him for a slashing major and game misconduct he took as the third period ended in Game 3. Nicholls slashed Medicine Hat F Hunter Shinkaruk. . . . Richard Doerksen, the WHL’s disciplinarian, told Darren Steinke of the Medicine Hat News: “I think on this one it certainly appeared to our supervisor at the game and our director of officiating and myself that there was perhaps some embellishment from the opponent. That was definitely taken into consideration when determining whether there should be a suspension or not.” . . .

In Prince Albert, F Turner Elson broke a 2-2 tie at 10:51 of the third period as the Rebels beat the Raiders, 3-2. . . . Prince Albert led this one 2-0 at 8:45 of the first, on goals by F Mark McNeill and F Jayden Hart. McNeill gave the Raiders their first lead of the series at 5:19. . . . F Connor Bleackley got Red Deer on the board at 12:02 of the first and F Brooks Maxwell tied it with his third of the series at 13:05 of the second. . . . Maxwell had 10 goals in 71 regular-season games. . . .

In Cranbrook, G Laurent Brossoit stopped 20 shots to help the Edmonton Oil Kings to a 4-0 victory over the Kootenay Ice. . . . F Henrik Samuellson and F Curtis Lazar each had a goal and an assist for the Oil Kings. . . . This was Brossoit’s second shutout of the series and the fourth of his playoff career. In this series, he is 3-1, 0.71, .970. His next victory will be the 20th of this career. . . .

In Kent, Wash., the Kelowna Rockets scored three first-period PP goals and went on to blank the Seattle Thunderbirds (of Kent), 4-0. . . . Kelowna G Jordon Cooke stopped 25 shots for his first playoff shutout. . . . F Tyson Baillie scored the game’s first two goals. F Myles Bell and F Zach Franko also scored, each notching his second of the series. . . . Kelowna finished 3-for-7 on the PP; Seattle was 0-for-8. . . . The Rockets were without F Rourke Chartier (undisclosed), who was injured in Game 3. They dressed F Justin Kirkland in Chartier’s place. . . . After attendance was announced as 6,021 in Kent for Game 3, it was 2,559 last night. . . . Kelowna D MacKenzie Johnston didn’t return after behind checked into the end boards by Seattle F Connor Honey, who was hit with a double minor for checking from behind. . . .

In Everett, F Nic Petan had two goals and two assists as the Portland Winterhawks dumped the Silvertips, 7-3. . . . The Winterhawks limited Everett to just 13 shots, including two in the second period. . . . F Brendan Leipsic added a goal and two assists for the Winterhawks, as did D Derrick Pouliot. . . . Portland was 3-for-5 on the PP. . . . Announced attendance was 2,000. . . . Everett lost F Manraj Hayer (broken finger) after he stopped a shot by Portland D Seth Jones in the second period.
F Collin Valcourt, Saskatoon
F Curtis Honey, Seattle (double minor)

D Brady Gaudet, Red Deer

From Edmonton Sun columnist Terry Jones (@sunterryjones), who was in Cranbrook for the OIl Kings’ two games with the Kootenay Ice: “If I owned Kootenay Ice after WHL record 15 consecutive years in the playoffs and a crowd of less than 2,000 for Game 4, I'd be outta here.”
The Ice drew crowds of 2,204 and 2,042 for its two home playoff games with the Oil Kings.

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