A little of this and some of that:
1. For the sake of the television viewers, those Halifax Mooseheads sweaters that have green numbers on red have got to go.
2. That was an all-world meltdown by Portland Winterhawks G Mac Carruth on Saturday in Saskatoon. His history shows that it won’t bother him, though, so he’ll be ready for the London Knights come Monday evening. At least the Winterhawks hope so.
3. In this day and age, when the jackals of the Internet are poised to tear you to shreds for any little misstep, you don’t want to forget the words to a national anthem when you’re on national TV.
4. I had a coach tell me recently that Portland’s Taylor Peters is the best faceoff man in the Canadian Hockey League. Watch for him to make a difference before the week is out.
5. It was just one game, so don’t let anyone tell you that Halifax F Nathan MacKinnon beat Portland D Seth Jones. It’s a team game and Halifax won, thus MacKinnon won.
6. Just wondering, but are there any WHL people pulling for Portland? Other than those folks with the Winterhawks, of course?
7. The NHL has fined the San Jose Sharks $100,000 after general manager Doug Wilson publicly disagreed with the decision to suspend F Raffi Torres. When told of that fine, Portland GM Mike Johnston said: “A hundred grand? Pffft! That’s chump change.”
8. If you are still watching the NHL playoffs, do you have any idea what is – and what isn’t – a penalty?
9. The Mooseheads have played 86 games this season. They have won 75 of them. Yes, they’re that good.
10. When December arrives and we look for the best story in hockey in 2013, we won’t have to look past the Swiss national men’s team. That’s some story that it is writing at the world championship, even if it loses to Sweden in today’s final.
Morris Dalla Costa of the London Free Press reports that the London Knights, the host team for the 2014 Memorial Cup, appear likely to partner with Rogers Sportsnet on a TV series similar to On The Edge, the all-access show that followed the Saskatoon Blades on the road to the 2013 Memorial Cup. That story is right here. . . . Something tells me that the next such series, no matter which team it involves, will be a whole lot tamer than the one that has featured Lorne Molleken and his Blades. . . . BTW, when Kamloops Blazers head coach Dave Hunchak was asked on Saskatoon radio station The Bull’s pregame show on Friday if he would OK such a show were his club the host team, he issued a resounding: “NO!” Simply put, he said, and I’m paraphrasing, something like that is too much of a distraction and the players are too young to be under such scrutiny.
Toby Gorman of the Nanaimo News Bulletin has more right here on the situation involving the Vancouver Island city and a potential new multiplex. But here’s what Mayor John Ruttan told Gorman: “In the absence of having strong support for it, when Coun. Bill Bestwick, who is still in hockey today, is on record and pooh-poohs the idea of a multiplex, I would think we’ll be hard pressed to find somebody else on council to lobby aggressively for it. I’d need to see more of a business case to support it, though I’m interested.”
The Brooks, Alta., Bandits and the host Summerside Western Capitals are to clash today in the final of the 2013 RBC Cup, which goes to the national junior A champion. . . . On Saturday, the Bandits, the AJHL champions, beat the Minnesota Wilderness 5-4 in OT in one semifinal, while the Western Capitals of the Maritime Hockey League took out the BCHL-champion Surrey Eagles 3-2 in OT. . . . Brooks F Mark Reners, who has played in the WHL with the Lethbridge Hurricanes, Vancouver Giants and Edmonton Oil Kings, scored at 8:30 of extra time. The Bandits actually trailed 4-2 after two periods and 4-3 with less than a minute to play. F Dakota Mason forced OT when he scored from behind the Wilderness net. . . . The AJHL hasn’t won the RBC Cup since 2001 when the Camrose Kodiaks turned the trick.
THE COACHING GAME:
The OHL’s Saginaw Spirit added on year to head coach Greg Gilbert’s contract earlier this week, meaning he is signed through 2015-16. Gilbert has been with the Spirit since December 2011. He was the OHL’s coach of the year for 2011-12 after going 20-10-6. The Spirit has lost out in the playoffs to the London Knights in each of the last two seasons, first in the second round and then in the first round.
TWEET OF THE DAY:
From Portland freelancer Scott Sepich (@SSepich), who is covering the Memorial Cup for The Oregonian: “When Mike Johnston does arrive, he can’t interact with the team.”
From Steve Ewen (@Steve Ewen) of the Vancouver Province: “Is there a Mike Johnston cop, making sure he behaves?”
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