Ferguson wins in return to Kamloops … That’s 30 for Steenbergen … Americans still unbeaten at home

The Kamloops Blazers had G Dylan Ferguson back with them on Friday night when they met the visiting Vancouver Giants.

Ferguson had been with the NHL’s Vegas Golden Knights since being called up under emergency recall rules on Oct. 30.

Ferguson, 19, was a seventh-round selection by the Dallas Stars in the NHL’s 2017 draft, but then was traded to the Golden Knights, along with a 2020 second-round draft pick, in a deal that had veteran D Marc Methot go the other way.

Ferguson attended the Golden Knights’ development, rookie and main camps, then signed a three-year entry-level deal before returning to the Blazers for the start of the WHL season.

He ended up leaving for Vegas on Oct. 30 after the Golden Knights had three goaltenders go down with injury. He returned to Kamloops on Friday afternoon as the Golden Knights took G Malcolm Subban off the injured list.

While with Vegas, Ferguson backed up Maxime Lagace for eight games, with seven of those on the road. Ferguson, who is from Lantzville, B.C., made his NHL debut on Tuesday in the third period of an 8-2 loss to the host Edmonton Oilers. He gave up one goal on two shots in 9:14 of play.

The Golden Knights were 3-4-1 in the eight games in which Ferguson was on their roster.

Last night, Ferguson stopped 23 shots as the Blazers beat the Giants, 6-2. Chances are good that he’ll get the start again tonight, this time against the Lethbridge Hurricanes.


So here’s what happened in regards to the delay-of-game situations that I wrote about here following a game between the visiting Prince George Cougars and the Kamloops Blazers on Wednesday night.

You may recall that Bryan Bourdon, one of the two referees, signalled a delay-of-game minor to Kamloops goaltender Dylan Garand at 8:55 of the third period with his club trailing 4-3.

But there was a meeting of the officiating minds at the penalty box and the call was rescinded.

Then, at 15:16, Nick Panter, the other referee, gave G Tavin Grant of the Cougars a minor for delay of game. This one wasn’t rescinded.

I have it on good authority from a WHL insider that this is what happened:

Panter had given Grant a verbal warning about freezing the puck in a non-pressure situation earlier in the third period. So when Bourdon hit Garand with the delay of game, Panter suggested that because he had given a warning at one end perhaps Garand should be given a warning. That is exactly what was done as the minor was rescinded.

Because Panter had issued a warning to Grant early in the period, the official felt obliged to issue a delay-of-game penalty later when he felt the occasion warranted it.


The Everett Silvertips are down to two goaltenders after releasing Dorrin Luding, 18, on Friday. Luding, who is from Prince George, was a third-round selection by the Saskatoon Blades in the WHL’s 2014 bantam draft. Everett acquired him from the Blades on Dec. 5, giving up a sixth-round pick in the 2016 bantam draft in the exchange. . . . This season, Luding was 3-6-1, 3.64, .891 in 11 appearances with Everett. . . . The move leaves the Silvertips with veteran Carter Hart, 19, and freshman Dustin Wolf, 16, as their goaltenders.


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FRIDAY:

At Moose Jaw, F Brayden Burke had three assists, including the 200th of his WHL career, as the Warriors dumped the Calgary Hitmen, 5-2. . . . Moose Jaw improved to 17-5-0. . . . The Hitmen (6-13-3) have lost five in a row (0-3-2). . . . Burke, who came over from the Lethbridge Hurricanes last season, has 62 goals and 200 assists in 199 regular-season games — three with the Red Deer Rebels, 128 with Lethbridge and 68 with Moose Jaw. . . . F Tate Popple of the Warriors opened the scoring at 7:56 of the first period. That was his first WHL goal and ties him with his father, Lavern, who scored once in 18 games over three seasons (1977-80) with the Wheat Kings. . . . F Luka Burzan (3) made it 2-0 on a PP, at 14:06. . . . The Hitmen pulled even on second-period goals by F Luke Coleman (6), on a PP, at 2:08, and F Mark Kastelic (4), at 4:52. . . . The Warriors took control with two PP goals before the period ended, F Noah Gregor (12) counting at 13:56 and F Tanner Jeannot (13) following up at 15:17. . . . F Jayden Halbgewachs got Moose Jaw’s last goal, his 18th, in the third period. . . . D Chase Hartje had two assists for the winners, with Burzan getting one. . . . The Warriors were 3-5 on the PP; the Hitmen were 1-5. . . . G Adam Evanoff earned the victory with 38 saves, nine more than Calgary’s Nick Schneider. . . . F Daemon Hunt, 15, will remain with the Warriors despite having played five games, which is the limit for a 15-year-old player before his club team’s season has ended. The Warriors are banged up on the back end so are able to keep Hunt under emergency recall. . . . The Warriors had D Dmitri Zaitsev back after a six-game absence, but still are without D Josh Brook, D Matthew Benson, D Jett Wood and F Brett Howden. . . . Brook is back at practice but isn’t yet ready to play. He has missed the entire season after injuring a wrist in the Montreal Canadiens’ camp and later undergoing surgery. . . . F Matteo Gennaro was among Calgary’s scratches. . . . Announced attendance: 3,070.


At Saskatoon, G Logan Thompson stopped 42 shots to lead the Brandon Wheat Kings to a 4-1 victory over the Blades. . . . Brandon (13-6-1) has won four in a row. . . . The Blades now are 8-11-1. . . . The visitors scored the first three goals, all in the second period. . . . F Baron Thompson (5), at 10:03, F Cole Reinhardt (5), on a PP, at 17:44, and F Linden McCorrister (7), at 18:04, staked Brandon to a 3-0 lead. . . . F Cam Hebig (15) counted for the Blades, on a PP, at 7:58 of the third period. . . . F Stelio Mattheos (14) scored for Brandon, on a PP, at 12:55. . . . D Schael Higson had two assists for Brandon. . . . The Wheat Kings were 2-7 on the PP; the Blades were 1-5. . . . G Nolan Maier, who was added to the Blades’ roster this week from the SJHL’s Yorkton Terriers, made his second career WHL start and his first in Saskatoon. He stopped 21 shots. . . . Blades G Ryan Kubic had started each of the team’s previous 14 games. . . . Saskatoon D Seth Bafaro sat out the third game of a four-game WHL suspension. . . . Announced attendance: 6,242.


At Medicine Hat, G Logan Flodell stopped 39 shots and F Tyler Steenbergen reached the 30-goal mark with two snipes as the Swift Current Broncos beat the Tigers, 4-3. . . . The Broncos improved to 14-4-1. . . . The Tigers (13-7-0) had won their previous five games. . . . Steenbergen opened the scoring with No. 29, on a PP, at 13:24 of the first period. . . . Medicine Hat F Max Gerlach (7) tied it at 15:39. . . . Steenbergen became the WHL’s first 30-goal man this season at 19:47. . . . F Conner Chaulk (4) gave the Broncos a 3-1 lead eight seconds later. . . . The Tigers got to within a goal when F Mark Rassell (21) scored at 5:11 of the second period. . . . Broncos F Aleksi Heponiemi (16) got that one back, on a PP, at 2:53 of the third period. . . . The Tigers closed to within a goal, at 4-3, when F Gary Haden (5) scored at 3:36. . . . The Broncos got two assists from each of F Glenn Gawdin, Heponiemi and D Colby Sissons. . . . It was seven-point outing for Swift Current’s hot line. . . . Steenbergen leads the WHL in goals (30) and is tied with Heponiemi for the points lead, each with 51. Gawdin is third, with 42 points. . . . D Joel Craven had two assists for the Tigers, with Haden getting one. . . . The Broncos were 2-4 on the PP; the Tigers were 0-5. . . . Medicine Hat G Michael Bullion stopped 12 shots. . . . F James Hamblin (knee) was back in the Tigers’ lineup. . . . The Broncos were without Manny Viveiros, their director of player personnel and head coach. Where was he? In Kelowna, watching the Rockets and the Lethbridge Hurricanes. That means associate coach Ryan Smith posted his first WHL head-coaching victory. . . . Announced attendance: 3,414.


At Cranbrook, B.C., the Pouliot brothers each scored a goal, but it was Ryan who got bragging rights as his score gave the Kootenay Ice a 4-3 victory over the Red Deer Rebels. . . . The Ice (9-12-1) had lost its previous four games. . . . The Rebels (9-13-1) have lost two in a row. . . . F Reese Johnson (7) put the visitors ahead 1-0 at 9:05 of the first period. . . . D Sam Pouliot, 17,  scored his first WHL goal for the Rebels, at 9:39. . . . The Ice tied it on goals from F Colton Veloso (6), on a PP, at 14:55, and F Brett Davis (7), at 1:10 of the second period. . . . F Kristian Reichel (10) put Red Deer back out front at 6:25. . . . F Keenan Taphorn (2) got the Ice into another tie, at 1:18 of the third. . . . D Ryan Pouliot, 18, broke the tie with his second goal of the season, on a PP, at 16:31. . . . The Ice got three assists from F Peyton Krebs. . . . F Mason McCarty had two assists for the Rebels. . . . Kootenay was 2-6 on the PP; Red Deer was 0-1. . . . G Bailey Brkin earned the victory with 38 stops, seven more than Riley Lamb of the Rebels. . . . Red Deer F Grayson Pawlenchuk wasn’t able to score on a first-period penalty shot with his guys leading, 2-0. . . .D Jonathan Smart made his debut with the Ice. Smart, 18, was acquired Monday from the Regina Pats, in a deal in which Ice captain Cale Fleury went the other way. Smart had missed Tuesday’s 4-1 loss to the Tigers in Medicine Hat. . . . The Ice had F Colton Kroeker back, but F Jeff de Wit remains out with an undisclosed injury. . . . The Rebels completed a seven-game road trip at 1-6-0 while being outscored 27-19. . . . Red Deer will play nine of its next 12 games at home, including tonight against the Ice. . . . Announced attendance: 2,333.


At Prince George, F Brogan O’Brien had two goals as the Cougars skated to a 5-1 victory over the Edmonton Oil Kings. . . . The Cougars (8-9-4) have won two in a row. . . . The Oil Kings (5-14-2) have lost eight straight games. . . . D Dennis Cholowski (6) got the home boys started at 4:35 of the first period, and F Kody McDonald (12) made it 2-0, on a PP, at 15:23. . . . O’Brien, who has six goals, scored his first of the night at 15:55 of the second period and F Vladislav Mikhalchuk (5) made it 4-0 at 17:16. . . . F Trey Fix-Wolansky (10) scored for the visitors, on a PP, 2:58 of the third period. . . . O’Brien added a shorthanded goal at 11:46. . . . McDonald and Cholowski each had an assist. . . . Prince George was 1-5 on the PP; Edmonton was 1-6. . . . G Taylor Gauthier stopped 25 shots for the winners, while Edmonton’s Travis Child blocked 35. . . . The Oil Kings are 0-4-0 on a five-game trip into the B.C. Division that will end with another game in Prince George tonight. . . . Announced attendance: 2,922.


At Kamloops, the Blazers scored five times on the PP en route to a 6-2 victory over the Vancouver Giants. . . . Kamloops (8-13-0) is 3-8-0 at home. . . . The Giants (9-9-4) had points in each of their previous five games (4-0-1). . . . F Brodi Stuart (4) gave the Blazers a 1-0 lead, on a PP, at 1:25 of the first period. . . . Vancouver F Ty Ronning (21) tied it, on a PP, at 6:05 as he ran his scoring streak to nine games. His father, Cliff, owns the WHL record of 18 games, set with the New Westminster Bruins in 1984-85. . . . The Blazers started to take over with a PP goal from F Luc Smith (4) at 14:02. . . . Kamloops F Jermaine Loewen (10) ran his goal streak to six games, on a PP, at 12:51, and F Quinn Benjafield (6) made it 4-1, on a PP, at 14:22. . . . Loewen has 10 goals in 15 games this season. He went into the season with 14 in 170 games. . . . D Ondrej Vala (5) upped the lead to 5-1 at 14:43. . . . Ronning added his 22nd goal at 5:33 of the third period. . . . Kamloops D Joe Gatenby (7) closed it out with another PP goal, at 9:34. . . . Kamloops F Garrett Pilon had three assists, while Benjafield added two assists to his goal. Stuart, Smith, Loewen and Gatenby each had one assist. . . . Kamloops was 5-7 on the PP; Vancouver was 1-4. . . . G Dylan Ferguson started for the Blazers, having returned earlier in the day from the NHL’s Vegas Golden Knights. He finished with 23 saves, three fewer than Vancouver’s Todd Scott. . . . The Giants lost F Owen Hardy at 11:00 of the first period. He left the ice unable to put any weight on his left leg after becoming entangled with Kamloops F Scott Mahovlich near the Giants’ bench. . . . This was the second game in a seven-game homestand for the Blazers. . . . Announced attendance: 3,789.


At Kelowna, the Rockets scored the game’s last three goals to beat the Lethbridge Hurricanes, 7-4. . . . Kelowna (12-6-3) has won four in a row. . . . Lethbridge (7-11-1), which opened a five-game road swing with this one, has lost seven straight (0-6-1). . . . The home side went up 1-0 just 40 seconds into the game when F Liam Kindree scored his third goal. . . . F Leif Mattson (7) made it 2-0, on a PP, at 2:08. . . . The Hurricanes took a 3-2 lead on a goal from F Jake Elmer (3), at 19:05, and two from G Giorgio Estephan, at 5:48 and 9:12 of the second period. . . . F Dillon Dube tied it for Kelowna at 9:56 and F Kyle Topping (9) put the Rockets out front at 14:45. . . . F Jordy Bellerive (9) got the Hurricanes back into a tie, at 3:58 of the third period. . . . The Rockets took the game away in the third as Dube (12) got his second of the game at 8:52, D James Hilsendager (3) counted, on a PP, at 12:28, and F Conner Bruggen-Cate (3) hit the empty net at 17:04. . . . D Cal Foote drew four assists for the Rockets, with D Gordie Ballhorn and Topping each getting two, and Mattson adding one. . . . Estephan added an assist to his two goals. . . . Kelowna was 2-4 on the PP; Lethbridge was 1-5. . . . The Rockets got 30 saves from G James Porter. . . . At the other end, Stuart Skinner stopped 27 shots. . . . F Kole Lind was among the Rockets’ scratches. . . . Announced attendance: 5,128.


At Kennewick, Wash., F Michael Rasmussen scored the game’s first two goals as the Tri-City Americans got past the Prince Albert Raiders, 4-1. . . . The Americans (13-5-2) are 8-1-2 in their past 11 games. They are 7-0-0 at home. . . . The Raiders (9-9-3) have lost two in a row. . . . The Raiders are 2-3-0 on a six-game road trip that wraps up tonight in Spokane. Prince Albert will return home for one game and then it’s on the road for five more outings. . . . Rasmussen, who has nine goals, scored at 5:06 and 8:24 of the second period. . . . D Juuso Valimaki (5), who also had an assist, made it 3-0 at 9:32. . . . F Parker Kelly (12) got the Raiders’ goal, on a PP, at 0:33 of the third period. . . . F Morgan Geekie (7) counted the home side’s final goal, at 2:03. . . . The Raiders were 1-4 on the PP; the Americans were 0-4. . . . G Beck Warm stopped 30 shots for the Americans. . . . G Ian Scott made 32 saves for the Raiders. . . . Announced attendance: 4,049.


At Spokane, G Griffen Outhouse stopped 19 shots to help the Victoria Royals to a 1-0 victory over the Chiefs. . . . The Royals (15-7-1) had lost their previous two games. . . . The Chiefs (10-8-3) had points in each of their previous three games (2-0-1). . . . Outhouse earned his first shutout of the season and the ninth of his career. He now holds the Royals’ career record with one more than Coleman Vollrath put up. The Victoria/Chilliwack franchise record belongs to Lucas Gore (10). . . . The game’s only goal came from D Jared Freadrich (4) at 18:54 of the third period. That is the third game-winner of his three-year career. . . . Spokane was 0-3 on the PP; Victoria was 0-4. . . . G Dawson Weatherill of the Chiefs stopped 23 shots. . . . Announced attendance: 4,771.


At Everett, G Carter Hart stopped 31 shots to lead the Silvertips to a 3-2 victory over the Seattle Thunderbirds. . . . Everett (10-10-2) has points in four straight (3-0-1). . . . Seattle (9-9-2) has lost five in a row (0-4-1). . . . F Nolan Volcan, who has eight goals, scored twice for Seattle, at 9:12 of the first period and 19:49 of the third. . . . In between, the Silvertips struck three times. . . . F Patrick Bajkov (11) scored a shorthanded goal at 13:01 of the second period. Bajkov added an assist to his goal and now has 218 career regular-season points in 292 games, good for second place on Everett’s all-time list. He now is two points ahead of F Josh Winquist. F Zach Hamill, who now plays in Norway, is No. 1, having put up 262 points in 250 games. . . . F Reece Vitelli (2) gave Everett a 2-1 lead at 15:10 of the third period, with F Sean Richards (9), who also had an assist, adding an empty-netter at 19:17. . . . Seattle was 0-2 on the PP; Everett was 0-3. . . . Hart, who would appear to have rounded into form after having missed time with mononucleosis, now is 5-2-2, 1.82, .941. . . . Seattle got 23 saves from G Liam Hughes. . . . Seattle F Tyler Carpendale was tossed with a spearing major in the first period. . . . The Silvertips were without D Montana Onyebuchi, who served a one-game WHL suspension after he took a charging major and game misconduct during a 2-0 victory over the visiting Prince Albert Raiders on Wednesday. . . . Seattle is without F Sami Moilanen, who has an undisclosed injury. . . . These teams will meet again tonight, this time in Kent, Wash. . . . Announced attendance: 5,983.


SATURDAY (all times local):

Calgary at Swift Current, 7 p.m.

Saskatoon at Moose Jaw, 7 p.m.

Kootenay at Red Deer, 7 p.m.

Regina at Portland, 6 p.m.

Edmonton at Prince George, 7 p.m.

Lethbridge at Kamloops, 7 p.m.

Kelowna at Vancouver, 7 p.m.

Prince Albert at Spokane, 7:05 p.m.

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

Everett vs. Seattle, at Kent, Wash., 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).


Royals prepping bid for 2020 Memorial Cup … Broncos’ line tearing it up … Elynuik sparks Chiefs


F Roman Tománek (Calgary, Seattle, 2004-06) has signed a contract for the rest of this season with Mulhouse (France, Ligue Magnus) after being released from a tryout contract with Bayreuth (Germany, DEL2). This season, he had one assist in 13 games with Freiburg (Germany, DEL2).


Now there are two.

The Victoria Royals have confirmed that they are interested in playing host to the 2020 Memorial Cup.

On Thursday, after the Kamloops Blazers announced their intention of making a bid, Cam Hope, the Royals’ president and general manager, told Taking Note that his club “absolutely” was interested.

Hope since has told the Victoria Times Colonist that “we intend to bid for the 2020 Memorial Cup.”

Victoria will be involved in the 2019 IIHF World Junior Championship as a co-host with Vancouver and the Giants.

On Friday, Hope told The Times Colonist’s Cleve Dheensaw: “We see a lot of natural crossover between the two events, for sure. Our ticket sales for the world junior championship have been brisk. Our building will be full.”

Hope added “that will be meaningful” when the WHL selects the host city for the 2020 Memorial Cup, something that is expected to happen in October 2018.

The Royals are expected to have more to say about their bid early in 2018.

“Victoria offers the entire package the hockey world is looking for in a Memorial Cup,” Hope told Dheensaw. “It has a deep and rich hockey history, an international airport, knowledge of hosting major sporting events, and is one of the leading tourist destinations in Canada.”

Dheensaw’s story is right here.


It was written in this space yesterday that Dylan Garand was the first goaltender to play for the Kamloops Blazers in his 15-year-old season since Devon Dubnyk in 2001-02.

It turns out that was in error.

Jon Keen, the Blazers’ radio voice, points out that Garand is the first since James Priestner on Feb. 23, 2007. On that night, Priestner went the distance in Kamloops as the Blazers, who had built up a 4-0 lead, lost 6-5 in OT to the Chilliwack Bruins. (Hey, remember them?)

F Dillon Johnstone forced OT in that one, scoring his seventh goal of the season, on a PP, at 19:30 of the third period. F Josh Aspenlind won the game 46 seconds into OT, scoring his third goal of the game and 20th of the season.

That was Priestner’s only appearance of the season with Kamloops.

Little did we know that Priestner was writing music during his WHL goaltending days. He now is the found and lead singer for The Lunas.

Give their first single — Until I’m Dead — a listen right here.


If you are a follower of the WHL you know that there frequently are scoring changes made following games, often, in fact, the next day. Such was the case after the Swift Current Broncos beat the host Saskatoon Blades, 6-4, on Friday night. . . . The original on-line scoresheet showed F Aleksi Heponiemi and F Tyler Steenbergen of the Broncos each with a goal and two assists. . . . However, there later were changes made. In the end, then, Heponiemi ended up with a goal and four — yes, four — assists, while Steenbergen would up with a goal and three assists. . . . When you went to bed on Friday night, Steenbergen led the WHL scoring race with 41 points, one more than Heponiemi. . . . When you woke up Saturday, they were tied at 42. . . . Now you know how that happened.

On Saturday night, Heponiemi, Steenbergen and Glenn Gawdin, the third member of that line, combined for 11 points in a 6-0 victory over the visiting Lethbridge Hurricanes. . . . When you went to bed, Heponiemi and Steenbergen remained tied for the scoring lead, each with 46 points. . . . But who knows whether it’ll be that way when you arise.

BTW, Gawdin is third in the scoring race, with 38 points. At least, he was last night.


According to a Saturday night tweet from Western Elite Hockey Prospects (@WEHPscout), F Trevor Wong, who was projected as an early pick in the WHL’s 2018 bantam draft, “has committed to the University of Denver.” . . . As WEHP put it: “Big blow to the WHL and the draft in general.” . . . Wong, from Vancouver, won’t turn 15 until May 4. He is playing for the bantam varsity team at St. George’s School, and has 61 points, including 26 goals, in 10 games.


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SATURDAY:

At Swift Current, the Broncos’ hot line struck three times in the first period and that set the tone for what turned into a 6-0 victory over the Lethbridge Hurricanes. . . . The Broncos (13-3-1), who have won two in a row, got 36 saves — 20 of them in the third period — from G Logan Flodell, who posted his third shutout this season and the ninth of his career. He has three shutouts in each of three straight seasons. . . . The Hurricanes (7-10-1) have dropped six in a row (0-5-1). . . . F Tyler Steenbergen, F Aleksi Heponiemi and F Glenn Gawdin, who form the WHL’s highest-scoring forward unit, combined for 11 points. Steenbergen had two goals and two assists, Heponiemi had a goal and three assists, and Gawdin scored twice and added an assist. . . . Heponiemi got it all started with his 14th goal, just 12 seconds into the game. . . . Steenbergen, who leads the WHL with 26 goals, made it 2-0, on a PP, at 15:01, and Gawdin upped it to 3-0, on another PP, just 22 seconds later. . . . Gawdin (14) added another PP goal in the second period, with F Kaden Elder (5) and Steenbergen scoring in the third. . . . D Colby Sissons helped out with two assists. . . . Heponiemi has played in 17 games and has at least four points in seven of them. He is on a nine-game goal and point streak, having scored 10 goals and totalled 26 points in that time. He has nine points in his past two games. . . . Steenbergen has six games in which he has had at least four points. . . . Gawdin has at least one point in nine straight games, totalling 22 points over that stretch. . . . The Hurricanes got 18 saves from G Reece Klassen. . . . The Broncos were 3-4 on the PP; the Hurricanes were 0-3. . . . Announced attendance: 2,480.


At Brandon, G Logan Thompson blocked 36 shots to lead the Wheat Kings to a 3-1 victory over the Saskatoon Blades. . . . Brandon (11-6-1) has won two in a row. . . . Saskatoon (7-10-1) has lost two straight. . . . The Wheat Kings got a goal and an assist from F Baron Thompson. He opened the scoring with his third goal, on a PP, at 15:24 of the second period. . . . F Stelio Matheos (11) gave the home boys a 2-0 lead at 13:45 of the third period. . . . D Jake Kustra (1) got the Blades to within a goal at 18:45, only to have F Evan Weinger (2) put it away with an empty-netter at 19:59. . . . Brandon was 1-5 on the PP; Saskatoon was 0-3. . . . G Ryan Kubic stopped 21 shots for the Blades. . . . Sophomore D Garrett Sambrook was back in Brandon’s lineup for the first time since Oct. 15. . . . The Wheat Kings were without F Tanner Kaspick, who served a one-game suspension left over from the Team WHL-Russia game on Tuesday night in Swift Current. He was ejected from that game for a headshot on Russia D Alex Alexeyev. . . . The Blades were without F Seth Bafaro, who drew a TBD suspension for a checking-from-behind major and game misconduct on Friday night against the visiting Swift Current Broncos. He hit F Kaden Elder, who was back in the Broncos’ lineup Saturday night. . . . D Randen Schmidt made his WHL debut for the Blades. Schmidt, 17, plays for the midget AAA Regina Pat Canadians. Les Lazaruk, the radio voice of the Blades, points out that Schmidt is the 996th player — and 878th skater — to suit up for the Blades. . . . Announced attendance: 4,804.


At Cranbrook, B.C., the Spokane Chiefs eased a 2-0 deficit two shorthanded goals on the same penalty and went on to score a 5-4 victory over the Kootenay Ice. . . . The Chiefs (10-7-3) have points in three straight games (2-0-1). . . . The Ice (8-11-1) has lost three in a row. . . . Despite being outshot 22-5 in the first period, the Ice emerged with a 1-0 goal as F Cameron Hausinger scored at 18:58. He made it 2-0 with his fourth goal of the season, at 4:05 of the second period. . . . With F Carter Chorney serving a checking-from-behind minor, the Chiefs tied it on shorthanded goals from F Jaret Anderson-Dolan (8), at 4:51, and F Hudson Elynuik (11), at 5:59. . . . F Zach Fischer (5) gave the visitors their first lead at 11:44. . . . The Ice moved into a tie at 15:42 when D Ryan Pouliot (1) scored at 15:42. . . . Spokane D Nolan Reid, who has nine goals, scored the next two goals — at 0:42 and 11:21 of the third period — as his guys took a 5-3 lead. . . . Ice F Alec Baer (7) cut the deficit to one at 18:19. . . . Elynuik had four assists for a huge five-point night, while Anderson-Dolan andD Ty Smith each had two helpers. . . . Spokane was 1-4 on the PP; Kootenay was 0-4. . . . G Dawson Weatherill earned the victory with 23 stops, 11 fewer than Kootenay’s Kurtis Chapman. . . . The Ice is without veteran forwards Colton Kroeker, Vince Loschiavo and Jeff de Wit, all out with undisclosed injuries. . . . Announced attendance: 2,428.


At Medicine Hat, F Max Gerlach scored his second goal of the game with 6.5 seconds left in OT to give the Tigers a 4-3 victory over the Calgary Hitmen. . . . Medicine Hat (12-6-0), which won 4-2 in Calgary on Friday night, has won three in a row. . . . Calgary (6-11-2) has lost two straight. . . . Gerlach, who now has six goals, hadn’t scored since Sept. 30. He suffered a severe facial injury on Oct. 7 and didn’t play again until Oct. 27. This was his sixth game back in the lineup. . . . The Hitmen took a 1-0 lead when F Jake Kryski (2) scored at 1:19 of the first period. . . . The Tigers went ahead 2-1 as F Jaeger White (2) scored his second goal in two games, at 5:43, and Gerlach counted at 16:42. . . . D Jake Bean (2) pulled Calgary even, on a PP, at 19:19. . . . The Tigers went back out front at 5:04 of the second on a PP goal from F Mark Rassell (17), who also had an assist. . . . Calgary F Jakob Stukel forced OT with his eighth goal just 32 seconds into the third period. . . . Calgary got two assists from each of F Mark Kastelic and F Matteo Gennaro. . . . The Tigers were 1-2 on the PP; the Hitmen were 1-4. . . . Medicine Hat G Michael Bullion stopped 36 shots, four more than Calgary’s Nick Schneider. . . . Veteran F James Hamblin was among the Tigers’ scratches after injuring a knee on Friday night. . . . Announced attendance: 3,970.


At Portland, F Joachim Blichfeld scored twice and added an assist to help the Winterhawks to a 5-2 victory over the Tri-City Americans. . . . The Winterhawks (13-4-0) have won four in a row. . . . The Americans (12-5-2) had points in each of their previous 11 games (9-0-2). . . . The Winterhawks took a 2-0 lead on goals from Blichfeld, at 4:01 of the second period, and F Skyler McKenzie (14), at 12:49. . . . F Maxwell James (2) scored for Tri-City, on a PP, at 14:32, but Portland got that one back 22 seconds into the third period when Blichfeld (5) scored, on a PP. . . . F Morgan Geekie (6) pulled the Americans to within a goal at 9:14. . . . The Winterhawks iced it with two empty-netters, from D Keoni Texeira (5) and F Kieffer Bellows (14). . . . Bellows and F Cody Glass each had two assists for Portland. . . . The Winterhawks got 39 saves from G Cole Kehler, while Patrick Dea stopped 44 shots at the other end. . . . Sophomore F Brad Ginnell returned to Portland’s lineup for the first time since Oct. 20. . . . Announced attendance: 9,479.


At Prince George, G Carter Hart stopped 28 shots to earn his first shutout of the season as the Everett Silvertips beat the Cougars, 4-0. . . . Everett (8-10-2) had lost its previous two games (0-1-1). . . . Prince George (6-9-4) had beaten the Silvertips 4-3 in a shootout on Friday night. . . . Hart, who has played in 155 games, now has 20 career regular-season WHL shutouts. He is tied for third on the WHL career list, with Justin Pogge (Calgary, Prince George, 2003-06, 151 games) and Dustin Slade (Kamloops, Brandon, Regina, Vancouver, 2002-07, 132 games). That is one behind Bryan Bridges (Seattle, Kootenay, 2001-06, 213 games) and Leland Irving (Everett, 2003-08, 195 games). The record (26) belongs to Tyson Sexsmith (Vancouver, 2005-09, 179 games). . . F Matt Fonteyne )10) scored the game’s first goal, at 15:44 of the first period. He drew an assist on the second goal, a PP score, from D Kevin Davis (3), at 0:22 of the second period. Before that goal, Everett’s PP had been 0-21, while the Cougars’ penalty killers were 39-39 since Oct. 13. . . . F Riley Sutter (8), who also had an assist, and F Sean Richards (7) added second-period goals. . . . Everett was 1-2 on the PP; Prince George was 0-2. . . . G Tavin Grant allowed four goals on 31 shots through two periods for the Cougars, with Isaiah DiLaura stopping all five shots he faced in the third period. . . . Announced attendance: 3,389.


At Kelowna, the Rockets scored two PP goals in the game’s first five minutes and went on to a 5-2 victory over the Red Deer Rebels. . . . Kelowna (10-6-3) has won five straight home games. . . . Red Deer (8-11-1) has lost six in a row (0-5-1). . . . F Dillon Dude (8), at 1:54, and F Liam Kindree (2), at 4:56, staked Kelowna to that 2-0 lead. . . . F Jared Dmytriw (6) got the Rebels to within a goal at 6:58, but the Rockets pulled away with three second-period goals. . . . D James Hilsendager (2) scored on a PP, at 8:41, with D Braydyn Chizen (1) scoring at 9:07, and F Kole Lind (11) counting at 6:39. . . . The game’s last goal came from Red Deer D Carson Sass (1), at 6:39 of the third period. . . . F Leif Mattson, who went into the game with goals in six of his previous seven games, had two assists. Kindree, Chizen, Lind and Hilsendager had one assist each. . . . Kelowna was 3-6 on the PP; Red Deer was 0-5. . . . G James Porter stopped 27 shots for the Rockets. . . . The Rockets scratched G Brodan Salmond and Larry Fisher of the Kelowna Daily Courier reports that the sophomore will be out up to six weeks with a knee injury. They had Ethan Hunt backing up for the second time in two nights. Hunt, 18, is playing with the junior B Kelowna Chiefs of the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League. . . . Red Deer starter Ethan Anders was beaten three times on 13 shots in 28:41. Riley Lamb, who suffered a broken thumb in training camp, made his first appearance of the regular season, stopping 17 of 19 shots in 31:19. . . . Announced attendance: 5,008.


At Langley, B.C., F Ty Ronning scored two goals and added an assist to lead the Vancouver Giants to a 4-1 victory over the Victoria Royals. . . . The Giants (7-8-4) have points in three straight (2-0-1). . . . The Royals (14-5-1) had won their previous two games. . . . This was the fifth of 10 meetings between these teams this season, with the Royals having won each of the first four. . . . Ronning, who has 18 goals, opened the scoring at 13:03 of the first period. . . . F Igor Martynov (6) tied it at 15:08. . . . F James Malm (5) broke the tie at 8:13 of the second period. . . . The Giants put it away with third-period goals from F Brad Morrison, on a PP, at 4:36, and Ronning, into an empty net, at 19:50. . . . D Dylan Plouffe had three assists for Vancouver, with Morrison adding one. . . . Vancouver was 1-5 on the PP; Victoria was 0-4. . . . The Giants got 37 saves from G David Tendeck. . . . G Griffen Outhouse stopped 23 shots for the Royals. . . . Announced attendance: 3,474.


At Kent, Wash., F Garrett Pilon drew three assists as the Kamloops Blazers scored a 4-2 victory over the Seattle Thunderbirds. . . . The Blazers (7-12-0) have won two in a row and are 7-3-0 since starting 0-9-0. The victory allowed the Blazers to move out of the 22-team league’s basement for the first time this season. They now are tied with the Calgary Hitmen, two points ahead of the idle Edmonton Oil Kings. . . . The Thunderbirds (9-7-2) have lost three in a row (0-2-1). . . . The Blazers scored twice in the game’s first five minutes, with F Nick Chyzowski (5) scoring on a PP at 1:30 and D Ondrej Vala (4) counting at 4:58. . . . The Thunderbirds tied it on second-period goals from F Blake Bargar (4), at 3:42, and F Nolan Volcan (6), on a PP, at 5:19. . . . Kamloops F Quinn Benjafield (4) broke the tie at 15:31 of the second period. . . . F Jermaine Loewen (8) ran his goal streak to four games with an empty-netter at 19:31. . . . Vala also had an assist. . . . Kamloops was 1-3 on the PP; Seattle was 1-4. . . . G Max Palaga stopped 24 shots to get the victory over Liam Hughes, who made 28 saves. . . . Seattle F Sami Moilanen left early in the first period with an undisclosed injury. He leads the Thunderbirds with 11 goals. . . . Announced attendance: 5,052.


SUNDAY (all times local):

Regina at Moose Jaw, 4 p.m.

Edmonton vs. Vancouver, at Langley, B.C., 4 p.m.

Prince Albert at Portland, 5 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).


Flodell, Broncos blank Tigers … Rebels kings of OT … Blades are streaking … Blazers finally win at home


As you may have read here a few days ago, the Victoria Royals have partnered with The Gord Downie and Chanie Wenjack Fund. As the Royals noted in a news release: “The Downie Wenjack Fund was established as part of Gord Downie’s legacy to bring awareness of the true history of Indigenous People and to generate discussion to forge new relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadians.” . . . If you are interested, there is more on this story right here, from CTV News Vancouver Island. . . . Here’s hoping a whole bunch of other WHL teams follow the Royals into this relationship.


The WHL suspended D Darian Skeoch of the Vancouver Giants on Saturday for something he did in Friday’s 2-1 loss to the visiting Prince George Cougars.

Skeoch was suspended under supplemental discipline. The length of the suspension has yet to be determined, but he didn’t play against the host Victoria Royals last night and chances are he won’t play in today’s rematch.

Here’s something that Steve Ewen of Postmedia wrote after Saturday’s game about what may or may not have been the hit in question:

“Vancouver defenceman Darian Skeoch laid a massive, open-ice hit on Prince George winger Jackson Leppard at the 3:40-mark of the third period. Leppard finished the shift and went to the bench, but left the game and went to the dressing room about four minutes later.

No word yet on Leppard’s status immediately moving forward.

There was no penalty. It was a clean hit. There was no fight afterwards, either, which was kind of refreshing frankly. Skeptics, of course, will say that Prince George didn’t have anyone who wanted to tangle with Skeoch, who is reputed to be one of the tougher customers in the WHL.”

Leppard was scratched from Prince George’s game against the Rockets in Kelowna last night.

Meanwhile, F Tristin Langan of the Moose Jaw Warriors has been suspended for one game after taking a boarding major and game misconduct in Medicine Hat on Friday night.


The Regina Pats released F Riley Krane from their roster a few days ago and he now has returned to the major midget Cariboo Cougars, who play out of Prince George. Krane, 17, is from Dawson Creek, B.C. He was an eighth-round selection by Regina in the WHL’s 2015 bantam draft. . . . He had one goal in five games with Regina last season, but didn’t get into a game this season due to an undisclosed injury.


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SATURDAY:

At Calgary, D Austin Strand scored with 41.9 seconds left in the third period to give the Seattle Thunderbirds a 4-3 victory over the Hitmen. . . . Strand, who is from Calgary, has seven goals this season, the first six of which came via the PP. . . . The Thunderbirds improved to 6-5-1. . . . The Hitmen (4-10-1) have lost three straight. . . . Seattle scored three times in the second period to take a 3-0 lead, then watched as Calgary tied it with three third-period goals. . . . F Blake Barger (2), at 6:25, D Reece Harsch (3), on a PP at 13:03, and F Donovan Neuls (2), on another PP at 18:33, scored for the Thunderbirds. . . . The Hitmen tied it on goals from D Jake Bean (1), at 7:13 of the third period, D Vladislav Yeryomenko (3), at 13:08, and F Mark Kastelic (3), on a PP, at 14:14. . . . Strand also had an assist for Seattle. . . . Bean and Yeryomenko each added an assist for Calgary. . . . Seattle was 2-4 on the PP; Calgary was 1-6. . . . G Liam Hughes recorded the victory with 25 saves, two fewer than Calgary’s Matthew Armitage. . . . The Hitmen were without F Andrew Fyten, who was suspended for one game after taking a checking-from-behind major and game misconduct in Lethbridge on Friday night. . . . D Jarret Tyszka and D Aaron Hyman returned to Seattle’s lineup after a one-game absence. Each picked up one assist. . . . Announced attendance: 5,705.


At Red Deer, F Lane Zablocki scored at 1:42 of OT to give the Rebels a 4-3 victory over the Regina Pats. . . . The Rebels (8-6-0) have won two in a row, both in extra time. . . . The Pats (8-6-2) have lost two straight (0-1-1). . . . D Hunter Donohoe gave the Rebels a 1-0 lead with his first WHL goal at 3:23 of the first period. . . . F Jack Flaman stretched that lead to 2-0 with a shorthanded goal at 16:53. That was Flaman’s fifth goal of the the season, but his first with Red Deer. He was acquired from the Lethbridge Hurricanes on Thursday. . . . The Pats scored the game’s next three goals. . . . D Dawson Davidson (3), who also had an assist, got the visitors started at 17:31 of the first period. . . . D Josh Mahura (5) tied the score, on a PP, at 5:03 of the second period, and F Robbie Holmes (3) gave the Pats a 3-2 lead at  9:11. . . . Red Deer tied it when F Grayson Pawlenchuk (8) scored, on a PP, at 2:52 of the third period. . . . Zablocki won it with his sixth goal of the season. Red Deer acquired Zablocki from Regina in a trade last season. . . . Red Deer was 1-2 on the PP; Regina was 1-6. . . . The Rebels got 28 stops from G Ethan Anders. . . . Regina G Tyler Brown stopped 16 shots. . . . F Brandon Hagel (ill) was among Red Deer’s scratches. . . . Announced attendance: 4,051.


At Swift Current, G Logan Flodell stopped 38 shots and the Broncos’ hot line picked up another seven points, including three goals, in a 4-0 victory over the Medicine Hat Tigers. . . . The Broncos (10-2-1) had lost their previous two games (0-1-1). . . . The Tigers (8-6-0) have lost two in a row. . . . F Glenn Gawdin, one-third of the hot line, scored twice and added two assists. He got the game’s first goal, while shorthanded, at 5:44, then scored the last goal, again while shorthanded, at 19:40 of the second period. He’s got 11 goals. . . . D Artyom Minulin (3) and F Aleksi Heponiemi (10) had the other goals. . . . Heponiemi, who also had an assist, and F Tyler Steenbergen, who had one assist, are Gawdin’s linemates. . . . Steenbergen ran his point steak to 13 games. He leads the WHL in goals (21) and points (35). . . . D Colby Sissons had two assists. . . . The Tigers were 0-6 on the PP; the Broncos’ PP unit wasn’t given even one opportunity. . . . Flodell posted his second shutout this season and the eighth of his WHL career. . . . The Tigers got 33 saves from G Jordan Hollett. . . . Announced attendance: 2,380.


At Saskatoon, F Cam Hebig scored two goals to lead the Blades to a 4-1 victory over the Brandon Wheat Kings. . . . The Blades (5-7-1) have won two in a row for the first time this season. . . . The Wheat Kings (9-5-1) have lost two straight. . . . The Blades scored the first four goals, striking twice in each of the first two periods. . . . Hebig got it started, on a PP, at 15:07 of the first period. . . . F Tyler Lees (2) scored his second goal in two games at 17:13. . . . F Chase Wouters (4) upped the lead to 3-0 at 10:13 of the second period and Hebig added his 12th at 18:47. . . . F Tanner Kaspick (6) had Brandon’s goal, on a PP, at 19:14 of the third period. . . . F Bradly Goethals helped the Blades with two assists. . . . Saskatoon was 1-2 on the PP; Brandon was 1-5. . . . The Blades got 32 stops from G Ryan Kubic. . . . Brandon G Logan Thompson made 19 saves. . . . Announced attendance: 3,058.


At Kamloops, D Joe Gatenby scored 40 seconds into OT to give the Blazers a 3-2 victory over the Tri-City Americans. . . . Kamloops (4-11-0) won for the first time in seven tries at home this season. . . . Tri-City (9-4-2) has points in eight straight games (6-0-2). . . . The visitors took a 1-0 lead when F Riley Sawchuk (2) scored at 3:19 of the first period. . . . The Blazers moved out front 2-1 on goals from F Keltie Jeri-Leon (1), at 5:38 of the first period, and F Quinn Benjafield (2), on a 5-on-3 PP, at 5:58 of the third period. . . . Jeri-Leon was acquired from the Americans on Oct. 8. He went into the game with one assist in eight games. . . . F Nolan Yaremko pulled the Americans into a 2-2 tie with his fourth goal, at 13:16. . . . Gatenby, who also had an assist, won it with his fifth goal this season. . . . F Garrett Pilon had two assists for Kamloops. . . . The Blazers held the puck for all 40 seconds of OT, winning it when Pilon directed the puck to the Tri-City net from the right wing and having it bounce off a player or two, one of them being Gatenby, and trickling into the net. . . . The Blazers were 1-4 on the PP; the Americans were 0-2. . . . G Dylan Ferguson earned the victory with 22 saves, six fewer than Tri-City’s Patrick Dea. . . . With Tri-City G Beck Warm sidelined with an undisclosed injury, Xavier Cannon, 17, backed up Dea. Cannon, who is from Kamloops, was a ninth-round selection by the Americans in the 2016 bantam draft. Cannon now plays for the major midget Kootenay Ice. Craig West, the veteran radio voice of the Americans, picked up Cannon in Trail, B.C., and got him to Kelowna where he backed up on Friday night. After the game in Kamloops, West drove Cannon to Kelowna where the Ice is scheduled to play against the Okanagan Rockets this morning at 10. . . . F Michael Rasmussen was among Tri-City’s scratches for a second straight night. It’s believed that Rasmussen was injured in an 8-4 victory over the visiting Moose Jaw Warriors on Wednesday night. . . . Announced attendance: 3,319.


At Victoria, F Matthew Phillips scored the only goal of a three-round shootout as the Royals got past the Vancouver Giangts, 6-5. . . . The Royals improved to 11-4-1 and moved back atop the overall standings, one point ahead of the idle Moose Jaw Warriors. . . . The Giants (5-6-3) have lost two in a row (0-1-1). . . . The Giants forced OT by overcoming a 5-2 deficit in the last 6:10 of the third period. . . . F Owen Hardy (5) made it 5-3 at 13:50, with F Tyler Popowich (2) getting his mates to within one at 15:56. F Cliff Running (11) tied it, on a PP, at 19:01. . . . D Matt Barberis (1) had given the Giants a 1-0 lead at 12:36 of the first period. . . . The Royals scored the next three goals. . . . F Ryan Peckford (8) counted at 12:45 of the first period. F Eric Florchuk (4), at 8:30 of the second period, and F Matthew Phillips (13), on a PP, at 11:45, stretched it to 3-0. . . . Vancouver F James Malm (4) got his club’s second goal, at 14:42. . . . The Royals opened the third period with two more goals, from F Regan Nagy (15), at 7:48, and F Jared Legien (7), at 8:04. . . . D Scott Walford had two assists for the Royals. . . . The Giants got two assists from D Dylan Plouffe, with Hardy and Barbers adding one each. . . . Phillips picked up the 100th assist and 200th point of his career on Peckford’s goal. With a goal and an assist, Phillips ran his point streak to 16 games. He has 32 points over that stretch. . . . Vancouver was 1-6 on the PP; Victoria was 1-9. . . . The Royals got 43 saves from G Griffen Outhouse. . . . At the other end, David Tendeck stopped 37 shots. . . . This was the Royals’ first home game after a seven-game road trip. . . . F Tyler Benson was among Vancouver’s scratches. He played his first game since Jan. 2 on Friday against the visiting Prince George Cougars. Benson had off-season sports hernia surgery and the Giants chose not to play him in back-to-back games. He is expected to be in the lineup in Victoria this afternoon. . . . Announced attendance: 4,491.


At Kelowna, the Rockets broke a 1-1 tie with a pair of second-period goals and went on to beat the Prince George Cougars, 4-2. . . . Kelowna (7-5-2) now has won three straight. . . . Prince George (5-6-4) had points in each of its previous four games (2-0-2). . . . F Leif Mattson (3) gave the home side a 1-0 lead at 12:13 of the first period. That was his third goal in four games. . . . F Vladislav Mikhalchuk (4) tied the score at 19:25. . . . Rockets F Kyle Topping (7) broke the tie at 9:04 of the second period and D Cal Foote (4) made it 3-1 at 18:58. . . . The Cougars got to within a goal as F Josh Maser (5) scored at 3:19 of the third. . . . The Rockets iced it when F Carsen Twarynski (9) got the empty-netter at 18:32. . . . F Brogan O’Brien had two assists for Prince George. . . . The Cougars were 1-3 on the PP; the Rockerts were 0-5. . . . G James Porter stopped 27 shots for the Rockets, one more than Prince George’s Taylor Gauthier. . . . Announced attendance: 4,708.


SUNDAY (all times local):

Regina at Edmonton, 4 p.m.

Red Deer vs. Kootenay, at Cranbrook, B.C., 4 p.m.

Vancouver at Victoria, 3:05 p.m.

Seattle at Lethbridge, 6 p.m.

Everett at Portland, 5 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).


Import returns to Americans … Ex-Pats co-owner dies at 78 … Broncos still perfect … Blazers get victory


F Tyler Redenbach (Prince George, Swift Current, Lethbridge, 2001-05) has signed a one-year contract with Liberec (Czech Republic, Extraliga). Redenbach was released by mutual agreement by Tappara Tampere (Finland, Liiga) earlier on Friday. He had one goal in 10 games. . . . Liberec needed help at centre after what the club says is a “long-term injury” to F Mário Bližňák (Vancouver, 2005-08).


The Tri-City Americans have three imports on their roster again as F Vladislav Lukin, 20, has returned from a brief stint in the pro game.

Lukin, from Ufa, Russia, was in the Americans’ training camp, but left to join the AHL’s San Antonio Rampage. On Oct. 2, the Rampage sent him to the ECHL’s Colorado Eagles. They released him on Tuesday.

Lukin has played three seasons with the Americans. Last season, he had 26 goals and 32 assists in 63 games. In 183 career regular-season games, he has 54 goals and 64 assists.

Lukin’s return presents the Americans with some roster challenges.

As a 20-year-old and an import, he is a two-spotter.

He joins F Jordan Topping, F Maxwell James and G Patrick Dea in giving the Americans four 20-year-olds, one over the maximum allowed.

The Americans also have two other imports — veteran Finnish D Juuso Valimaki and freshman Russian D Roman Kalinichenko — so, if they keep Lukin, one of those two will have to go.

Interestingly, the Americans had another import on their roster — freshman Belarusian D Sergei Sapego — but placed him on waivers earlier in the week. He was claimed by the Prince Albert Raiders.


Ted Knight, a former co-owner of the Regina Pats, died from cancer on Friday morning. He was 78. . . . Knight, along with Huddy Bell, Bill Hicke, Jack Nicolle and Morley Gusway, purchased the Pats in 1986. They later sold the franchise in 1995, the WHL ultimately purchasing it and then selling it to Diane and Russ Parker of Calgary. . . . Knight also was the long-time president of the Regina-based Knight Automotive Group. . . . A funeral service is scheduled for Tuesday, 2 p.m., at the Centre of the Arts in Regina. . . . A complete obituary is right here.


The Kelowna Rockets have added F Kyle Crosbie, 16, to their roster, at least for the weekend. Crosbie, from Didsbury, Alta., was an eighth-round selection in the WHL’s 2016 bantam draft. . . . This season, he put up a goal and four assists with the EDGE School’s prep team in Calgary. Last season, he had 12 goals and 18 assists in 28 games with EDGE’s Elite 15 side.


The Edmonton Oil Kings have signed F Tyler Horstmann and F Jalen Luypen to WHL contracts. . . . Horstmann, from Richmond, B.C., was a fourth-round pick in the 2017 WHL bantam draft. This season, he has four assists in six games with the Greater Vancouver Canadians of the B.C. Major Midget Hockey League. Last season, he had 16 goals and 12 assists in 30 games with the Delta Hockey Academy’s bantam prep team. . . . The Oil Kings selected Luypen, from Kelowna, in the ninth round of the 2017 bantam draft. He has three goals and three assists with the Okanagan Hockey Academy prep team in Penticton, B.C. Last season, with the OHA’s bantam prep team, he had 21 goals and 17 assists in 30 games.


Curling Canada announced Friday that the 2019 Tim Hortons Brier will be held in Brandon, running from March 2-10. That means the Wheat Kings will spend most of the 2018-19 regular-season’s final four weeks on the road.


F Austin Wong, 17, has committed to attend Harvard University and play for the Crimson. Wong, the younger brother of former Lethbridge Hurricanes star Tyler Wong, was an 11th-round pick by the Kootenay Ice in the 2015 WHL bantam draft. . . . The Ice dealt his rights to the Hurricanes on Aug. 22, getting back D Tyler Strath, 17, and a conditional fifth-round pick in the 2019 bantam draft. . . . Austin Wong was in training camp with the Hurricanes. . . . Strath and Wong are teammates with the AJHL’s Okotoks Oilers. . . . Wong, who is from Cochrane, Alta., has four goals and four assists in eight games. Strath has two assists in four games.


F Nigel Dawes is burning through the early days of the KHL regular season, running at a goal-a-game pace. Dawes, 32, has scored 18 times the season’s first 18 games. But Dawes, who is from Winnipeg and played four seasons (2001-05) with the WHL’s Kootenay Ice, won’t be playing for Canada at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games. He is in his seventh season with Astana Barys and has been a citizen  of Kazakhstan for two years and doesn’t have any regrets. . . . Tim Wharnsby of cbc.ca has more right here.


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I guess it says something about the days in which we live that The Associated Press now runs a regular feature that it calls NOT REAL NEWS. . . . Makes you wonder what’s next.


FRIDAY:

In Swift Current, G Logan Flodell earned the shutout and, yes, F Tyler Steenbergen scored the goal as the Broncos beat the Vancouver Giants, 1-0. . . . The Broncos ran their record to 8-0-0; they are the only one of the WHL’s 22 teams not have been beaten in regulation time. . . . Flodell stopped 37 shots in posting his first shutout this season and the seventh of his career. He stopped 17 shots in the first period and 13 in the third. . . . Steenbergen scored his WHL-leading 16th goal at 11:54 of the second period. He has goals in seven straight games, having only not scored in the season-opener. . . . Swift Current was 0-3 on the PP; Vancouver (2-4-1) was 0-1. . . . The Giants got 30 saves from G David Tendeck. . . . The Giants opened a six-game East Division swing with this game. They’ll play tonight in Moose Jaw. . . . This was a return to Swift Current for Dean Chynoweth, the Giants’ associate coach. Chynoweth, in his first season with the Giants, spent five seasons (2004-09) with the Broncos as their general manager and head coach. . . . The Broncos are at home to the Edmonton Oil Kings tonight. . . . Announced attendance: 2,263.


At Lethbridge, the Everett Silvertips erased a 3-2 deficit with two third-period goals as they beat the Hurricanes, 4-3. . . . F Bryce Kindopp, with his second goal of the game and the season, pulled Everett into a 3-3 tie at 5:59. . . . F Riley Sutter, with his second goal of the game and sixth of the season, snapped the tie at 16:18. . . . The Hurricanes erased a 2-0 first-period deficit with three second-period PP goals. . . . Kindopp and Sutter had given Everett a 2-0 lead with goals at 0:59 and 18:44 of the first period. . . . The Hurricanes scored the only goals of the second period, with F Jordy Bellerive counting at 3:58, F Dylan Cozens (4) scoring at 15:02 and Bellerive (3) providing the 3-2 lead at 18:29. . . . The Silvertips got two assists from F Connor Dewar and one from Sutter. . . . F Giorgio Estephan drew two assists for Lethbridge, with Bellerive getting one. . . . Lethbridge was 3-5 on the PP; Everett was 0-5. . . . D Dorrin Luding stopped 29 shots to earn the victory over Stuart Skinner, who made 32 saves. . . . The Silvertips had G Blake Lyda, a 15-year-old from Edmonton backing up. Lyda was a fourth-round pick in the 2017 bantam draft and is playing for the minor midget AAA CAC Canadians in his hometown. . . . Everett scratched three goaltenders — Connor Hart (mononucleosis), Dustin Wolf (undisclosed injury) and Kyle Dumba, who has been released. Dumba, 19, was released earlier in the month by the Kamloops Blazers, then added by the Silvertips after Hart was diagnosed. Dumba started Wednesday’s 4-2 loss in Medicine, but lasted only 2:02 as he surrendered two goals on three shots. . . . The Silvertips (4-6-0) snapped a three-game losing skid with the victory. . . . Everett has scored four times in seven of its 10 games; it has scored once in each of the other three games. . . . The Hurricanes slipped to 3-4-0. . . . The Silvertips wrap up a nine-game road trip tonight in Cranbrook, B.C., against the Kootenay Ice. To this point, the Silvertips are 3-5-0 on the swing. . . . Announced attendance: 3,335.


At Prince Albert, D Josh Mahura scored at 1:55 of OT as the Regina Pats beat the Raiders, 2-1. . . . That was Mahura’s third goal of the season. . . . Freshman F Emil Oksanen gave Regina a 1-0 lead with his eighth goal, at 19:01 of the second period. . . . The Raiders tied it when F Spencer Moe (2) scored at 2:18 of the third period. . . . F Matt Bradley had two assists for Regina, which now is 4-4-1. . . . The Raiders are 3-3-1. . . . The Pats were 0-4 on the PP; the Raiders were 0-3. . . . Regina G Tyler Brown stopped 25 shots, six fewer than Prince Albert’s Curtis Meger, who was making his fifth straight start. Nicholas Sanders, who has been out with an undisclosed injury, returned as the backup. Veteran G Ian Scott still is out with an undisclosed injury. . . . The Raiders have returned G Brett Balas, 16, to the midget AAA Calgary Flames. . . . D Brayden Pachal was among the Raiders’ scratches as he sat out the first of a three-game suspension. . . . Regina D Liam Schioler sat this one out as he served the second of a two-game suspension. . . . The Raiders hit the road right after the game and headed for Brandon where they will play the Wheat Kings tonight and Sunday. Yes, it’s one of those three games-in-fewer-than-48-hour weekends for Prince Albert. . . . Announced attendance: 2,008.


At Medicine Hat, the Tigers struck five times on the PP and beat the Saskatoon Blades, 5-2. . . . Tigers F Mark Rassell (9) broke a 2-2 tie at 17:37 of the second period. . . . D David Quenneville (2) had given the home boys a 1-0 lead at 6:11 of the first period. . . . Saskatoon D Jackson Caller, in his 81st WHL game, tied it with his first career goal, at 15:10. . . . The Tigers went back out front at 9:14 of the second period when F James Hamblin (1) scored. . . . The Blades tied it as F Josh Paterson (1) scored, on a PP, at 11:37. . . . Medicine Hat put it away with third-period goals from F Josh Williams (2), at 1:34, and D Kristians Rubins (1), at 6:20. . . . Quenneville also had three assists, as did D Linus Nassen, while Hamblin and Rassell each had one. . . . Medicine Hat (5-3-0) was 5-7 on the PP; Saskatoon (2-5-0) was 1-3. . . . G Jordan Hollett earned the victory with 26 saves, six fewer than Saskatoon’s Ryan Kubic. . . . The Tigers played again without F Max Gerlach (facial injuries) and F Jaeger White (undisclosed injury). . . . Among Saskatoon’s scratches were F Logan Christensen, who suffered an undisclosed injury in practice earlier in the week, and F Kirby Dach, who didn’t make the trip after taking a hit from behind in Regina on Saturday. Regina D Liam Schioler drew a two-game suspension for the hit. . . . Announced attendance: 3,301.


At Prince George, the Kamloops Blazers halted their season-opening franchise-record nine-game losing streak by beating the Cougars, 4-1. . . . The Cougars (3-4-2) scored the game’s first goal, but the Blazers (1-9-0) got the next four to win it. . . . The home team scored first with F Kody McDonald (8) getting the goal at 8:30 of the first period. . . . The Blazers took control with three PP goals. . . . F Garrett Pilon (4) was given credit for a goal that tied it at 19:17 of the first period, although that may be changed to F Connor Zary for his second goal of the season. . . . Zary gave Kamloops the lead, only its second this season, at 3:49 of the second period. . . . F Brodi Stuart (3) added insurance at 9:23 of the third period. . . . F Jermaine Loewen (1) got the empty-netter at 18:59. . . . Pilon also had two assists, while Zary added one. . . . Kamloops was 3-6 on the PP; Prince George was 0-5. . . . G Dylan Ferguson blocked 24 shots for the Blazers, while the Cougars’ Taylor Gauthier stopped 17. . . . The Blazers had Loewen (head) back in the lineup after a six-game absence. . . . Freshman F Justin Sigrist, who is from Switzerland, was among the Blazers’ scratches. He has a goal and two assists in nine games. . . . The Cougars were without injured defencemen Josh Anderson and Jonas Harkins. . . . Announced attendance: 3,374.


At Kelowna, the Calgary Hitmen got out to a 3-1 lead in the second period and hung on for a 4-3 victory over the Rockets. . . . F Mark Kastelic (2) got Calgary started at 4:36 of the first period, only to have Kelowna F Nolan Foote (2) tie it at 10:33. . . . F Hunter Campbell (2), at 11:14, and F Jakob Stukel (5), at 13:26, provided Calgary with the 3-1 lead. . . . The Rockets twice cut the deficit to one but couldn’t equalize. . . . F Kyle Topping (3) got it to 3-2 at 14:57. . . . The Hitmen got back the two-goal lead when F Cael Zimmerman, a 16-year-old from Englefeld, Sask., scored his first WHL goal at 11:49 of the third period. . . . The Rockets got back to within a goal, again, at 13:39 when F Jack Cowell (4) counted, on a PP. . . . Topping and F Kole Lind each had two assists for Kelowna. . . . Calgary (3-5-1) was 0-5 on the PP; Kelowna (4-2-1) was 1-6. . . . G Nick Schneider stopped 31 shots for the visitors, with Brodan Salmond turning aside 22 for the Rockets. . . . This was the first of four games in five nights for the Rockets, who play tonight (Saturday) and Sunday in Portland. . . . The Hitmen concluded a three-game B.C. Division road trip. They were 2-1-0, having lost 7-1 in Prince George and won 4-2 in Kamloops. . . . Announced attendance: 5,221.


At Spokane, F Jake McGrew scored three times to help the Chiefs to an 8-6 victory over the Victoria Royals. . . . The Royals (7-1-1) suffered their first regulation loss of the season. . . . The Chiefs are 5-4-0. . . . McGrew, an 18-year-old from Orange, Calif., sat out all of last season with a knee injury suffered in training camp. He was selected by the San Jose Sharks in the sixth round of the NHL’s 2017 draft. . . . Last night, McGrew, who now has four goals, was playing in his fourth game. . . . The Chiefs fell behind 1-0 early in the first period, but took control with the next four scores in a six-goal first period. . . . F Regan Nagy (8), on a PP, put the Royals ahead at 4:14. . . . The Chiefs then got goals from McGrew (2), F Riley Woods (5), F Eli Zummack (3) and F Hayden Ostir (2) to take a 4-1 lead. . . . F Eric Florchuk (2) pulled the Royals to within two goals at 13:35. . . . F Jaret Anderson-Dolan (2) stretched Spokane’s lead at 3:02 of the second period, but Victoria D Chaz Reddekopp (2) got that one back at 4:11. . . . McGrew’s second goal upped the home side’s lead to 6-3 at 6:34. . . . F Matthew Phillips (7) scored for the Royals at 19:35. . . . The Chiefs iced it by taking an 8-4 lead on goals from Ostir and McGrew, at 1:43 and 3:13 of the third period. . . . Florchuk, shorthanded, and F Tyler Soy (3) closed out the scoring for Victoria at 8:15 and 15:26. . . . The Chiefs got two assists from each of F Ethan McIndoe, D Ty Smith and Anderson-Dolan, with Zummack getting one. . . . Phillips and Soy each had two assists for the Royals. Nagy had one. . . . Czech D Filip Kral picked up an assist for the Chiefs in his first WHL game. . . . Spokane was 2-6 on the PP; Victoria was 1-4. . . . G Dawson Weatherill turned aside 20 shots for the Chiefs. . . . Victoria starter Griffen Outhouse was beaten seven times on 29 shots in 41:43. Dean McNabb finished up with 10 saves on 11 shots in 16:40. . . . The Chiefs had scored 32 goals in their first eight games. . . . Spokane F Rykr Cole began serving a three-game suspension after taking a boarding major and game misconduct in Portland on Tuesday. He hit Winterhawks F Ryan Hughes, who has since undergone surgery for a broken leg. . . . Announced attendance: 4,013.


SATURDAY (all times local):

Prince Albert at Brandon, 7:30 p.m.

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

Vancouver at Moose Jaw, 7 p.m.

Saskatoon at Red Deer, 7 p.m.

Edmonton at Swift Current, 7 p.m.

Kelowna at Portland, 6 p.m.

Kamloops at Prince George, 7 p.m.

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

Victoria vs. Seattle, at Kent, Wash., 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).


Three teams do goaltender shuffle … Rebels lose Lamb to injury … Warriors reveal some numbers

F Bruno Mráz (Brandon, 2011-12) has signed a one-year contract with Olomouc (Czech Republic, Extraliga). Last season, he had 17 goals and 19 assists in 44 games with Zvolen (Slovakia, Extraliga). . . .

F Peter Mueller (Everett, 2005-07) has signed a one-year contract with Red Bull Salzburg (Austria, Erste Bank Liga). He had 13 goals and 12 assists in 56 games last season with the Providence Bruins (AHL). . . .

F Tomáš Mojžíš (Moose Jaw, Seattle, 2000-03) has been loaned to Pardubice by Liberec (both Czech Republic, Extraliga) for the rest of this season. This season, he had been pointless in five games with Liberec. . . .

F Denis Tolpeko (Seattle, Regina, 2003-06) has been released by Spartak Moscow (Russia, KHL). He had one assist in four games.


With opening night slightly more than 48 hours away, three WHL teams undertook major makeovers in their goaltending departments on Wednesday.

The Saskatoon Blades moved out G Logan Flodell, 20, sending him to the Swift Current Broncos, while at the same time acquiring G Ryan Kubic, 19, from the Vancouver Giants.

The Blades gave Vancouver a second-round selection in the 2019 WHL bantam draft for Kubic, who had been the Giants’ No. 1 goalie for two seasons.

Saskatoon sent Flodell to the Swift Current Broncos for a fifth-round pick in 2019 and a second-rounder in 2020.

The Blades are left with Kubic and Joel Grzybowski, an 18-year-old freshman from Hafford, Sask., as their goaltenders. Kubic, from St. Andrews, Man., played the previous two seasons with the Giants, who selected him in the second round of the 2013 bantam draft.

Kubic got into 50 games as a freshman (17-24-6, 3.31, .898) and 56 last season (15-32-6, 3.67, .895).

Moving Flodell also allowed the Blades to get down to three 20-year-olds — D Evan Fiala, who is the team captain, F Cam Hebig and F Braylon Shmyr.

“It was a very difficult and complicated process to go through for us,” Colin Priestner, the Blades’ general manager, said in a news release. “All four guys are special and in any scenario we were going to lose a star player. We know how good Logan is and what an incredible season he had with us last year, and losing him is difficult. However, we simply felt the combination of Hebig and Shmyr playing together as 20s would give us a first line on par with any other in the league and would insulate our young star players from having to play against top lines and top d-men every night.

“We now have a five-year plan in net moving forward and this fills the gap that would have been created with Logan graduating next year.”

The Giants are poised to open with veteran G David Tendeck, who turns 18 on Nov. 25, and freshman G Todd Scott, a 17-year-old from Albertville, Minn. Tendeck, from North Vancouver, B.C., was 5-14-0, 4.78, .856 in 22 games as a freshman last season.

The Broncos, meanwhile, won’t be through making moves.

Flodell’s acquisition left them with two 20-year-old goaltenders, the other being veteran Taz Burman. The Broncos also have three other 20-year-olds on their roster, in forwards Conner Chaulk, Glenn Gawdin and Arthur Miller.

Flodell, from Regina, was 22-20-4, 2.81, .912 in 48 games with the Blades last season. In 2015-16, he was 22-13-4, 2.68, .904 in 42 appearances with the Seattle Thunderbirds, who selected him in the third round of the 2012 bantam draft.

The Broncos also have G Joel Hofer on their roster. The 6-foot-3 Hofer, 17, is from Winnipeg. He played the previous two seasons at the Pursuit of Excellence in Kelowna.

Interestingly, the Broncos and Blades are scheduled to open the regular season in Saskatoon on Friday.


On the subject of goaltending, the Red Deer Rebels have lost starter Riley Lamb, 19, for at least six weeks with a broken thumb. That means veteran Lasse Petersen, 20, steps into the starting role, with freshman Ethan Anders, who turns 17 on Tuesday, backing him up. . . . Greg Meachem of reddeerrebels.com reports that Lamb was injured during a practice session this week. . . . The Rebels open the season at home to the Edmonton Oil Kings on Saturday night. . . . Red Deer is carrying three 20-year-olds in Petersen, F Mason McCarty and F Grayson Pawlenchuk. . . . Meachem’s story is right here.


The Moose Jaw Warriors reported a loss of $463,566 for the year ending May 31, but that was after putting more than $700,000 back into the multi-purpose Mosaic Place in which they play.

Shareholders were told at Wednesday’s annual meeting that team operations netted $267,631 for the year, including $138,296.13 in playoff revenue. The Warriors lost a first-round series in seven games to the Swift Current Broncos, with four of the games played in Moose Jaw.

The Warriors again honoured a 10-year pledge commitment to Mosaic Place with a payment of $200,000. That means they have paid $1.7 million towards the facility with four years remaining in the pledge.

The Warriors also paid $124,088.75 in rent and $531,197 in upgrades to Mosaic Place, mostly in the areas of sound and lighting.

It all added up to a loss of $463,566, which left the Warriors with a bank balance of $1,081,545.01. There also is $112,106.30 in a legacy fund, and $282,033.78 in their education fund.

It also is more than worth noting that the team’s booster club raised $257,487. Now that’s a booster club!


F Ty Ronning and F Brad Morrison have returned to Vancouver from NHL camps, leaving the Giants with four 20-year-olds on their roster. Ronning had been with the New York Rangers, while Morrison skated with the Calgary Flames. . . . Some observers thought Ronning might get a chance with the Hartford Wolfpack, the Rangers’ AHL affiliate. He had two goals and three assists in 12 games in Hartford late last season. . . . The Giants acquired Morrison from the Prince George Cougars in June. He had 85 goals and 103 assists in 260 games with the Cougars. . . . Vancouver’s roster also includes two other 20s — F Jack Flaman and D Darian Skeoch. It is expected that they will waive Flaman, if they haven’t already. . . . Teams have until Oct. 10 to get down to the maximum three 20s. . . . The Giants open the regular season in Victoria against the Royals on Friday.


The Moose Jaw Warriors released F Jaeger White, 19, from their roster on Wednesday. White, from Medicine Hat, was a fourth-round selection by the Lethbridge Hurricanes in the 2013 WHL bantam draft. He has played with the Hurricanes, Everett Silvertips and Brandon Wheat Kings, recording five goals and 15 assists in 84 games. White has battled shoulder injuries for much of his career. He missed all of last season, playing only two games with the AJHL’s Brooks Bandits. . . . The Warriors also released F Brayden Tracey, who is expected to play a second season with the midget AAA Calgary Northstars. Tracey, 16, was a first-round pick in the WHL’s 2016 bantam draft. Last season, he had eight goals and 11 assists in 28 games with the Northstars.


D Dylan Coghlan of the Tri-City Americans has signed a three-year entry-level contract with the NHL’s Vegas Golden Knights after being in their training camp. Coghlan, a 19-year-old from Duncan, B.C., was in camp as an undrafted free agent. . . . Last season, he had 15 goals and 38 assists in 71 games with the Americans, who selected him in the third round of the 2013 WHL bantam draft. . . . In 196 career regular-season games, he has 21 goals and 61 assists. . . . Coghlan is the third undrafted free agent out of the WHL to get an NHL contract this week. Earlier, F Jordy Bellerive of the Lethbridge Hurricanes signed with the Pittsburgh Penguins and F Parker Kelly of the Prince Albert Raiders signed with the Ottawa Senators.


The Spokane Chiefs have signed F Cordel Larson, 16, who was a ninth-round pick in the 2016 WHL bantam draft. From Weyburn, Sask., the 5-foot-8, 160-pounder Larson had five goals and 13 assists with the midget AAA Notre Dame Hounds of Wilcox, Sask., last season.


G Cody Porter, who has played in 117 regular-season WHL games, has signed with the QMJHL’s Saint John Sea Dogs. Porter, who turns 20 on Saturday, is from North Vancouver, B.C. . . . Last season, he was 14-16-3, 3.46, .888 in 34 games with the Calgary Hitmen. He also has played with the Vancouver Giants. . . . Porter is available to play for the Sea Dogs tonight (Thursday) when they open the regular season against the visiting Halifax Mooseheads.


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Friday games (start of regular season; all times local):

Regina at Brandon, 7:30 p.m.

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

Moose Jaw at Prince Albert, 7 p.m.

Medicine Hat at Lethbridge, 7 p.m.

Swift Current at Saskatoon, 7:05 p.m.

Spokane at Prince George, 7 p.m.

Vancouver at Victoria, 7:05 p.m.

Kamloops at Kelowna 7:05 p.m.

Saturday games (all times local):

Kootenay at Calgary, 7 p.m.

Prince Albert at Moose Jaw, 7 p.m.

Edmonton at Red Deer, 7 p.m.

Brandon at Regina, 7 p.m.

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

Spokane at Prince George, 7 p.m.

Victoria at Vancouver 7 p.m.

Kelowna at Kamloops, 7 p.m.

Portland at Everett, 7:05 p.m.

Tri-City vs. Seattle, at Kent, Wash., 7:05 p.m.

Sunday games (all times local):

Red Deer at Edmonton, 4 p.m.

Tri-City at Everett, 4:05 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).


Trader Matt strikes again … Seattle deals for goaltender … Blades settle on net pair

F Matt MacKay (Moose Jaw, Medicina Hat, Vancouver, Brandon, 2008-11) has signed a one-year contract with the Heilbronner Falken (Germany, DEL2). Last season, he had one goal and four assists in 41 games with the Augsburger Panther (Germany, DEL).



There was a time when Bob Tory, the general manager of the Tri-City Americans, was known in hockey circles as Trader Bob. Tory didn’t earn that moniker because he was afraid to make a trade.

Matt Cockell, the Kootenay Ice’s GM.

It seems, however, that the time has come to pass the moniker along to Matt Cockell, the first-year general manager of the Kootenay Ice.

Cockell and Greg Fettes purchased the Ice from the Chynoweth family, with the WHL’s board of governors approving the sale on April 27.

Cockell, a former WHL goaltender, made his first trade on May 24, acquiring G Mario Petit, 20, from the Everett Silvertips for a conditional sixth-round selection in the 2018 WHL bantam draft.

On Monday, Cockell swung his ninth trade, as he got F Alec Baer, 20, from the Lethbridge Hurricanes for F Jake Elmer, who will turn 19 on Dec. 31, and a fifth-round pick in the 2018 draft.

Here’s a look at all nine of Cockell’s swaps:

May 24 — Acquired G Mario Petit, 20, from Everett for a conditional sixth-round pick in the 2018 bantam draft. (The Ice released Petit on Sunday.)

June 28 — Acquired F Cameron Hausingrer, 18, from the Red Deer Rebels for a fourth-round pick in the 2018 bantam draft.

July 5 — Traded G Declan Hobbs, 19, to the Spokane Chiefs for a seventh-round pick in the 2018 bantam draft.

Aug. 1 — Acquired D Jordan Henderson, 20, from the Medicine Hat Tigers for a conditional sixth-round pick in the 2019 bantam draft.

Sept. 10 — Traded F Max Patterson, who turns 18 on Dec. 27, to the Swift Current Broncos for G Bailey Brkin, 18, and a conditional fifth-round pick in the 2018 bantam draft.

Sept. 11 — Traded F Noah Philp, 19, to the Seattle Thunderbirds for fifth-round selections in the 2018 and 2019 bantam drafts.

Sept. 13 — Acquired G Kurtis Chapman, 19, from the Regina Pats for a conditional sixth-round pick in the 2018 bantam draft.

Sept. 15 — Acquired F Colton Veloso, 20, from the Portland Winterhawks for a conditional fourth-round pick in the 2018 bantam draft.

Sept. 18 — Acquired F Alec Baer, 20, from Lethbridge for F Jake Elmer, who will turn 19 on Dec. 31, and a fifth-round pick in the 2018 bantam draft.

Baer, from St. Louis Park, Minn., becomes the third 20-year-old on the Ice’s roster. He played three-plus seasons with the Vancouver Giants before being dealt to Lethbridge last season. He had 12 goals and nine assists in 30 games with Lethbridge, after putting up three goals and 15 assists in 39 games with Vancouver. In 270 career games, Baer has 56 goals and 70 assists.

Elmer, from Calgary, had seven goals and nine assists in 46 games with the Ice last season. He was a sixth-round pick by the Regina in the 2013 bantam draft, but was pointless in 20 games with the Pats over two seasons.

The Ice released Petit and Henderson on Sunday, leaving them with, at the time, two 20-year-olds in F Colton Kroeker

The Ice also released D Jordan Henderson, 20, who had been acquired from the Medicine Hat Tigers for a conditional sixth-round pick in the 2019 bantam draft. Henderson played with three teams last season, getting into 15 games with Spokane, 20 with the Saskatoon Blades, and 26 with the Tigers. He totalled six goals and 21 assists in this 61 games.

With Petit and Henderson off the roster, the Ice was left with two 20-year-olds — F Colton Kroeker and Veloso. The acquisition of Baer leaves the Ice with the maximum three 20s, barring any future moves.

The Ice also released G Jesse Makaj, 16, from their roster on Sunday, leaving it with Chapman and Brkin as its goaltenders as it prepares to begin regular-season play on on Friday against the visiting Calgary Hitmen.

Chapman, from Airdrie, Alta., finished last season by helping the Portage Terriers to the MJHL championship. He was 2.94 and .905 in 16 regular-season games, then went 2.07 and .931 in 12 playoff games.

Brkin, from Sherwood Park, Alta., was with the AJHL’s Calgary Mustangs last season, going 5.19 and .890.

Of course, all of that could change should one of the 21 other general managers place a call to Trader Matt.

 


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With G Carl Stankowski injured and apparently a few weeks from returning, the Seattle Thunderbirds have acquired G Liam Hughes from the Edmonton Oil Kings.

In return for Hughes, an 18-year-old from Kelowna, the reigning WHL champions surrendered a fourth-round selection in the WHL’s 2019 bantam draft.

Hughes played in seven games with the Oil Kings last season, all before Oct. 29 when his season was ended by an undisclosed injury. In those seven games, Hughes was 1-4-2, 3.26, .895. One season earlier, his season with the major midget Okanagan Rockets was ended in early February by a lower back injury.

The Oil Kings selected Hughes in the seventh round of the 2014 bantam draft.

With Hughes gone, the Oil Kings still have three goaltenders on their roster — veteran Travis Child, 20, who was acquired from the Brandon Wheat Kings over the summer; Josh Dechaine, 19, who is from St. Albert, Alta.; and Boston Bilous, 16, who was a fourth-round pick in the 2016 bantam draft. With Hughes out last season, Dechaine backed up Patrick Dea and was 3-8-0, 4.41, .876 in 17 appearances. Dea, 20, now is with the Tri-City Americans.

In Seattle, Hughes joins Matt Berlin, 19, and Cole Schwebius, 16, as the goaltenders on the roster. Berlin got into 13 games (7-2-2, 2.82, .902) with the Thunderbirds last season after moving over from the Spokane Chiefs. Schwebius is a freshman from Kelowna.

Stankowski, a 17-year-old from Calgary, took the WHL by storm last season after Seattle starter Rylan Toth was injured. In seven regular-season appearances, he was 3-0-1, 2.18, .910. He then stole the show in the playoffs, going 16-2-2, 2.50, .911 in backstopping the Thunderbirds to the WHL championship.

However, Stankowski suffered an undisclosed injury over the summer and the acquisition of Hughes would seem to indicate that the sophomore isn’t anywhere close to a return.


The Tri-City Americans are down to four 20-year-olds and two imports, with Russian F Vladislav Lukin having left for the training camp of the AHL’s San Antonio Rampage. Lukin, who has played three seasons with the Americans, had 26 goals and 32 assists in 63 games last season. In 183 regular-season games, he has 54 goals and 64 assists.

The other 20-year-olds on the roster are G Patrick Dea, F Maxwell James, D Brendan O’Reilly and F Jordan Topping.

Dea is one of two goaltenders left, with the other being sophomore Beck Warm. One would think, then, that one of the other three will be moved before the Oct. 10 deadline for each team to declare a maximum of three 20-year-olds.

The two imports in camp are Russian D Roman Kalinichenko and D Sergei Sapego, who is from Belarus. The Americans also have D Juuso Valimaki, who will turn 19 on Oct. 7, on their roster, but he is in camp with the NHL’s Calgary Flames. Should Valimaki return — and he has to play in the NHL or be sent back to the Americans — Tri-City would have two weeks to move out one import player.


The Saskatoon Blades have their roster down to 26 players, including eight defencemen and 16 forwards, after releasing three players on Monday. Gone from the roster are G Nolan Maier, 16, from Yorkton, Sask.; D Zach Ashton, 16, from Calgary; and F Cole Johnson, 19, who is from Marwayne, Alta. . . . With Maier gone, the Blades are down to two goaltenders — veteran Logan Flodell, 20, and freshman Joel Grzybowski, 18, who was an 11th-round pick in the 2014 bantam draft. . . . Maier was a second-round selection in the 2016 bantam draft. . . . Ashton was selected in the third round of the 2016 bantam draft. . . . Johnson had one assist in 20 games with the Blades last season. He also played 44 games with the Swift Current Broncos over three seasons, scoring five goals and adding six assists. . . . The Blades are carrying four 20-year-olds — Flodell, F Cam Hebig, F Braylon Shmyr and D Evan Fiala, who has been released by the NHL’s Detroit Red Wings and is on his way back to Saskatoon. With Flodell one of two goaltenders and Fiala having been named captain, it would seem that either Hebig or Shmyr will be moved when the Blades get down to the maximum of three 20s.

Meanwhile, the Blades announced plans to salute former captain Bruce Gordon at their home-opener on Friday against the Swift Current Broncos. Gordon has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and will be joined in pregame ceremonies by former teammates and friends from throughout the hockey universe. . . . Darren Steinke, the travelling blogger, was at the Blades’ news conference and writes about it right here.


The Portland Winterhawks and Seattle Thunderbirds will meet 12 teams in the WHL’s 2017-18 regular season. Nine of those games are to be televised by JOEtv, starting with a meeting in Portland on Sept. 30.

According to a news release, Ian Furness of 950 KJR/Q13 Fox News will be the play-by-play voice for most of the games.

Here’s the TV schedule:

Sept. 30, at Portland, 6 p.m.

Oct. 7, at Seattle, 6:05 p.m.

Dec. 30, at Seattle, 6:05 p.m.

Dec. 31, at Portland, 7 p.m.

Jan. 13, at Portland, 6 p.m.

Feb. 10, at Seattle, 6:05 p.m.

Feb. 11, at Portland, 5 p.m.

March 4, at Seattle, 5:05 p.m.

March 17, at Seattle, 6:05 p.m.


He loves the movie A River Runs Through It. He does the two-step and the Calgary Stampede. He runs, hikes, surfs and golfs. Dan Price also is the new head coach of the WHL’s Victoria Royals. . . . Cleve Dheensaw of the Victoria Royals provides an interesting look at Price 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).