D Logan Pyett (Regina, 2003-08) has signed a one-year extension with Admiral Vladivostok (Russia, KHL). Last season, Pyett started with Vityaz Podolsk (Russia, KHL) and was traded to Admiral in December for Mathias Porseland. In 50 games, Pyett had 16 points, six of them goals. . . .
F Justin Kelly (Prince Albert, Spokane, Saskatoon, 1997-2002) has signed a one-year contract with the Bietigheim Steelers (Germany, DEL2). Last season, with the Ravensburg Towerstars (Germany, DEL2), he had 90 points, including 32 goals, in 54 games. He tied for the league lead in points and was No. 1 in assists.
1. Happy Canada Day, and a Merry Christmas in July to NHL unrestricted free agents.
2. It seems that the Moose Jaw Warriors may be about to join the WHL teams that are searching for head coaches. Jon Rosen, the former radio voice of the Everett Silvertips who now blogs for the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings, tweeted Friday: “Getting the sense that the next Manchester head coach will be Mike Stothers. Coached WHL-Moose Jaw last three seasons. Not official.” . . . The Manchester Monarchs are the Kings’ AHL affiliate. . . . On Monday, there were a few reports stating that Stothers is headed to the Monarchs. . . . That being the case, it will leave the Warriors, Portland Winterhawks, Regina Pats and Vancouver Giants each needing a head coach.
3. During the NHL draft, I came upon a piece at sbnation.com that does a great job of explaining what a crap shoot this process really is. Written by Adam Gretz, it includes a chart that breaks down the draft from 1995 to 2005, showing what percentage of picks appeared in the NHL and what percentage played 100 or more games. It’s really interesting and it’s right here.
4. The Spokane Chiefs and head coach Don Nachbaur have signed a two-year contract extension that takes him through the 2016-17 season. Nachbaur is preparing for his fifth season with the Chiefs, which will be his 16th season as a WHL head coach. . . . He has 598 regular-season coaching victories, trailing only Ken Hodge (742), Don Hay (609) and Lorne Molleken (603) in the WHL record book. . . . Nachbaur is a three-time winner of the WHL’s coach-of-the-year award, having won it with three different teams (Spokane, Tri-City and Seattle). . . . Only Pat Ginnell, with four, has been saluted more often as coach of the year.
5. Bob Stauffer, the analyst on the Edmonton Oilers’ radio broadcast crew and host of Oilers Now on 630 CHED, tweeted that “a Pacific Division (NHL) team requested permission to interview @EdmOilKings Head Coach Derek Laxdal for an AHL HC job.” . . . That led to speculation that the Pittsburgh Penguins were about to sign Travis Green as an assistant coach, leaving the AHL’s Utica Comets without a head coach. The Comets are the Vancouver Canucks’ top affiliate.
6. Earlier, Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette had tweeted that Penguins GM Jim Rutherford had said the Penguins hadn’t yet hired Travis Green but “we’re hoping he comes on board.”
7. The Kamloops Blazers won’t have D Edson Harlacher back for a second season. Harlacher, 18, is a native of Zurich and has chosen to stay in Switzerland. He is expected to play for the Kloten Flyers of the National League A. . . . Harlacher was the only European on the Blazers’ roster, meaning they are likely to take two players in Wednesday’s CHL import draft. . . . He had nine assists in 71 games last season, then was passed over in last weekend’s NHL draft. . . . Harlacher played for Switzerland at the IIHF’s U-18 World championship in April.
8. The Saskatoon Blades won’t have Czech D David Nemecek, 19, back for a second season. Nemecek had 15 points, five of them goals, after being selected in the first round of the 2013 CHL import draft. . . . F Nikita Scherbak, a Russian, was the Blades’ best player last season and was a first-round selection by the NHL’s Montreal Canadiens on Friday. . . . That means that Saskatoon GM/head coach Bob Woods is able to select one or two players in Wednesday’s import draft. They hold the ninth and 69th selections. . . . Daniel Nugent-Bowman of the Saskatoon StarPhoenix has more right here.
9. A couple of NHL draft notes provided by Mike Morreale (@mikemorrealeNHL): “The @USHL saw a record # of players picked at the '14 NHL Draft; 35 players who played this season were chosen by NHL clubs; 12 from NTDP.” . . . “There were 65 Americans picked at '14 NHL Draft. Not since 1991 (67) have more Americans been selected at the draft.”
10. Another late draft note: A total of 21 goaltenders were selected, none from the WHL. Eleven European goaltenders were taken, with six others from the U.S., and four from Canada.
11. The Everett Silvertips have acquired F Graham Millar, 18, from the Saskatoon Blades for either a conditional fifth-round selection, or a conditional fourth-round selection, in the 2015 bantam draft. . . . Everett’s news release said a conditional fifth-rounder was involved; Saskatoon’s news release said it was a conditional fourth-rounder. . . . Last season, as a freshman, Millar had 13 points, including seven goals, in 61 games. He is from Penticton, B.C.
12. Nick Patterson of the Everett Herald takes a look right here at the Silvertips’ import situation going into Wednesday’s draft. He also explains some of the rules involving the import draft and, please, try not to laugh while you’re reading. The headline could have been” Rules, rules and more rules.
The Tri-City Americans have signed Zachary Fournier as their new athletic therapist. He has degrees from the U of Tampa and Ohio U in Athens, Ohio. He started last season with the ECHL’s San Francisco Bulls. When the franchise folded in mid-season, he joined the San Francisco Giants as a minor league trainer in Scottsdale, Ariz. . . . The Regina Pats have signed F Jacob Elmer, a Calgarian who was born on Dec. 31, 1998. Elmer was a sixth-round selection in the 2013 bantam draft. He had 71 points, including 37 goals, in 52 games with the EDGE Mountaineers (Elite 15s) last season.
THE COACHING GAME:
The Edmonton Oilers have signed Todd Nelson to a three-year contract extension. Nelson has completed four seasons as the head coach of the Oklahoma City Barons, the Oilers’ AHL affiliate, and they have reached the playoffs each season. Nelson, from Prince Albert, played four seasons (1986-90) with the Raiders.
@hawkeyblog Dear Abbey, Our WHL coach/GM signed w/ an NHL team I really dislike. What do I do? Cheer,or continue to wish failure on them?
— Michael Welch (@bonzosa) June 28, 2014
There has never been a subscription fee for this blog, but if you enjoy stopping by here, why not consider donating to the cause? Just click HERE. . . and thank you very much.