F Andreas Eder (Vancouver, 2013-14) signed a one-year contract with Red Bull Munich (Germany, DEL). This season, with Red Bull Salzburg II (Austria, Molodyozhnaya Liga), he had 21 goals and 25 assists in 54 games. The MHL is the top Russian junior league.
The Red Deer Rebels will begin the playoffs without F Adam Musil, who suffered an ankle injury in Saturday’s final regular-season game, a 3-2 loss to the visiting Edmonton Oil Kings. . . . Greg Meachem of the Red Deer Advocate reports that Musil will miss a first-round series against the Medicine Hat Tigers. That series opens Saturday in Medicine Hat. “It’s a significant injury and he’ll be week to week with it,” Brent Sutter, the Rebels’ general manager and head coach, told Meachem. . . . The Rebels have added D Ryan Pouliot, 16, from the major midget Vancouver-North West Giants, and G Trevor Martin, 18, who finished the season with the SJHL’s Melville Millionaires. . . . Pouliot was an 11th-round selection by the Saskatoon Blades in the 2013 bantam draft. Martin was acquired earlier this season from the Blades.
Despite not making the playoffs, the Moose Jaw Warriors’ braintrust feels the team made considerable progress this season. . . . Matthew Gourlie of the Moose Jaw Times-Herald has more on that story right here.
The Saskatoon Blades missed the playoffs for a second straight season, but management is convinced that the franchise is on the right track to get back to responsibility. Daniel Nugent-Bowman of the Saskatoon StarPhoenix takes a look right here at the pros and cons of the season just past and the one ahead.
The Prince Albert Raiders are playing the “what if . . .” game now that the season is over and they didn’t make the playoffs. In Prince Albert, that games goes like this: “What if Leon Draisaitl had returned for a third season?” . . . Jeff D’Andrea of paNOW has more right here.
Myles Fish of the Prince Albert Herald writes of the Raiders that “the questions about the team now centre around its staff. Effectively the entire hockey operations staff with the Raiders have contracts that are set to expire in May.” . . . That story is right here.
If you aren’t aware, I have been writing stories on hockey coaches for The Coaches Site (thecoachessite.com). With that in mind, I recently had occasion to chat with former SAIT athletic director/hockey coach Ken Babey, who now is the head coach of Canada’s national sledge hockey team. . . . That story is right here.
D Mason Geertsen of the Vancouver Giants has signed a three-year, entry-level deal with the NHL’s Colorado Avalanche. Colorado selected Geertsen, 19, in the fourth round of the NHL’s 2013 entry draft. Geertsen, from Rocky Rapids, Alta., had 38 points, 13 of them goals, in 69 games this season. . . . He began his career with the Edmonton Oil Kings. . . . In 245 regular-season games, he has 78 points, including 19 goals.
F Jackson Houck of the Giants has signed an amateur tryout (ATO) with the Oklahoma City Barons, the AHL affiliate of the Edmonton Oilers. The Oilers selected him in the fourth round of the 2013 NHL draft. . . . Houck, who turned 20 on Feb. 27, is from North Vancouver. He had 51 points, including 22 goals, in 65 games this season. In 256 regular-season games, all with Vancouver, he has 189 points, including 87 goals.
Daniel Nugent-Bowman of the Saskatoon StarPhoenix reports that Blades D Brycen Martin and F Brett Stovin will be finishing this season in the professional ranks. . . . Martin is to report to the Rochester Americans, the Buffalo Sabres’ AHL affiliate. Buffalo selected Martin in the third-round of the 2014 NHL draft. Martin, who has yet to sign with the Sabres, missed the Blades’ last two games with a back injury, so it’s not certain that he will play for the Americans. . . . After being acquired from the Swift Current Broncos, Martin had 22 points, five of them goals, in 30 games with Saskatoon. . . . Stovin is expected to join the ECHL’s Missouri Mavericks, whose head coach is former Blades D Richard Matvichuk. This season, Stovin, 20, had 50 points, including 29 goals, in 72 games. He will finish this season with the Mavericks, then return home and decide whether to chase a pro career or go to school. . . . Nugent-Bowman’s story is right here.
The WHL is scheduled to hold its draft lottery today. During this draft, the order for the first six selections in the 2015 bantam draft will be decided. The six teams that didn’t make the playoffs take part in the draft lottery — Saskatoon, Lethbridge, Vancouver, Kamloops, Prince Albert and Moose Jaw. . . . Keep in mind that Spokane holds Saskatoon’s first-round selection from a January 2013 trade in which the Blades acquired F Collin Valcourt. . . . Also remember that Moose Jaw holds Kamloops’ first-round pick from a January 2013 deal in which the Blazers got D Joel Edmundson. . . . The most a team is able to move up in the draft lottery is two spots. . . . The order of the second round and all subsequent rounds will be the inverse order of the regular-season standings. . . . The bantam draft is scheduled for May 7 in Calgary.
The Kootenay Ice has signed a new three-year broadcasting deal with The Drive 102.9 FM. The contract runs through 2017-18. . . . It covers all 72 regular-season games and all playoff games, as it has for each of the previous 15 seasons. . . . Jeff Hollick, the play-by-play voice since 1999-2000, will remain in place.
THE WHL PLAYOFF SCHEDULE:If you came here looking for a WHL playoff schedule, click right here. You will find the complete first-round schedule, with graphics courtesy of Terry Massey of thirteenletter.com.
THE COACHING GAME:The QMJHL’s Moncton Wildcats have signed head coach Darren Rumble to a two-year contract that runs through 2016-17. Rumble was working on a two-year deal that was to expire after this season. The club had an option on a third season. . . . The Wildcats are 79-51-0-6 in two seasons under Rumble. They open a first-round playoff series at home to the Chicoutimi Sagueneens on Thursday.
Here’s a look at the 20 WHL head coaches who have more than 300 regular-season victories to their credit:
1. Ken Hodge (Edmonton, Portland), 742
2. Don Hay (Kamloops, Tri-City, Vancouver) 637
3. Don Nachbaur (Seattle, Tri-City, Spokane) 631
4. Lorne Molleken (Moose Jaw, Saskatoon, Regina) 603
5. Ernie McLean (Estevan, New Westminster) 548
6. Pat Ginnell (Flin Flon, Victoria, Lethbridge, Medicine Hat, New Westminster) 518
7. Jack Shupe (Medicine Hat, Victoria) 466
8. Dean Clark (Calgary, Brandon, Kamloops, Prince George) 465
9. Peter Anholt (Prince Albert, Seattle, Red Deer, Kelowna, Prince Albert) 464
10. Mike Williamson (Portland, Calgary, Tri-City) 460
11. Bob Lowes (Seattle, Brandon, Regina) 453
12. Kelly McCrimmon (Brandon) 417
Doug Sauter (Calgary, Medicine Hat, Regina, Brandon) 417
14. Marcel Comeau (Calgary, Saskatoon, Tacoma, Kelowna) 411
15. Bryan Maxwell (Medicine Hat, Spokane, Lethbridge) 397
16. Brent Sutter (Red Deer) 367
17. Marc Habscheid (Kelowna, Chilliwack, Victoria, Prince Albert) 365
18. Graham James (Moose Jaw, Swift Current, Calgary) 349
19. Bob Loucks (Lethbridge, Tri-City, Medicine Hat) 340
20. Willie Desjardins (Saskatoon, Medicine Hat) 333
Broadcast booth in final reg season game at The Arena. @BobRidley_CHAT on left. @Bladesvoice on the right. #WHL. pic.twitter.com/48jjWfilYF
— Darren Steinke (@StanksSports) March 25, 2015
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