Friday, March 22, 2013

Things are happening in Arizona when it comes to attempts to cut down on the number of concussions being experienced by young athletes. Wynter Holden of Phoenix magazine has that story right here.
In the NFL, ball carriers no longer will be able to use the crown of the helmet to deliver blows.
Len Berman of reports that Jim Brown, only the greatest running back in football history, had this to say: "I used my forearm. And the palm of my hand. And my shoulders. And my shoulder pads. I wasn't putting my head into too much of anything. I don't think that sounds like a good idea to me. What is my guarantee that my head is going to be strong enough to hurt somebody else, and not hurt myself?"
You may know Diana Swain as an investigative reporter with CBC News; on occasion, she also sits in for host Peter Mansbridge on The National. On top of that, She is a hockey mom, and she is preparing for her final minor hockey game. Actually, it’s her son’s final game. Anyway, she has written a terrific piece looking at her son’s minor hockey career. Her son never played junior hockey and won’t be playing professionally. As Swain writes: “University beckons in the fall. When he plays again, it will be in a men's beer league somewhere where there will be women in the stands, but not the moms. I will miss it very much. It's not just a chapter of his life that’s closing. But, a chapter of mine too.”
That piece is right here. Give it a read.
If you aren’t aware, there was a time when Diana’s late father, Brian, was a TV/radio guy in Brandon and covered the  Wheat Kings.

F Dyson Stevenson of the Regina Pats is joining the ECHL’s Bakersfield Condors, while D Dan Gibb of the Prince George Cougars will finish up with the ECHL’s Stockton Thunder. . . . D Brett Kulak of the Vancouver Giants will finish up with the AHL’s Abbotsford Heat. The Calgary Flames, the Heat’s parent club, selected Kulak in the fourth round of the 2012 NHL draft. . . .
The WHL announced its Western Conference award winners and all-stars teams yesterday. Check them out at
NHLIt seems that the Washington Capitals have requested that the Lethbridge Hurricanes do something with their logo.
Cam Charron of Yahoo! Sports has more right here.

All of this reminds me of when the franchise first was nicknamed the Hurricanes. Pat Sullivan, a columnist with the Lethbridge Herald, was trying to understand the choice of nickname and wrote that perhaps the logo should have featured an overturned mobile home.
Had the Hurricanes only taken his advice, they could have avoided all of this.
BCHLThe BCHL’s Coquitlam Express has relieved general manager and head coach Jon Calvano of his duties. Calvano had been with the Express for three seasons. “A very strong shortlist of Head Coach candidates has been identified and a decision on a replacement is pending,” reads a release posted on the Express’ website. . . .
The junior B Kimberley Dynamiters of the Kootenay Junior Interional Hockey League are looking for a general manager/head coach. They chose not to renew the contract of Glenn Burgess, who was a midseason replacement for Roman Vopat.

2013 Playoffs

The WHL’s first-round playoff matchups:
Edmonton (1) vs. Kootenay (8)
Saskatoon (2) vs. Medicine Hat (7)
Calgary (3) vs. Swift Current (6)
Red Deer (4) vs Prince Albert (5)

Portland (1) vs. Everett (8)
Kelowna (2) vs. Seattle (7)
Kamloops (3) vs. Victoria (6)
Spokane (4) vs. Tri-City (5)
Two playoff series began last night. All eight series will feature games tonight. . . .
In Saskatoon, G Cam Lanigan stopped 42 shots as the Medicine Hat Tigers got past the Blades, 4-1. . . . The Tigers led 1-0 after a period on goals by F Trevor Cox and F Hunter Shinkaruk. . . . Medicine Hat was never caught after that. . . . Medicine Hat D Zach Hodder didn’t get a point, but he was plus-4. . . . Blades G Andrey Makarov, who played in 61 regular-season games, turned aside 29 shots. . . . The teams play again tonight in Saskatoon. . . . A year ago, the Tigers swept the Blades from a first-round series. . . . In fact, the Blades now have lost nine straight playoff games. . . . This season, the Blades went 4-0 against the Tigers, outscoring them 23-11. . . . Medicine Hat D Matt Staples didn’t return after taking a hard check from Saskatoon F Jessey Astles in the first period. . . . The Tigers didn’t bring F Blake Penner (leg, skate cut) or D Ty Stanton (concussion) to Saskatoon. . . . The Blades have added G Patrick Johnson to their roster. Johnson, who played for the SJHL’s Melfort Mustangs, will be behind Makarov and backup Alex Moodie on the depth chart. . . .

In Calgary, D Alex Roach scored at 4:32 of OT to give the Hitmen a 6-5 victory over the Swift Current Broncos. . . . The goal came off a shot from a bad angle and originally was credited to F Pavlo Padakin. . . . The Hitmen took a 1-0 lead just 34 seconds into the first period when F Brooks Macek scored on a PP. It was the seventh time this season that Macek scored in the opening minute of a period. . . . Calgary went on to lead this one 4-0 halfway through the second period. . . . Calgary F Brady Brassart gave his side a 5-3 lead with his third goal at 3:47 of the third. . . . Broncos F Coda Gordon scored at 4:20 of the third period and F Graham Black tied it on a PP at 13:53. . . . That was Brassart’s first WHL hat trick.

From Tri-City Americans F Jesse Mychan (@jmychan28): “Game 1 in spoke tomorrow! Nothing better than 10,000+ booing you #muckonmuck”
From Edmonton Sun columnist Terry Jones (@sunterryjones): “Big upset in Saskatoon. Medicine Hat Tigers 4 Saskatoon Blades 1. Toon Town is Memorial Cup host two months from now. Imagine . . .”

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