Friday, August 30, 2013

Signings, signings and more signings . . .

THE MacBETH REPORT:
EIHL-UKD Kenton Smith (Calgary, 1995-2000) signed a two-week tryout contract with the Braehead Clan Glasgow (Scotland, UK Elite). He had three goals and 16 assists in 59 games with the Cardiff Devils (Wales, UK Elite) last season. According to the club, the tryout is to cover a “slight knock” picked up by D Ray Macias (Kamloops, 2002-07). . . .


D Ty Wishart (Prince George, Moose Jaw, 2004-08) signed a one-year contract with the Schwenninger Wild Wings (Germany, DEL). He had seven goals and 17 assists in 62 games with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers (AHL) last season.
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All three members of what was at times the best forward line in the WHL last season now have signed NHL contracts. RW JC Lipon of the Kamloops Blazers signed a three-year, two-way entry-level deal with the Winnipeg Jets on Thursday after being a third-round selection in the 2013 draft. . . . Lipon, from Regina, played on a line with C Colin Smith, a seventh-round pick by the Colorado Avalanche in 2012, who has signed, and LW Tim Bozon, a third-round selection by the Montreal Canadiens in 2012, who also has signed. . . . Lipon and Smith both are 20, so are eligible to play in the AHL if they don’t make an NHL roster. Lipon could end up with the St. John’s Ice Caps, while Smith would play for the Cleveland-based Lake Erie Monsters. . . . Bozon, 19, will attend Montreal’s camp, but if he doesn’t make the Canadiens he has to be returned to Kamloops. . . . Last season, Smith had 106 points, including 41 goals, in 72 games, while Bozon put up 91 points, 36 of them goals, in 69 games. Lipon, who missed some time while with Canada’s national junior team, finished with 89 points, including 36 goals, in 61 games.
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The Lethbridge Hurricanes have opened training camp without D Ryan Pilon, who turns 17 on Oct. 10, and G Corbin Boes, 20. . . . Pilon has been diagnosed with mononucleosis and the Hurricanes suggest he may miss the start of the regular season. Pilon played for Canada’s U-18 team as it won the Memorial of Ivan Hlinka earlier this month. He had 28 points in 57 games for the Hurricanes as a 16-year-old last season. . . . Boes, who was acquired from the Brandon Wheat Kings in May, has had surgery on his right hand and is expected to be out for up to three weeks.
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The Seattle Thunderbirds have signed F Kaden Elder and F Nolan Volcan to WHL contracts. . . . Elder, from Saskatoon, was selected with the 22nd pick of the 2013 bantam draft. He had 64 points in 33 games with the bantam AA Notre Dame Hounds last season. . . . Volcan, from Edmonton, was taken with the draft’s 27th selection. He had 76 points, including 40 goals, in 32 games with the bantam AAA Edmonton Maple Leaf Athletic Club team last season. His father, Marty, is a former WHLer (Portland, Seattle Breakers, Victoria Cougars, 1984-86).
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The Tri-City Americans had a busy day as they signed three players to WHL deals. . . . F Jordan Topping, from Salt Spring Island, B.C., is a 16-year-old who had 17 points in 40 games with the North Island Silvertips of the B.C. Major Midget League last season. He was an eighth-round selection in the 2012 bantam draft and is the seventh draft pick to sign with the Americans. He is not related to D Mitch Topping, who is Tri-City’s captain. . . . The Americans also signed D Dylan Coghlan of Nanaimo, B.C., to a contract. Coghlan was a third-round selection in the 2013 bantam draft. He had 40 points in 34 games with the bantam AAA Nanaimo Clippers. . . . Later in the day, the Americans announced the signing of F Michael Sauer, 16, from Bemidji, Minn. He played last season for Bemidji High School, putting up 30 points in 25 games. He has been on Tri-City’s list since March.
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The Kamloops Blazers have signed F Nathan Looysen, 17, to a WHL deal. From Saanichton, B.C., Looysen was placed on the Blazers’ protected list in November 2012. He had 23 points in 27 games with the junior B Peninsula Panthers of the Vancouver Island Junior League last season.
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The Portland Winterhawks have signed F Ethan Price, 16, who played last season with the Omaha Lancers AAA U-16 team in the North American Prospects League. He had 38 points in 22 games. . . . From Lincoln, Neb., Price was a sixth-round pick in the 2012 WHL bantam draft. . . . From the Winterhawks’ news release: “Price is the latest highly rated American-born player to join the Winterhawks in recent seasons, including current ’Hawks Paul Bittner (Minnesota), Brendan Burke (Arizona), Chase De Leo (California), Josh Hanson (Alaska), Keegan Iverson (Minnesota), Alex Schoenborn (North Dakota), Keoni Texeira (California) and Dominic Turgeon (Colorado). Apart from Hanson, each of those players has at least three years of WHL eligibility remaining.”
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The NFL and more than 4,500 players have settled a concussion-related lawsuit, with the players to get $765 million if a judge, as expected, approves the settlement. . . . Ken Belson of The New York Times offers an explanation for what happened right here.
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Jeff Blair of The Globe and Mail writes: “A lawyer specializing in class-action lawsuits believes the already-long odds of former NHL players attempting legal action against the league over the matter of concussions have become a little longer with the announcement of an imminent settlement between the NFL and more than 4,500 former players.” . . . That piece is right here.
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Daniel Engber of Slate.com writes:
“The imprecision of diagnosis means that even with all this money changing hands, we’ll still have no idea how prevalent these disabilities really are.
The settlement does almost nothing to elucidate this question, nor any other in the science of concussions. How serious is the problem of head injuries in football? No one has ever done a well-controlled, long-term study of cognitive impairment to find out. No one has ever selected a random group of athletes in advance, then followed them over time to figure out how their rates of brain pathology relate to everybody else’s. These are just the most basic questions that are yet to be answered, but there’s lots more we still don’t know.”
Engber’s complete piece is right here.
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Rob Nutter, a 55-year-old millwright from Castelgar, B.C., has undergone a heart-and-kidney transplant. Derrick Penner of the Vancouver Sun has today's feel-good story right here

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