- The Portland Winterhawks are one win away from advancing to the Western Hockey League final. With a three games to one lead on the Kamloops Blazers, the Hawks can advance to the league final for a third consecutive year with a win in game five. How many teams can brag about that? Unfortunately people don’t remember who advances to the league final, only the team that hoists the Ed Chynoweth Cup over their head.
- It has been interesting to hear the comments coming from the Blazers coaches in their Western Conference final series with Portland. It sounds so familiar to what the Kelowna Rockets were saying in round two. The Blazers need to be more disciplined and their best players need to be their best players. It is a phrase used far too often, but it is so true. If your elite players fail to hit the score sheet your team is in a heap of trouble.
- How has the officiating been in the Western Conference final? The Blazers can’t be happy with a non call/non suspension after forward Brendan Ranford was hit late in the third period in game four by Winterhawks forward Keegan Iverson. Ranford was hurt on the play but there was no call from either of the two referees. I didn’t see the hit, so can’t comment on if it was dirty or not. Regardless, the number of power plays granted to each team has been relatively close, something we failed to see in round two when the Blazers met the Kelowna Rockets.
- The Interior Savings Centre in Kamloops is getting a new score clock in time for next season. The new clock includes new high definition video boards which were desperately needed. The score clock at ISC is nine years old.
- Madison Bowey goes for gold for Canada at the Under 18’s in Russia. It is another great experience for the Kelowna Rockets defenceman to play with the elite in his age group. You have to wonder if that increases his stock heading into the NHL draft. Can’t hurt it, can it?
- The WHL Bantam Draft goes Thursday of next week and the Rockets pick second last. Good position to be in considering it is an indication you had a successful regular season. The last time the Rockets picked this late was in 2004. Director of Player Personnel Lorne Frey picked Saskatoon born defenceman Luke Schenn 20th overall.
- Good for Don Hay. The Vancouver Giants head coach still has it. Maybe some junior fans thought the veteran coach lost it after his team ended up dead last in the WHL this season. Hay has guided the Under 18 team to the gold medal game and has again shown he is one of the best at his craft.
- The Giants will undoubtedly select Edmonton’s Tyler Benson with the first pick in Thursday's bantam draft. Good on them for picking up an exceptional player. Not since Brendan Gallagher and Gilbert Brule have the Giants had a forward that puts the fear into the eyes of the opposition. Benson is going to be fun to watch whether you are cheering for the Giants or against them.
- I sure feel for the Edmonton Oil Kings after losing captain Griffin Reinhart for the remainder of the playoffs after undergoing foot surgery. That is a huge loss for the defending champions and comes at a terrible time. It falls in line with the Rockets loss of captain Colton Sissons in the second to final game of the regular season. It is a huge blow to any line up. The only advantage the Oil Kings have over the Rockets is they are defending league champions and have incredible veteran depth.
Friday, April 26, 2013
Things that make me go hmm....
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- Tyson Time! (Audio)
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