Thursday, June 30, 2011

Barber joins NTDP U18s

Press Release

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Riley Barber (Livonia, Mich.) has been added to the U.S. National Under-18 Team at USA Hockey's National Team Development Program for the 2011-12 season, it was announced today.

"We are very excited to add Riley to our team for this year," said Danton Cole, head coach of the U.S. National Under-18 Team. “Riley possesses the combination of skill, work ethic and character that will contribute greatly to our team.”

Last season, Barber skated full-time for United States Hockey League champion Dubuque Fighting Saints, tallying 14 goals and collecting 14 assists in 57 regular-season games. Barber also netted two goals for Dubuque in 11 playoff games en route to the Clark Cup.

Additionally, Barber helped the NTDP's U.S. National Under-17 Team capture the 2011 Vlad Dzurilla Under-18 Tournament title in Piestany, Slovakia, in February. In three games, he notched one goal and added an assist.

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Boyd Named Majors' GM and Head Coach

Press Release

MISSISSAUGA, ON - The Mississauga St. Michael’s Majors are pleased to announce the hiring of James Boyd as the new General Manager and Head Coach of the hockey club. Boyd has spent the last four seasons as the Assistant General Manager and Co-Coach to Dave Cameron with the Majors.

Boyd, 35, began his coaching career at just 23 years old, when he was named an Assistant Coach with the Belleville Bulls. After four years as an Assistant Coach, the Bulls promoted him to Head Coach prior to the 2003-04 season. After a year as Head Coach in Belleville, Coach Boyd moved to Toronto where he became the Assistant Director of Hockey Operations and Assistant Coach with the Toronto St. Michael’s Majors. A St. Michael’s College School alumni, Boyd spent three seasons coaching the Majors in Toronto with then Director of Hockey Operations and Head Coach, Bud Stefanski. Prior to the 2007-08 season, the Majors moved to Mississauga with Dave Cameron joining the team as General Manager and Head Coach. After a year with Coach Cameron as an Assistant in Mississauga, Boyd was promoted to Assistant General Manager and Co-Coach prior to the 2008-09 season. With so much experience behind him and Coach Cameron moving on to the NHL with the Ottawa Senators, Coach Boyd is ready to move into his new role with the club, as General Manager and Head Coach.

“Over the years, Dave (Cameron) and the rest of the staff here (in Mississauga) have developed a strong tradition of excellence,” said Boyd, “I look forward on continuing to stress teamwork and above all a strong work ethic as we continue to build winning teams in Mississauga.”

Between coaching and playing, Boyd has spent 16 seasons in the Ontario Hockey League, taking part in 1104 games.

He played four years of major junior hockey and two years of Canadian Interuniversity Hockey before embarking on his coaching career. His four years of junior included time with the Kitchener Rangers, Ottawa 67’s and the Belleville Bulls. His best season in junior came in 1994-95, with the Bulls, when he had 22 goals and 25 assists for 47 points to go along with 130 penalty minutes. He also appeared in 14 playoff games for the Bulls that season, contributing another six points in the post season. After graduating from junior hockey, the Midland, ON native headed for the University of Guelph where he suited up for the Guelph Gryphons Men’s Hockey team. In two year’s of university hockey, Boyd appeared in 45 games and was a solid producer with 21 goals and 26 assists for 47 points and 56 penalty minutes.

In the coming weeks, the Majors will announce the rest of their coaching staff.

(Nathan can be reached at

Farley Commits to University of Minnesota-Duluth

Press Release

The Fargo Force announced that forward Austin Farley has committed to play college hockey at the University of Minnesota-Duluth following his USHL career.

Farley played 33 games for the Force during his rookie USHL season and collected 11 points (7g, 4a). He scored a goal in his USHL debut on November 27th vs. Green Bay. The 17-year-old led the Force with a .219 shooting percentage, scoring his seven goals on just 32 shots. Farley is a native of Park Ridge, Illinois and was selected by the Fargo Force in the third round (34th overall) of the 2010 USHL Entry Draft.

Farley's commitment comes the same week that Force Head Coach Jason Herter accepted an assistant coach position at the University of Minnesota-Duluth. Another Force player, Willie Corrin, is also committed to the school. Another 10 players who spent the 2010-11 season in the USHL are committed to play college hockey for the Bulldogs; Cal Decowski (Des Moines Buccaneers), Andy Welinski (Green Bay Gamblers), Tim Smith (Indiana Ice), Chris Casto (Lincoln Stars), Justin Crandall (Omaha Lancers), Caleb Herbert (Sioux City Musketeers), Adam Krause (Sioux City Musketeers), Austyn Young (Sioux Falls Stampede), Matt McNeely (Team USA), and Kyle Osterberg (Team USA).

The University of Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs are a member of the WCHA and had 14 USHL alumni on the roster this past season when they captured the school's first-ever NCAA Championship - J.T. Brown (Waterloo Black Hawks), Jack Connolly (Sioux Falls Stampede), Aaron Crandall (Des Moines Buccaneers/Green Bay Gamblers), Justin Faulk (Team USA), Keegan Flaherty (Fargo Force/Green Bay Gamblers), David Grun (Sioux Falls Stampede/Cedar Rapids RoughRiders), Jake Hendrickson (Sioux City Musketeers), Scott Kishel (Sioux Falls Stampede), Luke McManus (Tri-City Storm/Indiana Ice/Omaha Lancers), Travis Oleksuk (Sioux City Musketeers), Drew Olson (Omaha Lancers), Ken Reiter (Danville Wings), Mike Seidel (Cedar Rapids RoughRiders), and Maxwell Tardy (Tri-City Storm).

(Nathan can be reached at

Stewart named head coach in Fairbanks

Press Release

The Fairbanks Ice Dogs have announced that Trevor Stewart has been named the team’s new head coach. He replaces Josh Hauge, who left to accept an assistant coaching position with the Tri-City Storm of the United States Hockey League (USHL).

Most recently, Stewart served as an assistant coach with the St. Louis Bandits, helping lead the club to a 41-13-4 record and a North Division regular-season title in 2010-11 while developing seven players for the Division I college ranks.

“We’re very excited to have Trevor on board as our next leader,” said Ice Dogs general manager Rob Proffitt. “His work ethic and attention to detail will be counted on heavily to keep our organization moving forward and remaining a perennial contender every year.”

Stewart, from Elk River, Minn., played four seasons of Division I hockey at the University of Connecticut from 2003-07. He served as head coach of the Missoula (Mont.) Maulers of the Northern Pacific Junior Hockey League from 2008-10 prior to joining the Bandits.

“I’m excited and grateful for this opportunity to be a part of the Fairbanks community,” said Stewart. “The standard of excellence has been set very high for Ice Dogs hockey, and I’ll work hard to maintain that level of success.”

In his three seasons as the Ice Dogs’ head coach, Hauge guided the club to a 111-49-15 record and two West Division regular-season championships. He also developed over 20 players for the Division I college ranks.

This past season, he led the team to its first-ever Robertson Cup championship as the North American Hockey League’s (NAHL) playoff champion and USA Hockey’s Tier II Junior A national champion.

“I wish Coach Hauge the best in his next step in the hockey world,” Proffitt added. “He’s been a tremendous asset to the program while taking us all the way to a national championship.”

In addition, Ice Dogs assistant coach Erik Largen has accepted the head coaching position with the Twin Cities Northern Lights of the Tier III Junior A Minnesota Junior Hockey League.

(Nathan can be reached at

Landon Smith Commits to DU

Press Release

The Colorado Thunderbirds are pleased to announce that Landon Smith has committed to play Division 1 college hockey for the University of Denver in the WCHA. He is scheduled to play for the Pioneers starting in the fall of 2013. Landon, born in 1993, is a forward that played for the Colorado Thunderbirds U18 team this past season and is from Greenwood Village, CO.

Landon has played in the Colorado Thunderbirds organization for three years playing on the U15 Midget Minor, U16 Midget Minor and U18 Midget Major teams. Smith has played in three USA National Championships with the Thunderbirds. Smith was a member and captain of the 2010 Tier 1 U16 National Championship team, that won Colorado’s first Tier 1 hockey championship ever. “Landon was a great leader for our championship team and is a young man that has not even come close to reaching his potential as a player. DU is getting a very special young man with a tremendous upside,” states Coach Ricci. “As a program, the Colorado Thunderbirds strive to prepare and produce young athletes that are ready to take the next step in their career. Landon is a fine example of the type of player that the Thunderbird program works to develop and move to the next level,” added Coach Ricci. Smith was drafted in May by Cedar Rapids of the USHL and will be joining them this fall. We are very excited for Landon. He is the third member from the U18 team to commit to play for the Pioneers. Smith is the seventh member of the Colorado Thunderbird AAA hockey program to commit to a Division 1 Hockey program during the 2010-2011 season.

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Sioux Lookout names Zangs new head coach/GM

Press Release

SIOUX LOOKOUT, Ont. – The Sioux Lookout Flyers have announced that Brad Zangs has been named the Superior International Junior Hockey League club’s new head coach and general manager.

“The Flyer's organization is excited to have a person of Brad's experience and strong track record of development joins our club in its fourth season,” said team president Mitch Wills.

“He'll be a tremendous asset leading our team on the ice and in the community.”

Zangs was most recently head coach for the Albert Lea Thunder Junior A team in the North American Hockey League and also coached for the Northwest Knights and Butte Irish Junior programs.

He has helped advance many players to Division I and Division III, plus some have moved on to the NHL and in the minor pro ranks.

He was also on the coaching staffs at Iowa State University, where the Cyclones won an American Collegiate Hockey Association national championship, as well as Hamline University and Northland College.

"I’m very excited to become part of the Community of Sioux Lookout,” offered Zangs.

The opportunity to coach in the SIJHL, which is hosting the Dudley-Hewitt Cup this season will be great a challenge,” added Sioux Lookout’s new coach and GM.

Zangs replaces Kurt Waltsten who recently left the club to join Prince George of the BCHL as their assistant coach/GM.

The Flyers training camp goes Aug. 26-29 in Sioux Lookout.

(Nathan can be reached at

2011 CHL Import Draft Results

Press Release

Toronto, ON – The Canadian Hockey League today announced the final results of the 2011 CHL Import Draft.

The two rounds included a total of 62 players selected from 10 different countries.

The OHL’s London Knights made a trade with the Barrie Colts to acquire the first overall pick which they used to select Finnish defenceman Olli Maatta, a 16-year-old eligible for the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.  After a trade with the QMJHL’s Rouyn-Noranda Huskies, the Quebec Remparts selected 2012 NHL Entry Draft prospect Russian forward Mikhail Grigorenko.  The WHL’s Calgary Hitmen maintained the third overall pick and selected Swedish forward Victor Rask who was also chosen by the Carolina Hurricanes in the second round 42nd overall in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft June 25 in Minnesota.

Each team in the CHL is permitted to carry two European Import players each season.  These players are selected annually at the Import Draft, with the order of selection rotating through each of the three leagues in the CHL using an inverse order of their final regular season standings from the 2010-11 season.


Draft Picks by Country:
Czech Republic – 15
Russia – 11
Sweden – 9
Slovakia – 7
Germany – 5
Switzerland – 5
Norway – 4
Latvia – 3
Finland – 2
Belarus – 1

Draft Picks by Position:
Forward – 42
Defence – 12
Goaltender – 8

Draft Picks by NHL Status:
2010 Drafted – 5
2011 Drafted – 7
2012 Eligible – 47
2013 Eligible - 3

Last season the Prince George Cougars used the first overall pick to select Edmonton Oilers prospect Martin Marincin, before the Sarnia Sting selected this year’s OHL and CHL Rookie of the Year and 2012 NHL Entry Draft prospect Nail Yakupov.  With the third overall pick the Halifax Mooseheads selected 2012 NHL Entry Draft prospect and Czech Republic National Junior Team member Martin Frk.

A total of 18 CHL players were selected in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft that are products of the Import Draft including five players chosen in the first round of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft on June 24 in Minnesota including Gabriel Landeskog of the Kitchener Rangers who went second overall to the Colorado Avalanche, Sven Bartschi of the Portland Winterhawks who went 13th overall to the Calgary Flames, Vladislav Namestnikov of the London Knights who was picked 27th overall by the Tampa Bay Lightning, Nicklas Jensen of the Oshawa Generals who was chosen 29th overall by the Vancouver Canucks, and Rickard Rakell of the Plymouth Whalers who was chosen 30th overall by the Anaheim Ducks.

The 2011 CHL Import Draft order of selection along with a seven-year historical recap of the draft can be viewed online here.

(Nathan can be reached at


Press Release

Newmarket Hurricanes defenceman Matt Dineen confirmed his commitment to join the Niagara University Purple Eagles beginning with the 2012-13 Atlantic Hockey season.

Playing in his third season for his hometown Hurricanes, the alternate captain has steadily improved his point total each season, recording 25 points in 44 games played this season to finish tied for second among defencemen on the club. The 6'1", 175 lbs. rearguard will return next year for a fourth season, attempting to help the defending regular season champion, Newmarket Hurricanes, defend their title.

Congratulations to Matt and we look forward to seeing him back in the OJHL, leading the 'Canes next season!

(Nathan can be reached at

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Olkinuora commits to the University of Denver

Press Release

Sioux Falls, SD—The Sioux Falls Stampede are proud to announce that goaltender Juho Olkinuora has committed to the University of Denver for the upcoming 2011-12 season. He becomes the 18th player from the 2010-11 team to commit to a Division I program.

The Helsinki, Finland native went 14-13-0 with a 2.78 GAA and a .900 save percentage in 27 games this season. He helped the Stampede advance to the Western Conference Finals, going 2-3 with a 2.70 GAA and a .911 save percentage in the playoffs.

The University of Denver is located in Denver, Colorado and the Pioneers are members of the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA). They are coming off a 25-12-5 season that saw them advance to the NCAA Midwest Regional Final before falling to North Dakota. George Gwozdecky is the head coach and has won well over 500 career games as a collegiate coach.

Former Stampede players Pat Mullen (2004-05) and Brandon Vossberg (2003-04) have recently played at Denver as well.

The Stampede are making preparations for the upcoming 2011-12 season. Players will report at the end of August for training camp. The USHL schedule for the upcoming season is expected to be released in a few weeks.

(Nathan can be reached at

Spirit Acquire Forward Michael Fine

Press Release

The Saginaw Spirit have completed a trade with the Kingston Frontenacs, acquiring forward Michael Fine in return for a third round pick in the 2012 OHL Priority Selection and an eighth round pick in the 2012 selection.

Fine is a four year veteran of the league, having tallied 60 goals and 90 assists for 150 points during that stretch. The North York Ontario native started his OHL career with the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds in 2007-2008, posting 25 goals and 30 assists for 55 points in two seasons.

He was traded to the Kingston Frontenacs at the start of the 2009-2010 season, where he tallied 35 goals and 60 assists for 95 points in two seasons. He posted 20 goals and 34 assists for 54 points in 2010-2011.

Fine, a 91-born forward, will be entering the 2011-2012 as an overage player. Each OHL team is allowed three active overage players – Ben Chiarot, Peter Hermenegidlo, Micky Sartoretto, Josh Shalla, Sloan Stewart, Jordan Szwarz and Brad Walch are active players from the 2010-2011 season that could return as overagers next season. Stay tuned to to see how the Spirit roster shapes up heading into next season!

Get your season Tickets! The Saginaw Spirit will be celebrating ten years of Spirit hockey in the Great Lakes Bay Region next season, and fans are invited to join in on the excitement! Season tickets for the 2011-2012 season are on sale now, with full season plans starting at $386 per seat! For more information contact the Spirit at 989-497-7747 or visit the Spirit store at 5789 State Street in Saginaw.

(Nathan can be reached at

Jackalopes add to front office staff

Press Release

The Odessa Jackalopes have announced that Mike Mariano has joined the team’s front office staff as its director of group sales.

Mariano comes to the Jacks from the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs, who won the Central Hockey League championship this spring before closing its doors. Mariano’s focus for the Mudbugs was selling groups and season-ticket packages.

“Mike came to us highly recommended by the Mudbugs ownership,” said Jackalopes general manager Joe Clark. “He has been in this industry since 2006 and knows how the factory operates. He has tremendous work ethic and should be a valuable addition to our staff.”

Mariano, originally from Berlin, Conn., graduated from UConn in 2006 and has worked for the Minnesota Twins' AA affiliate in New Britain, Conn., before moving to Bossier-Shreveport where he guided the Mudbugs to an average of 750 fans per night in groups.

“The Jackalopes have always had a great reputation in minor league sports as a class organization,” said Mariano. “After seeing what the Permian Basin has to offer, combined with the team’s move to the NAHL, it was an easy decision.”

Mariano, who grew up playing minor hockey, will move to the Permian Basin in the coming week and comes on board July 6.

The Jackalopes will celebrate their 15th Anniversary this season and their inaugural campaign as a member of the North American Hockey League.

(Nathan can be reached at

Connor Wilson Invited To Hurricanes Rookie Camp

Press Release

Bensenville, IL (June 29, 2011) - The Chicago Steel are proud to announce that goalie Connor Wilson has been selected to participate in the Carolina Hurricanes' 2011 Rookie Camp. Wilson, who will be attending Yale University next season, holds the Chicago Steel record for saves, minutes played and games started.

Having grown up less than five miles from the RBC Center where the Hurricanes play their home games, it's a dream come true for the Cary, North Carolina native.

"This feels really great," Wilson said. "This is something I dreamt of as a kid and to get to skate with the Hurricanes' organization is going to be an unbelievable experience."

"My parents are very happy for me and they deserve a lot of the credit as well. They've supported me throughout my hockey career and provided me with the opportunity to play at a high level."

His parents, Dave and Beth Wilson, have been Hurricanes season ticket holders since the club's inception in 1997. They are considered legacy ticket holders and are looking forward to watching Connor take to the ice in a Carolina uniform.

"My wife and I are very proud of Connor," Dave Wilson said. "He has been very dedicated to the Chicago Steel. Connor has always had a great work ethic and plays with a lot of heart."

"Very few kids who grow up in the south make it to an elite level of hockey. For Connor to make it to the USHL and now have the chance to participate in Carolina's Rookie Camp is a very prestigious honor."

Wilson lead the USHL this season in games played, and was second in both saves and minutes played. He recorded 30-plus saves in 19 games in 2010-11, including a 49 save performance against the Youngstown Phantoms on Feb. 26.

"We are very excited for Connor," Chicago Steel Goaltending Coach Kelly Gee said. "He is a very deserving player for all the hard work that he has put in over the last two years. He has a tremendous ability to play the position. That paired up with his passion for the game will give him a legitimate shot at playing in the National Hockey League when his collegiate career is over."

Rookie camps are held every year prior to the start of the NHL season and are utilized by the hockey operations staff to evaluate recent draft picks and top prospects. The camp includes on- ice practice sessions, scrimmages and culminates with a game against an opposing NHL team�s rookies.

(Nathan can be reached at


Press Release

Calgary, AB – The Western Hockey League today released its schedule of games for the 2011-12 regular season.

The 2011 WHL Opening Weekend will launch on Thursday, September 22, with a special Opening Night game in Moose Jaw featuring the first ever WHL Regular Season game to be played in the brand new Moose Jaw Multi-plex between the Warriors and Brandon Wheat Kings.  The game will be broadcast LIVE on SHAW TV with the pre-game show starting at 7:00 pm (MT).

The 2011-12 WHL Regular-Season schedule gets into full swing on Friday, September 23, with six games including the 2011 WHL Champion Kootenay Ice beginning defence of their Ed Chynoweth Cup against the Rebels in Red Deer.

Nine WHL games are set for Saturday, September 24, including a new era of WHL hockey in Victoria, BC, as the Royals will host the Vancouver Giants for their first ever regular season home game at the Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre.  This game will also be a feature broadcast LIVE on SHAW TV starting at 7:00 pm (PT). 

The 792 game regular season concludes on Sunday, March 18th with the 2012 WHL Playoffs and the battle for the Ed Chynoweth Cup beginning on Friday, March 23rd.

The QMJHL and the City of Shawinigan, Quebec will serve as the official hosts for the 2012 MasterCard Memorial Cup.  The Shawinigan Cataractes will host the WHL Champions, Ontario Hockey League Champions and the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League Champions from May 18 – 27, 2012.
As in previous seasons, the majority of games will be played on the weekend.  Of the 792 games, 538 are scheduled for the weekend, with 233 to be played on a Friday, 235 on a Saturday and 70 on a Sunday.  Additionally, 8 weekday games occur on various holidays throughout the season, meaning close to 70% of the schedule is played on a weekend or non-school days.  During the week, Wednesday night has 145 matches, 84 games are scheduled for Tuesday, 13 contests will be played on Thursday and 12 games are scheduled to be held on Monday.

Day – No. of Games (Percentage)
Monday – 12 (1.5%)
Tuesday – 84 (10.6%)
Wednesday - 145 (18.3%)
Thursday - 13 (1.6%)
Friday – 233 (29.4%)
Saturday - 235 (29.7%)
Sunday – 70 (8.8%)
CLICK HERE to download 2011-12 WHL Regular Season schedule

(Nathan can be reached at


Press Release

The Melfort Mustangs have hired Dwight Kulchysky to serve as an assistant coach for the upcoming season. Dwight has experience in the SJHL as he was an assistant coach in Nipawin for eight years. For the last three seasons, he has served as a scout for the Western Hockey League’s Prince Albert Raiders. The Mustangs are excited to have Kulchysky work alongside new head coach Gavin Holcomb as the two look to keep the hockey team as a competitive force in the Bauer Conference and the SJHL.

(Nathan can be reached at

Davis commits to Michigan Tech via Lumberjacks Tryout Camp

Press Release

Muskegon, Mich. – The hundreds of skaters who recently took part in Muskegon Lumberjacks Tryout Camp were not just duking it out for a spot on the Jacks’ 2011-12 roster; they also were playing for their hockey future beyond the United States Hockey League. Just ask Jimmy Davis.

The Caledonia, Mich., native caught the eye of Michigan Tech University Head Coach Mel Pearson at the L.C. Walker Arena and immediately was offered a scholarship to play for the Huskies this fall.

“To be able to get a scholarship through Jacks camp means a lot,” Davis said. “The main goal of junior hockey is to continue playing hockey, get a scholarship and get set up for whatever you want to do – whether it be going pro in hockey or whatever career you choose out of college.”

Davis was a standout defenseman at East Kentwood High School, from which he graduated this spring. A gritty, 6-foot, 190-pound blueliner, Davis helped his team to the final four of the Michigan state hockey tournament this past season. His father, Jim, spoke with Pearson following the Jacks’ all-star game on June 18, but withheld the conversation from his protégé, lest it prove a distraction in the following morning’s all-star game.

“I appreciate that he didn’t tell me,” said Davis, laughing. “My dad’s always looked out for me and pushed me. I have him to thank for my toughness and my work ethic.”

Davis has been using the workouts developed by Jacks Assistant Coach Dave Noel-Bernier, a certified strength and conditioning coach, to prepare for the jump from high school hockey. He’ll depart for Houghton, Mich. on Aug. 22.

“This speaks to the kind of opportunity we’re providing to hockey players from Michigan – and anywhere – here in Muskegon,” Lumberjacks Owner and CEO Josh Mervis said. “We can get players to college faster and on to their pro careers as fast here as any league in the world, including the CHL. We also get them prepared for life after hockey, which no other path can provide. That’s why the USHL is the perfect path.”

(Nathan can be reached at

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

T-Birds Round Out Coaching Staff For 2011-12 Season

Press Release

KENT, June 28, 2011 — Seattle Thunderbirds general manager Russ Farwell announced the team has finalized its coaching staff for the 2011-12 season.

The team has named Darren Rumble and Jim McTaggart as assistant coaches.

Rumble was an associate coach with the Lewiston MAINEiacs of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League last season.

“I am excited to come west to the WHL”, said Rumble. “Steve, Jim and I are going to be a real good fit and work well together. The Thunderbirds have a great history and the new location and facility provides a great hockey environment and an opportunity I could not pass up. I am looking forward to joining the organization and immersing myself and my family in the Kent community.”

McTaggart was an assistant coach with the T-Birds for the last seven seasons under former head coach Rob Sumner. He was also an assistant coach with the T-Birds from 1994 to 1996.

“I am excited for the opportunity to work with Steve and Darren and to continue my relationship with a quality organization,” said McTaggart.

“We are excited to add Darren to our coaching staff,” said Farwell. “Steve met with him last week and felt he brought the perfect complement of experiences to round out our staff. We have a number of very good young defensemen coming up and Rumble is the ideal guy to help them develop.”

“Jim has been a very solid contributor to our coaching staff over the years,” continued Farwell. “Jim gives us some continuity from the past, and his input and hockey insight is valuable in all areas.”

Rumble played 193 NHL games as a defenseman with the Philadelphia Flyers, Ottawa Senators, St. Louis Blues and Tampa Bay Lightning. In the NHL, he amassed 36 points and had 10 goals and 26 assists with 216 penalty minutes.

Rumble was a member of the 2004 Tampa Bay Lightning team that won the Stanley Cup.

In 2007, Rumble joined the Norfolk Admirals of the American Hockey League as an assistant coach. The Admirals are the top minor league affiliate of the Tampa Bay Lightning. He was promoted to head coach of the Admirals in July of 2008. Rumble was with the Admirals until January of 2010.

Upon retiring from professional hockey in the 2004-05 season, Rumble became an assistant coach with the Springfield Falcons of the American Hockey League. He was an assistant with the Falcons until taking the position with the Admirals as an assistant coach.

Rumble was selected by the Philadelphia Flyers in the first round, 20th overall, in the 1987 NHL Entry Draft.

Darren and his wife, Jennifer, and their children Chris, Brandon, Alexa and Graeson will be moving to Kent in mid-to-late July.

Turner Stevenson

Turner Stevenson has elected to pursue coaching opportunities at the American Hockey League level for next season and will not be returning to the Thunderbirds coaching staff.

“Turner was a great source of knowledge and experience for our players over the last four years. We wish him luck as he moves on to further his coaching career” said Farwell.

T-Birds season tickets are currently on sale. Season tickets can be purchased by calling the T-Birds office at 253-239-7825.

(Nathan can be reached at

Bulls’ Barclay Branch Named Director of Operations for Ontario’s Under 17 Team

Press Release

Toronto - The Ontario Under 17 Program Policy Committee is pleased to announce the appointment of Barclay Branch as Director of Operations for Ontario's Under 17 Men’s hockey team. Mr. Branch takes over the helm from Rob Kitamura who has been hired as the Ontario scout for the Tampa Bay Lightning of the NHL.

Mr. Branch is currently the Assistant General Manager and Director of Player personnel for the Belleville Bulls of the Ontario Hockey League. He has also been an Assistant coach and Director of Scouting and Development with the Oshawa Generals and has been involved extensively with the Under 17 program as a guest evaluator over the last several years.

“The committee is pleased that Barclay has agreed to become the Director of Operations and is confident that his appointment will provide continuity, leadership and continued excellence within the Under 17 program, stated Ted Baker Chairman of the Under 17 Policy committee.”

"I am honoured that the committee has selected me to become the Director of Operations for Ontario’s Under 17 Team and I’m looking forward to the challenge of identifying and evaluating Ontario's high performance hockey players at this age classification. We will continue the process of evaluating our athletes at the upcoming Provincial Under 17 camp being held in Thunder Bay, Ontario from July 6-10, 2011 and I anticipate putting together the best team possible to represent Ontario at the upcoming World Hockey Challenge that is being held in Winnipeg Manitoba from December 27, 2011 through January 4, 2012, stated Branch.

The Ontario Under 17 Program is a component of Hockey Canada's Program of Excellence and is co-ordinated through the Hockey Development Centre for Ontario on behalf of their 3 Ontario Branches. The program receives financial support from the Ministry of Health Promotion & Sport. Approximately 1200 players have participated at regional Under 17 identification camps throughout Ontario this spring.

(Nathan can be reached at

Otters swap draft picks with Spitfires

Press Release

The Erie Otters of the Ontario Hockey League today announced that they have acquired the 37th overall selection in the 2011 CHL Import Draft from the Windsor Spitfires in exchange for Windsor’s fifth round pick in the 2012 OHL Priority Selection and Erie’s seventh round pick in the 2013 OHL Priority Selection.

The Otters now hold three picks (37th, 67th, 94th) in the 2011 CHL Import Draft. Each team in the CHL is permitted to carry two European Import players each season. Goaltender Ramis Sadikov was selected in the 2009 CHL Import Draft and is eligible to return to the Otters next season.

The 2011 CHL Import Draft will take place on Wednesday beginning at 9:00 a.m. The two-round draft will take place online and can be followed live as picks are made at

2011-12 Season Tickets are available at one of the most affordable prices in the Ontario Hockey League. Reserve your seat for all 34 Otters home games and receive a number of outstanding Season Ticket Holder Benefits including personalized Season Ticket Books, free tickets to Otters pre-season games played at the Tullio Arena, unused ticket redemption opportunities, merchandise discounts and more! Ask about our new VIP Hat Trick Club!

(Nathan can be reached at


Press Release

The Kindersley Klippers have made a 3 for 1 trade with the BCHL’s Salmon Arm Silverbacks. Kindersley sends homegrown product Sean Flanagan to the Silverbacks for 20 year old forward Jarryd Ten Vaanholt (1991-West Vancouver, BC), 19 year old forward Josh McKissock (1992-Vancouver, BC) and 19 year old defenceman Justin Elliott (1992-Vancouver, BC).

Ten Vaanholt had 50 points in 58 games for the Silverbacks last season while McKissock and Elliott played sparingly getting five and two points respectively.

In Flanagan, the Klippers give up one of the best 1991 born defencemen in the SJHL. He had 30 points in 52 games and was a member of the Canada West team that played at the World Under 18 Challenge.

(Nathan can be reached at

Force Coach Joins NCAA Champions

Press Release

The Fargo Force hockey club announced today that Head Coach Jason Herter has accepted the position of Assistant Coach for the University of Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs, winners of the 2011 NCAA Men's Hockey Championship.

"I am excited about the opportunity to further my coaching career at the NCAA Division I coaching level and join a program that is at the top of college hockey," said Herter. "It is bittersweet to leave the Fargo Force as I have enjoyed working with the players, coaches, and staff for one of the best organizations in the USHL."

Herter led the Force to a 33-22-5 record (71 points) during the 2010-11 USHL season. The club also advanced to the second round of the playoffs for the third straight season before being knocked off by the eventual Clark Cup champion Dubuque Fighting Saints. A total of 17 players on Herter's squad this season has earned commitments to NCAA Division I hockey programs.

Herter first joined the Force for their inaugural season (2008-09), serving as assistant coach to Dean Blais and helping the club reach the Clark Cup Final. He became the third head coach in Fargo Force history on September 11th, 2010 and now becomes the third Force coach to advance to a NCAA Division I coaching role after a stint behind the bench for the Force.

"In the short history of the Fargo Force, the organization has not only established itself as a launching pad for the careers of players, but as a place to advance the careers of coaches," said Force general manager Jon Kram. "We are happy for Jason on his move to the next level."

Herter is no stranger to college hockey having enjoyed a three-year playing career (1988-91) at the University of North Dakota. The defenseman was twice named Second Team All-WCHA and twice earned a spot on the conference's All-Academic Team. He collected 119 points (30g, 89a) over 118 games and ranks fifth in all-time scoring among defensemen at the school. Herter was selected in the first round (8th overall) by the Vancouver Canucks in the 1989 NHL Entry Draft. He had an 11-year professional career playing in the AHL, IHL, and Europe and played in one NHL game for the New York Islanders during the 1995-96 season.

The Force have named Assistant Coach Byron Pool as the team's interim head coach.

(Nathan can be reached at

Oil Kings Trade Hrbas To Blazers For Draft Picks

Press Release

Edmonton, AB – Edmonton Oil Kings General Manager Bob Green announced today the team has traded import defenceman Marek Hrbas to the Kamloops Blazers.

The Oil Kings dealt the 18-year-old blue-liner and the 27th overall selection at this week's 2011 Canadian Hockey League Import Draft to the Blazers in exchange for the 18th overall selection at the 2011 CHL Import Draft and the Blazers' fifth-round selection at the 2012 Western Hockey League Bantam Draft.

Hrbas, a native of Plzen, Czech Republic, played 64 games with the Oil Kings in 2010-11, scoring five goals and 12 assists for 17 points. He was one of two import players on Edmonton's roster alongside forward Kristians Pelss, an Edmonton Oilers NHL draft pick. Hrbas was also the captain for the Czech Republic at the 2011 IIHF World Under-18 Championship.

"We'd like to thank Marek for his time with the Oil Kings and we wish him all the best with his new team," Green said of the deal with Kamloops.

(Nathan can be reached at


Press Release

The Barrie Colts are proud to announce that they have acquired defenseman Reid McNeill from the London Knights.

The Colts traded away the rights to the first overall pick in the Canadian Hockey League Import Draft to get the 6’4” defenseman.

The Colts also get London’s 25th overall selection in the Import Draft, Mississauga’s second round pick and London’s third round pick in the 2013 Ontario Hockey League Priority Selection.

McNeill has played two full seasons with the Knights, picking up eleven points in 115 games played.

Last season the London native played in all but six games for the Knights, registering two goals, four assists and 70 penalty minutes.

(Nathan can be reached at


Press Release

The Colts completed a busy day of trading Monday with their fourth deal of the day. The Colts completed yet another trade with the Saginaw Spirit late Monday, acquiring forward Ivan Telegin for a trio of draft picks.

Barrie sent Saginaw a conditional seventh round draft pick, Mississauga's second round draft pick in 2013 and London's third round pick in 2013, a pick the Colts acquired earlier in the day in the Reid McNeill deal.

Telegin, a 6'4" center from Novokuznetsk, Russia has spent the last two years in Saginaw and has at least 20 goals in both seasons. Last season Telegin put up 61 points in 59 games played with 20 goals, 41 assists and 35 penalty minutes.

The Colts shook up their roster considerably Monday making four trades involving five players, six draft picks and two Import draft picks.

(Nathan can be reached at

Hounds acquire Rogalski from division rivals

Press Release

Soo Greyhounds General Manager Kyle Dubas announced this afternoon that the team has completed a deal with the West Division’s Sarnia Sting.

In the deal the Hounds acquire overage, All-Star defenseman JOE ROGALSKI in exchange for Guelph’s 5th Round pick in the 2012 OHL Priority Selection and Erie’s 3rd Round pick in the 2013 OHL Priority Selection.

“Acquiring Joe Rogalski has been a process which we have been working on for over two months. We first inquired with the Sarnia club about Joe leading into the draft and were informed by Joe's agent, Murray Kuntz of CAA, that they would not waive their no-trade clause to report to Sault Ste. Marie” began Dubas. “A few weeks ago we followed up with Sarnia and were given permission to speak with the Rogalski family regarding our situation here and how we could help Joe earn an NHL contract this season and where he would fit in on our depth chart. Last week, the Rogalski's informed us and Sarnia that they would accept a trade here. From there Jacques (Sting GM Jacques Beaulieu) and I worked out an agreement.”

Rogalski, a native of Lancaster NY, is set to enter his 5th season in the Ontario Hockey League after having a career best season grabbing 7 goals and 25 assists, good for 32 points in 63 games played during 2010-11.

The 6’2”, 185 lb rearguard was a member of the Western Conference squad in the 2010 OHL All-Star Classic before being picked by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the 6th Round (152nd overall) of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft.

“We are thrilled to be able to add Joe today for a number of reasons. First off, Joe has been an all-star in this league and is a Pittsburgh Penguins draft pick. He immediately brings skill and stability to our defence corps and we envision him serving as a mentor to our young defenceman such as Ryan Sproul, Gianluca Curcuruto and Darnell Nurse” concluded Dubas.

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Braid added to Hounds' blueline

Press Release

Soo Greyhounds GM Kyle Dubas announced that the team has completed their second deal of the day, exchanging defensemen with the Barrie Colts.

In the deal the Hounds acquired 18-year old left shooting defenseman MACKENZIE BRAID and Barrie’s 7th Round pick in the 2014 OHL Priority Selection in exchange for 19-year old defenseman Derek Hartwick.

“Mackenzie is an elite skater and showed he was also a very versatile player last season with Barrie. This trade allows us to get a year younger and allows Derek to gain a good opportunity in Barrie” stated Dubas.

Braid, a native of Mississauga, ONT stands 6’1” while weighing in at 165 lbs.

“Mackenzie had 12 points, including 5 goals as rookie defender for Barrie and we strongly value his two biggest strengths - skating and puck movement. He also showed a willingness last season to engage physically when required too and feel that with commitment he can become a well rounded defenceman for our hockey club” concluded the Hounds GM.

(Nathan can be reached at


Press Release

The Kingston Frontenacs announce today that they have traded their import pick in this year’s 2011 CHL Import Draft, 22nd overall, along with goaltender Franky Palazzese and a 10th round selection in the 2015 OHL Priority Selection to the Kitchener Rangers in exchange for Kitchener’s 2nd round selection in 2015 and a 6th round selection in 2014.

“With the addition of Beranek today from the Colts, we where afforded the luxury of moving our pick in this year import draft,” said General Manager Doug Gilmour. “And with the goaltenders we have coming in to compete for positions, we felt we needed to move a goalie. We wish Franky all the best in Kitchener and in his career,” he added.

(Nathan can be reached at

PAMHA Tier 1 Teams to be Renamed “Raiders”

Press Release

The Prince Albert Raiders are proud to announce today that they have entered into a long-term agreement with the Prince Albert Minor Hockey Association that will see the three Minor Hockey Tier 1 Teams renamed “Raiders.”

The Pee-Wee, Bantam and Midget Tier 1 Teams will each retain their corporate sponsorship titles from NAPA, Venice House and Liteway Electric respectively, but will now be called “Raiders.” Beginning in the 2011-12 season, the teams will now have the following titles:

1. Pee-Wee NAPA Raiders (Formerly “NAPA Ice”)

2. Bantam Venice House Raiders (Formerly “Venice House Pirates”)

3. Midget Liteway Electric Raiders (Formerly “Midget Liteway Electric Thunder”)

It is a five-year agreement between the two organizations and along the title, each of the three teams will also wear Raider jerseys and socks.

“We are extremely pleased with the new agreement with the Prince Albert Minor Hockey Association,” said Raiders Head Coach and General Manager Bruno Campese. “It is something we have wanted to do for some time now and I am very happy we were able to enter into this partnership. As a community owned team, it is imperative we maintain an active and visible role in Prince Albert and this is another opportunity to stay involved in and support the community that has supported us for so many years.”

(Nathan can be reached at

Monday, June 27, 2011

2011 CHL Import Draft Takes Place Wednesday June 29

Press Release

The two-round draft will take place online and can be followed live as picks are made at

Each team in the CHL is permitted to carry two European Import players each season. These players are selected annually at the Import Draft, with the order of selection rotating through each of the three leagues in the CHL using an inverse order of their final regular season standings from the 2010-11 season.

The OHL's Barrie Colts currently hold the number one selection in the 2011 CHL Import Draft followed by the QMJHL's Rouyn-Noranda Huskies, and the WHL's Calgary Hitmen. Teams are permitted to trade draft picks up to and during the Import Draft process.

Last season the Prince George Cougars used the first overall pick to select Edmonton Oilers prospect Martin Marincin, before the Sarnia Sting selected this year's OHL and CHL Rookie of the Year and 2012 NHL Entry Draft prospect Nail Yakupov. With the third overall pick the Halifax Mooseheads selected 2012 NHL Entry Draft prospect and Czech Republic National Junior Team member Martin Frk.

Four players selected in the 2010 CHL Import Draft were recently chosen in the first round of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft on June 24 in Minnesota including Sven Bartschi of the Portland Winterhawks who went 13th overall to the Calgary Flames, Vladislav Namestnikov of the London Knights who was picked 27th overall by the Tampa Bay Lightning, Nicklas Jensen of the Oshawa Generals who was chosen 29th overall by the Vancouver Canucks, and Rickard Rakell of the Plymouth Whalers who was chosen 30th overall by the Anaheim Ducks.

(Nathan can be reached at

67's Sign Top Draft Pick

Press Release

June 27, 2010 (Ottawa ON.): The Ottawa 67’s today announced the signing of their top draft pick in the 2010 OHL Priority Selection Draft (17th overall). 16-year old LW David Perklin, a native of Mississauga, ON., will be on the ice with the rest of the team when training camp opens at the end of August.

At 6’ 3” and 190 lbs, it’s expected Perklin will be able to hold his own against older, more experienced OHL opponents. Head Coach and Assistant General Manager Chris Byrne says he thinks the challenge of stepping-up to a higher level will bring out the best in Perklin. “In AAA Minor Midget, David always seemed to play his best when the games meant the most,” said Byrne. “His size speaks for itself, but David is also a highly skilled player and it’s going to be exciting to see him develop over the course of the season.”

Last season, Perklin led the Toronto Marlies 95’s to an OHL Showcase Cup championship with 6 points in 3 round-robin games and 6 more, four of them goals, in 3 playoff games.

(Nathan can be reached at

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Monsters unveil new logo

Press Release

The Fresno Monsters have announced the unveiling of their new logo.

“We're very excited about our team’s new look and new attitude for the upcoming season," said Monsters head coach and general manager Eric Ballard. "Now that our logo has been debuted, we can’t wait for the season to start.”

The Monsters will begin their second season in the NAHL in 2011-12. In its inaugural season, Fresno finished with a 19-34-5 record.

The team finished third in the NAHL in average (2,684) and overall (77,840) attendance during the 2010-11 campaign.

(Nathan can be reached at

NOJHL looking for Commissioner applications

Press Release

The NOJHL is continuing its search for a new full-time NOJHL commissioner to lead the league into the future.

All applicants are required to have some Junior Hockey experience at the management level, or sports management skills from another sport that can transfer over to the new position here with the NOJHL.

The league is hoping to have a new commissioner in place by the start of the 2011-2012 season.

For more information on the position contact: Hector Seguin at

(Nathan can be reached at

Kings Dman Jutzi locked up by Mavericks for 2012

Press Release

Powell River Kings defenceman Jon Jutzi is the latest BCHLer to land an NCAA scholarship and will be one of three league products headed to play for the Minnesota State University-Mankato Mavericks after next season.

The lanky defencemen put forth a solid rookie campaign in Powell River and will join Salmon Arm SilverBacks Brett Knowles and Bryce Gervais at MSU

A 6-foot-2, 195-pound native of Tavistock, Ont., Jutzi posted six goals and 18 assists and 10 penalty minutes in 56 regular season games. He came on strong in the postseason by scoring five goals and four assists to go along with eight penalty minutes in 17 games.

Jutzi will form a key part of the Kings' blueline next season as stalwarts Justin Dasilva and Jason Yee have graduated to Ohio State and UBC respectively. Fellow rearguards Craig Dalrymple and Braden Pears also return giving the Kings a good contingent returning on the back end.

(Nathan can be reached at

Saturday, June 25, 2011

2011 NHL Draft - 2nd-7th round

Press Release


31. Edmonton Oilers - David Musil (D, Vancouver (WHL)); 32. St. Louis Blues - Ty Rattie (RW, Portland (WHL)); 33. Florida Panthers - Rocco Grimaldi (C, USA U-18 (USHL)); 34. New York Islanders - Scott Mayfield (D, Youngstown (USHL)); 35. Detroit Red Wings - Tomas Jurco (RW, Saint John (QMJHL)); 36. Chicago Blackhawks - Adam Clendening (D, Boston U (Hockey East)); 37. Columbus Blue Jackets - Boone Jenner (C, Oshawa (OHL)); 38. Nashville Predators - Magnus Hellberg (G, Almtuna (Sweden-2)); 39. Anaheim Ducks - John Gibson (G, USA U-18 (USHL)); 40. Boston Bruins - Alexander Khokhlachev (C, Windsor (OHL)); 41. St. Louis Blues - Dmitri Jaskin (RW, Slavia (Czech Republic)); 42. Carolina Hurricanes - Victor Rask (C, Leksand (Sweden-2)); 43. Chicago Blackhawks - Brandon Saad (LW, Saginaw (OHL)); 44. Dallas Stars - Brett Ritchie (RW, Sarnia (OHL)); 45. Calgary Flames - Markus Granlund (C, Hifk Jr. (Finland-Jr.)); 46. St. Louis Blues - Joel Edmundson (D, Moose Jaw (WHL)); 47. San Jose Sharks - Matthew Nieto (LW, Boston U (Hockey East)); 48. Detroit Red Wings - Xavier Ouellet (D, Montreal (QMJHL)); 49. Los Angeles Kings - Christopher Gibson (G, Chicoutimi (QMJHL)); 50. New York Islanders - Johan Sundstrom (C, Frondula (Sweden)); 51. Phoenix Coyotes - Alexander Ruuttu (C, Jokerit Jr. (Finland-Jr.)); 52. Nashville Predators - Miikka Salomaki (RW, Karpat (Finland)); 53. Anaheim Ducks - William Karlsson (C, Vasteras Jr. (Sweden-Jr.)); 54. Pittsburgh Penguins - Scott Harrington (D, London (OHL)); 55. Detroit Red Wings - Ryan Sproul (D, Miss. St. Michaels (OHL)); 56. Phoenix Coyotes - Lucas Lessio (LW, Oshawa (OHL)); 57. Calgary Flames - Tyler Wotherspoon (D, Portland (WHL)); 58. Tampa Bay Lightning - Nikita Kucherov (W, CSKA 2 (Russia-Jr.)); 59. Florida Panthers - Rasmus Bengtsson (D, Rogle (Sweden-2)); 60. Minnesota Wild - Mario Lucia (LW, Wayzata HS, MN); 61. Ottawa Senators - Shane Prince (C, Ottawa (OHL));

62. Edmonton Oilers - Samu Perhonen (G, JYP Jr. (Finland)); 63. New York Islanders - Andrei Pedan (D, Guelph (OHL)); 64. Florida Panthers - Vincent Trocheck (C, Saginaw (OHL)); 65. Anaheim Ducks - Joseph Cramarossa (C, Miss. St. Michael`s (OHL)); 66. Columbus Blue Jackets - Thomas Tynan (C, Des Moines (USHL)); 67. Winnipeg Jets - Adam Lowry (LW, Swift Current (WHL)); 68. Philadelphia Flyers - Nick Cousins (C, Sault St. Marie (OHL)); 70. Chicago Blackhawks - Michael Paliotta (D, USA U-18 (USHL)); 71. Vancouver Canucks - David Honzik (G, Victoriaville (QMJHL)); 72. New York Rangers - Steven Fogarty (C, Edina HS (MN)); 73. Carolina Hurricanes - Keegan Lowe (D, Edmonton (WHL)); 74. Edmonton Oilers - Travis Ewanyk (LW, Edmonton (WHL)); 75. New Jersey Devils - Blake Coleman (C, Indiana (USHL)); 76. Florida Panthers - Logan Shaw (RW, Cape Breton (QMJHL)); 77. Buffalo Sabres - Daniel Catenacci (C, Sault St. Marie (OHL)); 78. Winnipeg Jets - Brennan Serville (D, Stouffville (OJHL)); 79. Chicago Blackhawks - Klas Dahlbeck (D, Linkoping (Sweden)); 80. Los Angeles Kings - Andy Andreoff (C, Oshawa (OHL)); 81. Boston Bruins - Anthony Camara (LW, Saginaw (OHL)); 82. Los Angeles Kings - Nicholas Shore (C, Denver (WCHA)); 83. Anaheim Ducks - Andy Welinski (D, Green Bay (USHL)); 84. Phoenix Coyotes - Harrison Ruopp (D, Prince Albert (WHL)); 85. Detroit Red Wings - Alan Quine (C, Peterborough (OHL)); 86. Toronto Maple Leafs - Josh Leivo (LW, Sudbury (OHL)); 87. Florida Panthers - Jonathan Racine (D, Shawnigan (QMJHL)); 88. St. Louis Blues - Jordan Binnington (G, Owen Sound (OHL)); 89. San Jose Sharks - Justin Sefton (D, Sudbury (OHL)); 90. Vancouver Canucks - Alexandre Grenier (RW, Halifax (QMJHL)); 91. Florida Panthers - Kyle Rau (C, Eden Prairie (HS-MN));

92. Edmonton Oilers - Dillon Simpson (D, North Dakota (WCHA)); 93. Colorado Avalanche - Joachim Nermark (C, Linkoping Jr. (SWE-Jr.)); 94. Nashville Predators - Josh Shalla (LW, Saginaw (OHL)); 95. New York Islanders - Robbie Russo (D, USA U-18 (USHL)); 96. Ottawa Senators - Jean-Gabriel Pageau (C, Gatineau (QMJHL)); 97. Montreal Canadiens - Josiah Didier (D, Cedar Rapids (USHL)); 98. Columbus Blue Jackets - Mike Reilly (D, Shat. St. Mary`s HS, MN); 99. New Jersey Devils - Reid Boucher (C, USA U-18 (USHL)); 100. Toronto Maple Leafs - Tom Nilsson (D, Mora Jr. (SWE-Jr.)); 101. Vancouver Canucks - Joseph Labate (C, Holy Angels HS, MN); 102. St. Louis Blues - Yannick Veilleux (LW, Shawnigan (QMJHL)); 103. Carolina Hurricanes - Gregory Hofmann (C, Ambri (Swiss)); 104. Calgary Flames - John Gaudreau (LW, Dubuque (USHL)); 105. Dallas Stars - Emil Molin (C, Brynas Jr. (SWE-Jr.) (USHL)); 106. New York Rangers - Michael St.Croix (C, Edmonton (WHL)); 107. Buffalo Sabres - Colin Jacobs (C, Seattle (WHL)); 108. Montreal Canadiens - Olivier Archambault (LW, Val-D`Or (QMJHL)); 109. Chicago Blackhawks - Maxim Shalunov (RW, Chelyabinsk 2 (Russia-Jr.)); 110. Los Angeles Kings - Michael Mersch (LW, Wisconsin (WCHA)); 111. Phoenix Coyotes - Kale Kessy (LW, Medicine Hat (WHL)); 112. Nashville Predators - Garrett Noonan (D, Boston U (Hockey East)); 113. Montreal Canadiens - Magnus Nygren (D, Farjestad (SWE-Jr.)); 114. Edmonton Oilers - Tobias Rieder (C, Kitchener (OHL)); 115. Detroit Red Wings - Marek Tvrdon (RW, Vancouver (WHL)); 116. Philadelphia Flyers - Colin Suellentrop (D, Oshawa (OHL)); 117. Washington Capitals - Steffen Soberg (G, Manglerud (Norway)); 118. Philadelphia Flyers - Marcel Noebels (LW, Seattle (WHL)); 119. Winnipeg Jets - Zachary Yuen (D, Tri-City (WHL)); 120. Vancouver Canucks - Ludwig Blomstrand (LW, Djurgarden Jr. (Sweden-Jr.)); 121. Boston Bruins - Brian Ferlin (RW, Indiana (USHL));

122. Edmonton Oilers - Martin Gernat (D, Kosice Jr. (Slovakia-Jr.)); 123. Colorado Avalanche - Garrett Meurs (C, Plymouth (OHL)); 124. Florida Panthers - Yaroslav Kosov (F, Magnitogorsk 2 (Russia-Jr.)); 125. New York Islanders - John Persson (LW, Red Deer (WHL)); 126. Ottawa Senators - Fredrik Claesson (D, Djurgarden (Sweden)); 127. New York Islanders - Brenden Kichton (D, Spokane (WHL)); 128. Columbus Blue Jackets - Seth Ambroz (RW, Omaha (USHL)); 129. New Jersey Devils - Blake Pietila (LW, USA U-18 (USHL)); 130. Toronto Maple Leafs - Tony Cameranesi (C, Wayzata (HS-MN)); 131. Minnesota Wild - Nick Seeler (D, Eden Prairie (HS-MN)); 132. St. Louis Blues - Niklas Lundstrom (G, Aik Jr. (Swe-Jr.)); 133. San Jose Sharks - Sean Kuraly (C, Indiana (USHL)); 134. New York Rangers - Shane McColgan (RW, Kelowna (WHL)); 135. Dallas Stars - Troy Vance (D, Victoriaville (QMJHL)); 136. New York Rangers - Samuel Noreau (D, Baie-Comeau (QMJHL)); 137. Buffalo Sabres - Alex Lepkowski (D, Barrie (OHL)); 138. Montreal Canadiens - Darren Dietz (D, Saskatoon (WHL)); 139. Chicago Blackhawks - Andrew Shaw (C, Owen Sound (OHL)); 140. Los Angeles Kings - Joel Lowry (LW, Victoria (BCHL)); 141. Phoenix Coyotes - Darian Dziurzynski (LW, Saskatoon (WHL)); 142. Nashville Predators - Simon Karlsson (C, Malmo-Jr. (Sweden-Jr.)); 143. Anaheim Ducks - Max Friberg (LW, Skovde (Sweden-3)); 144. Pittsburgh Penguins - Dominik Uher (C, Spokane (WHL)); 145. Detroit Red Wings - Philippe Hudon (C, Choate-Rosemary HS (CT)); 146. Detroit Red Wings - Mattias Backman (D, Linkoping Jr. (Sweden-Jr.)); 147. Washington Capitals - Patrick Koudys (D, Rensselaer (ECAC)); 148. Tampa Bay Lightning - Nikita Nesterov (D, Chelyabinsk 2 (Russia-Jr.)); 149. Winnipeg Jets - Austen Brassard (RW, Belleville (OHL)); 150. Vancouver Canucks - Frank Corrado (D, Sudbury (OHL)); 151. Boston Bruins - Rob O`Gara (D, Milton Academy HS (MA));

152. Toronto Maple Leafs - David Broll (LW, Sault Ste. Marie (OHL)); 153. Colorado Avalanche - Gabriel Beaupre (D, Val D-Or (QMJHL)); 154. Florida Panthers - Edward Wittchow (D, Burnsville HS (MN)); 155. Phoenix Coyotes - Andrew Fritsch (RW, Owen Sound (OHL)); 156. Ottawa Senators - Darren Kramer (C, Spokane (WHL)); 157. Winnipeg Jets - Jason Kasdorf (G, Portage (MJHL)); 158. Columbus Blue Jackets - Lucas Sedlak (C, C.Budejovice Jr. (Czech Republic-Jr.)); 159. New Jersey Devils - Reece Scarlett (D, Swift Current (WHL)); 160. Anaheim Ducks - Josh Manson (D, Salmon Arm (BCHL)); 161. Minnesota Wild - Stephen Michalek (G, Loomis-Chaffee HS (CT)); 162. St. Louis Blues - Ryan Tesink (C, Saint John (QMJHL)); 163. Carolina Hurricanes - Matt Mahalak (G, Plymouth (WHL)); 164. Calgary Flames - Laurent Brossoit (G, Edmonton (WHL)); 165. Dallas Stars - Matej Stransky (RW, Saskatoon (WHL)); 166. San Jose Sharks - Daniil Sobchenko (C, Yaroslavl (Russia)); 167. Buffalo Sabres - Nathan Lieuwen (G, Kootenay (WHL)); 168. Montreal Canadiens - Daniel Pribyl (C, Sparta Jr. (Czech Republic-Jr.)); 169. Chicago Blackhawks - Sam Jardine (D, Camrose (AJHL)); 170. Nashville Predators - Chasen Balisy (C, USA U-17 (USDP)); 171. Ottawa Senators - Max McCormick (LW, Sioux City (USHL)); 172. New York Rangers - Peter Ceresnak (D, Trencin Jr. (Slovakia-Jr.)); 173. Toronto Maple Leafs - Dennis Robertson (D, Brown (ECAC)); 174. Pittsburgh Penguins - Josh Archibald (W, Brainerd (HS-MN)); 175. Detroit Red Wings - Richard Nedomlel (D, Swift Current (WHL)); 176. Philadelphia Flyers - Petr Placek (RW, Hotchkiss School (HS-CT)); 177. Washington Capitals - Travis Boyd (C, USA U-18 (USHL)); 178. Tampa Bay Lightning - Adam Wilcox (G, Green Bay (USHL)); 179. San Jose Sharks - Dylan Demelo (D, Miss. St. Michael`s (OHL)); 180. Vancouver Canucks - Pathrik Westerholm (C, Malmo (Sweden-2)); 181. Boston Bruins - Lars Volden (G, Blues Jr. (Finland-Jr));

182. Edmonton Oilers - Frans Tuohimaa (G, Jokerit Jr. (Finland Jr.)); 183. Colorado Avalanche - Dillon Donnelly (D, Shawnigan (QMJHL)); 184. Florida Panthers - Iiro Pakarinen (RW, Kalpa (Finland)); 185. New York Islanders - Mitchell Theoret (C, Niagara (OHL)); 186. Ottawa Senators - Jordan Fransoo (D, Brandon (WHL)); 187. Winnipeg Jets - Aaron Harstad (D, Green Bay (USHL)); 188. Columbus Blue Jackets - Anton Forsberg (G, Modo-Jr. (SWE-Jr.)); 189. New Jersey Devils - Patrick Daly (D, Benilde-St. Margaret`s (HS-MN)); 190. Toronto Maple Leafs - Garret Sparks (G, Guelph (OHL)); 191. Minnesota Wild - Tyler Graovac (C, Ottawa (OHL)); 192. St. Louis Blues - Teemu Eronen (D, Jokerit (Finland Jr.)); 193. Carolina Hurricanes - Brody Sutter (C, Lethbridge (WHL)); 194. San Jose Sharks - Colin Blackwell (C, St. John`s Prep (HS-MN)); 195. Dallas Stars - Jyrki Jokipakka (D, Ilves (Finland)); 196. Phoenix Coyotes - Zac Larraza (LW, USA U-18 (USHL)); 197. Buffalo Sabres - Brad Navin (C, Waupaca (HS-WI)); 198. Montreal Canadiens - Colin Sullivan (D, Avon Old Farms HS (CT)); 199. Chicago Blackhawks - Alexander Broadhurst (C, Green Bay (USHL)); 200. Los Angeles Kings - Michael Schumacher (LW, Frondula Jr. (SWE-Jr.)); 201. Tampa Bay Lightning - Matthew Peca (C, Pembroke (CHL)); 202. Nashville Predators - Brent Andrews (LW, Halifax (QMJHL)); 203. Toronto Maple Leafs - Max Everson (D, Edina HS (MN)); 204. Ottawa Senators - Ryan Dzingel (C, Lincoln (USHL)); 205. Detroit Red Wings - Alexei Marchenko (D, CSKA (Russia)); 206. Philadelphia Flyers - Derek Mathers (RW, Peterborough (OHL)); 207. Washington Capitals - Garrett Haar (D, Fargo (USHL)); 208. Tampa Bay Lightning - Ondrej Palat (LW, Drummondville, (QMJHL)); 209. Pittsburgh Penguins - Scott Wilson (C, Georgetown (OJHL)); 210. Vancouver Canucks - Henrik Tommernes (D, Frolunda (Sweden Jr.)); 211. Chicago Blackhawks - Johan Mattsson (G, Sodertalje Jr. (Swe-Jr.).

(Nathan can be reached at

Training Camp starts August 14

Press Release

Sydney – The Cape Breton Screaming Eagles 15th Training Camp will begin Sunday, August 14 at Centre 200 General Manager Pierre Roux announced on Thursday June 23,2011

To date, 44 players have been invited to training camp which will be held under first year General Manager Roux and first year head coach Ron Choules.

Of the 44 players invited to camp so far, 28 have at least one game experience in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.

It should be a very competitive camp, according to Roux, who will continue to look to add more players through the free-agent route, although he doesn’t expect more than 50 players to attend camp.

The team will also play six pre-season games three at home against Halifax, Moncton and PEI and three on the road against Halifax, Moncton and PEI.

The three home games will be spread out across Cape Breton with games scheduled for Centre 200 on Sunday, August 21 against the Halifax Mooseheads at 4:00 p.m., the Northside Civic Centre will play host to the Screaming Eagles and the Moncton Wildcats on Friday, August 26 at 7:00 pm and on Labour Day Monday, September 5 at 4:00 pm the Screaming Eagles and the PEI Rocket will square off at the Port Hawkesbury Civic Centre.

“We are pleased to be able to play some pre-season games away from Centre 200. The new facility on the Northside is a state of the art building and we have been trying for a number of years to schedule a game in Port Hawkesbury and this year it all came together’, Screaming Eagles President Paul MacDonald said.

(Nathan can be reached at

2011 NHL Draft - 1st Round

Press Release

1. Edmonton Oilers – Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (Red Deer WHL)
2. Colorado Avalanche – Gabriel Landeskog (Kitchener OHL)
3. Florida Panthers – Jonathan Huberdeau (Saint John QMJHL)
4. New Jersey Devils – Adam Larsson (Skelleftea Sweden)
5. New York Islanders – Ryan Strome (Niagara OHL)
6. Ottawa Senators – Mika Zibanejad (Djurgarden Sweden)
7. Winnipeg Jets – Mark Scheifele (Barrie OHL)
8. Philadelphia Flyers – Sean Couturier (Drummondville QMJHL)
9. Boston Bruins – Dougie Hamilton (Niagara OHL)
10. Minnesota Wild – Jonas Brodin (Farjestad Sweden)
11. Colorado Avalanche – Duncan Siemens (Saskatoon WHL)
12. Carolina Hurricanes – Ryan Murphy (Kitchener OHL)
13. Calgary Flames – Sven Bartschi (Portland WHL)
14. Dallas Stars – Jamie Oleksiak (Northeastern NCAA)
15. New York Rangers – J.T. Miller (US NDTP)
16. Buffalo Sabres – Joel Armia (Porin Assat Finland)
17. Montreal Canadiens – Nathan Beaulieu (Saint John QMJHL)
18. Chicago Blackhawks – Mark McNeill (Prince Albert WHL)
19. Edmonton Oilers – Oscar Klefbom (Farjestad Sweden)
20. Phoenix Coyotes – Connor Murphy (US NTDP)
21. Ottawa Senators – Stefan Noesen (Plymouth OHL)
22. Toronto Maple Leafs – Tyler Biggs (US NTDP)
23. Pittsburgh Penguins – Joe Morrow (Portland WHL)
24. Ottawa Senators – Matt Puempel (Peterborough OHL)
25. Toronto Maple Leafs – Stuart Percy (Mississauga OHL)
26. Chicago Blackhaws – Phillip Danault (Victoriaville QMJHL)
27. Tampa Bay Lightning – Vladislav Namestnikov (London OHL)
28. Minnesota Wild – Zack Phillips (Saint John QMJHL)
29. Vancouver Canucks – Nicklas Jensen (Oshawa OHL)
30. Anaheim Ducks – Rickard Rakell (Plymouth OHL)

(Nathan can be reached at


Press Release

The Gloucester Rangers Junior A hockey club is pleased to annouce the appointment of Sylvain Favreau as their new coach. Sylvain has been the assistant coach with the Rangers for the past few seasons having led the offence and power play systems. He was also responsible for the academic portion of the Rangers program, monitoring the student/athletes and their in class performances.

Sylvain came up through the Gloucester Rangers Minor Hockey system and then was drafted and played in the CCHL (CJHL) for Kanata, Ottawa and finished his junior hockey career with the Gloucester Rangers Junior A club. He brings a wealth of experience to the Rangers staff as he also played professional hockey in Europe until 2007.

"I am confident in Sylvain’s leadership skills, and with his knowledge and experience with the team already, he is a good fit to assume the role of coach for the Rangers, » says Paul Jennings, president & general manager of the club. « I have watched Sylvain over the past few seasons and have been impressed with his ability to work with our players and staff. We look forward to a successful season with Sylvain at the helm."

"I would also like to thank our former coach Rick Dorval, who has stepped down to spend more time with his family. The Rangers organization wish him all the best and I am sure that during the hockey season we will see Rick at the CCHL games and I am confident that he will be back coaching in the near future."

(Nathan can be reached at

Friday, June 24, 2011

Frontenacs Add Goaltending Coaches: Curtis Joseph and David Franco

Press Release

The Kingston Frontenacs are pleased to announce the addition of two new goaltender coaches, former National Hockey League netminder Curtis Joseph, along with his goaltender coach David Franco.

Franco has been a goaltending coach for over twenty years, having mentored the above mentioned Joseph along with other National Hockey Leaguer Jamie Storr who played ten years in the League. As well he was the goalie coach for the Chinese Woman’s Olympic Team at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics.

Curtis brings Over 20 years of NHL experience, appearing in 943 games, winning 454 games and 51 shut-outs.

“This is a chance to add two very respected quality individuals and coaches to our hockey staff” said Doug Gilmour. “They will be a great addition”.

Training Camp opens the end of August.
(Nathan can be reached at

Jr. Buzzers Win Niagara Falls Challenge Cup

Press Release

The St. Michaels Jr. Buzzers 1995 AAA team coached by Chris Lazary, (assistant coach of the St. Michael’s Buzzers of the OJHL), participated in the Niagara Falls Challenge Cup Tournament June 17-20 and came home the tournament champions.

The Jr. Buzzers opened up their tournament on Friday, June 17 with a 3-1 win over the Barrie Bandits and finished the tournament undefeated with a 4-0-1 record.

In the Championship game, the Jr. Buzzers faced the South East Nationals from South Carolina. The Jr. Buzzers came out strong but found themselves behind on a Nationals late first period power play goal. The Jr. Buzzers responded less than two minutes later. With only forty nine seconds left in the first period and on a power play, Rocky Fuda kept the puck in at the point and made a beautiful pass to Andrea Voudouris. He fed it to Nello Altomare who was waiting to one time it into the Nationals net to tie the game 1-1.

That goal provided a spark to the team’s offence and just thirty four seconds into the second period, Adam Iacobucci scored their second goal assisted by Vincent Dinunzio and Jackson Parker giving the Jr. Buzzers the lead 2-1. Both teams were stingy defensively the rest of the period and at the end of the second, the Jr. Buzzers led 2-1.

The third period was the most exciting and the best of the tournament. The Nationals tied the game 2-2 midway through the third but the Jr. Buzzers did not back down. They showed their perseverance and determination taking back the lead less than ninety seconds later with a goal by Michael Mantenuto set up by David Lamanna.

The pesky Nationals would not give up and they too came back less than a minute later with a goal tying it up 3-3. The Jr. Buzzers would not be outdone though in this see-saw battle taking the lead back just twenty four seconds later. Stefan Losberg raced in the Nationals zone, recovered a loose puck and passed it Patrick Finamore who was waiting at the point. Finamore fired a bullet to the net and with traffic in front, the puck deflected off a player into the net to make it 4-3 for the Jr. Buzzers. Lucas Mastromattei , in goal for the Jr. Buzzers, made some spectacular saves down the stretch and the Jr. Buzzers went on to win the game and the tournament by a final score of 4-3.

“This was truly a team effort,” said Head Coach Chris Lazary. “Each and every player contributed to the team’s success and deserves to be congratulated for their efforts.”

The team is now preparing for a run at the Chowder cup taking place in the Boston Area from July 5-10, 2011. If you were born in 1995 and are interested in participating please call 416-230-0920.

The Jr. Buzzers Spring/summer program is owned and operated by the St. Michael’s Buzzers of the OJHL. The program focuses on skills development, conditioning with an emphasis on sportsmanship and fair play. Since their inception in1933, the St. Michael’s Buzzers have sent close to the 100 players to the NHL and over 300 have received athletic scholarships from the NCAA or advanced to the OHL

(Nathan can be reached at


Press Release

The Nipawin Hawks have added a goaltender to their stable after a trade with the Fort McMurray Oil Barons of the Alberta Junior Hockey League.

The team has sent 1992 born forward Jamie Johnson (Edmonton, AB) to Fort MacMurray for 1992 born netminder Davis Jones (Edmonton, AB)

Johnson had 27 points in 44 games last year and it was hoped he could improve on those numbers for the Hawks this season, but Head Coach Doug Johnson says he was moved for family reasons.

In Jones, the team gets a goalie that went 11-3 in a backup role last year with a goals against average of 2.26 and two shutouts. Johnson is excited to have someone of Jones’ caliber in the organization and is looking forward to having assistant coach Chad McLeod—a former goalie—work with him and his two returnees Stephen Klein and Brody Hoffman.

(Nathan can be reached at

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Coach Cameron Officially Headed to Ottawa

Press Release

Majors General Manager and Head Coach Dave Cameron has officially been named an Assistant Coach with the NHL’s Ottawa Senators. Cameron joins new Head Coach Paul MacLean’s staff. Cameron will be heading to Ottawa with a familiar face as Owen Sound Attack Head Coach Mark Reeds was also named to the staff. The two faced off in a the Rogers OHL Championship Series that went to overtime in game seven just over a month ago and again in late May at the MasterCard Memorial Cup in Mississauga.

Cameron, 52, is a native of Kinkora, PEI. He has spent a total of ten seasons in the Ontario Hockey League – two as Head Coach of the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds, four as Director of Hockey Operations and Head Coach of the Toronto St. Michael’s Majors and four as General Manager and Head Coach of the Mississauga St. Michael’s Majors.

In eight seasons with the Majors organization, Cameron reached the Eastern Conference finals a total of six times – winning the Bobby Orr Trophy as Eastern Conference Champions this past season. In 2000-01, Cameron’s first year with the club, he took the Majors, a franchise that had never made the post season in the modern era, to the Eastern Conference Championship Series. That was the start of four consecutive finals appearances. During those four year’s behind the bench in Toronto, Cameron coached future NHL players Matt Ellis, Kevin Klein, Peter Budaj, Justin Peters, Darryl Boyce and Tim Brent to name a few.

After four successful seasons in Toronto, Cameron was named the Head Coach of the Binghamton Senators of the American Hockey League. In his first season with the B-Sens, Cameron posted a 47-21-0-12 record with the likes of Jason Spezza and Ray Emery in the line up. Cameron stayed in Binghamton until 2007 when he was asked to return to the Majors who were in the midst of a move from Toronto to Mississauga, and coming off a last place finish in the OHL’s Eastern Conference.

Cameron’s first move back with the Majors was to draft Casey Cizikas with the third overall pick in the 2007 OHL Priority Selection. He also drafted Brett Flemming and made a deal for Jordan Mayer that season. That year, Cameron guided the team to a fifth place finish and a spot in the playoffs, a massive improvement from the 2006-07 season. The next year, the team continued to improve with the addition of overager Jared Gomes, the emergence of Mike Pelech and Chris Carrozzi as elite players and the arrival of then rookie netminder JP Anderson, who was stellar for the Majors in the playoffs, guiding the Majors to the second round. In year three of the re-build, Cameron led the Majors back to the Eastern Conference Championship Series, only to lose to the Barrie Colts in five games.

The 2010-11 season was the pinnacle of Coach Cameron’s re-build of the organization. The team posted their best record in club history and captured the Hamilton Spectator Trophy with the best record in the Ontario Hockey League during the regular season. The team also returned to the Eastern Conference Final and for the first time in the modern era of the franchise, the double blue captured the Bobby Orr Trophy as Eastern Conference Champions. In the OHL Final, Cameron and the Majors lost a heartbreaking seven game series to the Owen Sound Attack, losing the final game in overtime. The Majors had a shot at redemption, heading into the MasterCard Memorial Cup as the host team. The Majors had an impressive showing, despite losing to the Saint John Sea Dogs in the final game. In the end, the Majors finished the 2010-11 season with a second place finish in the MasterCard Memorial Cup, a second place finish in the Ontario Hockey League, a Hamilton Spectator Trophy win and they captured the Bobby Orr Trophy as Eastern Conference Champions.

Cameron leaves the Majors holding every coaching record. His record as coach of the Majors was 310-178-30-26. During his time in junior hockey, he also won a gold medal as an Assistant Coach at the World Junior Hockey Championship in 2009, a silver as an Associate Coach in 2010 and another silver medal as Head Coach of Canada’s World Junior team in 2011.

The Majors will be announcing their 2011-12 Coaching staff soon.

(Nathan can be reached at

Giants Name Glen Hanlon Assistant Coach

Press Release

Vancouver Giants Executive Vice-President and General Manager Scott Bonner announced Thursday that Glen Hanlon has been appointed as the club’s new assistant coach. The former NHL goaltender signed a multi year deal with the organization.

“I am extremely excited to have a coach of Glen’s caliber join our team, “ said Bonner. “I think having the opportunity to add a coach with both NHL playing and coaching experience will only make our players experience better and will assist them as they prepare for pro hockey.”

A native of Brandon, Manitoba, Hanlon played 3 years in the WHL with his hometown Wheat Kings, winning the WHL’s Goaltender of the Year award in 1977. He was selected in the 3rd round, 40th overall by the Vancouver Canucks in the 1977 NHL Entry Draft and went on to a 15 year career in the NHL playing for the Canucks, St. Louis Blues, New York Rangers, and Detroit Red Wings.

“The opportunity to work with an organization with a winning tradition, combined with the stability it will provide for myself and my family was too good to pass up,” said Hanlon.

Since retiring as a player in 1991, Hanlon has coached in the NHL, AHL, KHL, Finnish Elite League, and internationally. Most notably he was the head coach of the Washington Capitals over 4 seasons from 2003 to 2007; a team, which featured the likes of Alexander Ovechkin, Alexander Semin, and Olaf Kolzig. As well, he was previously the national team head coach for Belarus and Slovakia.

“Junior hockey is the one level I have never coached at. I am excited to get the chance to work with young players and to learn and work with Don Hay, who I believe is the best junior coach in Canada,” said Hanlon.

The Giants are the only team in the Canadian Hockey League to boast two former NHL head coaches behind their bench. “We feel very fortunate this opportunity presented itself,” said head coach Don Hay. “The addition of Glen to our staff is a huge asset and I can’t wait to start working together.”

Yogi Svejkovsky will remain with the team as skills coach, while last year’s assistant coach Chad Scharff has taken over as the team’s equipment manager. Rounding out the coaching staff is Paul Fricker, who was named goaltending coach at the end of May.

Vancouver Giants training camp opens August 25, 2011 at the Ladner Leisure Centre

(Nathan can be reached at


Press Release

Calgary, AB – The Western Hockey League today announced the Pre-Season schedule for the 2011-12 season. The schedule includes 64 games beginning on Tuesday, August 30 and concluding on Sunday, September 18. The pre-season schedule also features three tournaments with the Edmonton Oil Kings and Everett Silvertips hosting tournaments on the September 2 – 5 weekend and the Tri-City Americans hosting their annual tournament over the September 8 – 10 weekend.

The Everett Silvertips Pre-season Classic runs September 2 – 4 and will feature all five U.S. Division Clubs, the host Everett Silvertips, Portland Winterhawks, Seattle Thunderbirds, Spokane Chiefs and Tri-City Americans. The Edmonton Oil Kings 5th Annual Pre-Season tournament begins Sunday, September 4 and features six WHL Clubs including the host Oil Kings, Calgary Hitmen, Medicine Hat Tigers, Prince George Cougars, Red Deer Rebels and Swift Current Broncos. The games will be played out of the Servus Credit Union Place in St. Albert, AB. The Tri-City Americans Pre-Season Tournament will again feature all five U.S. Division Clubs; the host Americans, Everett Silvertips, Portland Winterhawks, Seattle Thunderbirds and the Spokane Chiefs. The tournament will also include the 2011 WHL Champion Kootenay Ice with games starting on September 8.

The 2011 WHL Pre-Season schedule also features games in 10 communities outside the 22 WHL Club markets, exposing the WHL to new fans across Western Canada. In Alberta, WHL fans will have the opportunity to watch pre-season action in the Crowsnest Pass, Innisfail, Jasper, Lacombe, St. Albert, Stettler and Taber. In British Columbia, the Vancouver Giants will host three games out of their practice facility in Ladner and the Victoria Royals will host a game in Maple Ridge. In Saskatchewan, the residents of Shaunavon will have the chance to watch the Regina Pats and Medicine Hat Tigers square off along with the Swift Current Broncos and Prince Albert Raiders.

The 792 game 2011-12 WHL Regular Season schedule will be released on Wednesday, June 29.

(Nathan can be reached at

Rangers Sign Lesway

Press Release

Kitchener Rangers Head Coach and General Manager Steve Spott has announced that the team has signed free agent Brandon Lesway to an Ontario Hockey League contract.

"Brandon is an excellent skater who made his mark as a top penalty killer this past year," Rangers Head Scout Murray Hiebert said. "His speed allows him to create offence by coming off the wing and taking the puck to the net. He will be an exciting player."

Brandon spent last season with the Kemptville 73's of the CJHL where he tallied 9 goals and 19 assists in 62 games.

Rangers training camp opens on Wednesday, August 31, 2011 at the Kitchener Memorial Auditorium.

(Nathan can be reached at

Danny Vanderwiel Commits to Whalers

Press Release

Plymouth Whalers President, General Manager and Head Coach Mike Vellucci announced the signing of 16-year-old left wing Danny Vanderwiel, who was selected by the Whalers in the eighth round (144th overall) of the 2011 Ontario Hockey League Priority Selection.

Vanderwiel – 5-foot-11 and 199 pounds from Island Lake, IL (northwest of Chicago) – scored 10 goals with 11 assists for 21 points and 87 PIM’s in 33 games for the Team Illinois U-16’s last season. He attended the Whalers Rookie Orientation at Compuware Arena in May.

Before coming to the Whalers Orientation Camp, Vanderwiel was invited to attend USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program Evaluation Camp last March, a camp featuring the top 1995-born players in the United States. Check out the roster.

“Our scouts have a history of finding good players later in the draft, and we really like what we’ve seen from Danny so far,” said Vellucci. “He’s strong on his skates and competes hard.”

“Danny’s a good skater who plays a physical game in all areas of the rink,” said Plymouth Assistant General Manager Brian Sommariva. “He provides grit and has a skill set that we like in all of our players.”

Vanderwiel is ready to start the next chapter of his hockey career.

“This is one of the most exciting things to be happening to me so far,” Vanderwiel said of his signing in a telephone interview. “The feeling of signing a contract and the team sending you a jersey after the draft makes you feel like a professional.”

Vanderwiel enjoyed his experience at the Whalers Rookie Orientation in May, where he scored a goal with two assists in two scrimmage games.

“I was able to meet some of my older teammates – Tom Wilson and Matt Mahalak – and we went to one of the Memorial Cup games (in Mississauga, ON),” Vanderwiel said. “They seem like good guys. (On the ice), I didn’t want to be nervous – I tried to play with confidence. I’m an honest grinder or power forward. I feel like Plymouth will be a good fit.”

Vanderwiel will attend school during the 2011-12 season at the Plymouth-Canton Educational Park.

Earlier this off-season, the Whalers signed 16-year-old goaltender Jake Patterson (7th round, 135th overall in 2010) and 15-year-old left wing Matthew Mistele (2nd round, 33rd overall, 2011).

Plymouth finished last season with a record of 36-26-2-4 and made the playoffs for the 20th consecutive season – a current OHL record. The Whalers bring back a full roster in 2011-12 and are expected to be in the thick of the Western Conference playoff race again.

(Nathan can be reached at

Reeds Accepts Position with Senators

Press Release

The Owen Sound Attack is pleased to announce that Head Coach Mark Reeds has accepted an Assistant Coaching position with the Ottawa Senators of the National Hockey League. Reeds, 51, completed his fourth season with the Owen Sound Attack in 2010/2011, guiding the Owen Sound franchise to their best regular season finish of all time. Under Reeds guidance in 2010/2011, the Attack captured their first ever MidWest division crown, Regular Season Western Conference Crown, Western Conference Playoff Championship and the cities first ever Ontario Hockey League Championship and Memorial Cup berth en route to being named the Ontario Hockey League’s Coach of the Year.

“Mark has contributed a lot to this organization over the last four seasons”, stated Attack General Manager Dale DeGray. “Anytime a coach of Mark’s caliber moves on, it creates a hole, however; we cannot thank him enough for his hard work, dedication and the positive attitude he has instilled throughout our whole organization. We wish Mark, his wife Mary, son Kyle and daughter Kelsey nothing but the best moving forward.”

Reeds will serve as an Assistant Coach under Paul MacLean, whom he worked with from ’93 to ’96 in Peoria. Also joining Reeds on the Senators Staff will be Mississauga St. Michael’s Majors Head Coach Dave Cameron. Cameron, 52, and Reeds are no strangers to one another after squaring off eight times in the Ontario League Finals and once in the 2011 MasterCard Memorial Cup.

Mark will be unavailable for comment for the short time being, however; is expected to be on hand for the Attack Awards BBQ and Banquet on July 3rd.

(Nathan can be reached at

Moose name Midgley Assistant Coach

Press Release

Halifax Mooseheads Head Coach Dominique Ducharme announced today the signing of Jim Midgley as assistant coach for the next two seasons. Midgley will join Ducharme and assistant coach Steve Hartley behind the bench for the Herd this season.

Midgley, 33, joins the Mooseheads with a solid track record of coaching and developing young players at the midget and junior ranks. For the past 2 seasons he has been the Director of Hockey Operations for Rothesay Netherwood Prep School in New Brunswick. He was also Head Coach for Team New Brunswick at the 2011 Canada Games in Halifax. Prior to that Midgley was assistant coach for the Saint John Sea Dogs from 2007 to 2009 and held the same position at Acadia University from 2003 to 2007. He also has coaching experience with Hockey Canada, as assistant coach for Team Atlantic Under 17 in 2009, followed by head coach in 2010.

“Jim brings tremendous communication and team development skills to our Club,” stated Ducharme. “He has a great reputation for growing players at this level and we look forward to him joining us behind the bench in Halifax next season.”

As a player, Midgley played 4 seasons in the Ontario Hockey League with the North Bay Centennials and Belleville Bulls. He moved to Halifax following his junior career and starred 4 years at St. Mary’s University, where he captained the Huskies for three of those seasons while being named All-Canadian twice.

“I am excited to be joining an organization with as rich a history and tradition as the Halifax Mooseheads”, stated Midgley, originally from Townsend, Ontario. “The organization has been very committed to building their program the right way, and as a coach I’m looking forward to working with the club's talented young prospects. I am very thankful for my time at Rothesay Netherwood School and look forward to working with Dominique and the rest of the coaching staff. “

Midgley will relocate to Halifax later this month in preparation for the Mooseheads Training Camp which opens August 17th at Cole Harbour Place.

The Halifax Mooseheads organization welcomes Jim Midgley to Moose Country!

(Nathan can be reached at

Slammers make solid addition

Press Release

Tresham played for the Guelph Storm of the Ontario Hockey League the past two seasons. Tresham recorded 3 goals and 6 assists and 67 minutes penalties for the Storm. Prior to the Storm Tresham played for the North York Rangers where he recorded 44 goals and 59 assists and 206 minutes in penalties.

"Connor is a very gritty player who competes every shift. We identified Connor as a player we wanted here and we were familiar with him as Kyle Adams coached him prior and the family is originally from the same area as I grew up" commented Head Coach Jason Tatarnic. Tresham is expected to bring leadership and the Slammers are looking forward to seeing Connor play in an offensive role again. "Sometimes at the major junior level you serve as a role player and every team needs those type of players at every level. We feel Connor has some great skills and we are looking forward to seeing him use them while maintaining his gritty play and we are looking for him to provide some leadership in our dressing room.

"I was very excited when The Slammers contacted me as I had some knowledge of organization, I'm especially excited to be playing for a winning team and would like to keep that winning tradition going. Growing up i always looked at myself as a 'go to' guy, and in junior A as a 16 and 17 year old i was a point guy. Over the past 2 years playing in the OHL 'I payed my dues' and I learned a grittier way to play the game, this year in Woodstock i'd like to combine my grit and skill and find my scoring touch again. I also believe i will bring some leadership and experience to the team, and can provide insight to some of the younger guys" commented Connor Tresham.

Tresham will be wearing number 7 next season and the Slammers organization are looking forward to having Connor in Woodstock.

(Nathan can be reached at

OHL Announces 2011-12 Exhibition Schedule

Press Release

Toronto, ON – The Ontario Hockey League today announced the exhibition game schedule for the 2011-12 season.

The schedule includes 50 games beginning on Friday September 2, 2011, and wrapping up on Sunday September 18, 2011.

Highlights of the 2011-12 exhibition game schedule include six games to be played away from home OHL rinks beginning with the Mississauga St. Michael’s Majors hosting the Guelph Storm on September 8 at Iceland Arena. The Majors will also play at Port Credit Arena on September 10 when they host the Peterborough Petes, and at Vic Johnston Arena in Streetsville when they host the Owen Sound Attack on September 17. Other off-site games include the Belleville Bulls hosting the Kingston Frontenacs in Wellington on September 10, the same day that the Erie Otters host the Attack in Woodstock, and the Plymouth Whalers host the London Knights at the St. Thomas Timken Centre.

The 680-game OHL regular season opens on Wednesday September 21 when the Robertson Cup Champion Owen Sound Attack host the Plymouth Whalers.

(Nathan can be reached at

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


Press Release

The Battlefords Stars and Yorkton Terriers have made a one for one trade involving a pair of 18 year forwards that both hope will have a significant impact for their team.

The Stars get 1993 born forward Cody Pongracz (Saskatoon, SK) from the Terriers in exchange for 1993 born forward Curtis Oliver (Elkhorn. MB) Pongracz was 7th in Saskatchewan Midget Triple A scoring last season registering 57 points for the Saskatoon Contacts in 43 games while Oliver put up 39 points in 37 games for the Yellowhead Chiefs of the Manitoba Midget Triple A League.

(Nathan can be reached at


Press Release

The Kindersley Klippers and Notre Dame Hounds are swapping forwards. The Klippers pick up the rights to 1994 born forward Landon Robin (Saskatoon, SK) in exchange for 1993 born forward Dillon Schwartzenberger (Saskatoon, SK).

Robin had 32 points in 34 games for the Beardy’s Blackhawks of the Saskatchewan Midget Triple A league this past season. Schwartzenberger had 27 points for the Saskatoon Blazers of the SMAAAHL in 33 games

(Nathan can be reached at

Gamblers Scout Earns NHL Position

Press Release

The Green Bay Gamblers are announced that Director of Scouting John Burkart has accepted a position with the Tampa Bay Lightning of the National Hockey League. Burkart will serve as the Lightning's Midwest amateur scout and cover NCAA Division 1 college hockey, the United States Hockey League, and the Ontario Hockey League.

Burkart came to the Gamblers prior to the 2008-09 season from the St. Louis Bandits of the North American Hockey League. Burkart was hired by then head coach Jon Cooper, who is also in the Tampa Bay organization, serving as the head coach of the Lightning's American Hockey League affiliate in Norfolk, Virginia. With Burkart evaluating and recruiting talent, the Gamblers won 145 games (regular season and playoffs), the most in a three-year span by any team in the 32-year history of the USHL. In his first season with the organization, the Gamblers won the Anderson Cup earning a 50-point improvement in the standings from the previous year, the largest turnaround in USHL history. Green Bay went on to win their second consecutive Anderson Cup in 2009-10 and won the Clark Cup as playoff champions. They made a repeat trip to the Clark Cup Final this season.

Burkart will join the Tampa Bay organization this weekend at the NHL Entry Draft at the Xcel Center in St. Paul, Minnesota.

(Nathan can be reached at