Thursday, April 3, 2014

Oil Kings, Rockets draw first blood

F Tyler Redenbach (Prince George, Swift Current, Lethbridge, 2001-05) has signed a one-year extension with Pelicans Lahti (Finland, Liiga). This season, Redenbach had three goals and 33 assists in 47 games. He was fourth in the Liiga in assists. Next season will be his sixth in Liiga. Redenbach is a former WHL scoring champion (Swift Current, 2003-04, 105 points). . . .
HPK Hämeenlinna (Finland, Liiga) has exercised an option on D Craig Schira (Regina, Vancouver, 2003-09) for next season. This season with HPK, Schira had 25 points, including six goals, in 54 games. He wasn’t able to finish the season after suffering a shoulder injury in March. . . .
D Alex Plante (Calgary, 2004-09) signed a one-year deal with Lørenskog (Norway, GET-Ligaen), joining his brother Tyler. This season with Dornbirn (Austria, Erste Bank Liga), Alex had 13 points, including three goals, in 54 games. . . .
G Tyler Plante (Brandon, 2003-07) has signed a one-year extension with Lørenskog (Norway, GET-Ligaen). This season, in 17 games, he was 2.28 and .917, leaving him fifth in the league in both categories. His season was ended early by a knee injury.

Spiros Anastas, an assistant coach with the AHL’s Grand Rapids Griffins, is the new head coach of the U of Lethbridge Pronghorns. Anastas, 28, will remain with the Griffins through the end of their season. From Mississauga, Ont., he is in his second season in Grand Rapids. . . . Anastas, who worked as the general manager of the BCHL’s Alberni Valley Bulldogs for part of 2012-13, replaces Greg Gatto, who was fired after the season. . . . The Griffins are the AHL affiliate of the NHL’s Detroit Red Wings. Detroit head coach Mike Babcock was the head coach at the U of Lethbridge for one season (1993-94) and Detroit assistant coach Bill Peters filled the position from 2002-05).
F Patrick Khodorenko, a second-round pick by the Everett Silvertips in the 2013 WHL bantam draft, has committed to the U.S. National Team Development Program’s U-17 team. A native of Walnut Creek, Calif., Khodorenko, who won’t turn 16 until Oct. 13, has played the last two seasons in the Detroit Honeybaked program.
The QMJHL’s Quebec Remparts will be the host team for the 2015 MasterCard Memorial Cup tournament. . . . The Chicoutimi Sagueneens were the only other team to bid on the event that is held each year in May. . . . The 2015 Memorial Cup is scheduled to be the last major event held in the Pepsi Colisee, which seats 15,000. A new arena is being built in Quebec City. . . . This year’s tournament is to be held in London, Ont.
The BCHL’s Chilliwack Chiefs have hired Jason Tatarnic as general manager and head coach. He replaces Harvey Smyl, who has stepped aside after 21 years with the Chiefs. . . . Tararnic, 41, spent eight seasons with the Maritime junior league’s Woodstock Slammers, who reached the Royal Bank Cup final in the spring of 2012. He didn’t coach this season after the Slammers underwent an ownership change.
The Calgary Hitmen will celebrate their 20th anniversary season in 2014-15 and, with that in mind, they have unveiled a special sweater, one that harkens back to that first season and also salutes nameskake Bret (Hitman) Hart, one of the franchise’s original owners. . . . According to a news release: “The limited edition retro jersey includes two shoulder patches; one that features Hart’s famous words, ‘The Best There Is, The Best There Was, The Best There Ever Will Be’, while the opposite shoulder is dressed with the historic Hitmen starburst logo.’
The photo at the top, from Hart's Instagram account, shows him wearing one of the limited edition sweaters while backstage at Wrestlemania in New Orleans.

THE SECOND ROUND (best-of-seven; all times local):
(x - if necessary)
(Edmonton leads, 1-0)
Season series: Edmonton, 3-1-0; Brandon, 1-2-1.
Thursday: Brandon 0at Edmonton 5 (5,899)
Saturday: Brandon at Edmonton, noon
Tuesday: Edmonton at Brandon, 7 p.m.
Wednesday: Edmonton at Brandon, 7 p.m.
x-Friday, April 11: Brandon at Edmonton, 7 p.m.
x-Monday, April 14: Edmonton at Brandon, 7 p.m.
x-Wednesday, April 16: Brandon at Edmonton, 7 p.m.
Edmonton: F Brandon Baddock, day-to-day; D Blake Orban, day-to-day.
Brandon: G Curtis Honey, day-to-day.
Season series: Medicine Hat, 3-3-0; Kootenay, 3-3-0.
Saturday: Kootenay at Medicine Hat, 7:30 p.m.
Sunday: Kootenay at Medicine Hat, 6 p.m.
Wednesday: Medicine Hat at Kootenay, 7 p.m.
Thursday: Medicine Hat at Kootenay, 7 p.m.
x-Saturday, April 12: Kootenay at Medicine Hat, 7:30 p.m.
x-Monday, April 14: Medicine Hat at Kootenay, 7 p.m.
x-Wednesday, April 16: Kootenay at Medicine Hat, 7 p.m.
(NOTE: Kootenay plays home games in Cranbrook, B.C.)
Medicine Hat: F Anthony Ast, indefinite; F Gavin Broadhead, day-to-day; F Hunter Shinkaruk, indefinite.
Kootenay: F Tim Bozon, indefinite; F Ryan Chynoweth, indefinite; D Tyler King, day-to-day; D Tanner Faith, 3-5 months.
(Kelowna leads, 1-0)
Season series: Kelowna, 2-1-1; Seattle, 2-1-1.
Thursday: Seattle 2 at Kelowna 6 (4,581)
Saturday: Seattle at Kelowna, 7:05 p.m.
Tuesday: Kelowna at Seattle, 7:05 p.m.
Wednesday: Kelowna at Seattle, 7:05 p.m.
x-Friday, April 11: Seattle at Kelowna, 7:05 p.m.
x-Sunday, April 13: Kelowna at Seattle, 5:05 p.m.
x-Tuesday, April 15: Seattle at Kelowna, 7:05 p.m.
(NOTE: Seattle plays home games in Kent, Wash.)
Kelowna: F Myles Bell, day-to-day.
Seattle: F Connor Honey, indefinite.
(Series televised by Shaw-TV)
Season series: Portland, 1-1-2; Victoria, 3-1-0.
Friday: Victoria at Portland (Veterans Memorial Coliseum), 7 p.m.
Saturday: Victoria at Portland (Moda Center), 7 p.m.
Monday: Portland at Victoria, 7:05 p.m.
Tuesday: Portland at Victoria, 7:05 p.m.
x-Thursday: Victoria at Portland (Moda Center), 7, p.m.
x-Saturday, April 12: Portland at Victoria, 7:05 p.m.
x-Monday, April 14: Victoria at Portland (Veterans Memorial Coliseum), 7 p.m.
Portland: None.
Victoria: None.

In Edmonton, G Tristan Jarry stopped 15 shots as the Oil Kings dumped the Brandon Wheat Kings, 5-0. . . . Edmonton leads the second-round series 1-0 with Game 2 scheduled for Saturday afternoon in Edmonton. . . . The shutout was Jarry’s first career playoff blank job. . . . Edmonton F Brett Pollock scored his fourth goal of these playoffs at 1:50 of the first period and the Oil Kings were off and running. . . . Brandon G Jordan Papirny stopped 40 shots. With Curtis Honey, their other goaltender scratched with an undisclosed injury, the Wheat Kings had Logan Thompson backing up Papirny. A sixth-round pick in the 2012 bantam draft, Thompson turned 17 on Feb. 25. From Calgary, he played for the midget AAA Calgary Buffaloes. . . . Pollock also had an assist, while F Edgars Kulda had a goal and an assist, and D Griffin Reinhart had two helpers. . . . Kulda has two goals in the playoffs. . . . F Mads Eller, D Ashton Sautner and F Henrik Samuelsson each scored his first goal. . . . Edmonton was 2-for-7 on the PP; Brandon was 0-for-2. . . .

In Kelowna, D Damon Severson scored twice and added two assists as the Rockets beat the Seattle Thunderbirds, 6-2. . . . Game 2 is scheduled for Saturday in Kelowna. . . . The Rockets scored in the final minute of each of the first two periods, giving them leads of 3-1 and 5-2. . . . F Cole Linaker and F Ryan Olsen each had a goal and an assist for Kelowna, while F Nick Merkley had two assists. . . . Seattle F Mathew Barzal scored at 7:44 of the first period to cut Kelowna’s lead to 2-1. . . . Severson scored on a PP at 19:42 for a 3-1 edge. . . . Seattle F Alexander Delnov made it 3-2 at 3:07 of the second, but Olsen upped that to 4-2 at 13:04, on a PP, and D Madison Bowey added another at 19:49. . . . Kelowna was 3-for-6 on the PP; Seattle was 0-for-3. . . . Kelowna G Jordon Cooke turned aside 23 shots, seven fewer than Seattle’s Taran Kozun.

From Grand Rapids Griffins (@griffinshockey): “We’re happy to report @Mcally15 underwent successful surgery to repair a jaw fracture & are hopeful he'll be back sometime during the playoffs.”
That would be F Mitchell Callahan of the AHL's Grand Rapids Griffins, whose selfie was posted here yesterday.

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