Pats add veteran d-man from Ice … Saskatoon, Kootenay move goalies … Warriors add some size, grit

F Rihards Burkarts (Brandon, Portland, 2013-16) has been released by mutual agreement by Zlín (Czech Republic, Extraliga). He had two goals and two assists in 17 games. . . .

F Ian McDonald (Tri-City, 2000-06) has signed a contract for the rest of this season with Selb (Germany, Oberliga) after his release by mutual agreement by Gherdëina Selva Val Gardena (Italy, Alps HL) on Sunday. He had nine goals and 10 assists in 15 games with Gherdëina this season. 

When you are the host team for the next Memorial Cup, tradition dictates that your roster is in a constant state of flux prior to the Jan. 10 trade deadline.

The Regina Pats, the host team for the 2018 Memorial Cup, continued down that road on Monday when they sent a potential five assets to the Kootenay Ice, getting back veteran D Cale Fleury, who is to turn 19 on Sunday, in the exchange.

Going to the Ice: D Jonathan Smart, 18; F Cole Muir, 16; and two or three bantam draft picks — a second-rounder in 2018, a sixth in 2018 and an undisclosed conditional pick in 2019 or 2020. The latter likely is conditional on Fleury playing in the WHL as a 20-year-old.

Originally, the second-round pick belonged to the Medicine Hat Tigers. It moved to Regina in a deal that had G Jordan Hollett move to the Tigers on May 23. In exchange for Hollett, 18, the Pats got F Matt Bradley, 20, the second-round pick and a fifth-rounder in 2019.

The sixth-round pick actually goes back to the Ice after having been sent to Regina for G Kurtis Chapman, who was released by Kootenay on Monday.

Fleury, the Ice’s captain since January, is from Carlyle, Sask. The Ice selected him in the fourth round of the 2013 bantam draft. The Montreal Canadiens picked him in the third round of the NHL’s 2017 draft. His older brother, Haydn, played in the WHL with the Red Deer Rebels and now is a defenceman with the NHL’s Carolina Hurricanes.

Cale is in his fourth WHL season, all of them with Kootenay. In 218 regular-season games, he put up 86 points, including 26 goals. Last season, he had 11 goals and 27 assists in 70 games.

Smart, from Kelowna, was a first-round selection by the Kelowna Rockets in the 2014 bantam draft. He is the son of former WHLer Jason Smart, and his grandfather, Russ, is a long-time WHL scout.

This season, Jonathan has 12 points, including two goals, in 21 games. In 132 regular-season games, he has 47 points, seven of them goals.

The Pats acquired Smart from Kelowna last season, sending D James Hilsendager and F Erik Gardiner to the Rockets.

Muir, from Vista, Man., is in his first WHL season and has one assist in 12 games. The Pats selected him in the second round of the 2016 bantam draft. Last season, he had 16 goals and 16 assists in 40 games with the midget AAA Yellowhead Chiefs in Manitoba.

John Paddock, the Pats’ general manager and head coach, pulled the trigger on the trade with Kootenay after the Pats were swept by the rival Moose Jaw Warriors in a Friday-Sunday doubleheader.

The Warriors won 3-2 in Regina on Friday, then returned home and won 3-1, on Sunday. When the games were done, the Pats were six points behind the Eastern Conference-leading Warriors, who also are atop the WHL’s overall standings.

After Sunday’s game, Greg Harder of the Regina Leader-Post wrote:

“There were rumblings on the weekend that the Pats — and perhaps the Warriors as well — were close to making a significant trade. Paddock wouldn’t tip his hand, but he did say there won’t be a knee-jerk reaction based solely on two lacklustre games.”

Paddock also told Harder:

“That’s the last thing on my mind. With the (trade) deadline (on Jan. 10), different guys have different ideas of when they want to do things. We have different things that we’re working on all the time to tweak some things.”

Obviously, Paddock is wanting to tweak his defence, and you have to wonder if he won’t make another deal down the road to bring in a high-end defenceman. As Jan. 10 nears and the non-contenders start auctioning off assets, there could be an all-star defenceman or two come available. Paddock, you can bet, will be first in line with his shopping cart.

The Moose Jaw Warriors got bigger and stronger up front on Monday when they acquired F Barrett Sheen, 19, from the Kootenay Ice for a fifth-round selection in the 2018 bantam draft.

The 6-foot-4, 220-pound Sheen, from Airdrie, Alta., has two goals, five assists and 51 penalty minutes in 18 games this season. Last season, he totalled eight goals, 10 assists and 159 penalty minutes in 55 games with the Ice. (The WHL credits Sheen with 129 penalty minutes; the league doesn’t include misconducts or game misconducts in its individual penalty totals.)

In 2015-16, Sheen had four goals and eight assists in 46 games with the Lethbridge Hurricanes.

The Saskatoon Blades have made a switch with their goaltenders, dropping Joel Grzybowski, 18, and adding Nolan Maier, 16. . . . Grzbowski, from Hafford, Sask., was an 11th-round selection in the 2014 bantam draft. This season, in five appearances, he was 0-1-0, 4.20, .843. He is expected to join the SJHL’s Battlefords North Stars. . . . Maier, from Yorkton, Sask., was a second-round pick in the 2016 bantam draft. He has been playing with the SJHL’s Yorkton Terriers, where he is 1-5-1, 5.15, .897. . . . The plan now is for Maier to spend the remainder of the season in Saskatoon backing up Ryan Kubic, 19.

The Kootenay Ice dropped G Kurtis Chapman, 19, from its roster on Monday. He is expected to join the AJHL’s Calgary Mustangs. Chapman, who was acquired from the Regina Pats on Sept. 13, was 4-5-0, 3.91, .880 with the Ice this season. . . . The Ice now is carrying two goaltenders — Bailey Brkin, 18, who came over from the Swift Current Broncos, and Duncan McGovern, 17, who was acquired from the Medicine Hat Tigers.

The Everett Silvertips, who it seems once looked at playing a game on the deck of an aircraft carrier, would be interested in playing an outdoor game at Seattle’s Safeco Field. However, Zoran Rajcic, the COO of CSH International, Inc., which owns the Silvertips, has told Jesse Geleynse of the Everett Herald that nothing is in the works at this moment. . . . “Is there an interest level? Absolutely,” Rajcic said. “I wouldn’t say ‘no’ to that. But we haven’t done anything (about it).” . . . Craig Herkimer, the president of KevaWorks, an event-management and promotions company based in California, has expressed an interest in being involved. He told Geleynse, via email: “Nothing has been confirmed, but many people in the sports community are interested in bringing this kind of event to the area.” . . . Geleynse’s piece is right here.

The KHL is on a scheduled break these days, allowing players to leave their teams to take part in various international competitions. Patrick Conway has taken advantage of the situation to write about the KHL’s teams and attendance. It’s interesting stuff and it’s all right here. . . . You are free to read it and then wonder how these teams are able to pay the salaries they do when attendance numbers don’t seem to be awfully healthy.

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!

F Seth Bafaro of the Saskatoon Blades has been suspended for four games after he took a checking-from-behind major and game misconduct during a 6-4 loss to the visiting Swift Current Broncos on Friday. Bafaro has already missed one game, the Blades’ 3-1 loss to the host Brandon Wheat Kings on Saturday.


No Games Scheduled.

TUESDAY (All times local):

Calgary at Brandon, 7 p.m.

Moose Jaw at Swift Current, 7 p.m.

Kootenay at Medicine Hat, 7 p.m.

Edmonton at Kelowna, 7:05 p.m.

Prince Albert vs. Seattle, at Kent, Wash., 7:05 p.m.

Red Deer 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 I’m also on Twitter (@gdrinnan).

A look into the Silvertips … Raiders don’t expect to land Bokk … Ice adds scouting manager

The Everett Silvertips get their 15th WHL season rolling later this week and they do it with a new head coach, Dennis Williams having taken over from Kevin Constantine, whose contract wasn’t renewed. . . . Jesse Geleynse of the Everett Herald takes a look right here at the Silvertips and the organization’s relationship with Constantine, which obviously wasn’t a typical ownership/coach thing. As Geleynse reports, ownership helped Constantine build “a summer getaway, on Center Island,” an “exclusive private community” accessible by boat or plane.

It doesn’t appear likely that the Prince Albert Raiders will have German F Dominik Bokk with them this season. Bokk was the Raiders’ lone selection in the CHL’s 2017 import draft and it was hoped he would replaced Czech F Simon Stransky, their leading scorer last season, on the roster. Stransky, who won’t return for his 20-year-old season, had 22 goals and 26 assists in 57 games last season. He has signed to play professionally with HC Vitkovice in the Czech Republic. . . . General manager Curtis Hunt told Trevor Redden of paNOW that the Raiders haven’t been able to get Bokk’s release. Bokk wrote that Hunt “spoke very candidly, saying it doesn’t look promising.” . . . Czech D Vojtech Budik, who had one goal and 25 assists in 56 games last season, will return for a third season in Prince Albert.

The Kootenay Ice, in the middle of reformatting its scouting department, has hired Taras McEwen as its manager of scouting. McEwen spent last season as an assistant coach with the SJHL’s Notre Dame Hounds and the hockey operations assistant in the hockey office at the Athol Murray College of Notre Dame in Wilcox, Sask. Before joining the Hounds, he was the general manager and head coach of the junior B Fort Knox franchise of the Prairie Junior Hockey League. . . . McEwen is the son of Brad McEwen, who recently left the NHL’s Calgary Flames’ scouting staff to become Hockey Canada’s head scout. . . . The Ice also is showing Zenon Herasymiuk as a regional scout, the only scout listed on their website, other than Garnet Kazuik, their veteran director of scouting.

The BCHL’s Penticton Vees have acquired F Shane Allan, who turns 20 on Dec. 19, from the AJHL’s Okotoks Oilers for future considerations. Allan, from Calgary, was a seventh-round selection by the Kootenay Ice in the WHL’s 2012 bantam draft. He had three goals and three assists in 66 games with the Ice in 2015-16. Injuries limited him to 10 games — and one goal and one assist — with the Oilers last season.. . . The Vees open training camp today (Monday).

The KHL’s regular season opens today (Monday). The MacBeth Report, who knows something about hockey over there, filed some notes pertaining to the Finnish entry, Jokerit. . . .

Each team plays 56 games this season. Jokerit starts with a three-week, eight-game road trip, almost one-third of its road schedule. Wow!

Aug. 23— at Minsk

Aug. 25 — at St. Petersburg

Aug. 27 — at Yaroslavl

Aug. 29 — at Dynamo Moscow

This part of the trip is pretty compact. About 1.30 between all cities flying time. Now the fun begins . . .

Sept. 6 — at Spartak Moscow

Sept. 9 — at Shanghai (6,825 km, 8.32 flying time, five-hour time difference from Moscow)

Sept. 11 — at Khabarovsk (2,256 km, 3.09 flight, two-hour difference from Shanghai)

Sept. 13 — at Vladivostok (618 km, 1.14 flight, no time difference)

Flight home to Helsinki from Vladivostok is 6,748 km, 8.26 flight, seven-hour time difference. It would be take only 45 minutes longer to fly from Vladivostok to Vancouver. Vancouver to Miami is only 4,508 km, 5.48 flight.

Sept. 16 — Home-opener at Helsinki against Dinamo Riga. the first of a five-game home stand though Oct. 3. Hope they find their legs and figure out what time it is in the three days between games.

If you’re wondering, Portland and Brandon are separated by 2,146 km.

Patrick Conway sets the scene for the KHL season right here, at Conway’s Russian Hockey Blog. It could be that the most interesting part of the season will involve the bottom of the standings. That’s because the KHL has said it will contract by three teams after this season and that the bottom three teams will be gone. Now that’s pressure!

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 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 I’m also on Twitter (@gdrinnan).