Thursday, February 5, 2015

Sutter signs with Swiss team . . . Smyth's night in Moose Jaw . . . Key game for Raiders

D Dave Sutter (Seattle, 2010-12) has signed a two-year contract beginning next season with Biel (Switzerland, NL A). This season, with Chaux-de-Fonds (Switzerland NL B), he has three goals and seven assists in 42 games. He was pointless in two games on loan to Fribourg-Gotteron (Switzerland, NL A).

The situation involving Winnipeg Jets F Evander Kane has blown up over the last couple of days. It now is that the point where there is speculation that Kane, who starred with the Vancouver Giants, may never play for the Jets again. Gary Lawless of the Winnipeg Free Press takes a good look at the Kane saga right here.
The queue of American cities hoping to play host to the 2018 World Junior Championship forms on the right. According to Kevin Allen of USA TODAY, the line will include bids backed by a number of NHL teams, including the Detroit Red Wings, Tampa Bay Lightning, Florida Panthers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Arizona Coyotes “and others.” . . . Allen’s story is right here. . . . The 2016 WJC is to be held in Helsinki, with the 2017 tournament scheduled for Montreal and Toronto.
An obituary in the Spokane Spokesman-Review on Thursday blames a man’s death on the “Seahawks lousy play call.” Seriously. . . . Take a look right here.

The Prince George Cougars, mired in a 12-game losing skid (10-0-2), should get some help tonight as they expect to have F Zach Pochiro (ribs) and F Jari Erricson (concussion) back in their lineup against the visiting Edmonton Oil Kings. Pochiro has missed eight games; Erricson has sat out four games. . . .
The Brandon Wheat Kings are in Cranbrook for a Friday-Saturday doubleheader with the Kootenay Ice. . . . The Eastern Conference-leading Wheat Kings are expected to be without F John Quenneville and G Alex Moodie, both of whom are believed to have concussions, and F Jayce Hawryluk (undisclosed injury). D Kale Clague (wrist) may play this weekend. . . . The Ice may be without F Jon Martin (ill). . . .
The Saskatoon Blades visit the Regina Pats tonight. The Blades go in knowing that they haven’t beaten the Pats in almost two years (March 9, 2013). . . . That’s 11 straight losses. . . . Saskatoon F Ryan Graham (back) is questionable, as is F Mitch Skapski (undisclosed injury). . . .
The Moose Jaw Warriors will honour Ryan Smyth tonight by retiring his number (28) as they entertain the Spokane Chiefs. Smyth played three seasons with the Warriors (1992-95), putting up 224 points, including 110 goals, in 188 games. . . . Tonight’s game will be shown on ShawTV with Dan Russell doing the play-by-play. . . .
Also on TV tonight: Roots Sports will do the game in Kent, Wash., between the Seattle Thunderbirds and Portland Winterhawks. Ian Furness will call the play. . . .
With the Medicine Hat Tigers hurting on the back end due to injuries and suspensions, F Blake Penner has taken some turns back there. But he left Wedneday’s 6-3 loss to the visiting Brandon Wheat Kings with an injury, so perhaps won’t be available tonight against the host Lethbridge Hurricanes. After Wednesday’s game, Shaun Clouston, the Tigers’ GM/head coach, told Ryan McCracken of the Medicine Hat News: “He missed the second half of the game, but hopefully it won’t be anything major.” . . .
If the Prince Albert Raiders are to make the playoffs, you would think they absolutely have to win tonight’s game against the visiting Swift Current Broncos. The Broncos hold down the East Division’s third playoff spot, five points ahead of Moose Jaw and eight up on the Raiders. A loss tonight puts the Raiders 10 points off the pace with 19 games remaining. A hole like that at this time of the season is awfully deep. . . .
The chase for the B.C. Division’s third playoff spot continues tonight with the three teams involved separated by four points. The Kamloops Blazers, who are in Kelowna tonight and then play host to the Rockets on Saturday, are third, three points ahead of the Vancouver Giants and four ahead of Prince George. . . . The Giants are at home to Red Deer tonight; the Cougars open a double-dip with the visiting Edmonton Oil Kings. . . .
In the U.S. Division, the Portland Winterhawks will continue their attempt at tracking down the first-place Everett Silvertips tonight. The Winterhawks, who are three points behind the first-place Silvertips, visit the third-place Seattle Thunderbirds, while Everett is at home to the fifth-place Tri-City Americans. . . . As things rest right now, it appears that all five U.S. Division teams will make the playoffs. Spokane and Tri-City hold down the Western Conference’s two wild-card spots at the moment.

From a news release that was issued on Thursday:
“James Hudziak, M.D., has two children who love ice hockey. His son skates for his college team and one of his daughters plays in high school.
“As a pediatric neuropsychiatrist and director of the Vermont Center for Children, Youth and Families at the University of Vermont (UVM) College of Medicine, Hudziak believes in the benefits of ice hockey and other sports for kids. Athletic activities help a young person build organizational skills, improve motor and emotional control, reduce anxiety and boost confidence.
“Now, though, Hudziak is looking into the potential dangers of ice hockey for young athletes. He and UVM colleagues Matthew Albaugh, Ph.D., Catherine Orr, Ph.D., and Richard Watts, Ph.D., have published a groundbreaking study in the February issue of The Journal of Pediatrics that shows a relationship between concussions sustained by young ice hockey players and subtle changes in the cortex, the outer layer of the brain that controls higher-level reasoning and behavior.”
The complete news release is right here.

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