Thursday, October 24, 2013

SELHV71 Jönköping (Sweden, SHL) has chosen not to renew loan agreement with Chicago (NHL) for F Kyle Beach (Everett, Lethbridge, Spokane, 2005-10). Beach had two goals and an assist in seven games with HV71. The team said Beach would have a limited role now that HV71 has signed new players. . . .

Slovak Ex-LigaD Jaroslav Obsut (Swift Current, Medicine Hat, Edmonton Ice, 1995-97) signed for the rest of season with Zvolen (Slovakia, Extraliga). This season, he was pointless in two games with Zvolen. Last season, he had a goal and an assist in seven games with Zvolen. He also played in the KHL, totalling 12 points, four of them goals, in 39 games with Donetsk (Ukraine) and Spartak Moscow (Russia).
1. The Canadian Junior Hockey League (CJHL) has taken a giant step towards banning fighting.
CJHLOn Thursday, the league, which governs junior A hockey, announced that it had "overwhelmingly voted to support an automatic game misconduct for fighting (the one-fight rule) . . ."
"The co-operation among our leagues and partners for standardized fighting rules and consistent discipline guidelines across all Junior A leagues is a significant step in the continuing development and evolution of the CJHL and Junior A hockey in Canada," CJHL President Kirk Lamb said in a news release. "We will work closely with our stakeholders and key partners, such as Hockey Canada and provincial branches, on bringing these endorsements forward for consideration."
Starting next season, a fighting major is likely to carry with it an automatic game misconduct. Five leagues that operate under the CJHL umbrella — the SIJHL, NOJHL, OJHL, CCHL and LHJAAAQ — already use the one-fight rule. Five other leagues — the BCHL, AJHL, SJHL, MJHL and MHL — are playing under a two-fight rule this season, but are expected to change in time for next season.
This definitely is the direction in which hockey below the professional level is moving. And people who are critical of decisions such as these need to understand that a big part of the decision rests on the issue of liability.

2. And just in case you're not sure of the damage that punches to the head are capable of inflicting, you can find out be reading this piece right here.

3. The message from the Seattle Thunderbirds is rather simple: We aren't anyone's patsy any more.
The Thunderbirds, who have struggled to reach the WHL's upper reaches in recent seasons, announced Thursday evening that they have acquired disgruntled forwards Jaimen Yakubowski and Sam Mckechnie, both 19, from the Lethbridge Hurricanes in exchange for forwards Riley Sheen, who turns 19 on Dec. 21, and Carter Folk, 17, and a third-round selection in the 2015 bantam draft.
Yakubowski and Mckechnie, the Hurricanes' two leading scorers last season, had both expressed a desire to be traded and were sent home last week to wait and see what might transpire.
The Thunderbirds, who are 9-3-1 and a point behind the Western Conference-leading Spokane Chiefs (10-3-0), have signalled to the WHL's 21 other teams that they are coming after them.
“So far this season we have shown potential to be a contender in the league but it is a very competitive division and we felt the experience and scoring these two bring will give us the depth to fully round out our lineup,” Seattle general manager Russ Farwell said in a news release. “We are a tougher team to play against today with this trade and we are excited about what these two players add to our team.”
Yakubowski, from Dalmeny, Sask., has but one goal in 11 games this season, after putting up 50 points, including 32 goals, in 66 games last season. He has 79 points, 49 of them goals, in 145 career games. He also has some fire and brimstone to his game. He was a fourth-round pick in the 2009 bantam draft.
Mckechnie, from Airdrie, Alta., has a goal and two assists in nine games this season. Last season, he finished with 44 points, including 26 goals, in 72 games. He had 76 points, 40 of them goals, in 153 career games. The Hurricanes selected him in the third round of the 2009 bantam draft.
Sheen, from Edmonton, had 40 points in 71 games with the Seattle last season. He was acquired from the Medicine Hat Tigers in a deal that had F Jacob Doty head east. Sheen had three ponts in 46 games with the Tigers in 2011-12. This season, he has eight points, three of them goals, in 12 games.
Folk, from Regina, is a freshman and is pointless in seven games. Seattle selected him in the fourth round of the 2011 bantam draft.
The Thunderbirds visit the Tri-City Americans tonight, before returning home to Kent for a game against the Vancouver Giants on Saturday.
The Thunderbirds and Chiefs aren't scheduled to meet until Dec. 1 and 6 when they play twice in Spokane. (The Portland Winterhawks are to visit Kent on Nov. 1.)
If you were wondering, F Ryan Gropp, who left the BCHL's Penticton Vees and a commitment to the U of North Dakota to join the Thunderbirds earlier this month, has yet to play. A groin injury has kept him on the sideline. He has practised this week and may play at some point this weekend.
Tim Pigulski of ESPN Seattle has more on the Thunderbirds right here.

4. After announcing the deal, the Hurricanes entertained the Moose Jaw Warriors. Lethbridge took a 3-0 lead into the third period, only to give up the game's last four goals and drop a 4-3 overtime decision. . . . Russian F Alex Chirva, playing his ninth game, forced OT with his first WHL goal at 15:20 of the third period and D Travis Brown won it 3:40 into extra time. . . . The Hurricanes are 2-11-2, which is the WHL's poorest record. The Warriors (6-7-3) are tied for fourth in the Eastern Conference.

5. A tweet from the Vancouver Province's Steve Ewen (@SteveEwen): "#WHL Somewhere Calvin Pickard is recounting all the good T-Bird news this year and saying, 'Now? Seriously?' "

6. The Vancouver Giants, having parted company with goaltending coach Paul Fricker earlier in the month, have filled that vacancy by hiring veteran coach Eli Wilson. . . . "I've coached at every level, from minor hockey to the NHL, and I've developed goaltenders to move on and reach their goals," Wilson said in a news release. "I've had a lot of success in the WHL when I was in Medicine Hat and I know what it takes at this level for goalies to reach their full potential." . . . Included on his resume are stints with Hockey Canada as well as the NHL's Anaheim Ducks and Ottawa Senators.

7. Would you give up one of your kidneys for $10,000? . . . According to a story that is right here: "Paying living kidney donors $10,000 could boost donations and cost effectively improve quality of life for people who would otherwise be on dialysis, say Canadian doctors who modelled the idea.

8. The Vancouver Giants are without one of their two goaltenders as Steve Ewen of the Vancouver Province reports that Jared Rathjen suffered an undisclosed injury in practice this week and wasn't able to even back up Payton Lee in Wednesday's 4-3 OT victory over the visiting Calgary Hitmen. . . . The Giants are using Jake Morrissey, 16, who Ewen reports is on loan to them until Monday. Morrissey, the brother of Prince Albert Raiders D Josh Morrissey, was a fifth-round selection by the Kelowna Rockets in the 2012 bantam draft and now is at the South Delta, B.C., Hockey Academy. . . . Payton Lee will be back in goal on Friday as Vancouver begins a stretch of five games in six nights — at home to Everett tonight, in Kent, Wash., against Seattle on Saturday, in Kamloops on Sunday, and in Prince George on Tuesday and Wednesday.

9. Nick Patterson of the Everett Herald reports that F Jujha Khaira of the Everett Silvertips has an undisclosed injury and won't play this weekend. The Silvertips are scheduled to be in Vancouver tonight and in Kamloops on Saturday. . . . Everett F Patrick Bajkov, who has missed two games with a concussion, isn't expected to play tonight but could return Saturday.

10. The St. Louis Cardinals beat the Red Sox 4-2 in Boston last night to even the World Series, 1-1. This means there will be a Game 5 and some interesting times in St. Louis on Monday. While the Red Sox and Cardinals are playing, the Monday Night Football game will feature the Seattle Seahawks at the Rams.

11. So . . . you've got a shrine to hockey wrapped around a bar in your basement. But you're missing that one thing . . . that one item that would really get the conversation rolling. How about a score clock, like this one right here?

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