Saturday, June 27, 2015

Molleken next Giants' coach? . . . WHL-related NHL draft notes . . . Dillabaugh joins Flyers


According to a Saturday afternoon tweet from Jay Janower of Global B.C., the Vancouver Giants are “set to announce Lorne Molleken” as their latest head coach. . . . Molleken sat out last season after being bought out when Edmonton car dealer Mike Priestner bought the Saskatoon Blades. Molleken had been the Blades’ general manager and head coach. . . . Molleken also has coached the Moose Jaw Warriors and Regina Pats. He has 603 career WHL coaching victories, good for fourth spot on the WHL’s all-time list. . . . Daniel Nugent-Bowman, who has covered the Saskatoon Blades for the Saskatoon StarPhoenix, reported that the Giants offered Molleken their head-coaching position on an interim basis in November. . . . With the Giants, Molleken will replace Claude Noel, who took over from Troy Ward early last season and wasn’t retained at season’s end. . . . The Giants have missed the playoffs in two of the last three seasons, including last season.
NHL Draft
The WHL says it had 35 players selected in the two-day NHL draft that wrapped up Saturday afternoon in Sunrise, Fla., the home of the Florida Panthers. That included five first-round selections.
First Round
7. D Ivan Provorov, Brandon Wheat Kings, Philadelphia Flyers.
14. F Jake DeBrusk, Swift Current Broncos, Boston Bruins.
16. F Mathew Barzal, Seattle Thunderbirds, New York Islanders.
26. D Noah Juulsen, Everett Silvertips, Montreal Canadiens.
30. F Nick Merkley, Kelowna Rockets, Arizona Coyotes.
Second Round
37. D Brandon Carlo, Tri-City Americans, Boston.
38. F Paul Bittner, Portland Winterhawks, Columbus Blue Jackets.
41. F Ryan Gropp, Seattle, New York Rangers.
47. F Jansen Harkins, Prince George Cougars, Winnipeg Jets.
51. D Brendan Guhle, Prince Albert Raiders, Buffalo Sabres.
Third Round
65. D Andrew Nielsen, Lethbridge Hurricanes, Toronto Maple Leafs.
69. F Keegan Kolesar, Seattle, Columbus.
76. G Adin Hill, Portland, Arizona.
79. D Sergei Zborovskiy, Regina Pats, New York Rangers.
84. F Deven Sideroff, Kamloops Blazers, Anaheim Ducks.
Fourth Round
94. F Adam Musil, Red Deer Rebels, St. Louis Blues.
99. F Austin Wagner, Regina, Los Angeles Kings.
105. F Jesse Gabrielle, Regina, Boston.
106. F Adam Helewka, Spokane Chiefs, San Jose Sharks.
112. D Parker Wotherspoon, Tri-City, New York Islanders.
113. F Brad Morrison, Prince George, New York Rangers.
116. F Glenn Gawdin, Swift Current, St. Louis.
Fifth Round
122. D Devante Stephens, Kelowna, Buffalo.
124. D Ethan Bear, Seattle, Edmonton Oilers.
129. D Sam Ruopp, Prince George, Columbus.
131. F Matt Bradley, Medicine Hat, Montreal.
136. F Pavel Karnaukhov, Calgary Hitmen, Calgary Flames.
143. D Connor Hobbs, Regina, Washington Capitals.
147. D Ryan Pilon, Brandon, New York Islanders.
Sixth Round
152. F Giorgio Estephan, Lethbridge, Buffalo.
173. D Colby Williams, Regina, Washington.
Seventh Round
187. D Chaz Reddekopp, Victoria Royals, Los Angeles.
203. F Matteo Gennaro, Prince Albert, Winnipeg.
205. G Evan Smith, Victoria, Nashville Predators.
210. D Tate Olson, Prince George, Vancouver Canucks.
The Regina Pats led all WHL teams with five players selected off their roster. Here’s a team-by-team look:
5 -- Regina.
4 -- Prince George, Seattle.
3 -- None.
2 -- Brandon, Kelowna, Lethbridge, Portland, Prince Albert, Swift Current, Tri-City, Victoria.
1 -- Calgary, Everett, Kamloops, Medicine Hat, Red Deer, Spokane.
0 -- Edmonton, Kootenay, Moose Jaw, Saskatoon, Vancouver.
DRAFT NOTES: The OHL had 31 players selected, while 30 were taken out of the QMJHL. . . . There were 17 Russian-born players selected, the most in 11 years. . . . A year ago, there were 37 WHL players drafted. The record is 43 in 2010 and 2005. . . . There were 37 players drafted who played last season in the USHL. . . . The Prince George Cougars had four players selected Saturday after having had five players taken in the previous six drafts. . . . F Cameron Hughes, who will turn 19 on Oct. 9, was selected in the sixth round by the Boston Bruins. He has 13 points, including three goals, in 34 games as a freshman at Wisconsin last season. His WHL rights belong to the Swift Current Broncos. From Edmonton, the Broncos selected him in the ninth round of the 2011 bantam draft. . . . The Arizona Coyotes selected then-Portland G Brendan Burke in the sixth round of the 2013 draft, but then chose not to sign him. On Saturday, the Coyotes selected Portland G Adin Hill in the third round. Hill beat out Burke for the No. 1 job in Portland last season, and Burke was dealt to the Calgary Hitmen. . . . G Evan Smith of Parker, Colo.,, played four games with Victoria and finished the season with the NAHL’s Austin Bruins, playing 15 regular-season and six playoff games. Still, the WHL is including him in its 35-player total. . . . D Andrew Nielsen of the Lethbridge Hurricanes, who went to Toronto in the third round, is a former Red Deer Rebels’ stick boy. . . . F Marcus Vela of the BCHL’s Langley Rivermen was the only player drafted from a junior A team. Vela, who is from Burnaby, B.C., was a seventh-round pick by Spokane in the WHL’s 2012 bantam draft. He has committed to the U of New Hampshire. . . .
In the seventh round, the Columbus Blue Jackets selected Finnish D Markus Nutivaara, who is 21 years of age. He had four assists in 35 games with Karpat of the Finnish Liiga last season. Nutivaara was the oldest player to be selected in the 2015 draft. . . . You may have noticed that there were 31 selections in the second round on Saturday. The Chicago Blackhawks received the round’s 24th pick (54th overall) as compensation for not signing F Kevin Hayes, a 2010 first-round selection. . . . All told, 211 players were selected. . . . NHL draft picks by birthplace: Canada, 79; U.S., 55; Sweden, 19; Russia, 17; Finland, 13; Czech Republic, 11; Slovakia, 5; Switzerland, 4; Latvia, 3; and, Belarus, China, Germany, Netherlands, Ukraine, each 1. . . . The CHL has scheduled its 2015 import/goaltenders-not-welcome draft for Tuesday.

Later Saturday, reports began indicating that various undrafted players had accepted invitations to NHL team development camps. . . . F Dryden Hunt of Medicine Hat will go to camp with Montreal. . . . D Turner Ottenbreit of Seattle is off to Washington’s camp. . . . Everett G Austin Lotz will go to Buffalo’s development camp.
Chris Pronger hasn’t played an NHL game for more than two years. He now is an NHL employee. His name may be among the latest Hockey Hall of Fame inductees when the list is revealed on Monday. . . . None of that prevented his having been traded by the Philadelphia Flyers to the Arizona Coyotes on Saturday. . . . Crazy? Welcome to the NHL’s salary cap world. . . . Adam Gretz of explains it all right here. . . . Ken Campbell of The Hockey News blogs about it right here.

Got a tip or some information you feel could be useful to me, send an email to

There were reports on Saturday that Bob Boughner, the head coach of the OHL’s Windsor Spitfires, is headed to the NHL. Darren Dreger of TSN reported that Boughner is soon to sign on as an assistant coach with the San Jose Sharks. Peter DeBoer, hired earlier as the Sharks’ head coach, is putting together his coaching staff. . . . Boughner coached the Spitfires to Memorial Cup titles in 2009 and 2010. He then joined the Columbus Blue Jackets as an assistant coach for one season before returning to Windsor.
Kim Dillabaugh has left the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings and signed on with the Philadelphia Flyers. Dillabaugh, who is from Kelowna, spent nine seasons with the Kings, mostly as their director of goaltender development. He was part of two Stanley Cup championships and also helped the AHL’s Manchester Monarchs to a Calder Cup title in 2014-15. . . . With the Flyers, Dillabaugh, 37, will take over from the departed Jeff Reese as goaltending coach. . . . Dillabaugh also has worked with the Kelowna Rockets, serving as an assistant coach and goaltending coach. He helped them to a Memorial Cup title in 2004 and WHL championships in 2005 and 2009. . . . Former NHL G Bill Ranford is the Kings’ goaltending coach. . . . Tim Panaccio of CSN-Philadelphia was the first to report the Flyers had signed Dillabaugh.
Meanwhile, the Toronto Maple Leafs have hired Steve Briere as their goaltending coach. Briere is the owner/head instructor of Canadian Professional Goalie Schools. He also works with four U.S. junior teams -- the Topeka Roadrunners (NAHL), Fargo Force and Des Moines Buccaneers (USHL), and Casper Coyotes (WSHL). . . . With Toronto, Briere will replace Rick St. Croix, who was dumped after last season.

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.


Stories from

Stories from

  © Design byThirteen Letter

Back to TOP