Strandberg updates his condition … Wheaties storm past Broncos … Pats get win in Everett

Leonard Strandberg has been a familiar face in hockey circles, especially in Western Canada, for a long time.

Unfortunately, he was involved in a motorcycle accident while in Arizona last week and now is in hospital where he continues to undergo treatment that to date has included the removal of one leg below the knee.

On Sunday, he sent out the statement that follows . . .

No one has any idea how long he will be in hospital, but the family is going to need help. With that in mind, there is a GoFundMe site right here.


If you had hoped to land one of the late Ed Chynoweth’s rings that was available at Classic Auctions, sorry, but you’re too late.

There were 13 rings, all of them hockey-related, in the lot. They brought in a total of $9,737. Of course, not all of that goes to the Chynoweth family as the auction house takes a chunk off the top in handling fees, etc.

The 1989 Swift Current Broncos Memorial Cup ring went for $1,685, the most of any of them. It also had 12 bids, which was tops.

The rings that were available and what they brought:

1989 Swift Current Broncos Memorial Cup, $1,685;

2002 Kootenay Ice Memorial Cup, $977.

1983 Portland Winterhawks Memorial Cup, $783;

1987 Medicine Hat Tigers Memorial Cup, $783;

1994 and 1996 World Junior Championship, $783 each;

1981 Canada Cup, $666;

1994 Kamloops Blazers Memorial Cup, $646;

1991 Spokane Chiefs Memorial Cup, $587;

1995 Kamloops Blazers Memorial Cup $587;

1985 World Junior Championship, $533;

1986 CHL Presidents ring, $484; and

1985 Prince Albert Raiders Memorial Cup, $440;

Before he died, Chynoweth, who meant so much to major junior hockey not just in the west but all of Canada, had told his family not to hang on to memorabilia for his sake. Without any collectors in the family, the decision was reached to sell off a lot of the things that had been in their husband/father’s possession.

I have been told that there are more lots to come, including sweaters and photographs.


Kelly Remple has been in the Moose Jaw/Regina area for more than a few years. He posted the above tweet on Saturday. It’s interesting to visit it and check out the responses. It’s also interesting that not one person has indicated they either have purchased a ticket (or tickets) or that they intend to be at the game, at least not as of the last time I checked.


So . . . were you surprised last week when you heard that Gary Bettman, the commissioner of hockey, was talking with money in Houston, perhaps about putting an NHL franchise in the fourth-largest sporting market in the U.S.? . . . Larry Brooks of the New York Post explains right here exactly what is happening with all of that.


If you like what you see here, you may want to consider donating to the cause. Should you choose to help out, simply click on the DONATE button in the upper right corner of this page and away you go. Thank you!


Taylor Harnett, 42, has signed on as the general manager and head coach of the MJHL’s Waywayseecappo Wolverines, replacing Arnie Caplan, who was in his first season when he was dismissed earlier this month. . . . Harnett, from Edmonton, has coached bantam and midget teams at Edmonton’s South Side Athletic Club in recent seasons. One of his players in bantam was Vancouver Giants captain Tyler Benson. Last season, Harnett was with the midget AAA Leduc Chrysler Oil Kings. . . . Paul MacLean, who had been named interim GM and head coach, will be the associate coach, with Dustin Korlak now the director of player operations. . . . The Wolverines were 1-16-1 when Caplan was fired and after beating the visiting Selkirk Steelers 7-4 on Sunday now are 2-22-1.


SUNDAY:

At Brandon, the Wheat Kings erased a 3-2 deficit with five goals as they beat the Swift Current Broncos, 7-3. . . . The Wheat Kings (14-6-1) have won five in a row. . . . The Broncos (15-5-1) had won their previous two games. The Broncos were playing their third game in fewer than 48 hours in three different cities. They beat the host Medicine Hat Tigers 4-3 on Friday, then edged the visiting Calgary Hitmen 2-1 in a shootout on Saturday. . . . On Sunday, the Wheat Kings took a 2-0 lead on goals from F Ty Lewis (11), at 4:20 of the first period, and F Connor Gutenberg (5), on a PP, at 8:01. . . . F Glenn Gawdin (15) got the Broncos to within one, on a PP, at 9:44. . . . The Broncos got a scare at 12:45 when F Tyler Steenbergen, the WHL’s leading goal scorer, left the game after taking a headshot from Brandon F Tanner Kaspick, who was given a major and game misconduct. Steenbergen, whose head hit the glass, went to the dressing room, but was back for the second period. . . . F Conner Chaulk (5) tied the game, on a PP, just 2:02 after Steenbergen left. . . . Steenbergen (31) then gave the Broncos a 3-2 lead at 5:29 of the second period. . . . The Wheat Kings got back into a tie at 8:16 as F Zach Wytinck (1) scored on a PP, and F Stelio Mattheos scored while shorthanded at 14:39 for a 4-3 lead. . . . F Evan Weinger (3) added insurance at 17:00, and the home side put it away on third-period goals from F Cole Reinhardt (6) and Mattheos (16), the latter via the PP. . . . Brandon got two assists from each of D Schael Higson, D Kale Clague, F Gunnar Wegleitner and Reinhardt, with Mattheos, Lewis, Gutenberg and Wytinck adding one apiece. . . . F Aleksi Heponiemi had two assists for the Broncos, with Steenbergen adding one to his goal. . . . Heponiemi leads the WHL scoring race with 54 points, one more than Steenbergen. . . . Brandon was 3-5 on the PP; Swift Current was 2-6. . . . G Logan Thompson earned the victory with 38 stops. . . . G Logan Flodell started for the Broncos. He allowed two goals on three shots in the first 8:01 when Joel Hofer was sent into the fray. He didn’t face a shot in 19 seconds, before Flodell returned. Flodell finished up with 29 saves. . . . The Broncos played a third straight game without Manny Viveiros, their director of hockey operations and head coach, who is scouting in the Western Conference. In his absence, associate coach Ryan Smith went 2-1-0. . . . During a pre-game ceremony, former Wheat Kings star Bill Derlago, who played with the Toronto Maple Leafs, presented Mayor Rick Chrest of Brandon with a Turk Broda banner that had been hanging in the Air Canada Centre in Toronto. The old banners have been removed and will be replaced in the ACC with new ones as part of the NHL team’s 100th season celebrations. The old banners now are being given to the hometowns of the former players. Broda, a legendary goaltender, is from Brandon. . . . Announced attendance: 3,241.


At Everett, the Regina Pats scored the game’s first two goals and held on for a 2-1 victory over the Silvertips. . . . Regina (13-9-2) now is 1-1-0 on a six-game road trip. . . . Everett (10-12-2) has lost two in a row. . . . The Silvertips went 1-2-0 in playing three games in fewer than 48 hours. They split a Friday-Saturday doubleheader with the Seattle Thunderbirds, winning 3-2 at home and then losing 2-0 in Kent, Wash. . . . F Robbie Holmes (5) gave Regina a 1-0 lead at 11:47 of the first period, and F Jake Leschyshyn (5) made it 2-0 at 2:19 of the third period. D Josh Mahura drew an assist on each goal. . . . The Silvertips cut the deficit in half on F Patrick Bajkov’s 12th goal, on a PP, at 12:10 of the third period. . . . Everett was 1-6 on the PP; Regina was 0-7. . . . The Pats got 38 saves from G Tyler Brown, while Everett’s Carter Hart stopped 48 shots. . . . Everett was without F Luke Ormsby, who drew a TBD suspension after taking a match penalty on Saturday. They also scratched F Connor Dewar, who was injured in that game. Dewar, in his third season, had missed only one previous game in his WHL career. . . . Everett lost F Sean Richards at 14:33 of the first period with a headshot major and game misconduct for a hit on Regina D Marco Creta, who wasn’t injured. . . . Announced attendance: 4,227.


MONDAY (all times local):

No Games Scheduled.


TUESDAY (all times local):

Saskatoon at Moose Jaw, 7 p.m.

Portland vs. Kootenay, at Cranbrook, B.C., 7 p.m.

Medicine Hat at Prince George, 7 p.m.

Lethbridge at Victoria, 7:05 p.m.


If you would like to contact Taking Note with information, have a question or just feel like commenting on something, feel free to send an email to greggdrinnan@gmail.com. I’m also on Twitter (@gdrinnan).


Scattershooting and channel surfing … MJHL coach puts up 500th win … Ferguson returning to Blazers … Broncos captain gets NHL deal

Ahh, this will be a glorious Thursday night. There are five TSN channels and Gary Bettman’s NHL has games on four of them.

Let’s watch the Arizona Coyotes against the Canadiens in Montreal. Maybe we’ll see how it is that the Coyotes have opened without a regulation victory in about 100 games. . . . Whoops! Blacked out.

Well, let’s move on to the next channel where the Winnipeg Jets are entertaining the Philadelphia Flyers. Let’s watch as F Nolan Patrick returns to the Flyers’ lineup after missing nine games with a concussion, and he does it in his hometown. . . . Whoops! Blacked out.

Oh well, there’s always the next channel where the New Jersey Devils are visiting the Toronto Maple Leafs. These aren’t your father’s Devils, you know. They don’t trap. Rather, they fly around the ice with the purpose of scoring goals. This one could be fun. . . . Whoops! Blacked out.

And it’s on to the fourth TSN channel, where the Pittsburgh Penguins are visiting the Ottawa Senators. Hey, it’s always fun to watch Sid Who Used To Be A Kid. . . . But not tonight. You guess it. Blacked out.

Thanks, Mr. Bettman.


What about that fifth TSN channel. Yes, it’s on to the NFL where the Tennessee Titans are visiting the Pittsburgh Steelers. . . . Thanks again, Mr. Bettman. You’re really doing a good job of selling the, uhh, NFL.


Brent Sutter, the owner, general manager and head coach of the Red Deer Rebels, remembers when his off-season training spot was a barn in which there was a heavy bag, a speed bag, some weights and a couple of bikes. Last summer, he did Pilates. Why? Because he wanted to experience what his players were doing. It’s all part of an attempt to cut down on injuries by improving flexibility and core strength.


When this WHL season began, Don Hay, now with the Kamloops Blazers, had 720 WHL head-coaching regular-season victories, meaning he needed 23 more to break Ken Hodge’s career record of 742. The Blazers have won seven of their first 20 games, meaning they are on pace for 25 victories this season.


Hey, there’s an NHL game on one of Sportsnet’s umpteen channels. It’s the St. Louis Blues in Edmonton against the Oilers. Always fun to watch McDavid and Draisaitl, even if we have to put up with Sportsnet’s computer-generated ads plastered all over the glass. . . . Oh wait. It’s blacked out.


After the Carolina Panthers dealt wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin to the Buffalo Bills, quarterback Cam Newton offered this analysis: “Yeah, we just lost a great player, but the Titanic still has to go.” . . . To which Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times responded: “Considering it’s Carolina’s less-than-stellar aerial game, shouldn’t it be the Hindenburg?”


“Twitter has increased the number of characters allowed per tweet from 140 to 280,” notes blogger Tony Chong of Richmond, B.C. “So isn’t that considered an email?” 


Hey, we found another NHL game on Sportsnet as the Vegas Golden Knights visit the Vancouver Canucks. Ahh, no blackout. Might check it out after the football game. Or earlier, if it’s a blowout.


By now you are aware that Dylan Ferguson of the Kamloops Blazers has been the Golden Knights’ backup goaltender since Oct. 30. He has been responsible for more publicity for Kamloops and the Blazers over the past couple of weeks than was generated when J-Lo, Morgan Freeman and Robert Redford were in the area to film An Unfinished Life.


Don’t discount the Vancouver Giants in the WHL’s Western Conference this season. The key, of course, is that F Tyler Benson has to stay healthy, something that hasn’t happened in either of the past two seasons. With Benson, head coach Jason McKee’s guys have two terrific forward lines. If the goaltending holds up, the Giants could make some noise.



Congratulations to Ken Pearson, the head coach of the MJHL’s Winkler Flyers.

KEN PEARSON

When the Flyers beat the host Steinbach Pistons 3-2 in OT on Wednesday night, Pearson chalked up his 500th regular-season victory as an MJHL head coach.

Pearson has made more than a handful of stops during his coaching career, including stints with the Neepawa Natives, Prince Albert Raiders, Brooks Bandits, Winnipeg South Blues and Battlefords North Stars. He has scouted for the Tri-City Americans and NHL Central Scouting.

All told, Pearson is in his 12th season behind the Flyers’ bench.

Pearson’s 500 regular-season victories are third on the MJHL’s all-time list, behind Doug Stokes (670) and Don MacGillivray (669). In the MJHL, Stokes coached the Kildonan North Stars, Winnipeg South Blues, Dauphin Kings, Selkirk Steelers and Winnipeg Saints. MacGillivray, now an assistant coach with the Brandon Wheat Kings, coached with the St. James Canadians, Southeast Blades, Neepawa Natives, Portage Terriers, Winnipeg South Blues and Winnipeg Blues.

Pearson’s Flyers go into this weekend at 16-6-0, tied for second in the 11-team league with the OCN Blizzard (15-5-2). Both teams are one point behind Steinbach (16-4-1).


The Calgary Flames have signed F Glenn Gawdin, the captain of the Swift Current Broncos, to a three-year entry-level NHL contract. Gawdin, 20, was selected by the St. Louis Blues in the 2015 NHL draft, but wasn’t signed by them. He was eligible for the 2017 draft, but wasn’t selected. Gawdin, from Richmond, B.C., was in the Flames’ training camp prior to this season as a free agent. . . . This season, Gawdin has 40 points, including 14 goals, in 18 games and his third in the WHL scoring race, behind line mates Tyler Steenbergen, who has 49 points, and Aleksi Heponiemo (48). . . . Gawdin was the fifth overall selection in the WHL’s 2012 bantam draft. In 263 games with the Broncos, he has 228 points, including 84 goals.


Taylor Shire, who works in TV at Global Regina, tweeted on Thursday: “Tickets for the Regina Pats outdoor game at Mosaic Stadium will range from $149, $219 or $319 per seat. They also have standing room only for $75. Includes Sat and Sun games.”

Among the replies to that tweet:

“Wow, those are some big numbers. Out of my price range so I won’t be joining the regiment for this game.”

“Does this include a signed Jordan Eberle jersey, beer, hand warmers and a hot dog?”

“For a dub game give your head a shake Regina.”

Meanwhile, on Dec. 17, the OHL’s Ottawa 67’s are going to face the QMJHL’s Gatineau Olympiques at The Stadium at TD Place, the home of the CFL’s Ottawa Redblacks.

A general admission ticket will set you back $15, with reserved seats going for $20 each. Those prices include all taxes and surcharges, along with transportation to the game.


F Josh Prokop revealed via Twitter on Thursday that he has made a commitment to attend Ohio State and play hockey for the Buckeyes. Prokop, 17, is from Edmonton. He was a fifth-round selection by the Swift Current Broncos in the WHL’s 2015 bantam draft. This season, Prokop has 14 points, eight of them goals, in 25 games with the BCHL’s Vernon Vipers. . . . Last season, he put up a CSSHL-leading 57 points, including 29 goals, in 30 games with the Northern Alberta X-Treme.


The Vegas Golden Knights flew out of Vancouver and headed home late Thursday night after posting a 5-2 victory over the Canucks.

Yes, G Dylan Ferguson of the Kamloops Blazers wasn’t on the plane and is to return to Kamloops today (Friday).

Ferguson, 19, was on the bench for an eighth straight game in support of starter Maxime Lagace last night. Ferguson had made his NHL debut during Tuesday’s 8-2 loss to the Oilers in Edmonton. He played 9:14 and stopped one of the two shots he faced.

Ferguson is from Lantzville, which is on Vancouver Island, so you know he had some supporters in the crowd last night. But they had to be content with watching him in the pregame warmup.

The Golden Knights have three goaltenders out with injuries, although one of them, Malcom Subban, has returned to practice. Subban, who was in Vancouver yesterday and watched the game from the press box, seems  ready to return, at least in a backup role. Starter Marc-Andre Fleury (concussion) and Oscar Dansk, who was injured on Oct. 30 and whose injury resulted in the phone call to Ferguson, also are injured.

The Golden Knights are next scheduled to play on Sunday against the visiting Los Angeles Kings.

Ferguson will rejoin the Blazers in time for two weekend home games, with the Vancouver Giants in town tonight and the Lethbridge Hurricanes following on Saturday.

The Blazers were 3-2-0 while Ferguson was with Vegas. Max Palaga, 17, who has been backing up Ferguson, made three starts, while Dylan Garand, a 15-year-old from the Delta Hockey Academy, was 1-1-0 in his two starts.


The political scene the U.S. is in upheaval due to, among other things, an investigation into whether Russia, under President Vladimir Putin, had its hands in the 2016 election. A short time ago, F Alex Ovechkin, the Washington Capitals’ starry Russian, waded into the mess by creating something that he, or somebody, has dubbed “Putin’s Team.” . . . So just what is that all about? And why would Ovechkin get involved in something like that at this particular point in time? . . . Matt Flegenheimer of The New York Times takes a look right here.


If you like what you see here, you may want to consider donating to the cause. Should you choose to help out, simply click on the DONATE button in the upper right corner of this page and away you go. Thank you!


D Montana Onyebuchi of the Everett Silvertips won’t play tonight against the visiting Seattle Thunderbirds as he serves a one-game WHL suspension. That comes after he took a charging major and game misconduct during a 2-0 victory over the visiting Prince Albert Raiders on Wednesday night.


Colin Birkas is out as head coach of the AJHL’s Calgary Canucks, and has been replaced, at least on an interim basis, by Darryl Olsen. . . . Birkas had been head coach since Aug. 11. He replaced James Poole, who resigned earlier in the summer after one season in the position. . . . Birkas had coached junior A in Ontario before signing with the Canucks. . . . A Calgarian, Olsen stepped up from assistant coach to take over as head coach of the AJHL’s Drumheller Dragons late last season. . . . The Canucks are 10-12-1 and in fifth place in the eight-team Viterra AJHL South.


What does a fired coach do with his time when there isn’t hockey? Here’s Casey O’Brien, who was dismissed by the SJHL’s Yorkton Terriers on Oct. 31 . . .


THURSDAY:

No Games Scheduled.


FRIDAY (all times local):

Calgary at Moose Jaw, 7 p.m.

Brandon at Saskatoon, 7:05 p.m.

Swift Current at Medicine Hat, 7:30 p.m.

Red Deer vs. Kootenay, at Cranbrook, B.C., 7 p.m.

Edmonton at Prince George, 7 p.m.

Vancouver at Kamloops, 7 p.m.

Lethbridge at Kelowna, 7:05 p.m.

Prince Albert vs. Tri-City, at Kennewick, Wash., 7:05 p.m.

Victoria at Spokane, 7:05 p.m.

Seattle at Everett, 7:35 p.m.


If you would like to contact Taking Note with information, have a question or just feel like commenting on something, feel free to send an email to greggdrinnan@gmail.com. I’m also on Twitter (@gdrinnan).


Scattershooting, while watching NFL … Loewen brings power game … Everett down two forwards … Coaching change in MJHL

While watching an NFL game on CTV on Sunday afternoon, the realization struck me — it isn’t the NFL on CTV; rather, it’s a series of NFL commercials aired between CTV promos.


After Tiger Woods pleaded guilty to reckless driving the other day, RJ Currie of SportsDeke.com noted: “His short game hasn’t been much, either.”


TV options on Sunday included taped telecasts on Sportsnet channels of three NHL games that were played on Saturday night. At the same time, the game between the host Edmonton Oilers and Detroit Red Wings was not available in my area “due to regional restrictions.” . . . So it was another day of watching NFL games.


Dwight Perry, in the Seattle Times: “The chartered plane carrying the NBA’s Oklahoma City Thunder last Saturday landed in Chicago with its nose cone completely caved in — the result of an apparent collision with a bird. Here’s guessing it was a blocking fowl.”


Here’s Perry, again: “The New Jersey Devils boast the world’s largest high-def scoreboard/video screen — the equivalent of 1,300 50-inch TVs. It’s so immense, fans say, that on replays you can almost see the puck.”


A tip of the hat to the WHL and its decision to take five days off while many of its top players take part in the CIBC Canada-Russia series, and a number of its best young players are at the U-17 World Hockey Challenge in Dawson Creek and Fort St. John B.C.


That’s right. The next scheduled WHL games are to be played on Friday.


Bill Wilms, a veteran WHL observer and broadcaster, took time out from his duties as the analyst on Vancouver Giants’ broadcasts to visit with me and to proffer an idea on Saturday night. It is time, he suggested, to take some of the hitting out of hockey. As he pointed out, those big open-ice hits, especially where a defender steps up into the neutral zone and unloads on an unsuspecting opponent, don’t accomplish much of anything, other than to oftentimes injure the opponent and result in a suspension to the hitter. . . . It’s hard to argue with that line of thinking, especially because intimidation really isn’t a factor in this day and age, and when so many of the changes in today’s game are aimed at improving player safety. Of course, if it really was about player safety, especially at the WHL level, those in power would act to get fighting out of the game, wouldn’t they?


Still, one look at the WHL’s weekly roster report and the names of all the injured players is enough to have me agreeing with Wilms. The talent pool isn’t deep enough to withstand the number of injuries in the game today, and any move to lessen those should be looked at in all seriousness.


Headline at SportsPickle.com: John Calipari lands Amazon headquarters.


ICYMI, the New York Islanders beat the visiting Colorado Avalanche, 6-4, on Sunday, with F Mathew Barzal earning five assists, two of them on the PP. And a whole lot of Seattle Thunderbirds nodded and said: “I’ve seen that show before.”


Yes, this has turned into a frustrating season for the WHL’s Kamloops Blazers, who have but five victories to show for their first 17 games.

And, yes, they are 1-7-0 at home following a 5-4 setback at the hands of the Vancouver Giants on Saturday night.

But here’s a word of warning to the Blazers’ opponents: Beware of No. 32.

Jermaine Loewen, 19, is into his fourth season in Kamloops and perhaps it all has come together for him, allowing him to become a real power forward.

Loewen went into this season with 32 points, 14 of them goals, in 171 regular-season games. He began this season by going pointless in three games, and then sat out six games with an undisclosed injury.

After enjoying back-to-back two-goal games against the Giants on the weekend, he now has six goals and four assists in 11 games this season.

Until recent times, Loewen, who is listed as 6-foot-2 and 221 pounds, played in the Blazers’ bottom six forwards. Of late, though, he has been patrolling the left side with the team’s most-gifted offensive forward — veteran Garrett Pilon, 19.

In the past, you never could question Loewen’s desire, his fearlessness or his emotional investment in games. However, he sometimes let that emotion get the better of him, something that often resulted in undisciplined play and bad penalties.

Of course, you also have to remember that Loewen, a formidably strong skater who often doesn’t realize his own strength, was late to the game, having been adopted by Tara and Stan Loewen out of an orphanage in May Pen, Jamaica, and taken to Arborg, Man., where he was introduced to hockey at the age of 10. (If you aren’t familiar with Jermaine’s story, check out this story right here. It was written by Marty Hastings of Kamloops This Week.)

Of late, it looks as though Loewen is putting it all together — kind of like the Rubik’s Cube has fallen into place. He was the Blazers’ best player on Saturday; in fact, you could make a case for his having been the most dominant player on the ice. He has a wicked snap shot and loves to use it off the rush. He knows the importance of getting to the net and causing mayhem. He loves to retrieve a loose puck deep in the offensive zone and drive to the net. All of that, and more, was on display Saturday, especially in the third period when he scored twice to get Kamloops back into the game.

Now it’s only a matter of Loewen getting consistent, of his being able to dominate every shift of every game. If/when that happens, NHL scouts will be marking Blazers’ games on their calendars.


The Everett Silvertips’ roster is down two forwards.

F Mark Liwiski has been suspended indefinitely, while F Ethan Browne has left the team and returned home.

Liwiski was suspended after being in violation of an unspecified team rule or rules.

After a 3-1 loss to the visiting Portland Winterhawks on Saturday, Everett head coach Dennis Williams told Jesse Geleynse of the Everett Herald:

“It’s something that again in probably a week’s time we’ll sit down as a staff, with (general manager) Garry (Davidson) being on the road, and discuss what are the next steps we’re going to take with everything.”

Davidson, like a lot of WHL general managers and scouts, is watching the U-17 World Hockey Challenge in Dawson Creek and Fort St. John, B.C.

Liwiski, 16, was a third-round selection in the 2016 WHL bantam draft. He was pointless in 10 games with Everett.

Meanwhile, Browne, a first-round selection in the 2016 bantam draft, is at home in Sherwood Park, Alta. According to Williams, Browne told him on Friday “that he wanted to take some time and so we’ve granted that. He wanted to go back home, so that was something he wanted to do. That came (as) kind of a surprise on Friday, but there’s nothing we can do. He wanted to go home and clear his mind, and try to get refocused.”

Browne has one assist in eight games with the Silvertips.


You may recall reading here recently that a number of rings that belonged to the late Ed Chynoweth, the longtime WHL and Edmonton/Kootenay Ice executive, are up for auction at Classic Auctions.

As of Sunday afternoon, there had been a goodly amount of action on all 13 of the rings that were made available by the Chynoweth family, with bids running from $440 to $977.

If you have been wondering why these items have been made available to fans and collectors, it turns out that it was Ed’s wish.

Dean Chynoweth, now the associate coach with the WHL’s Vancouver Giants, told me Saturday night that his father had told his family not to hang on to things just because they had been his. They have there memories and that’s enough.

There aren’t any collectors in the family, and it turns out that there is a lot of memorabilia. Thus the decision was made to get involved with Classic Auctions, a move that will take a lot of interesting memorabilia out of closets and into the hockey community.

In the near future, there will be more from the Chynoweth collection, including sweaters and photos, made available.

If you’re interested, you can check out the rings right here.


A source told Taking Note recently that the WHL is exploring the possibility of holding a pair of outdoor games early in 2019 at Safeco Field, the home of baseball’s Seattle Mariners. . . . Russ Farwell, the general manager of the Seattle Thunderbirds, has told Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times that there was some preliminary work done on such a project more than three years ago. “It wasn’t out of the question, (the Mariners) would do it if you could pay the freight,” Farwell told Baker. “We just weren’t able to take it on at that time. But it’s something we’ll look at, and I think we’ll explore again.” . . . Baker’s story is right here.


A tip of the cap to the AJHL’s Okotoks Oilers, who had Zach Roe, sons Lennon and Louis, and a few other family members on hand for a presentation prior to a Saturday night game. Tara Roe, Zach’s wife, was among the victims of the mass shooting in Las Vegas on Oct. 1. Zach played in the WHL with the Regina Pats. . . . There is a photo and more right here.


If you like what you see here, you may want to consider donating to the cause. Should you choose to help out, simply click on the DONATE button in the upper right corner of this page and away you go. Thank you!


Paul McLean has taken over as the head coach of the MJHL’s Waywayseecappo Wolverines. McLean, who had been the assistant general manager/assistant coach, replaces Arnie Caplan, who had been in his first season as the general manager and head coach. . . . The Wolverines were 1-16-1 when the move was made on Friday. . . . In McLean’s first two games as head coach, the Wolverines lost 9-1 and 6-0 to the visiting Steinbach Pistons on Saturday and Sunday. . . . Caplan was hired in May, taking over from Barry Butler after a 14-42-4 season. . . . The franchise is into its 19th season but has only had a winning season on two occasions.


SUNDAY:

No Games Scheduled.


MONDAY (all times local):

Russia vs. Team WHL, Moose Jaw, 7 p.m.


TUESDAY (all times local):

Russia vs. Team WHL, Swift Current, 7 p.m.


WEDNESDAY-THURSDAY:

No Games Scheduled.


If you would like to contact Taking Note with information, have a question or just feel like commenting on something, feel free to send an email to greggdrinnan@gmail.com. I’m also on Twitter (@gdrinnan).

Ice chills Wheat Kings … Stallard leads Raiders past Broncos … Everett has its Hart back

F Lukáš Vartovník (Everett, 2006-08) has signed a contract for the rest of this season with Poprad (Slovakia, Extraliga). This season, he had 10 goals and 10 assists in 13 games with Spišská Nová Ves (Slovakia, 1. Liga), and three goals and one assist in six games while on loan to Poprad.


A tip of the hat to the MJHL’s Waywayseecappo Wolverines, who will honour Braden Pettinger tonight (Saturday) when they play host to the Steinbach Pistons. . . . Pettinger got into 14 games with Steinbach, then played 108 games with the Wolverines before being traded to the Portage Terriers. On Nov. 12, 2015, in his first game with the Terriers, Pettinger suffered a catastrophic injury. . . . Pettinger, 22, is from Elgin, Man. . . . The Wolverines note: “Braden continues with his long recovery and we will honour (his) courageous battle in a pre-game ceremony.” . . . Pettinger and his family are scheduled to be in attendance.


F Alec Zawatsky made his WHL debut with the Saskatoon Blades against the host Medicine Hat Tigers on Friday night. Earlier this week, I made reference to Zawatsky having driven from Estevan to Lethbridge through a snowstorm in order to get to Lethbridge in time to practise with the Blades on Thursday morning. . . . As it turns out, that’s not how it happened. . . . Zawatsky, who played for the SJHL’s Notre Dame Hounds against the Bruins in Estevan, rode the bus back to Wilcox, Sask. He later flew from Regina to Calgary, and then drove to Lethbridge. . . . Apologies to all involved, but especially to Notre Dame head coach Clint Mylymok, who you have to know would never put a young player into a situation that would involve such a travel predicament.


The Portland Winterhawks have signed G Dante Giannuzzi to a WHL contract. From Winnipeg, Giannuzzi was a fifth-round selection in the WHL’s 2017 bantam draft. . . . He is playing this season in Winnipeg with the Rink Hockey Academy Elite 15s, and is 1.35, .953 with one shutout in five appearances.


The Seattle Thunderbirds have signed G Eric Ward to a WHL contract. Ward, who is from Edmonton, signed prior to the Thunderbirds’ 3-1 victory over the host Oil Kings on Thursday night. . . . Ward, 16, is playing for the midget AAA CAC Canadians in Edmonton.


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FRIDAY:

At Brandon, the Kootenay Ice struck four times in fewer than 10 minutes in the first period en route to a 4-2 victory over the Wheat Kings. . . . The Ice improved to 8-8-1. . . . The Wheat Kings (9-6-1) have lost three in a row. . . . F Sebastian Streu (1) got the visitors started at 8:26 of the first period, with F Michael King (4) making it 2-0 at 14:00. . . . F Kaeden Taphorn (1), who also had an assist, upped the lead to 3-0 at 16:44, and D Cale Fleury (6) made it 4-0 at 18:03. . . . The Wheat Kings got a PP goal from F Ty Lewis (9) at 18:58 of the first period, and D Ty Ettinger (1) got Brandon to within two goals at 11:55 of the second. . . . Brandon was 1-2 on the PP; Kootenay was 1-6. . . . G Duncan McGovern, in his first start with the Ice since being acquired from the Medicine Hat Tigers, stopped 33 shots. . . . Brandon starter Logan Thompson surrendered four goals on 15 shots in the first period. Dylan Myskiw played the last two periods, stopping all 12 shots he faced. . . . The same two teams will play in Brandon again tonight. . . . Announced attendance: 3,616.


At Regina, the Pats scored the game’s last three goals, all via the PP, and beat the Red Deer Rebels, 4-3. . . . Regina (11-6-2) has points in four straight (3-0-1). . . . The Rebels (8-8-1) have lost three in a row (0-2-1). . . . Red Deer got the game’s first two goals, from F Austin Pratt (4), at 9:24 of the first period, and F Kristian Reichel (6), shorthanded, at 16:47. . . . D Josh Mahura got the Pats on the scoreboard at 18:51. . . . F Jack Flaman (6), who also had an assist, restored Red Deer’s two-goal lead at 1:34 of the second period. . . . D Jonathan Smart (2) pulled the Pats to within a goal at 9:17 of the second and Mahura (7) tied it at 15:36. . . . F Matt Bradley (14) snapped the tie at 9:44 of the third period. . . . F Wyatt Sloboshan had two assists for Regina, with Smart adding one to his goal. . . . The Pats were 3-7 on the PP; the Rebels were 0-4. . . . G Tyler Brown earned the victory with 25 saves. . . . At the other end, G Ethan Anders, who is from Regina, blocked 44 shots. . . . F Lukus MacKenzie, required Thursday from the Saskatoon Blades, made his Red Deer debut. . . . Regina F Nick Henry (shoulder), who has yet to play this season, has returned to practising but didn’t dress for this one. . . . The Pats have dropped D Parker Gavlas, 18, from their roster. He is expected to join the SJHL’s Yorkton Terriers. Gavlas, from Saskatoon, was pointless in seven games with Regina. . . . Announced attendance: 6,484.


At Lethbridge, the Calgary Hitmen broke a 2-2 tie with three straight goals as they skated to a 6-3 victory over the Hurricanes. . . . The Hitmen (5-10-1) had lost their previous three games. . . . The Hurricanes (7-7-1) have lost three in a row (0-2-1). . . . The Hurricanes closed out a seven-game homestand in which they finished 3-3-1. . . . F Jordy Bellerive, back after a one-game absence, scored his eighth goal for a 1-0 Lethbridge lead 27 seconds in to the game. . . . Calgary took a 2-1 lead on goals from F Matteo Gennaro (11), at 7:56 of the first period, and F Orca Wiesblatt (1), at 14:04. . . . Lethbridge tied it at 16:32 as F Jake Elmer (1) scored. . . . Calgary got the next three goals, from F Andrei Grishakov (5), at 3:19 of the second, and F Tristen Nielsen, who scored twice, at 16:10 of the second and 6:10 of the third. He’s got four goals. . . . F Giorgio Estephan (6), on a PP, got the home side to within two at 12:30, but Calgary D Vladislav Yeryomenko (4) got the empty-netter at 18:33. . . . The Hitmen got two assists from F Luke Coleman, with Grishakov and Yeryomenko adding one each. . . . Lethbridge was 1-2 on the PP; Calgary was 0-2. . . . G Nick Schneider stopped 34 shots for Calgary, nine more than Lethbridge’s Stuart Skinner. . . . Lethbridge had F Zane Franklin and Bellerive back after they sat out one game due to illness. . . . These teams will meet again tonight, this time in Calgary. . . . Announced attendance: 3,363.


At Prince Albert, F Jordy Stallard scored three straight goals to lead the Raiders to a 5-1 victory over the Swift Current Broncos. . . . The Raiders improved to 7-5-3, while the Broncos, who are 6-1-1 on the road, are left at 10-3-1. . . . Prince Albert took a 1-0 lead when F Justin Nachbaur, who is from Cross Lake, Man., scored his first WHL goal — and point — at 3:57 of the first period. He was playing in his 11th game. . . . Stallard, who has 12 goals, then struck for three in a row, the last two coming via the PP. The 20-year-old scored at 5:00 and 16:31 of the first period, and completed his first WHL hat trick at 10:01 of the second. . . . F Aleksi Heponiemi (11) scored for the Broncos, on a PP, at 14:41. He’s got goals in six straight games. . . . The Raiders got that one back at 17:27, on a PP, from F Sean Montgomery (5). . . . F Cole Fonstad had two assists for the winners. . . . The Raiders were 3-6 on the PP; the Broncos were 1-3. . . . Prince Albert G Ian Scott stopped 30 shots. . . . The Broncos started G Logan Flodell, who allowed five goals on 26 shots in two periods. Joel Hofer finished up by stopping 12 third-period shots. . . . Of the game’s 19 minor penalties, 12 were for roughing. . . . Announced attendance: 2,049.


At Medicine Hat, the Tigers erased a 1-0 deficit with seven straight goals as they dumped the Saskatoon Blades, 7-2. . . . The Tigers (9-6-0) had lost their previous two games. . . . The Blades (6-8-1) had won three in a row. . . . F Josh Paterson (4) gave Saskatoon a 1-0 lead at 4:36 of the first period. . . . F Gary Haden (4) tied it at 6:59 and F Tyler Preziuso (5) gave the Tigers the lead at 19:16. . . . The Tigers gook control with three second-period goals, two from D David Quenneville, who has seven goals, and one from Ryan Chyzowski (7). . . . F James Hamblin (4) and D Dylan MacPherson (2) also scored for the winners. . . . F Cam Hebig (13) had Saskatoon’s other goal. He also had an assist. . . . Medicine Hat got three assists from D Linus Nassen, two each from D Kristians Rubins, Preziuso and F Ryan Jevne, and one from Hamblin. . . . Medicine Hat was 2-5 on the PP; Saskatoon was 1-2. . . . The Tigers got 20 stops from G Jordan Hollett. . . . The Blades opened with G Ryan Kubic, who was beaten five times on 28 shots through two periods. Joel Grzybowski played the third period, stopping 10 of 12 shots. . . . Announced attendance: 3,029.


At Spokane, F Kieffer Bellows scored a pair of PP goals to help the Portland Winterhawks to a 4-1 victory over the Chiefs. . . . The Winterhawks (11-4-0), who have won two in a row, scored the game’s last four goals. . . . The Chiefs (8-7-2) have lost three straight (0-2-1). . . . The Chiefs took a 1-0 lead at 9:53 on a goal from F Jaret Anderson-Dolan (5). . . . D Matthew Quigley (2) tied it for Portland at 11:18. . . . Bellows, who has 12 goals and points in 10 straight games, broke the tie at 14:46 and stretched the lead at 19:38. . . . Portland F Cody Glass (8) closed out the scoring at 15:14 of the third period. . . . The Winterhawks got two assists from each of D Henri Jokiharju and F Skyler McKenzie, with Glass getting one. . . . Portland was 2-5 on the PP; Spokane was 0-4. . . . G Cole Kehler turned aside 47 shots to earn the victory over Dawson Weatherill, who made 30 saves for Spokane. . . . F Kailer Yamamoto, who played the past three seasons with the Chiefs, was a healthy scratch last night by the Edmonton Oilers, who beat the visiting New Jersey Devils, 6-3. Signs seem to indicate that Yamamoto soon will be returned to the Chiefs. . . . Announced attendance: 4,419.


At Langley, B.C., F Jermaine Loewen’s PP goal with 16.4 seconds left in the third period gave the Kamloops Blazers a 5-4 victory over the Vancouver Giants. . . . The Blazers (5-11-0) have won two in a row and five of their last seven games. . . . The Giants (5-8-3) have lost four in a row (0-3-1). . . . F Quinn Benjafield (3) gave the visitors a 1-0 lead at 5:15 of the first period. . . . The Giants took a 2-1 lead on goals from F Brad Morrison, at 10:23, on a PP, and F Dawson Holt (2), at 11:32. . . . Kamloops took a 4-2 lead with the next three goals, all in the second period, from F Luc Smith (3), at 1:29, F Garrett Pilon (6), at 4:14, and Loewen, at 11:13. . . . The Giants tied it in the third period on goals from Morrison (4), at 12:53, and F Ty Ronning (13), at 17:30. . . . Loewen won it with his fourth goal of the season. . . . F Brodi Stuart had two assists for Kamloops, with Pilon, Smith and Loewen each getting one. . . . The Giants got two assists from each of F Milos Roman and Ronning, with Morrision adding one. . . . Morrison had three points but was serving a slashing penalty when the Blazers got the winner. . . . Kamloops was 1-3 on the PP; Vancouver was 1-4. . . . Kamloops G Max Palaga stopped 23 shots to earn his first WHL victory. Dylan Ferguson, the Blazers’ No. 1 goalie, is with the NHL’s Vegas Golden Knights on emergency recall. . . . The Giants got 17 saves from G David Tendeck. . . . The Giants are without D Darian Skeoch, who served the third of a four-game suspension, and D Bowen Byram, who is at the U-17 World Hockey Challenge. . . . The rematch is scheduled for tonight in Kamloops. . . . Announced attendance: 3,368.


At Victoria, F Leif Mattson broke a 2-2 tie at 16:50 of the third period and the Kelowna Rockets went on to a 4-2 victory over the Royals. . . . Kelowna (8-5-3) has points in five straight (4-0-1). . . . Victoria (12-5-1) had won its previous two games. . . . F Jared Legien (8) gave the Royals a 1-0 lead 24 seconds into the first period. . . . Kelowna tied it when F Dillon Dube scored, on a PP, at 14:03. . . . Victoria went back out front on F Dante Hannoun’s 10th goal, on a PP, at 17:10. . . . D Cal Foote (5) got Kelowna back into a tie, on another PP, at 17:53 of the second period. . . . Mattson got the winner, his fourth goal in five games. . . . Dube (7) iced it with the empty-netter at 19:30 of the third period. . . . F Kole Lind had two assists for Kelowna, with Foote and Dube each getting one. . . . Kelowna was 2-3 on the PP; Victoria was 1-7. . . . Kelowna G James Porter earned the victory with 25 saves. . . . Victoria G Griffen Outhouse stopped 34 shots. . . . Kelowna F Carsen Twarynski was ejected with a boarding major at 9:53 of the third period. . . . F Matthew Phillips of the Royals had his point streak snapped at 17 games. He had 34 points, including 15 goals, over that stretch. . . . The same teams will play in Victoria again tonight. . . . Announced attendance: 4,616.


At Everett, F Patrick Bajkov broke a 1-1 tie at 18:38 of the third period as the Silvertips got past the Prince George Cougars, 3-1. . . . The Silvertips (7-9-1) have won three in a row. . . . The Cougars (5-8-4) have lost three straight. This game marked the end of a seven-game road run for the Cougars. They went 2-3-2. . . . F Orrin Centazzo (3) gave Everett a 1-0 lead at 3:48 of the first period. . . . The Cougars tied it at 13:33 of the second period on a goal from F Josh Maser (6). . . . Bajkov snapped the tie with his ninth goal. . . . F Connor Dewar (10) got the empty-netter at 19:32 of the third period. . . . Dewar also had an assist. . . . The Cougars were 0-2 on the PP; the Silvertips were 0-8. . . . Everett G Carter Hart, the WHL’s goaltender of the year each of the past two seasons, stopped 23 shots. He was back in Everett’s lineup for the first time since Sept. 30 after being sidelined by mononucleosis. The Silvertips now are carrying three goaltenders — they had Dustin Wolf, 16, backing up last night, with Dorrin Luding, 18, scratched. . . . The Cougars got 47 stops from G Tavin Grant. . . . F Luke Ormsby, who was acquired Thursday from the Seattle Thunderbirds, made his Everett debut. . . . The Cougars made it official on Friday, announcing that they have added F Pavel Azhgirei, 17, who is from Belarus. He was waived by the Silvertips and was in the lineup against them last night. . . . Azhgirei and Cougars F Vladislav Mikhalchuk were teammates on the U-17 Belarusian national team that won the Mac’s tournament in Calgary last season. . . . The Cougars had F Jackson Leppard back after a two-game absence with an undisclosed injury, while F Aaron Boyd sat out a second straight game. . . . Cougars D Josh Anderson (shoulder) is back skating but now has missed 10 games. . . . These teams will meet again next weekend as the Silvertips visit Prince George for a Friday-Saturday doubleheader. . . . Announced attendance: 3,579.


SATURDAY (all times local):

Kootenay at Brandon, 7:30 p.m.

Lethbridge at Calgary, 7 p.m.

Saskatoon at Edmonton, 7 p.m.

Red Deer at Swift Current, 7 p.m.

Moose Jaw at Prince Albert, 7 p.m.

Seattle at Medicine Hat, 7:30 p.m.

Kelowna at Victoria, 7:05 p.m.

Vancouver at Kamloops, 7 p.m.

Tri-City at Spokane, 7:05 p.m.

Portland at Everett, 7:05 p.m.


If you would like to contact Taking Note with information, have a question or just feel like commenting on something, feel free to send an email to greggdrinnan@gmail.com. I’m also on Twitter (@gdrinnan).

Teams clear up 20-year-old situations … Pats, Ice swing deal … Raiders add an import

Leland Mack, a familiar face in minor hockey circles on the Lower Mainland of B.C., also scouts for the Seattle Thunderbirds. As you can see from the above tweet, he has received his 2016-17 WHL championship ring from the Thunderbirds.

I posted a tweet here earlier showing the Pittsburgh Penguins’ scouting staff as they were presented with their 2016-17 Stanley Cup rings. Wayne Meier, who is one of Pittsburgh’s amateur scouts and who knows his way around arenas in Western Canada and the Pacific Northwest, is one of those scouts and has been with the Penguins for a few years. He was kind enough to send along a photo of his three Stanley Cup rings, which makes for a nice collection.


F Jaroslav Kristek (Tri-City, 1998-2000) has signed a one-year contract with Brest (France, Division 1). Last season, with Tychy (Poland, PHL), he had 14 goals and 15 assists in 35 games. . . .

F Tayler Thompson (Prince George, 2010-12) has been released by Brest (France, Division 1) at his request for personal reasons. He was pointless in three games. . . .

The KHL playing rights to F Vladimir Bobylyov (Vancouver, Victoria, 2014-17) have been traded by Spartak Moscow to Salavat Yulaev Ufa (both Russia) for Stepan Khripunov. Bobylyov was recalled by the Toronto Marlies (AHL) from the Orlando Solar Bears (ECHL) on Saturday. Last season, he had one goal and two assists in 20 games with Spartak Moscow (Russia, KHL); one goal and one assist in three games with Khimik Voskresensk (Russia, Vysshaya Liga); and nine goals and 27 assists in 38 games with the WHL’s Victoria Royals.


The Massey twins of Regina have their own YouTube channel and are soon to feature Les Lazaruk, the long-time radio voice of the Saskatoon Blades. In fact, the Blades are in Regina tonight (Wednesday) and at some point Lazaruk will be interviewed by the Massey brothers. . . . They are looking for audience participation and would like you to send questions for them to ask Lazaruk to questions@themasseys.ca. . . . Requests must be in by noon. . . . The YouTube channel is located right here.


The WHL’s 20-year-old deadline came and went on Tuesday afternoon, with a few teams making moves. For the uninitiated, WHL teams are permitted to keep a maximum of three 20-year-olds on their active roster.

The Portland Winterhawks got down to three 20s by trading F Evan Weinger to the Brandon Wheat Kings for a third-round selection in the WHL’s 2018 bantam draft.

Weinger, from Los Angeles, is in his fourth WHL season. Last season, he had 20 goals and 18 assists in 62 games with Portland. In 187 career games, he has 89 points, including 37 goals. He was a 13th-round selection by the Winterhawks in the WHL’s 2012 bantam draft.

The trade leaves Portland with G Cole Kehler, D Keoni Texeira and F Alex Overhardt as its 20s.

Weinger’s acquisition leaves the Wheat Kings with four 20s, the others being G Logan Thompson, D Kade Jensen and D James Shearer. However, Shearer is on Brandon’s injury list and isn’t expected to return until perhaps late November, so the Wheat Kings won’t have to worry about getting down to three until his return.

Weinger is expected to make his Brandon debut tonight against the visiting Edmonton Oil Kings.

In Medicine Hat, the Tigers revealed that F Zach Fischer had left the club on Sunday and asked to be traded. That left them with G Michael Bullion, F Mark Rassell and Latvian D Kristians Rubins as their 20s.

Fischer, from Lloydminster, Alta., had 34 goals and 29 assists in 62 games with the Tigers last season. This season, he had one goal in three games. In 154 career games, all with Medicine Hat, he put up 47 goals and 40 assists.

“We spent a lot of time on Sunday talking with him, talking with his agent, trying to get to the bottom of it,” Shaun Clouston, the Tigers’ general manager and head coach, told reporters.“He didn’t give us any specifics, so if there’s any specifics, it’ll have to come from Zach.”

Fischer, who now is on the Tigers’ suspended list, was a fifth-round selection by the Calgary Flames in the NHL’s 2017 draft.

In Swift Current, the Broncos waived F Arthur Miller, choosing to keep G Logan Flodell, G Glenn Gawdin and F Conner Chaulk. Miller, from Regina, had two assists in two games this season. In 106 regular-season games, he had nine goals and 15 assists.

The Prince George Cougars also went into the day with four 20s. There wasn’t anything official announced, but D Shane Collins wasn’t in their lineup last night against the visiting Calgary Hitmen. So it would seem the Cougars chose to go with F Aaron Boyd, F Jared Bethune and F Brogan O’Brien.

As well, the Seattle Thunderbirds placed F Tyler Adams on their injured list. He is scheduled for hip surgery so won’t be back anytime soon. The Thunderbirds are left with F Donovan Neuls, D Turner Ottenbreit and D Austin Strand as their 20s.


The Kootenay Ice has acquired F Jeff de Wit, 19, from the Regina Pats in exchange for F Tanner Sidaway, 18, and a seventh-round selection in the 2018 bantam draft. . . . Sidaway, a sophomore from Victoria, has two goals and six assists in 65 games with the Ice last season. This season, he has a goal and an assist in five games. . . . The Pats acquired de Wit, who is from Red Deer, from the Red Deer Rebels in January. He had five goals and six assists in 37 regular-season games with the Pats. De Wit, a first-round selection by Red Deer in the 2013 bantam draft, has 20 goals and 33 assists in 211 regular-season games.


The Prince Albert Raiders have claimed D Sergei Sapego, a freshman from Vitebsk, Belarus, off waivers from the Tri-City Americans. Sapego, 18, had two assists in three games with the Americans. He played for Belarus in the 2017 IIHF U-18 World Championship in April, recording a goal and an assist in seven games. He joins veteran D Vojtech Budik, who is from Czech Republic, as the Raiders’ import players.

Having acquired Sapego, the Raiders dropped D Tyler Lowe, 17, from their roster. Lowe, who got into one game with the Raiders, is expected to join the AJHL’s Drumheller Dragons. The Raiders selected Lowe, who is from Calgary, in the third round of the 2015 bantam draft.

The Americans found themselves with three import players, one over the limit, when D Juuso Valimaki returned from the camp of the NHL’s Calgary Flames, thus the decision to place Sapego on waivers. The other import is Russian D Roman Kalinichenko, who is in his first WHL season.


Almost three weeks ago, there was talk that the Vancouver Giants would have F Tyler Benson back with them in time for their East Division road swing this season. Well, the Giants open that trip against the Swift Current Broncos on Friday and it appears they will have to wait until they get home before seeing Benson again. Benson, who has been plagued by injuries for the previous two seasons, remains with the NHL’s Edmonton Oilers where he is working with their medical staff in an attempt to return from off-season surgery for a sports hernia. . . . Steve Ewen of Postmedia reports that once Benson does return to the Giants, he will practise for at least a week before getting into a game. . . . Benson, 19, has played in 63 games over the past two seasons. The Oilers selected him in the second round of the 2016 NHL draft and have signed him to a three-year entry-level contract. . . . Ewen’s complete story is right here.


Ryan Flaherty of Global TV reports that the Saskatoon Blades will be without F Logan Christensen for up to eight weeks. He suffered an undisclosed injury during a Monday practice. . . . Christensen, 18, is in his third season with the Blades. He is pointless in five games, after putting up 11 goals and 16 assists in 27 games last season.


F Elan Bar-Lev-Wise, a 16-year-old from Vancouver, B.C., has committed to play next season for the BCHL’s Vernon Vipers. He was a sixth-round pick by the Victoria Royals in the 2016 WHL bantam draft. . . . Last season, he had six goals and 10 assists in 19 games with Burnaby Winter Club’s prep team. He is captaining that team this season and has three goals and eight assists in seven games.


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The WHL handed out eight games in suspensions on Tuesday.

D Brendan de Jong of the Portland Winterhawks drew a three-game suspension for a cross-checking major and game misconduct he took on Sunday against the visiting Spokane Chiefs. He hit Chiefs D Jeff Faith, who missed some time before returning in the third period.

F Brayden Pachal of the Prince Albert Raiders was suspended for three games after taking a slashing major and game misconduct on Saturday in Medicine Hat. F Max Gerlach of the Tigers is expected to miss a game or two as he recovers from some facial damage.

D Liam Schioler of the Regina Pats will sit for two games after drawing a suspension under supplemental discipline. He delivered a hit from behind on Saskatoon F Kirby Dach in Regina at 10:46 of the first period on Saturday. Schioler was given a minor penalty at the time. Dach will miss at least three games as he won’t accompany the Blades on a three-game road trip that begins tonight in Regina.


TUESDAY:

At Red Deer, G Grayson Pawlenchuk broke a 1-1 tie at 9:21 of the second period and the Rebels went on to a 4-1 victory over the Everett Silvertips. . . . F Lane Zablocki (1) gave the home side a 1-0 lead at 1:27 of the first period. . . . Everett tied it when F Orrin Centazzo (2) scored at 4:16 of the second period. . . . After Pawlenchuk scored, F Kristian Reichel (3) added insurance at 18:12. . . . Red Deer F Jared Dmytriw (2) completed the scoring at 18:28 of the third period. . . . Pawlenchuk, who has five goals, also had an assist, as did Reichel and Zablocki. . . . Red Deer (4-3-0) was 1-5 on the PP; Everett (3-5-0) was 0-6. . . . The Rebels got 28 saves from G Ethan Anders, who posted his first WHL victory. Anders, 17, is from Regina. . . . Everett’s Dorrin Luding blocked 32 shots. . . . The Rebels had lost their previous three games. . . . The Silvertips are six games into a nine-game road trip. They are 2-4-0. . . . D Kevin Davis (ill) was among Everett’s scratches. He played in all 72 games last season. . . . Announced attendance: 3,977.


At Swift Current, F Tyler Steenbergen scored two more goals as the Broncos ran their season-opening record to 7-0-0 with a 6-2 victory over the Lethbridge Hurricanes. . . . Steenbergen, who now has 15 goals, opened the scoring on a PP at 15:06 of the first period. . . . Lethbridge took a 2-1 lead on goals from F Giorgio Estephan (3), on a PP, at 17:24 of the first, and D Calen Addison (2), on another PP, at 5:46 of the second period. . . . Addison was credited with 10 shots on goal. . . . The Broncos then scored five unanswered goals. . . . F Kaden Elder (3) tied it, shorthanded, at 14:02. . . . F Riley Stotts (2) broke the tie, on a PP, at 5:48 of the third. . . . F Aleksi Heponiemi (4) added insurance at 7:38, and F Max Patterson (1) scored at 12:35. . . . Steenbergen scored an empty-netter at 19:42. . . . The Broncos got three assists from D Artyom Minulin and two from F Conner Chaulk, while Elder and Stotts each had one. . . . Swift Current was 2-9 on the PP; Lethbridge (3-3-0) was 2-7. . . . G Logan Flodell earned the victory with 45 saves. . . . Lethbridge’s Stuart Skinner stopped 28 shots. . . . The game experienced a brief delay at 1:43 of the third period due to an electrical problem in the arena. Both teams were sent to their dressing rooms at the time. . . . Announced attendance: 2,121.


At Prince George, F Kody McDonald scored three goals to help the Cougars to a 7-1 victory over the Calgary Hitmen. . . . This was the second hat trick of McDonald’s WHL career. McDonald, who has six goals, also scored three times on Jan. 12, 2016, in a 6-2 victory over the visiting Seattle Thunderbirds. . . . After a scoreless opening period, the Cougars took a 3-0 lead on second-period goals from McDonald, at 1:08, F Vladislav Mikhalchuk (3), at 2:43, and F Jared Bethune, shorthanded, at 12:15. . . . F Matteo Gennaro (3) scored, on a PP, for Calgary at 14:37. . . . Prince George got that one back when F Josh Maser (3) scored at 19:54. . . . The home side put it away with two goals form McDonald and one from F Aaron Boyd (2) in the third period. . . . Boyd’s goal also was shorthanded. . . . Bethune added two assists to his goal and Boyd had one. . . . Prince George (3-3-2) was 1-5 on the PP; Calgary (1-5-1) was 1-4. . . . G Taylor Gauthier stopped 16 shots to earn his first victory. Gauthier, 16, is from Calgary. He was a first-round pick by the Cougars in the 2016 bantam draft. . . . Calgary starter Nick Schneider surrendered four goals on 18 shots through two periods. Matthew Armitage played the third period and stopped 13 of 16 shots. . . . There was a clash of brothers in this one as veteran F Jake Kryski, 19, of the Hitmen played against his younger brother Max, a 17-year-old freshman. Max recorded one assist, while Jake was blanked. . . . D Peter Kope was in the Cougars’ lineup after being brought in from the AJHL’s Camrose Kodiaks. The Cougars lost D Josh Anderson and D Jonas Harkins to undisclosed injuries in weekend games. . . . Announced attendance: 2,577.


At Portland, Cole Kehler, the reigning CHL goaltender of the week, stopped 43 shots as the Winterhawks beat the Spokane Chiefs, 3-0. . . . These teams met three times in five nights with the Winterhawks sweeping. They won the first two, 6-1 and 7-2. . . . F Kieffer Bellows (3) scored Portland’s first goal, at 6:40 of the first period. . . . F Alex Overhardt (3) scored while shorthanded at 11:10 of the second period. . . . F Brad Ginnell (2) closed out the scoring at 14:32 of the third period. . . . F Skyler McKenzie had two assists. . . . Portland (6-1-0) was 0-2 on the PP; Spokane (4-4-0) was 0-5. . . . Kehler has one shutout this season and three in his career. . . . The Chiefs got 37 saves from G Dawson Weatherill. . . . Spokane lost F Rykr Cole at 7:08 of the first period when he took a boarding major and game misconduct for a hit on Portland F Ryan Hughes. . . . Portland is four games into an eight-game stretch in which it played Spokane three times in five nights and Seattle once, and now will see the Kelowna Rockets four times in eight days. Yes, Portland’s next four games all are against Kelowna. . . . F Joachim Blichfeld (concussion) and D Brendan De Jong (suspended) were among Portland’s scratches. . . . Announced attendance: 2,621.


At Victoria, F Matthew Phillips and F Regan Nagy each scored twice as the Royals skated to an 8-2 victory over the Tri-City Americans. . . . The Royals (7-0-0) and Americans (3-4-0) are scheduled to meet again Wednesday night in Victoria. . . . The Royals led this one 3-0 before the game was seven minutes old. . . . F Ryan Peckford (7) got it started just 10 seconds after the first puck was dropped. . . . Phillips, who has five goals, made it 2-0 at 2:43, and F Jared Legien (3) scored, on a PP, at 6:40. . . . The Americans got a PP goal from F Jordan Topping (4) at 14:06. . . . However, the Royals opened the second period with two goals — from F Dino Kambeitz (2), at 7:36, and Phillips shorthanded, at 9:34 — to take control. . . . D Dylan Coghlan (2) also scored for the Americans. . . . F Tyler Soy (2) and Nagy, with two, finished Victoria’s scoring. Nagy has five goals. . . . The Americans were 2-3 on the PP; the Royals were 2-7. . . . Victoria G Griffen Outhouse stopped 18 of 20 shots in 50:51, before Dean McNabb came on for the final 9:09. He stopped all six shots he faced. . . . Tri-City starter Patrick Dea allowed seven goals on 25 shots over two periods. Beck Warm played the third, stopping 11 of 12 shots. . . . The Americans lost F Maxwell James to a headshot major and game misconduct at 10:51 of the third period. . . . Announced attendance: 4,103.


At Kent, Wash., the Seattle Thunderbirds scored twice in a shootout to beat the Vancouver Giants, 3-2. . . . F Ty Ronning, the first shooter, gave Vancouver a 1-0 lead in the shootout. Seattle tied it when F Noah Philp, its third shooter, found the mark, and won it the next round when F Zack Andrusiak scored. . . . In regulation time, F Sami Moilanen (8) gave Seattle a 1-0 lead at 1:50 of the first period. . . . Vancouver tied it at 3:47 when F Brayden Watts (4) scored. . . . The Thunderbirds went ahead 2-1 as D Austin Strand (4) counted on the PP at 12:50 of the second period. . . . The Giants tied it again, at 19:22, as F Brad Morrison (2) scored. . . . Seattle (4-2-1) was 1-5 on the PP; Vancouver (2-3-1) was 0-4. . . . G Liam Hughes blocked 33 shots for Seattle, 10 more than Vancouver’s Todd Scott. . . . Announced attendance: 4,008.


WEDNESDAY (all times local):

Edmonton at Brandon, 7 p.m.

Everett at Medicine Hat, 7 p.m.

Saskatoon at Regina, 7 p.m.

Calgary at Kamloops, 7 p.m.

Tri-City at Victoria, 7:05 p.m.


If you would like to contact Taking Note with information, have a question or just feel like commenting on something, feel free to send an email to greggdrinnan@gmail.com. I’m also on Twitter (@gdrinnan).


Penguins put hole in Declaration of Principles … Outdoor game tickets on sale … Howden returns to Warriors

Early in September, representatives of 17 hockey organizations — including the NHL, NHLPA and the CHL — made a big to-do of unveiling what they call the Declaration of Principles.

If you dig into the WHL website you will find a news release that includes this:

NHL spokesperson Pat LaFontaine was there when hockey’s Declaration of Principles was unveiled. (Photo: nhl.com)

“This joint statement advocates the game of hockey as a powerful platform for participants to build character, foster positive values and develop important life skills that transcend the game.”

An eight-point platform that begins with “We believe . . .” includes this: “All hockey programs should provide a safe, positive and inclusive environment for players and families regardless of race, colour, religion, national origin, gender, age, disability, sexual orientation and socio-economic status. Simply put, hockey is for everyone.”

If you are able to find the original news release, you will find a whole lot of words. You will read it, your eyes may glaze over, and you may think, “OK, ideally this is fine. But let’s put the words into action.”

And then along came Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017.

To that point, U.S. President Donald Trump had spent his weekend slighting the NBA-champion Golden State Warriors and their unequivocal leader Steph Curry, something that resulted in a tweet from LeBron James that quickly became the most-retweeted and most-liked tweet in Twitter’s brief history.

Trump also took time to inflame NFL players and owners, suggesting to supporters in Huntsville, Ala., on Friday that “son of a bitch” players who don’t stand for the U.S. anthem should be fired by those same owners, a few of whom had donated US$1 million apiece to Trump’s cause.

Players who had acted in this fashion were mostly blacks who weren’t — REPEAT: WEREN’T — protesting the U.S. anthem or the country’s flag. They have been protesting social injustice — primarily inequality and police violence against blacks. By the time Trump got through with his Alabama speech and a tweetfest that followed, he had managed to do the seemingly impossible by uniting NFL players and owners, with many of the latter issuing statements slamming Trump for his comments.

As well, the movement that started with Colin Kaepernick now has been joined by white football players, baseball players, a CFL team and entertainers. Even anthem singers went to their knees, either during or after they performed.

Which brings us to the Stanley Cup-champion Pittsburgh Penguins who, in a stroke of incredibly bad timing, chose to inject themselves into this discussion in the middle of a red-hot NFL Sunday by tweeting a statement that revealed they “have accepted an invitation to attend” the White House and meet with Trump, who has proven on numerous occasions to be a white supremacist and a racist.

The Penguins, obviously blind to the irony, included a photo from their last White House visit. That photo shows 21 men, all of whom appear to be white, with then-President Barack Obama, who isn’t white.

The Penguins two-paragraph statement concluded:

Any agreement or disagreement with a president’s politics, policies or agenda can be expressed in other ways. However, we very much respect the rights of other individuals and groups to express themselves as they see fit.”

The Penguins, given an opportunity to prove that hockey’s Declaration of Principles is for real, chose instead to shoot a giant-sized hole in it. They will visit with this shockingly inept man who has led the world closer to nuclear war than it perhaps has ever been and appears to have been in bed with the Russians, who sure seem to have helped him win an election.

The Penguins, then, had an opportunity to stand up for hockey’s Declaration of Principles, to prove that in their world hockey really “is for everyone.”

Instead, they chose to remain neutral on a day when everyone was picking a side.

If was President John F. Kennedy who, having read Dante’s Inferno, came up with this interpretation from one part: “The hottest places in Hell are reserved for those who in time of moral crisis preserve their neutrality.”


The 2018 World Junior Championship is to be played in Buffalo, with Team Canada and Team USA scheduled to meet in an outdoor game on Dec. 29, 3 p.m. ET. Single tickets to that game went on sale Monday morning, priced from US$45 to US$137. Yes, I think I’ll stay home and watch on TV, too. . . .

F Brett Howden should be in the Moose Jaw Warriors’ lineup when they next play on Friday against the visiting Regina Pats. The Warriors’ captain was returned to the Warriors by the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning on Monday. . . .

The Prince Albert Raiders have released D Lane Kirk, 17, from their roster. He is expected to join the MJHL’s Swan Valley Stampeders, with whom he played last season. The Stampeders play out of Kirk’s hometown of Swan River, Man. . . . A fifth-round pick in the 2015 WHL bantam draft, he had one assist in three games with the Raiders last season. He didn’t play in either of the Raiders’ first two games this season. . . .

The Calgary Hitmen released D Jakob LaPointe, 19, on Monday. From Leduc, Alta., he was in his third season with the Hitmen. He had seven assists in 48 games last season, after recording four assists in 42 games in 2015-16. He was pointless in one game this season. . . .

The Regina Pats have signed D Samuel McGinley, 15, who was a fifth-round selection in the 2017 WHL bantam draft. From Calgary, he played last season with the Calgary Royals of the Alberta Minor Bantam Hockey League, putting up five goals and five assists in 36 games. This season, he is playing with the Edge School Elite 15s in Calgary.

Exhibition season hits high gear … Warriors sign 6-foot-8 d-man … CHL issues doping suspension

FIRE REPORT:

Heavy smoke moved back into Kamloops on Thursday, as if to remind us that this summer of fire isn’t yet over. The smoke had cleared out by Friday morning, but, yes, we got the message.

In fact, officials now are saying that some of the fires could smoulder into the spring of 2018.

On Friday, the B.C. Wildfire Service reported there were 161 fires burning, with 22 of those having started on Thursday.

Since the fire season began on April 1, the BCWS has spent more than $435 million, while fires have burned through 1,080,941 hectares. The Elephant Hill fire, burning since July 7, is at 186,000 hectares.

There isn’t any rain in the forecast, so it will be a hot and dry long weekend.

Things also took a turn near Cranbrook where all scheduled flights in and out of Canadian Rockies International Airport were cancelled on Friday because of a wildfire that cropped up northeast of the city.

Earlier in the day, the provincial government extended the state of emergency through Sept. 15.


F Marek Tvrdoň (Vancouver, Kelowna, 2010-14) has signed a one-year contract with the Edinburgh Capitals (Scotland, UK Elite). Last season, with the Indy Fuel (ECHL), he had seven goals and five assists in 21 games. He also had six goals and 12 assists in 24 games with Nitra (Slovakia, Extraliga). . . .

D Sebastian Owuya (Medicine Hat, 2010-11) has signed a one-year contract with Södertälje (Sweden, Allsvenskan) after a successful tryout. Last season, he had four goals and 23 assists in 39 games with Sundsvall (Sweden, Division 1). . . .

F Ryan Hollweg (Medicine Hat, 1999-2004) has signed a one-year extension with Plzeň (Czech Republic, Extraliga). He didn’t play last year due to complications after knee surgery. According to the club, there were “infections.”. . . . In 2015-16, he had two assists in 24 games.

———

In Everett, the Vancouver Giants opened exhibition play with a 3-1 victory over the Seattle Thunderbirds. . . . The Giants got a goal and an assist from each of Brendan Semchuk and Owen Hardy as they took period leads of 1-0 and 3-0 over the WHL’s defending champions. . . . Seattle was 1-9 on the PP; Vancouver was 1-6. . . . Seattle F Nikita Malukhin didn’t play in the third period after suffering an undisclosed injury. . . . Vancouver G Todd Scott started and stopped all 14 shots he saw through 29:59. Trent Miner came on to stop eight of nine shots. . . . Seattle G Cole Schwebius went the distance, with 30 saves. . . .

In Everett, D Matthew Quigley and D Clay Hanus each had three assists to lead the Portland Winterhawks to a 7-3 victory over the Spokane Chiefs. . . . The Winterhawks got two goals from F Reece Newark. . . . Spokane F Hudson Elynuik drew a kneeing major and game misconduct at 16:08 of the first period for a hit on Hanus. . . . Portland was 4-9 on the PP; Spokane was 1-4. . . . G Shane Farkas stopped 26 shots for Portland, while Spokane’s Dawson Weatherill turned aside 34. . . . D John Ludvig was in Portland’s lineup, which would indicate that he has signed a WHL contract. From Kamloops, he had five goals and 10 assists in 17 games with the junior B Kamloops Storm last season. Ludvig, 17, is the son of former NHLer Jan Ludvig (New Jersey, Buffalo, 1982-89).

In Everett, the Tri-City Americans got three goals from each of F Nolan Yaremko and F Sasha Mutala as they beat the Silvertips, 9-4. . . . The Americans got four assists from F Brett Leason, with F Morgan Geekie adding two goals and an assist. . . . F Patrick Bajkov had two goals and an assist for the Silvertips. . . . Tri-City was 1-4 on the PP; Everett was 0-4. . . . G Beck Warm went the distance for the victory, stopping 35 shots. . . . Everett G Dorrin Luding made 26 saves. . . .


In Regina, F Cameron Hebig’s shorthanded goal at 7:10 of the third period broke a 2-2 tie as the Saskatoon Blades beat the Swift Current  Broncos, 3-2. . . . F Arthur Miller had pulled the Broncos even with a PP goal just 57 seconds earlier. . . . Hebig, who missed all of last season with concussion-related issues, also had an assist. . . . Saskatoon was 1-6 on the PP; Swift Current was 1-8. . . . G Joel Grzybowski stopped 27 shots to earn the victory over Joel Hofer, who made 29 saves. . . .


In Red Deer, F Kody McDonald broke a 2-2 tie at 15:55 of the third period to give the Prince George Cougars a 3-2 victory over the Edmonton Oil Kings. . . . The Cougars got their other two goals from F Vladislav Mikhalchuk, a freshman from Minsk, Belarus. . . . F Jared Bethune had two assists for the winners. . . . D Conner McDonald had a goal and an assist for Edmonton, which was 2-4 on the PP. . . . Prince George was 1-4. . . . The Cougars started G Tavin Grant, who stopped all 12 shots he faced, and finished with Brock Hamm, who was 10-for-12 in 30:38. . . . Edmonton starter Travis Child stopped 16 of 17 shots in 29:22, with reliever Boston Bilous coming on to stop 11 of 13. . . .

In Red Deer, F Kristian Reichel struck for three goals to lead the Rebels to a 5-3 victory over the Calgary Hitmen. . . . Reichel, 19, is from Most, Czech Republic. He is the son of former NHLer Robert Reichel (Calgary, New York Islanders, Phoenix, Toronto, 1990-2004). . . . Red Deer D Alexander Alexeyev had two assists in what was his first game since he suffered a knee injury on Jan. 28. . . . F Brandon Hagel of the Rebels, who left the team’s Wednesday intrasquad game after taking a hit to a knee, was in the lineup and drew two assists. . . . Calgary was 0-2 on the PP; Red Deer was 1-6. . . . Red Deer G Ethan Anders allowed three goals on 18 shots over two periods, with Lasse Petersen coming on to stop nine shots in the third. . . . Calgary G Nick Schneider stopped 27 shots. . . .


In Lethbridge, F Josh Williams scored twice to help the Medicine Hat Tigers to a 4-2 victory over the Hurricanes. . . . F Henry Rybinski helped the winners with three assists. . . . Lethbridge was 1-5 on the PP; Medicine Hat was 1-5. . . . G Garin Bjorklund started for the Tigers, stopping 19 of 20 shots in 31:18. Duncan McGovern finished up, also stopping 19 of 20. . . . G Stuart Skinner went the distance for Lethbridge, making 39 saves. . . .


In Kamloops, F Erik Miller’s two goals led the Blazers to a 5-3 victory over the Victoria Royals. . . . With the Sandman Centre still being used as an evacuee reception centre, the game was played at the McArthur Island Sport and Events Centre on the city’s North Shore. . . . Miller broke a 2-2 with a PP goal at 1:35 of the third period. . . . F Garrett Pilon added the home team’s fourth goal at 3:04. . . . F Jared Legien scored twice for the Royals. . . . Veteran F Quinn Benjafield of the Blazers saw his first action since suffering an undisclosed injury on the first day of training camp. . . . Victoria was 2-5 on the PP; Kamloops was 2-6. . . . G Dylan Ferguson stopped 25 shots to earn the victory. . . . Royals starter Dylan Myskiw allowed two goals on 17 shots in 30:35. Brock Gould finished up, stopping 21 of 24 shots in 29:25.


The NAHL’s Corpus Christi IceRays are working to help their corner of the world recover and rebuild after the destruction caused boy Hurricane Harvey. With that in mind, the IceRays have started the Harvey Relief Virtual Sellout.

From the website:

“The Harvey Relief Virtual Sellout is a donation-based incentive drive centered around donating funds directly helping victims and areas while providing an outlet for the people of the Coastal Bend for a specific upcoming IceRays game. The objective is to create a hub for members of the hockey community, those outside of the Coastal Bend and around the area to join efforts in assisting those in need from Hurricane Harvey.”

You are able to find more information and make a donation right here.


D Oleg Sosunov, who is from Ryazan, Russia, has signed with the WHL’s Moose Jaw Warriors. . . . He was a sixth pick by the Tampa Bay Lightning in the NHL’s 2016 draft and has signed a pro contract. Sosunov stands 6-foot-8 and weighs 235 pounds. In the photo in the tweet, he is standing next to Moose Jaw head coach Tim Hunter, who is 6-foot-2. . . . Sosunov is expected to make his Moose Jaw debut in an exhibition game today (Saturday) against the host Regina Pats.


The Medicine Hat Tigers have signed German F Mick Kohler to a WHL contract. Kohler, from Bonn, was selected in the CHL’s 2017 import draft. . . . Last season, he played for Kolner EC’s U-19 side, putting up 16 goals and 44 assists in 31 games. He also had two goals and two assists in 20 games with Dresdner Eislowen of the DEL2. . . . The Tigers also signed G Kaeden Lane, who will turn 16 on Oct. 10. A list player, he spent last season with the Burnaby Winter Club’s Elite 15 team. He was 8-3-1, 2.30, .922 and was named the division’s top goaltender.


The Regina Pats have signed D Marco Creta, 17, to a WHL contract. Creta has been in the Pats’ training camp as a free-agent invitee. From Oak Bluff, Man., he played last season with the MJHL’s Virden Oil Capitals, putting up two goals and 11 assists in 57 games.


The Edmonton Oil Kings have signed three players — D Logan Dowhaniuk,  D Aidan Lawson and F David Kope. . . . Dowhaniuk, from Camrose, Alta., was a second-round selection in the 2017 bantam draft. Last season, he had 27 goals and 29 assists in 36 games with the bantam AAA Camrose Red Wings. . . . Last season, the 6-foot-4 Lawson, 16, had 13 goals and nine assists in 15 games with the Cache Valley Wild, a Utah high school team. . . . Kope, from Edmonton, had seven goals and 14 assists in 34 games with the midget AAA Edmonton Canadians last season. He was an eighth-round pick in the 2015 WHL bantam draft.


The Prince George Cougars have signed G Isaiah DiLaura, 17, and F Brendan Boyle, 16. . . . The 6-foot-2, 200-pound DiLaura played last season at Lakeville South High School in Minnesota, going 1.89, .914 in 22 games. The Cougars selected him in the eighth round of the 2015 bantam draft. . . . DiLaura is one of four goaltenders with the Cougars, the others being Brock Hamm, 20; Tavin Grant, 19; and Taylor Gauthier, 16. . . . Boyle, from Calgary, now lives in Lake Country, B.C. He had 10 goals and 15 assists in 28 games with the Pursuit of Excellence Elite 15s last season. . . . D Cole Beamin, 16, returned to his home in Saskatoon after suffering a knee injury in training camp. Beamin, who turns 16 on Oct. 11, was a second-round selection by the Cougars in the WHL’s 2016 bantam draft.


F Ethan Price, 20, has joined the USHL’s Omaha Lancers after spending the past four seasons in the WHL. . . . Omaha acquired his rights from the Lincoln Stars for a conditional selection in the USHL’s 2018 draft. . . . Price, who is from Lincoln, had eight goals and 10 assists in 70 games with the Victoria Royals last season. . . . He had four goals and four assists in 67 games with the Portland Winterhawks as a freshman in 2013-14. He split the next season between the Winterhawks and Lincoln, before joining the Royals for 2015-16. He had 11 goals and 15 assists in 70 games in that season.


The CHL has suspended F Antoine Lessard, 18, for eight games for anti-doping violation. According to a news release: “The violation resulted from a urine sample collected during in-competition doping control (in) March. The sample revealed the presence of methylphenidate and metabolites, a stimulant on the list of banned substances.” . . . Lessard had six goals and three assists in 63 games as a freshman with the Victoriaville Tigres last season. Under terms of the suspension, he will miss the first eight games of the 2017-18 regular season. . . . QMJHL commissioner Gilles Courteau, from the same news release: “The player was very co-operative throughout the process. After we gathered his explanations and evaluated his case, we understand that he now has a medical reason to make use of this medication. However, he did not have any diagnosis or prescription in his name when he carried out his anti-doping control. Several medications, including those for attention deficit disorder, contain substances that are on the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) prohibited list. Given this situation, we realize the importance of continuing to educate our teams about the risks involved if a player consumes a prohibited substance . . .”


If you like what you see here, you may want to consider donating to the cause. Should you choose to help out, simply click on the DONATE button in the upper right corner of this page and away you go. Thank you!


If you’re looking for information on WHL teams and their training camp rosters, visit Small Thoughts At Large, the blog maintained by Alan Caldwell. . . . You will find it all right here.


If you would like to contact Taking Note with information, have a question or just feel like commenting on something, feel free to send an email to greggdrinnan@gmail.com. I’m also on Twitter (@gdrinnan).


Tuer memorial service Tuesday … Ice coach promises change … Keller back with Blazers


A memorial service for Graham Tuer will be held on Tuesday, 2 p.m., at the Queensbury Convention Centre in Regina. Tuer, a familiar face around Western Canadian arenas for more than 50 years, died in Regina on Tuesday morning. He was 87. . . . If you wonder how much he will be missed, just Google his name or search for it on Twitter. . . . He was a remarkable man who touched a lot of people.


The Kootenay Ice has won 26 regular-season games over the past two seasons, and the franchise has experience a lot of change over the summer, with new owners and a new head coach coming on board.

Earlier this week, head coach James Patrick told reporters that there definitely will be changes on the Ice’s roster.

“We know that there’s going to be some new players on the team,” Patrick said. “We brought in six guys to start with. We’re going to have some young guys pushing at the door.

“We drafted two Europeans who are . . . I’m really impressed with (Slovak defenceman) Martin Bodak . . . there’s going to be new players on the team. That should be a strong message to some returning veterans that there’s not going to be enough spots for the amount of players we have. I hope that alone sends a message to them and increases the competition.”

Patrick went so far as to say that if some of the veterans don’t get that message “they may be missing the boat.”

“All you can focus on is yourself and being prepared and being ready to compete and give it all to earn a spot,” Patrick said. “That’s all I’m asking of them and I hope they have that frame of mind. I think a lot of them do; I don’t know if they all do.”

The Ice has four goaltenders in camp — veterans Mario Petit, 20, and Jakob Walter, 18, and a pair of 16-year-olds in Jesse Makaj and Carter Woodside.

Makaj, a second-round selection in the 2016 WHL bantam draft, played last season with the major midget Vancouver-NW Giants. Woodside, from Asquith, Sask., was a sixth-round pick in 2016. He played last season with the midget AAA Swift Current Legionnaires.

“They will be given a very long look,” Patrick said of the two young goaltenders. “They will make the decision for us.”

There is more on the Ice right here from Summit 107FM.


The NAHL’s Corpus Christi IceRays are back in business.

Head coach Brad Flynn told Taking Note about their having to deal with the arrival of Hurricane Harvey and that was reported here on Wednesday.

Later in the day, the IceRays issued this news release:

“Following the impact and passing of Hurricane Harvey, the Corpus Christi IceRays have resumed operations and normal business hours at the American Bank Center. All players have safely returned to their billet homes, and the team has begun preparations for the 2017-18 season. The first skate of the season will take place on Saturday, and off-ice training begins today and will continue throughout camp.

“The IceRays organization thanks and appreciates the support sent from the hockey community, members of the IceRays family and surrounding communities throughout the events of Hurricane Harvey. The organization now urges those individuals and organizations to support the local Coastal Bend communities greatly impacted by the storm.

“The IceRays organization stands strong with the city of Rockport, Port Aransas, and the towns most affected by the impact of Hurricane Harvey. Starting today, the IceRays players and staff will be going to these areas to help distribute supplies and begin the rebuilding process throughout training camp and during the season. The IceRays Family extends to the outer regions of the Coastal Bend, and family is most important in difficult circumstances. The IceRays organization maintains its community-first approach and strong investment in the citizens and businesses of the area, and that commitment will not waiver in this time of strife.

“We will rebuild. We will overcome. We will rise.

“Texas Forever.”


Mark Romas has been named director of scouting by the Seattle Thunderbirds, the reigning WHL champions. He takes over from Dan McLean, who now is an amateur scout with the NHL’s Pittsburgh Penguins. . . . Romas, a Winnipegger, has been Seattle’s Manitoba scout for six seasons, and has been scouting in the WHL for 24 seasons. He also has worked with the Moose Jaw Warriors (1992-98) and Regina Pats (1998-2010). . . . He will continue as the Thunderbirds’ Manitoba scout while handling the director of scouting’s duties.


Aaron Keller has returned to the Kamloops Blazers, this time as a part-time assistant coach. Keller, 42, has retired after playing professionally for 18 seasons in Japan. A defenceman who is from Kamloops, he played four seasons with the Blazers (1992-96), and was part of two Memorial Cup-championship teams. . . . While in Japan, Keller represented the country at eight world championship tournaments. . . . In Kamloops, Keller will work alongside head coach Don Hay and assistant coach Mike Needham, part-time assistant Chris Murray and goaltending coach Dan De Palma. . . . The Blazers had a vacancy on their coaching staff because Terry Bangen left to join the ECHL’s Worcester Railers as an assistant coach. . . . Keller has moved back to Kamloops and has been on the ice with the Blazers during training camp.


The Kamloops Blazers have signed F Riley Ginnell, whose family has a long history with the WHL. . . . Ginnell, from Calgary, was a seventh-round selection in the WHL’s 2017 bantam draft. . . . Last season, he had 12 goals and 15 assists in 36 games with the bantam AAA Calgary Royals. . . . His brother, Brad, is going into his second season with the Portland Winterhawks. . . . Their father, Erin, is a former WHL player (New Westminster, Calgary Wranglers, Seattle, Regina, Swift Current, 1985-87) who now scouts for the NHL’s Vegas Golden Knights. He has been an NHL scout since 2000. . . . The late Pat Ginnell, Erin’s father, was a legendary WHL coach and general manager, who scouted for the NHL’s St. Louis Blues for 14 years. He also played on the 1956-57 Flin Flon Bombers, who won the Memorial Cup.


The Saskatoon Blades have signed D Majid Kaddoura, who is from Chestermere, Alta. Kaddoura, 16, was added to the Blades’ protected list last season. He played for the Calgary-based Edge School’s Elite 15 team in 2016-17, putting up four goals and 21 assists in 29 games and was named the league’s top defenceman. . . . Meanwhile, D Brandon Armstrong, 18, was among the players released by the Blades on Wednesday. He had been released by the Moose Jaw Warriors before being invited to camp by the Blades. From Maple Ridge, B.C., he was a fifth-round pick by the Warriors in the WHL’s 2014 bantam draft. Last season, he had one goal and one assist in 34 games with the Warriors.


The Regina Pats have signed F Cole Dubinsky, D Ryker Evans and D Parker Gavlas. . . . Dubinsky, from Androssan, Alta., was a fourth-round selection in the WHL’s 2017 bantam draft. Last seasons, he had 14 goals and 16 assists in 22 games with the OHA Edmonton bantam prep team. . . . Evans, from Calgary, was a 10th-round pick in the 2016 bantam draft. He played last season for the minor midget CRAA Blue side, putting up three goals and 23 assists in 36 games. . . . Gavlas, 17, is from Saskatoon and was in the Pats’ training camp as a free agent. Last season, he had six goals and 11 assists in 43 games with the midget AAA Battleford Stars. . . . The Pats also announced their leadership group on Wednesday. F Sam Steel, the WHL’s reigning player of the year, will be the captain. The alternates will be F Matt Bradley, F Jake Leschyshyn and D Josh Mahura. Steel, 19, won the WHL scoring title last season, with 131 points. Bradley, 20, was acquired from the Medicine Hat Tigers over the summer. Leschyshyn, 18, is coming off knee surgery that limited him to 43 games last season. Mahura, 19, was acquired from the Red Deer Rebels in January.


The Seattle Thunderbirds have signed four players — F Graeme Bryks, G Cole Schwebius, D Cade McNelly and F Samuel Huo. . . . Bryks, from Edmonton, was an eighth-round pick in the WHL’s 2016 bantam draft. Last season, with the midget AAA Knight of Columbus Pats, he had 11 goals and 15 assists in 32 games. . . . Schwebius, from Kelowna, was a 10th-round pick in the 2016 bantam draft. He was 1.93, .911 in 17 games with the OHA Elite 15 team last season. . . . McNelly, from Westlock, Alta., was in Seattle’s camp a year ago as a free-agent, and was added to the Thunderbirds’ protected list. Last season, he had three assists in 20 games with the midget AAA Fort Saskatchewan Rangers. . . . Huo, from Richmond, B.C., was in Seattle’s training camp this week as a free-agent invite. Last season, with the Burnaby Winter Club’s Elite 15 side, he had 18 goals and 14 assists in 28 games.


The Swift Current Broncos have signed D Christian Riemer, 17, to a WHL contract. From Regina, Riemer was added to the Broncos’ protected list last season and has been in training camp with them. Last season, with the midget AAA Swift Current Legionnaires, he had nine goals and 11 assists in 40 games. . . . He was in the Broncos’ lineup on Tuesday as they scored a 4-0 exhibition victory over the host Moose Jaw Warriors.


The Everett Silvertips have signed D Alex Moar and G Danton Belluk to WHL contracts. . . . Moar, from Prince Albert, was selected by Everett in the fifth round of the 2016 bantam draft. Last season, with the midget AAA Prince Albert Mintos, he had one goal and 22 assists in 40 games. . . . Belluk, from Lorette, Man., was a 10th-round selection in the 2016 bantam draft. Last season, he was 11-5-2, 2.72, .913 with the midget AAA Eastman Selects. . . . Moar and Belluk remain with the Silvertips and are expected to play in this weekend’s Delta Hotels Preseason Classic in Everett.


The Calgary Hitmen have signed D Layne Toder, 17, who was a fourth-round pick in the WHL’s 2015 bantam draft. From Elkhorn, Man., he had 11 goals and 17 assists in 44 regular-season games with the MJHL-champion Portage Terriers last season. Toder, who was named to the MJHL’s all-rookie team, added a goal and eight assists in 18 playoff games.


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If you’re looking for information on WHL teams and their training camp rosters, visit Small Thoughts At Large, the blog maintained by Alan Caldwell. . . . You will find it all right here.


If you would like to contact Taking Note with information, have a question or just feel like commenting on something, feel free to send an email to greggdrinnan@gmail.com. I’m also on Twitter (@gdrinnan).