Hay reminisces after tying WHL record . . . Shares career mark with Hodge . . . Standard of 742 could fall tonight

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Kamloops head coach Don Hay (third from left) accepts congratulations from forward Carson Denomie at the bench as trainer Colin Robinson (left) and assistant coaches Dan DePalma, Aaron Keller and Mike Needham wait to greet him.

Down below, the arena had emptied as the mostly satisified fans headed out into the Kamloops night.

The cleaning staff was sweeping and picking up bottles, getting ready for another day and another game.

In the press box, Don Hay pulled up a chair, the radio interview finished and most of his responsibilities done for the night. He undid his tie, took a deep breath and offered up a satisfied smile.

Hay’s Kamloops Blazers had just beaten the Portland Winterhawks, 5-2, for what was the 742nd regular-season coaching victory of his WHL career.

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That tied Hay with Ken Hodge as the winningest regular-season coaches in WHL history. Hodge had held the record since retiring as a coach after the 1992-93 season. Hodge spent the first three seasons (1973-76) of his WHL coaching career with the original Edmonton Oil Kings, and the remainder with the Winterhawks, the franchise having moved to the Oregon city after the 1975-76 season.

Hay will have an opportunity to break the record tonight as the Blazers and Winterhawks complete a doubleheader in Kamloops. They will play again Sunday, too, this time in Portland.

Hay, who will be 63 next month, and Hodge, 71, are hockey lifers.

Hodge’s playing career was cut short by an eye injury while with the Moose Jaw Canucks of what was then the Western Canada Hockey League, and he turned to coaching. He may have been the youngest head coach in junior hockey history when, at 21, he took over the QMJHL’s Sorel Eperviers in 1968.

As a result, Hay and Hodge were never opponents as players, but they certainly were as coaches.

Their paths did come within a couple of seasons of crossing at one point. Hodge was the head coach of the International league’s Flint Generals for four seasons (1969-73). Hay played one season with the Generals, 1975-76, by which time Hodge was with the Oil Kings.

On Friday, when Hay looked back, the first memory came from Oct. 9, 1992 . . .

Hay, then 38, had gotten his first victory on opening night, Sept. 26, 1992, when the Blazers beat the host Tacoma Rockets, 7-6 in overtime. “Yeah,” Hay says, “we were losing after two periods and Hnat Domenichelli got a hat trick in the third.”

The Blazers went on to lose 7-3 to the Chiefs in Spokane on Oct. 2, then dropped a 4-3 OT decision in Portland the next night.

But it’s that Oct. 9 game that sticks in Hay’s memory.

It was his first home game as the Blazers’ head coach. A Kamloops native, he spent seven seasons as an assistant coach with the team, before taking a leave of absence from the city’s fire department and signing on as head coach.

This game also was the first in the history of what was then Riverside Coliseum and now is the Sandman Centre.

“The building was full and we raised a banner,” Hay says.

The Blazers had won the WHL championship and the Memorial Cup in 1991-92.

“After the game, I’m in my office, my assistants don’t come in,” Hay continues. “We lost about 8-2. We got taught a lesson by Mr. Hodge.”

Aaron Keller and Chris Murray, both of them now on Hay’s coaching staff, were in the Kamloops lineup that night.

“I asked Aaron, ‘Do you remember that game?’ ” Hay says. “He told me, ‘Oh yeah, we lost 8-2.’ ”

Hay chuckles again. He loves the stories and the memories.

“I can remember sitting in that room going, ‘Did I make the right decision leaving the fire hall? Maybe I should go back to the fire hall.’

“(General manager) Bob Brown came in and he was really good. He said, ‘You’re the guy to coach us. We have a lot of faith and belief in you.’ ”

Hay spent two more seasons as the Blazers’ head coach, winning back-to-back Memorial Cups in 1994 and ’95, before giving the pro game a try.

He later spent two seasons (1998-2000) as head coach of the Tri-City Americans before trying the pro game again.

He returned to the WHL in 2004 and spent 10 seasons with the Vancouver Giants, before coming back to his hometown over the summer of 2014.

By the time Hay returned to the WHL, Hodge had retired from coaching. He spent the next 15 seasons as the general manager, and was an owner for part of that time.

“I didn’t coach a lot of games against him, but when I was an assistant those seven years we had a lot of playoff series with him,” Hay says. “I really respect the job he did . . . it’s a pretty special record to tie.

“And it was nice to do it at home.”

Hay also tied the record with a good friend working the other bench.

Mike Johnston, Portland’s vice-president, general manager and head coach, and Hay have been friends since they were together on the coaching staff with Team Canada as it won the 1995 World Junior Championship in Red Deer.

“He was a big help on that coaching staff,” Hay says, “and we’ve been friends ever since.”

They are close enough that they try to to spend at least one day each summer playing golf, having lunch “and talking hockey,” Hay says. They also connect at various coaches’ conferences.

When was the last time they spoke?

Hay chuckles and says: “I talked to him (Friday) morning . . . we’ll probably talk (this) morning.”

Later today, their teams will meet as Hay gets his first shot at becoming the winningest regular-season coach in WHL history.

At the same time, Johnston, who turns 61 next month, will be trying to become the 23rd head coach in WHL history with 300 victories.

No matter the outcome, the friendship will endure. Johnston, like Hay, is a hockey lifer.

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Hay ties WHL career coaching record . . . Americans’ Rasmussen set to return . . . Silvertips run win streak to eight

MacBeth

D Jakub Čutta (Swift Current, 1998-2001) has signed a contract for the rest of this season with Litvínov (Czech Republic, Extraliga). Čutta last played in 2015-16 with Västerås (Sweden, Allsvenskan), when he had three assists in 31 games. . . .

F Michal Řepík (Vancouver, 2005-08) has signed a contract for the rest of this season with Sparta Prague (Czech Republic, Extraliga) after his release by mutual agreement by Slovan Bratislava (Slovakia, KHL). He had 12 goals and 11 assists in 51 games. Slovan has two regular-season games left, but can’t make the playoffs.


A LITTLE OF THIS . . .

The Tri-City Americans may have F Michael Rasmussen in their lineup tonight (Saturday) when they meet the visiting Spokane Chiefs.

Rasmussen, who had wrist surgery before Christmas, last played on Dec. 16. The 6-foot-6, TriCity30220-pound Rasmussen has 31 points, including 16 goals, in 22 games. He was a first-round selection by the Detroit Red Wings in the NHL’s 2017 draft.

Rasmussen took part in full practices this week for the first time since having surgery.

“It’s been a good week,” head coach Mike Williamson told Annie Fowler of the Tri-City Herald. “He has worked hard to put himself in a position to get back. We are pretty sure he will play this weekend. . . . We are pretty sure he is ready to go. We will make that final determination (Saturday).”

The Americans are scheduled to entertain the Seattle Thunderbirds on Sunday.

Tri-City remains without D Juuso Valimaki, but he may return to the club next week.

Fowler’s complete story is right here.


The biggest smile in all of the west likely belongs to Bruce Vance these days. He’s one of the good guys and spent a lot of time working in WHL circles. These days, you can bet that his focus is on the U of Saskatchewan Huskies women’s hockey team.

That’s because his daughter, Jessica, leads Canada West with six shutouts and a .921 save percentage.

Oh, did we mention that she spent two seasons at the U of Manitoba but couldn’t get into the Bisons’ lineup, other than one game that cost her a season of eligibility.

Then she transferred to Saskatchewan and had to sit out a season.

Claire Hanna of Global News in Saskatoon has more right here.


If you like what you get here, please consider clicking on the DONATE button over there to the right and helping the cause.

If you have a tip or just want to chat, email me at greggdrinnan@gmail.com. You are able to follow me on Twitter at @gdrinnan.

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Another day, another set of twins is brought to our attention.

This time it’s Brett and Garrett Festerling, now 31 and playing in Europe.

whlBrett, a defenceman, spent five seasons (2002-07) in the WHL, with the Tri-City Americans and Vancouver Giants. He now plays for the Nürnberg Ice Tigers of Germany’s DEL.

Garrett, a forward, was in the WHL for four seasons (2003-07), with the Portland Winterhawks and Regina Pats. These days, he also is in the DEL, with Adler Mannheim.

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Twins who played together . . .

Darren and Trevor Kruger, Swift Current (1987-89)

Bob and Ted McAneeley, Edmonton (Calgary Buffaloes, 1966-67; Edmonton Oil Kings, 1968-69)

Trevor and Troy Pohl, Portland (1986-88)

Taylor and Travis Sanheim, Calgary (2014-16)

Jeremy and Joshua Schappert, Seattle (2005-08)

Rich and Ron Sutter, Lethbridge Broncos (1980-83)

Kaeden and Keenan Taphorn, Kootenay (active)

——

Twins who played but not together . . .

Brett and Garrett Festerling, Tri-City/Vancouver, Portland/Regina (2002-07)

Connor and Curtis Honey, Seattle, Brandon (2011-14)

Brent and Kyle Howarth, Kelowna, Medicine Hat/Spokane/Prince Albert Raiders (2003-06)

Kris and Ryan Russell, Medicine Hat and Kootenay (2003-07)

Beck and Will Warm, Tri-City and Edmonton (active)

——

Officials who are twins and work together . . .

Chad and Cody Huseby, linesmen from Red Deer (active)


THE COACHING GAME . . .

Since being fired as the general manager and head coach of the BCHL’s Nanaimo Clippers, Mike Vandekamp is hanging out at the rink and helping the minor hockey association.

“I want to continue to volunteer my time with that, mostly coach mentorship stuff,” Vandekamp, a former WHL coach, told Greg Sakaki of the Nanaimo News Bulletin. “That’s something that keeps a guy a little bit involved and down at the rink.”

Wes Mussio, the Clippers’ new owner, fired Vandekamp on Dec. 21, a move the coach said he never saw coming. Mussio announced the move via a late-night post on Twitter, citing irreconcilable differences.

“I don’t think there was ever a specific incident that led to this, or specific animosity or any disrespect shown,” Vandekamp said. “We were operating the hockey team the way we’ve always operated the hockey team.”

Under Vandekamp and assistant Dustin Donaghy, a former WHL player, the Clippers were 18-13-3-2 and second in the Island Division. Under Darren Naylor, the Clippers are 4-7-0-0 and have slipped to third, five points behind the Powell River Kings and Victoria Grizzlies.

Sakaki’s complete story is right here.


Scoreboard

FRIDAY:

At Prince Albert, F Kody McDonald had a goal and two assists against his old club as the Raiders beat the Prince George Cougars, 6-2. . . . Prince Albert (19-20-9) has points in four PrinceAlbertstraight (3-0-1) and remains four points behind Saskatoon in the chase for a wild-card spot. . . . Prince George (18-24-7) is 10 points out of a playoff spot. This was the start of a six-game East Division trek for Prince George. . . . McDonald opened the scoring with his 23rd goal, while shorthanded, at 3:51 of the first period. . . . F Josh Maser tied it with No. 22 at 9:48. . . . F Jordy Stallard (32) put the Raiders back out front at 9:48. . . . F Liam Ryan (2) got the visitors even again at 6:03 of the second period. . . . The Raiders scored the game’s last four goals. . . . F Parker Kelly (20) snapped the tie at 16:20. . . . F Curtis Miske (16) upped the lead to 4-2 at 1:21 of the third period. . . . F Cole Fonstad (13), just back from the Top Prospects game, scored at 8:36 and F Sean Montgomery (11) added a PP goal at 10:20. . . . Stallard, Montgomery and Parker each added an assist for the Raiders. . . . The Raiders were 1-2 on the PP; the Cougars were 0-5. . . . G Ian Scott earned the victory with 22 saves. . . . Prince George got 29 stops from G Tavin Grant. . . . F Brogan O’Brien, who last played on Dec. 10, was back in the Cougars’ lineup. . . . The Raiders were without F Regan Nagy, whose right knee injury apparently isn’t as bad as it looked when it happened. “I think we dodged a bullet there,” Raiders head coach Marc Habscheid told Jeff D’Andrea of paNOW.com. “He was X-Rayed, MRI’d, and they all came back clear. It seemed there was a lot of trauma in that area, but he seems to have dodged a bullet and he’s pretty much day-to-day. As soon as he can play, he can play.” . . . Announced attendance: 1,896.


At Saskatoon, G Nolan Maier stopped 20 shots to lead the Blades to a 5-0 victory over the Edmonton Oil Kings. . . . Saskatoon (24-23-3) had lost its previous two games. It holds Saskatoondown the Eastern Conference’s second wild-card spot, four points behind Regina. . . . Edmonton (13-28-7) has lost three in a row (0-2-1). . . . Maier, who turned 17 on Jan. 10, has two shutouts this season. He is 16-9-1, 3.18, .904. . . . F Josh Paterson (24) scored the game’s first goal, at 3:05 of the first period. . . . F Max Gerlach (23) scored a PP goal at 6:07, and D Jackson Caller (3) made it 3-0 at 9:20. . . . The Blades got a second-period goal from F Michael Farren (4), on a PP, at 17:03, and one in the third from F Braylon Shmyr (25), at 12:39. . . . Saskatoon got two assists from F Kirby Dach, with Gerlach and Paterson each adding one. . . . Saskatoon was 2-11 on the PP; Edmonton was 0-3. . . . Edmonton took 17 of the game’s 25 minor penalties. . . . G Josh Dechaine started for the Oil Kings and was beaten three times on eight shots in 10:13. Todd Scott finished up by stopping 17 of 19 shots in 49:47. . . . The Blades had F Caleb Fantillo back in their lineup. He hadn’t played since Nov. 29. . . . D Dawson Davidson (ill) was among Saskatoon’s scratches, ending his chance of playing 73 games this season. The Blades acquired him from Regina earlier this month. . . . Announced attendance: 3,309.


At Lethbridge, F Brayden Burke scored in OT to give the Moose Jaw Warriors a 3-2 victory over the Hurricanes. . . . Moose Jaw (39-7-3) has won four straight and leads the MooseJawWarriorsoverall standings by 11 points over Swift Current. . . . Lethbridge (22-21-6) has lost four in a row (0-2-2). It is second in the Central Division, six points behind Medicine Hat. . . . The Warriors took a 2-0 lead on second-period goals from F Tristin Langan (13), at 11:35, and F Justin Almeida (29), on a PP, at 13:24. . . . F Keltie Jeri-Leon (5) got the home boys to within a goal at 19:45. . . . F Jadon Joseph (6) forced OT with a goal at 19:34 of the third period. . . . Burke, who was acquired from the Hurricanes last season, won it with his 23rd goal of the season at 2:38 of extra time. He leads the WHL scoring race with 95 points, three more than teammate Jayden Halbgewachs. . . . D Kale Clague drew three assists for Moose Jaw, with Burke and Almeida getting one apiece. . . . Moose Jaw was 1-4 on the PP; Lethbridge was 0-1. . . . The Warriors got 19 saves from G Adam Evanoff. . . . G Logan Flodell stopped 30 shots for Lethbridge. . . . The Hurricanes are without F Taylor Ross and F Dylan Cozens, while D Jett Woo remains out of Moose Jaw’s lineup. . . . Announced attendance: 4,158.


At Medicine Hat, D Cal Foote’s OT goal gave the Kelowna Rockets a 4-3 victory over the Tigers. . . . Kelowna (31-14-3) has won three straight and leads the Western Conference by KelownaRocketsone point over Everett. . . . Medicine Hat (25-19-6) went to OT for the fifth time seven games. It leads the Central Division by six points over Lethbridge. . . . The Rockets scored the game’s last three goals, Foote winning it with his 10th goal on a breakaway at 3:01 of extra time. . . . F Mark Rassell gave the Tigers a 2-0 lead with goals at 0:42 and 5:43 of the first period. He has 41 goals, the third player this season to surpass 40. . . . F Leif Mattson (16) got Kelowna on the scoreboard at 19:45. . . . F Jaeger White (8) restored Medicine Hat’s two-goal lead at 17:39 of the second period. . . . F Kole Lind (25) got the visitors to within a goal at 5:20 of the third period, and F Conner Bruggen-Cate (14) tied it at 8:14. . . . D Gordie Ballhorn had two assists for Kelowna. . . . The Rockets were 1-2 on the PP; the Tigers were 0-1. . . . G Brodan Salmond stopped 29 shots for Kelowna, four fewer than Medicine Hat’s Michael Bullion. . . . F Dillon Dube was among Kelowna’s scratches. . . . Announced attendance: 3,041.


At Cranbrook, B.C., F Alec Baer and D Martin Bodak each scored twice to lead the Kootenay Ice to a 6-2 victory over the Brandon Wheat Kings Kings. . . . Kootenay (22-23-3) Kootenaynewhas won two in a row. It is third in the Central Division, three points behind Lethbridge. . . . Brandon (28-16-5) has lost seven straight (0-4-3). It remains third in the East Division, six points ahead of Regina. . . . The same two teams will play in Cranbrook again tonight. . . . Last night, the Ice led 5-0 at 10:53 of the second period. . . . Bodak, who has five goals, got it started at 10:14 of the first period. Baer, on a PP, made it 2-0 at 13:00. . . . F Peyton Krebs (11) upped it to 3-0 at 1:22 of the second period. . . . F Sebastian Streu (7) made it 4-0, on a PP, at 4:28 and Baer’s 20th made it 5-0, on another PP, at 10:53. . . . Bodak added a third-period goal. . . . F Luka Burzan (7) and F Evan Weinger (23) scored for Brandon. . . . The Ice got three assists from F Brett Davis and two from F Colton Kroeker, with Baer adding one. . . . Kootenay was 3-3 on the PP; Brandon was 1-5. . . . G Matt Berlin stopped 21 shots for the home side. . . . Brandon’s Dylan Myskiw turned aside 27 shots. . . . The Wheat Kings will wrap up a seven-game road trip tonight. . . . Announced attendance: 2,230.


At Kamloops, head coach Don Hay tied the WHL’s career record for regular-season victories with No. 742 as the Blazers skated to a 5-2 victory over the Portland Winterhawks. . . . Hay Kamloops1now shares the record with long-time Edmonton/Portland coach Ken Hodge. Hay’s first opportunity to break the record comes tonight in a rematch with Portland. . . . Kamloops (22-23-3) has won four in a row but is still six points away from a playoff spot. . . . . Portland (28-16-4) had won its previous two games. It is second in the U.S. Division, four points behind Everett. . . . F Connor Zary (5) gave the home team a 1-0 lead, on a PP, at 7:17 of the first period. . . . Portland F Skyler McKenzie (36) tied it, on a PP, at 9:18. . . . The Blazers went ahead 3-1 on second-period goals from F Justin Sigrist (2), at 10:44, and F Jermaine Loewen, at 12:24. . . . Sigrist hadn’t scored opening night when he notched the Blazers’ first goal of the season in a 6-2 loss to the Rockets in Kelowna. . . . F Jake Gricius (10) added a Portland goal, on a PP, at 4:12 of the third period. . . . F Quinn Benjafield (16) provided some insurance at 14:20, and Loewen (23) got the empty-netter, at 18:23. . . . Portland was 2-5 on the PP; Kamloops was 1-2. . . . Blazers G Dylan Ferguson was the game’s first star, with 30 saves. . . . Portland G Cole Kehler, 20, stopped 20 shots. The Winterhawks acquired him from Kamloops on July 21, 2016, for a seventh-round pick in the 2018 bantam draft. . . . It was a homecoming for F Ty Kolle and D John Ludvig of the Winterhawks. Both played their first WHL games in their hometown. . . . The Winterhawks continue to play without top forwards Cody Glass and Kieffer Bellows, who have combined for 47 goals. . . . With the injuries, the Winterhawks have added F Seth Jarvis, a first-round pick in the 2017 bantam draft, to their roster. Jarvis, who turns 16 on Feb. 1, plays at the Rink Hockey Academy in Winnipeg. . . . Kamloops F/D Tylor Ludwar didn’t return after his head and the right elbow of Portland D Matthew Quigley came into contact at 18:11 of the second period. It would be safe to assume that Ludwar is in concussion protocol. . . . Announced attendance: 3,721.


At Langley, B.C., F Tanner Kaspick’s second goal of the game, in OT, gave the Victoria Royals a 4-3 victory over the Vancouver Giants. . . . Victoria (28-17-4) is second in the B.C. VictoriaRoyalsDivision, five points behind Kelowna. . . . The Giants (25-16-8) have lost four in a row (0-2-2). They are third in the B.C. Division, two points behind Victoria. . . . F Dawson Holt (8) gave Vancouver a 1-0 lead at 2:54 of the first period. . . . Victoria tied it on F Andrei Grishakov’s 15th goal, at 7:34. . . . F Tyler Benson put the Giants back out front at 9:22. . . . The Royals took a 3-2 lead on second-period PP goals from Kaspick, at 7:25, and F Matthew Phillips (33), at 10:28. . . . Benson’s 19th goal at 19:06 of the third period forced OT. . . . Kaspick won it with his 16th goal at 2:28 of extra time. . . . Phillips added an assist to his goal for the Royals, while Holt did the same with the Giants. . . . Victoria was 2-5 on the PP; Vancouver was 0-4. . . . G Griffen Outhouse stopped 22 shots for the winners. . . . The Giants got 28 stops from G David Tendeck. . . . Announced attendance: 3,357.


At Everett, F Matt Fonteyne broke a 1-1 tie 34 seconds into the second period and the Silvertips went on to a 3-1 victory over the Seattle Thunderbirds. . . . Everett (31-16-2) has Everettwon eight in a row and leads the U.S. Division by four points over Portland. . . . Seattle (25-17-6) had a five-game winning streak end. It is third in the U.S. Division, one point ahead of Spokane. . . . F Bryce Kindopp (14) put the home team out front at 9:25 of the first period. . . . Seattle tied it at 11:50 on a PP goal from D Austin Strand (16). He has 11 PP goals this season. . . . Fonteyne put the home side ahead 2-1 with his 29th goal, on a PP. . . . F Connor Dewar added insurance at 9:40 of the third period. . . . Fonteyne also had an assist. . . . Seattle was 1-4 on the PP; Everett was 1-5. . . . G Carter Hart earned the victory with 20 saves, 10 more than Seattle’s Liam Hughes, who had missed the previous five games with an undisclosed injury. . . . Hart now is 18-3-1, 1.33, .958. . . . Seattle lost F Sami Moilanen in the second period with an undisclosed injury. . . . Everett F Sean Richards sat this one out as he began serving a two-game suspension. . . . He also will miss tonight’s rematch in Kent, Wash. . . . Announced attendance: 8,164.


SATURDAY (all times local):

Edmonton at Prince Albert, 7 p.m.

Regina at Swift Current, 2:30 p.m.

Prince George at Saskatoon, 7:05 p.m.

Kelowna at Red Deer, 7 p.m.

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

Moose Jaw at Medicine Hat, 7:30 p.m.

Portland at Kamloops, 7 p.m.

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

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

Calgary at Victoria, 7:05 p.m.


TWEET OF THE DAY

Mohr back from facial injury . . . Young Stars tourney is on . . . Adding two more sets of twins

MacBeth

D Richie Regehr (Kelowna, Portland, 1998-2004) has been released by mutual agreement by Klagenfurt (Austria, Erste Bank Liga). According to the club, Regehr suffered a “serious upper body injury” at the end of September and had a setback when he returned to practice. He had one goal and one assist in six games. . . .

F Masi Marjamäki (Red Deer, Moose Jaw, 2002-05) has signed a contract for the rest of this season with Almtuna Uppsala (Sweden, Allsvenskan) after his release by mutual agreement by Jokerit Helsinki (Finland, KHL). He had two goals and two assists in 24 games. . . .

D Alex Roach (Calgary, 2010-14) has been assigned on loan by Grizzlys Wolfsburg (Germany, DEL) to Eispiraten Crimmitschau (Germany, DEL2) for the duration of the DEL Olympics break. He had three assists in 25 games. . . . The DEL breaks after games on Feb 2 until Feb 28. The DEL2 doesn’t have a break.


A LITTLE OF THIS . . .

On Dec. 3, with Edmonton playing against the visiting Lethbridge Hurricanes, Oil Kings F Kobe Mohr was struck by a puck just below his left eye.

The 18-year-old from Lloydminster, Alta., now has three plates in his face. As he told EdmontonOilKingsDerek Van Diest of Postmedia, he ended up with a broken orbital bone, broken tear duct and broken nose.

“Right away, I soaked the ice up pretty good in blood and I couldn’t see, I couldn’t breathe and I knew my nose was broken for sure and something was wrong with my eye because I couldn’t see,” Mohr told Van Diest. “But I wasn’t sure exactly what was wrong. The first thing was just the pain. I was squirming out there, I couldn’t really control it and the trainer came out and got me off the ice as fast as I could and got me stitched up and took me straight to the hospital, so it was a pretty quick process, which was pretty good.”

He was back in the lineup on Jan. 9, meaning he missed only 13 games.

Van Diest’s story, complete with a post-injury selfie, is right here.


On Thursday, Geoffrey Brandow (@GeoffreyBrandow) tweeted a list of the top 10 WHL teams in terms of regular-season victories from September 2003 through last night. I have added to his list by including WHL championships won during that time in parentheses:

  1. Kelowna 639 (3)
  2. Medicine Hat 623 (2)
  3. Calgary 602 (1)
  4. Tri-City 575 (0)
  5. Brandon 573 (1)
  6. Spokane 548 (1)
  7. Portland 547 (1)
  8. Everett 543 (0)
  9. Kootenay 533 (1)
  10. Vancouver 529 (1)

NOTE: Edmonton (2) and Seattle (1) aren’t in the top 10 in victories in that time period, but have won championships.


It seems that there will be Young Stars tournament in Penticton this year, but if you read between the lines it sounds like there may be changes in store.

Trevor Linden, the Vancouver Canucks’ president of hockey operations, has told Kristi Patton of the Penticton Western News that his team is committed to playing in the preseason rookie tournament this year.

“While the format and number of participating teams may change,” Linden said, “we’ve confirmed our continued participation this year. We’ll have more details to share in the near future.”

Andrew Jakubeit, Penticton’s mayor and the event’s chairman, told Patton: “Right now, I’m confident there will be an event this fall. Whatthe shape, size or scope of teams is, I can’t confirm or deny yet.”

In recent years, the Canucks team has faced teams from the Calgary Flames, Edmonton Oilers and Winnipeg Jets. The tournament is held in the first half of September, although this year’s dates have yet to be announced.


Attention WHL franchise owners . . .

Darren Rovell, a senior writer with ESPN, filed a piece Thursday explaining what happened when the the NFL’s Atlanta Falcons cut concession prices.

“Steve Cannon, CEO of the AMB Group . . . told ESPN that although food and beverage prices were 50 percent lower in its new Mercedes-Benz Stadium than the prices in the Georgia Dome the previous year, fans spent 16 percent more,” Rovell writes.

Rovell’s story is right here.


If you’re a regular here, you will be aware that organ donation is a big deal in our home.

On Thursday, I stumbled on a truly interesting story involving a 60-year-old single father of five who was in dire need of a kidney. So on a trip to Disney World, he wore a special t-shirt.

The rest, as they say, is history.

His story is right here.


If you like what you get here, please consider clicking on the DONATE button over there to the right and helping the cause.

If you have a tip or just want to chat, email me at greggdrinnan@gmail.com. You are able to follow me on Twitter at @gdrinnan.

And don’t forget that the domain name here is greggdrinnan.com.

Enjoy!


We are adding two more sets of twins to our WHL Twins Wall of Fame, both brought to our attention via readers of this blog.

We start today with Brent and Kyle Howarth, forwards from St. Andrews, Man. Brent whlplayed three seasons (2003-06) with the Kelowna Rockets, while Kyle was with the Medicine Hat Tigers, Spokane Chiefs and Prince Albert Raiders. Now 31, they did play together with the MJHL’s Selkirk Steelers in 2002-03 and 2006-07. In fact, they helped the Keith Cassidy-coached Steelers win the 2006-07 MJHL title. Kyle put up 141 points, including 103 assists, in 58 games, while Brent had 131 points, 49 of them goals, in 59 games.

We also have been reminded about Taylor and Travis Sanheim, the pride of Elkhorn, Man., which is also the hometown of Sheldon Kennedy. Taylor and Travis, now 21, played together with the Calgary Hitmen.

Taylor, a forward, played two-plus seasons (2014-17) with the Hitmen; Travis was there for three seasons (2013-16).

Now 21, Taylor is playing senior hockey in Saskatchewan, while Travis is in the NHL with the Philadelphia Flyers.

——

Twins who played together . . .

Darren and Trevor Kruger, Swift Current (1987-89)

Bob and Ted McAneeley, Edmonton (Calgary Buffaloes, 1966-67; Edmonton Oil Kings, 1968-69)

Trevor and Troy Pohl, Portland (1986-88)

Taylor and Travis Sanheim, Calgary (2014-16)

Jeremy and Joshua Schappert, Seattle (2005-08)

Rich and Ron Sutter, Lethbridge Broncos (1980-83)

Kaeden and Keenan Taphorn, Kootenay (active)

——

Twins who played but not together . . .

Connor and Curtis Honey, Seattle, Brandon (2011-14)

Brent and Kyle Howarth, Kelowna, Medicine Hat/Spokane/Prince Albert Raiders (2003-06)

Kris and Ryan Russell, Medicine Hat and Kootenay (2003-07)

Beck and Will Warm, Tri-City and Edmonton (active)

——

Officials who are twins and work together . . .

Chad and Cody Huseby, linesmen from Red Deer (active)


Scoreboard

THURSDAY:

No Games Scheduled.


FRIDAY (all times local):

Prince George at Prince Albert, 7 p.m.

Edmonton at Saskatoon, 7:05 p.m.

Moose Jaw at Lethbridge, 7 p.m.

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

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

Portland at Kamloops, 7 p.m.

Victoria vs. Vancouver, at Langley, B.C., 7:30 p.m.

Seattle at Everett, 7:35 p.m.


TWEET OF THE DAY

Hay closing in on top spot in WHL record book . . . One victory from Hodge’s long-standing mark . . . Standard may fall this weekend

Don Hay, the head coach of the Kamloops Blazers, goes into this weekend with 741 regular-season WHL coaching victories. That is one off the record of 742 that has been held by Ken Hodge since 1993.

Hodge was a long-time head coach with the Portland Winterhawks, who will play in Kamloops on Friday and Saturday nights. The teams then will head for Portland and a Sunday date.

At the same time, Mike Johnston, the Winterhawks’ vice-president, general manager and head coach, is in search of his 300th regular-season victory, all of the with Portland. He will become the 23rd coach in WHL history with at least 300 victories.

On top of that, the Winterhawks will be playing their 3,000th regular-season WHL game on Friday night.

Before the 2015-16 WHL season began, Hay and I sat down for coffee and a chat. What follows is the I wrote for The Coaches Site.


It was late on the afternoon of May 21, 1995.

There was pandemonium in Riverside Coliseum, the home arena of the WHL’s Kamloops Blazers, who had just beaten the Detroit Jr. Red Wings, 8-2, to win their third Memorial Cup championship in four years.

Don Hay, the Kamloops native who was the Blazers’ head coach, stood in their dressing room and watched the celebration carrying on around him.

More than 20 years later, he recalls: “I was in the dressing room going, ‘What am I going

DonHay
Don Hay, the head coach of the Kamloops Blazers, has held a lot of media scrums during his lengthy coaching career. (Photo: Gregg Drinnan)

to do now? What am I going to do now? Am I going to quit the Blazers?’ ”

Hay had been on the Blazers’ coaching staff for 10 years at that point, the last three as head coach. Earlier, when he was an assistant coach, he also was a Kamloops firefighter.

“Coaching was different then,” he says. “Believe it or not, there’s more security now than there was then, and I had a good job (with the fire department).”

History shows that Hay didn’t get out of the coaching game, and he never returned to the firehall. He moved on to the NHL, came back to the WHL, and then returned to the NHL before once again coming back to the WHL.

He’s back in Kamloops now, as the Blazers’ head coach, and he is really comfortable being back home.

In a lengthy conversation with the 2015-16 WHL season on the horizon, Hay touches on a lot of things and tells some stories.

—————

Tom Renney had been the head coach when the Blazers began that Memorial Cup run by winning the 1992 championship in Seattle. After that victory, Renney signed a two-year contract with the Blazers. However, he wasn’t in Kamloops long enough to get it started.

During the summer, Dave King left Hockey Canada, where he had been head coach of the national men’s team. Hockey Canada asked Renney if he wanted that job.

“That was always Tom’s dream job, to coach the national team,” Hay says. “He grew up in Nelson watching the (Trail) Smokies and teams like that, and his dad was into that. So he left in the middle of July.”

That’s when Blazers general manager Bob Brown asked Hay, a seven-year assistant coach, if he wanted to succeed Renney.

Interestingly, Hay actually had taken a bit of a step back from the Blazers. His children were old enough that they were getting actively involved in sports and he was able to spend more time with them. And, of course, there was the job with the Kamloops Fire Department.

“I had to take a two-year leave of absence from the firehall,” Hay recalls. “I wasn’t going to go anywhere else to coach. I wasn’t going to leave the security of the firehall. I actually took a paycut to come and coach the Blazers.”

Hay signed a two-year contract as the Blazers’ head coach. That contract was up after the Blazers won the 1994 Memorial Cup in Laval, Que.

“That was the end of my two years,” Hay says. “We had just won the Memorial Cup and I had to make a decision whether I’m going to go back to the firehall.”

Except that the Blazers were to be the host team for the 1995 Memorial Cup tournament.

“So,” Hay says, “they said, ‘Take another year but this is your last year.’ ”

—————

After the Blazers won the 1992 Memorial Cup, they went young with, Hay says, “I think five 16-year-olds.” He also pointed to a “key trade” that Brown made in acquiring goaltender Steve Passmore from the Victoria Cougars “to stabilize our group.”

Passmore returned as a 20-year-old for 1993-94.

“The team to beat that season was Portland,” Hay says. “They had (Adam) Deadmarsh and (Jason) Wiemer and (Scott) Langkow in goal. They had a good team. Langkow got hurt during the season so we had jumped them in the standings.”

Kamloops and Portland met up in the West Division final, with the Blazers, who had finished seven points ahead of the Winterhawks, holding home-ice advantage.

“Game 1 and 2, we won,” Hay remembers. “Game 3 and 4, they won. Game 5, back here, Kamloops1we won that to go up 3-2. Down in Portland for Game 6, Jarome Iginla, who was 16, got the first goal and then Scott Ferguson scored late in the game and we ended up winning the series. It was something that wasn’t expected.”

The Blazers then took out the Saskatoon Blades in a seven-game championship final.

“We went to Laval and it was like, ‘Boy, it all came together.’ So we unexpectedly won in ’94.”

The following season, as Hay puts it, “We had a really strong team. I think we went wire-to-wire as the No. 1 team in the country.”

In the end, they came up against the Brandon Wheat Kings in the WHL final. With the Blazers the host team for the Memorial Cup, both teams knew they would be advancing. Still, as the series progressed, Hay found himself having to make a key decision.

With the series using a 2-3-2 format, the Wheat Kings won the opener in Kamloops.

“The second game,” Hay explains, “we were down and we make the decision to pull the goalie, Roddie Branch, and we put in Randy Petruk.”

Petruk, a 16-year-old from Cranbrook, had gotten into 27 games as a freshman, going 16-3-4. Still, he was 16 years of age. Branch was 20.

“Petruk won eight straight games after that,” Hay says. “We were down 2-0 going to Brandon. We won all three games in Brandon and came back here to win Game 6 in our building. He won those four games and then he won four games at the Memorial Cup as a 16-year-old.”

That was the last time Hay turned to a 16-year-old goaltender. Still, he says that experience is why he didn’t have any problem turning to 17-year-old Tyson Sexsmith in 2006-07 when he needed a goaltender with the Vancouver Giants the host team for the 2007 Memorial Cup. Hay went to Sexsmith early on, and the kid got into 51 regular-season games and 22 more in the playoffs.

The Giants lost to Willie Desjardins and the Medicine Hat Tigers in seven games in the WHL final that year — “That playoff against Medicine Hat was as good as any playoff I’ve been in,” Hay says — but later beat the Tigers 2-1 in the Memorial Cup final in Vancouver’s Pacific Coliseum.

The Giants had won the 2006 WHL title under Hay, but lost a semifinal game at the Memorial Cup in Moncton.

—————

When Hay ended a three-season professional playing career, he returned to Kamloops and was prepared to work as a firefighter and coach minor hockey.

He also was in on the ground floor with the Kamloops Cowboys, a short-lived senior team that played in a league with the likes of the Quesnel Kangaroos, who featured the legendary Gassoff boys, Prince George Mohawks and North Delta Hurricanes.

Hay’s coaching career began innocuously enough when the Cowboys’ coach skipped a practice.

“One day our coach got mad at our group and didn’t show up,” Hay recalls. “We’re sitting in the dressing room, going, ‘Who wants to run practice?’

“I said, ‘Well, I’ll give it a try,’ and I became kind of the player-coach.”

As he got involved in coaching minor hockey, he worked hard to get his coaching levels. As he says, “They wouldn’t give me a head-coaching job because I didn’t have my levels.”

He got the levels and was quite content coaching minor hockey. Then came the phone call that would change everything. It was the summer of 1985 and Ken Hitchcock was preparing for his second season as the Blazers’ head coach.

“I didn’t know him at all,” Hay says. “He said, ‘Come on down for a coffee. I want to meet you.’ I went down there and by the time I left he offered me a part-time assistant-coaching job.”

Hay’s head was spinning as he went home. He was 31 years of age and knew he wanted to give it a shot.

He remembers going home and saying to his wife, Vicki: “Just let me try this for a year. I can work it around my shifts.”

It was a part-time gig and he wouldn’t be making road trips. At least that was the plan at the start.

“But the more you got into it,” Hay says, “the more you were there all the time. I said, ‘Just let me try it for a year’ and it’s been ever since.”

Of course, if Hay thought he was a coach then, he admits that he quickly underwent an attitude adjustment.

“I remember my first practice with Hitch,” Hay says. “I thought being an ex-pro player, I knew everything. I found out I didn’t know anything.

“He was a student of the game. He had gone to watch the Oilers practice with Glen Sather. He had spent time with Clare Drake in Edmonton. Hitch used to watch Sather with Gretzky, Kurri, Coffey . . .”

Hay spent five years working with Hitchcock, and they made two trips to the Memorial Cup — 1986 in Portland and 1990 in Hamilton.

“That 1990 team . . . it was a good team,” he says. “Lennie Barrie. Dave Chyzowski. We got Clayton Young in a trade from Victoria. He got 100 points. He was our fourth-line centre. We had an awesome team. We had some great teams here.”

It was Hitchcock who pushed Hay towards Hockey Canada. It was Hitchcock who prodded Hay until he got involved in the U-17 program that was in its infancy. Hay was one of the coaches when some B.C. teams gathered at Memorial Arena in Kamloops.

“That was the first year of the program,” Hay says. “Bob Nicholson was the head of B.C. amateur hockey. I can remember we were representing Okanagan and we were playing a Lower Mainland team. The first period was all penalties.

“Bob was there and he said, ‘If you guys can’t get this thing straightened out we might not have this program.’

“It was a startup program; they wanted to identify the best players. It obviously ended up fine and things moved on.”

—————

A lot of ice has been made since Hay got into the coaching game. When he first started coaching, who would have seen cell phones and social media on the horizon?

“The players have changed. The coaches have changed,” Hay says. “At one time you had one coach. Now you have an assistant coach . . . some people have two assistant coaches. We have a couple of part-time guys. . . .  The players have so many resources now . . . video, YouTube.

“At one time we had nothing. Then we had VHS for a long time. My first year in Vancouver we had a computer and I was a little leery about how this thing all worked.”

Hay pauses, and then he chuckles.

“In 1990, Len Barrie had the first cell phone. He was in the back of the bus with this great big cell phone like this,” Hay says, and he holds his hands about a foot apart.”

Yes, even the t-shirts have changed.

“In ’94 in Laval, we had Stanfield underwear that we would write things on with a Sharpie,” Hay says. “Now you get a new t-shirt with something written on it.”

The way Hay sees it, everything has changed.

“The kids have really changed,” he says, but he adds that a lot of that is because “technology has changed. . . . Society has changed.”

He thinks back 15 or 20 years and remembers when coaches and players read The Hockey News on the bus “to find out what was going on” in the NHL and the three major junior leagues.

Hay was the head coach of the Canadian team that played in the 1995 World Junior Championship in Red Deer. He remembers attending a summer session in Red Deer . . .

“The Quebec guys sat over there. The Ontario guys sat over there. The Western Hockey League guys sat over there. Nobody knew each other,” he says. “The only guy they knew was Brett Lindros because he was such a recognizable guy. People didn’t know who Bryan McCabe was. Nobody knew what was happening.”

These days, thanks at least in part to social media, everyone knows everyone and many players are in regular contact with each other.

This, of course, has led to rules regarding the use of phones and social media.

“We have no phones at meals,” Hay says. “When you come in the dressing room, you put your phone away.”

When the Blazers travel to Vancouver, for example, the players have to turn off their phones once they reach Chilliwack.

“You have to explain why you’re doing it,” Hay says. “You’re doing it so they can focus and concentrate.”

A chuckle follows.

“I remember one time when we were playing in Swift Current and staying in Medicine Hat,” he says. “We got back and I was upset after we lost.”

Hay ordered his player to go “straight to your rooms.”

Except that Darcy Tucker chimed in with: “I have to phone my mom and dad.”

So, as Hay recalls, “They all lined up at the pay phone.”

Another pause. Another chuckle. He has asked players what they would rather give up — a hot shower or the cell phone.

“They would all rather shower in cold water than give up their cell phones,” he says with a laugh.

Hay also points out that dealing with cell phones and social media is “part of the discussion” at all levels of hockey, including the World Junior Championship. “How are we going to handle cell phones and computers and things like that? You want the focus to be on the task at hand, but the phone has become such a big part of their lives.”

Helping players learn to deal with social media, as Hay points out, is part of a coach’s responsibility. The WHL has rules regarding the use of social media because, as Hay says, “We don’t want the players embarrassing themselves.”

He adds: “They’re young people. They have to learn the right decision-making. I always tell the players ‘my job is to not only teach you hockey skills, but to teach you life skills.’

“The biggest life skill is making good decisions.”

—————

If Hay has learned one thing in his coaching career, it is that the only constant in hockey is change. That is something that he doesn’t see changing, either.

“The kids are more educated; they’re more aware,” he says. “They’re well coached. They’re probably not as coachable . . . not open to change at times. That’s probably the biggest thing.

“As coaches, we have to change with the times and the players. The players have got to change and adapt, also. Sometimes there’s stubbornness to change on both sides.”

However, as he is quick to point out, it is “the coachable guys who have a chance to become players.”

He quickly names four former WHLers who went on to play in the NHL and in a couple of sentences he explains how they got there. “Chris Murray, Darcy Tucker, Milan Lucic, Brendan Gallagher . . . those guys would come to the rink every day wanting to get better,” Hay says. “They wanted to know, ‘What can you teach me today?’ If they got corrected, they would try to do it (better) and please you. That’s what coachability is all about. They had to work to get where they wanted to get to.”

Of course, nothing is like it used to be. Hockey didn’t use to be all about systems. Oh, sure, coaches worked on defensive zone coverages and such, but . . .

“It wasn’t like it is now; no doubt about it,” Hay says. “Games were like 8-6 and 9-7. There were systems, but not as detailed as they are today and not as structured as they are today. That’s probably the biggest change I’ve seen in my time.”

When Hay left for the first time after the 1994-95 season, he left behind a WHL that, as he puts it, “was still a pretty explosive league with lots of goals.” It’s not like that now and one of the main reasons, he suggests, is that the “coaches are more educated now.”

Hockey coaches, as a rule, love to share. They spend their summers attending coaching clinics, either as presenters or participants. Hay is no exception.

“I learned from Hitch to give back,” Hay says. “Give back to the community that helps you. Every summer I try to either present at a coaches clinic or go to a coaches clinic. It’s important to continue to learn. You pick up one or two things that you think can help you have success and I think that’s important.”

As for the future of the game, he sees hockey “going to more of a development model.” It starts with the increase in the number of coaches being hired in the pro game.

“You look at the (Chicago) Blackhawks and their farm team,” he says. “They had a head coach, an assistant coach . . . they had special assignment coaches. They had a faceoff guy, a goalie guy, a defence guy, a forward guy, a penalty-killer guy. They’re trying to teach their players as much as they can because of the salary cap . . . they have to replace these guys with younger guys.”

The people who run junior teams are paying attention, too. In the case of the Blazers, Hay says they spent the first two days of their training camp on skill development. They brought in Dallas Stars goaltending coach Jeff Reese.

“We also did defencemen development. We did forward development,” Hay says. The focus on skill development has meant one other thing, too.

“You want to get to your group as quick as possible so you can start working with them and start developing them,” he says.

—————

Hay returned to Kamloops as the Blazers’ head coach over the summer of 2014. He had spent the previous 10 years as the head coach of the Vancouver Giants. Ron Toigo, the Giants’ majority owner, let Hay out of the final year of a contract in order to allow him to return to his hometown.

“I had 10 really good years in Vancouver,” Hay says. “The opportunity came probably at the right time for everybody. I didn’t think the opportunity would come, to be able to come back. Things just didn’t match up along the way. When I was looking for a job, the Blazers had a quality coach. When they needed a coach, I had a job.”

Hay seems completely at peace with where he is at this stage of his life. He is 61 now, and he’s back home and surrounded by family.

“It feels different,” he says of being back in Kamloops. “It feels good but it feels different.”

These days, with Hay into his second season in his second stay with his hometown Blazers, he seems really comfortable with his lot in life.

While son Darrell continues to play professionally — he is a defenceman with the Sheffield Steelers of Great Britain’s Elite Ice Hockey League — Hay is in close proximity to his and Vicki’s twin daughters. Angela, who is married to former WHL goaltender Thomas Vicars, lives in Salmon Arm, while Ashly, who was married in July, lives in Kamloops.

“This is home. I was born and raised here. I came back every summer. It’s not like I left Kamloops and never came back. I have always felt that Kamloops is home. I enjoyed my time in Vancouver and the people I met there and the people I worked with there. I just didn’t think the opportunity would ever present itself.”

Winterhawks ask for minimum-wage break . . . Steel leads Pats to win . . . Chiefs, Weatherill blank Giants

A LITTLE OF THIS . . .

The Portland Winterhawks have asked state lawmakers for an exemption from any PortlandOregon law that requires employers to pay at least minimum wage to employees.

Katie Shepherd of the Willamette Week reports that the Winterhawks have asked the state government “for a custom-made law that would allow the team to continue not paying its players.”

Oregon’s minimum wage is $11.25 per hour.

According to Shepherd, Tim Bernasek, an attorney representing the Winterhawks, wrote to the Oregon House Judiciary Committee that “without an exemption for amateur athletes under Oregon law, the Portland Winterhawks will be forced to either declare bankruptcy or relocate.”

A class-action lawsuit asking the courts to force CHL teams to pay minimum wage to players is underway in Canada. The WHL’s five U.S. teams have been ruled exempt from that lawsuit, but the plaintiffs have appealed.

Obviously, the Winterhawks aren’t waiting for the outcome of that appeal.

Shepherd reports that the Winterhawks “asked the Oregon Legislature to change the law in 2017. The Senate approved the Winterhawks’ proposal, but the House rejected it as too broad.

“So the team is trying again. Lawmakers expect the new bill will pass.”

Shepherd’s complete story is right here.


F Mason Shaw of the Medicine Hat Tigers has been cleared to return to skating. Shaw has Tigers Logo Officialbeen in Minneapolis, where the Minnesota Wild’s medical staff gave him a going over. He suffered a knee injury that needed surgery while with the Wild’s rookie team at a preseason NHL tournament on Sept. 10. . . . “I’m very excited,” Shaw told CHAT News Today. “I came down here looking for that news, and to be able to leave Minnesota knowing I can come back on skates is something I’m looking forward to, and it’s a long time coming. It’s time to get some skates on.” . . . There isn’t a timetable for his return but he hopes to be back in time for the playoffs. . . . Last season, Shaw, a fourth-round pick by the Wild in the 2017 bantam draft, had 27 goals and 67 assists in 71 games.


If you like what you get here, please consider clicking on the DONATE button over there to the right and helping the cause.

If you have a tip or just want to chat, email me at greggdrinnan@gmail.com. You are able to follow me on Twitter at @gdrinnan.

And don’t forget that the domain name here is greggdrinnan.com.

Enjoy!


Another set of twins has been added to our list to those who played together in the WHL.

Jeremy and Joshua Schappert, now 29, were with the Seattle Thunderbirds. Jeremy whlplayed five seasons (2005-10) with the Thunderbirds; Joshua was there from 2005-07 and for 23 games in 2007-08.

Twins who played together . . .

Darren and Trevor Kruger, Swift Current (1987-89)

Bob and Ted McAneeley, Edmonton (Calgary Buffaloes, 1966-67; Edmonton Oil Kings, 1968-69)

Trevor and Troy Pohl, Portland (1986-88)

Jeremy and Joshua Schappert, Seattle (2005-08)

Rich and Ron Sutter, Lethbridge Broncos (1980-83)

Kaeden and Keenan Taphorn, Kootenay (active)

——

Twins who played but not together . . .

Connor and Curtis Honey, Seattle, Brandon (2011-14)

Kris and Ryan Russell, Medicine Hat and Kootenay (2003-07)

Beck and Will Warm, Tri-City and Edmonton (active)

——

Officials who are twins and work together . . .

Chad and Cody Huseby, linesmen from Red Deer (active)


Scoreboard

WEDNESDAY:

At Regina, F Sam Steel drew five assists to lead the Pats to a 7-3 victory over the Saskatoon Blades. . . . Regina (25-20-5) holds down the Eastern Conference’s first wild-ReginaPats100card spot, six points ahead of the Blades. . . . Saskatoon (23-23-3) is four points ahead of Prince Albert, which holds two games in hand. . . . Including in Steel’s night was his 300th career regular-season point. Steel now has 303 points, including 196 assists, in 237 games. . . . Earlier in the game, Regina F Cam Hebig got point No. 200. The first 193 points of Hebig’s WHL career came with the Blades, who dealt him to Regina earlier this month. . . . D Josh Mahura (17), who also had three assists, gave the Pats a 1-0 lead at 2:39 of the first period. . . . Saskatoon F Chase Wouters (14) tied it at 8:30. . . . Regina took control with the game’s next four goals. D Libor Hajek (9), an acquisition from the Blades, gave the Pats a 2-1 lead at 12:21. . . . F Nick Henry (8) upped it to 3-1 at 4:43 of the second period, and F Jesse Gabrielle (6) scored, on a PP, at 10:51. . . . F Jared Legien (18) made it 5-1, on another PP, at 14:29. . . . Saskatoon then got two goals from F Max Gerlach, who has 22 this season. He made it 5-2 at 19:15, then 5-3 just 32 seconds into the third period. . . . Hebig iced it with his 33rd and 34th goals, the latter shorthanded, at 1:13 and 12:31. . . . Hajek and Hebig also had an assist each. . . . D Jake Kustra had two assists for Saskatoon. . . . Regina was 3-6 on the PP; Saskatoon was 1-7. . . . G Ryan Kubic, who started the season with Saskatoon, stopped 26 shots for Regina. At the other end, G Tyler Brown, who began the season with the Pats, blocked 38 shots for the Blades. . . . The Blades hold a 4-2-0 edge in the season series, but it isn’t that lopsided because the Pats are 2-2-2. That means the Blades have eight points and the Pats have six. Ahh, the loser point is a glorious thing, isn’t it? . . . Saskatoon, which beat the Pats 4-3 in OT in Saskatoon on Saturday, was missing F Eric Florchuk, who is at the Top Prospects Game. . . . The Pats continue to be without F Jake Leschyshyn. . . . The Blades lost D Evan Fiala to a cross-checking major and game misconduct at 14:29 of the second period for a hit on Steel, who wasn’t injured. . . . Announced attendance: 5,454.


At Edmonton, D Kristians Rubins scored in OT to give the Medicine Hat Tigers a 4-3 victory over the Oil Kings. . . . Medicine Hat (25-19-5) had lost its previous four games (0-Tigers Logo Official2-2). The Tigers lead the Central Division by six points over Lethbridge. . . . Edmonton (13-27-7) has lost two straight (0-1-1). . . . The Oil Kings took a 1-0 lead when F Colton Kehler (22) scored, on a PP, at 14:39 of the first period. . . . The Tigers scored the next three goals, all in the second period. F Ryan Jevne (12) got a PP score at 13:03. D Dalton Gally made it 2-1 with his first goal, at 18:34. F Josh Williams (6) upped it to 3-1 at 18:45. . . . The Oil Kings tied it on third-period goals from F David Kope (7), at 11:54, and F Tomas Soustal (12), at 14:32. . . . D Matthew Robertson assisted on both of those Edmonton goals. . . . Rubins won it at 1:03 of OT. He has five goals, three of them winners with two of those coming in OT. . . . F Ryan Chyzowski had two assists for the Tigers, with Jevne adding one. . . . Edmonton was 1-2 on the PP; Medicine Hat was 1-5. . . . G Jordan Hollett stopped 27 shots for Medicine Hat, including a stop on Soustal on a penalty shot at 3:30 of the third period. . . . G Josh Dechaine stopped 36 shots for the Oil Kings. . . . Announced attendance: 6,008.


At Lethbridge, F Kole Lind had four points, including the OT winner on a breakaway, as the Kelowna Rockets beat the Hurricanes, 4-3. . . . Kelowna (30-14-3) has won two in a KelownaRocketsrow. It leads the Western Conference by a point over Everett. . . . Lethbridge (22-21-5) has lost three straight (0-2-1). It is second in the Central Division, four points ahead of Kootenay. . . . D Kaedan Korczak (2) gave Kelowna a 1-0 lead 20 seconds into the second period. . . . Lethbridge F Jadon Joseph (5) tied it 12 seconds later. . . . Lind, who finished with two goals and two assists, put the visitors out front, on a PP, at 10:02. . . . The home team took a 3-2 lead on goals from F Jordy Bellerive (31), at 18:14 of the second, and D Igor Merezhko (4), at 14:00 of the third period. . . . Kelowna F Carsen Twarynski (31) forced OT when he scored at 19:22. . . . Lind won it at 4:33 of OT. . . . Kelowna had a 6-1 edge in OT shots. . . . F Nolan Foote had two assists for the winners, with Twarynski adding one. . . . F Zane Franklin had two assists for Lethbridge and Joseph had one. . . . A tip of the Taking Note hat to Kelowna head coach Jason Smith for giving the start to G Cole Tisdale. The 15-year-old is from Lethbridge so got to make his second career WHL start in his hometown where he began the season with the minor midget AAA Hurricanes. He is with the Rockets due to injuries to James Porter and Roman Basran. . . . Tisdale earned the victory with 25 saves. . . . Lethbridge G Reece Klassen stopped 45 shots. . . . Kelowna was 1-2 on the PP; Lethbridge was 0-2. . . . The Hurricanes were without D Calen Addison for a second straight game. He’s at the Top Prospects Game. . . . Lethbridge also is without injured forwards Dylan Cozens and Taylor Ross. Before being injured, they were on the Hurricanes’ top line, along with Logan Barlage. . . . Announced attendance: 3,974.


At Langley, B.C., G Dawson Weatherill stopped 31 shots and F Kailer Yamamoto had two goals as the Spokane Chiefs beat the Vancouver Giants, 5-0. . . . Spokane (26-19-3) opened SpokaneChiefsa seven-game stretch of road games by winning its fourth straight. The Chiefs are fourth in the U.S. Division, one point behind Seattle and two ahead of Tri-City. Spokane and Tri-City hold down the Western Conference’s two wild-card berths. . . . Vancouver (25-16-7) has lost three in a row (0-2-1). It is third in the B.C. Division, one point behind Victoria. . . . Weatherill, an 18-year-old sophomore from  Red Deer, has two career shutouts, both of them coming this season. . . . F Zach Fischer (21) got the Chiefs’ offence started at 1:03 of the first period. . . . Yamamoto, who has eight goals, scored 59 seconds into the second period and again at 3:10. The second goal came with the Chiefs shorthanded. . . . Yamamoto has seven goals and 10 assists in a seven-game point streak. He has put together seven straight multi-point games. . . . F Luke Toporowski (4) and F Hudson Elynuik (23), who also had two assists, had Spokane’s other goals. . . . Elynuik now has 201 career points, 125 of them assists. . . . Vancouver starter David Tendeck stopped 23 of 27 shots through two periods. Trent Miner came on to play the third period. In his WHL debut, he stopped 14 of 15 shots in 20 minutes. . . . Each team was 0-6 on the power play. . . . Spokane was missing D Ty Smith, who is at the Top Prospects Game. . . . The Giants are without F Milos Roman, who has been seen with a walking boot on one foot. . . . Announced attendance: 2,579.


THURSDAY (all times local):

No Games Scheduled.


FRIDAY (all times local):

Prince George at Prince Albert, 7 p.m.

Edmonton at Saskatoon, 7:05 p.m.

Moose Jaw at Lethbridge, 7 p.m.

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

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

Portland at Kamloops, 7 p.m.

Victoria vs. Vancouver, at Langley, B.C., 7:30 p.m.

Seattle at Everett, 7:35 p.m.


TWEET OF THE DAY

Free beer at WHL game . . . Savoie family may ask for exceptional status . . . Rebels snap ugly streak . . . Thunderbirds win, again

A LITTLE OF THIS . . .

Will free beer draw fans to a hockey game?

The Vancouver Giants may find out tonight (Wednesday) when they play host to the Spokane VancouverChiefs at the Langley Events Centre.

If you are of legal drinking age, you need to get a wristband prior to entering the facility. In order to get that wristband, you will have to show two pieces of ID.

That will allow you to get one free Trading Post Lager. If you aren’t yet 19 years of age, you will be able to get a free can of pop.

Rob Williams of dailyhive.com has the beer story and more on the Giants right here.


Two more messages on Tuesday means two more sets of twins in the WHL, although they didn’t play together.

Of course, a trade could change that for 18-year-olds Beck and Will Warm. Beck, a goaltender, is in his second season with the Tri-City Americans, while Will, a defenceman, is completing his second season with the Edmonton Oil Kings. They are from Whistler, B.C.

I also have been reminded of the Russell brothers. Now 30, the twins are from Red Deer. Kris played four seasons (2003-07) with the Medicine Hat Tigers and now is in his 11th NHL season. Ryan played with the Kootenay Ice for four seasons (2003-07). He last played in 2015-16 with the Cardiff Devils of the British Elite league and now is an amateur scout with the NHL’s San Jose Sharks.

So put the Becks and the Russells on a list with Connor and Curtis Honey as twins who played in the WHL but not on the same team.

Bob and Ted McAneeley, Rich and Ron Sutter, Darren and Trevor Kruger, and Trevor and Troy Pohl are twins who were teammates in the WHL. Of course, the Kaphorn twins, Kaeden and Keenan, now are with the Kootenay Ice.

And we can’t forget Chad and Cody Huseby, twin brothers who work as WHL linesmen based in Red Deer.


The WHL has yet to grant exceptional status to a 15-year-old player, a move that would allow him to play an entire season. Matthew Savoie may become No. 1 on the WHL’s list.

A rule prohibits WHL teams from using 15-year-olds for more than five games, although whlexceptions are made for players selected in the bantam draft under emergency conditions. Savoie, though, won’t turn 15 until Jan. 1, 2019, so isn’t eligible for the WHL bantam draft until 2019.

From St. Albert, Alta., he has 61 points, including 20 goals, in 19 games with the Northern Alberta X-Treme bantam prep team.

Were his family to apply for and be granted exceptional status, Savoie would become eligible for the 2019 bantam draft and could play a full-time role in 2019-20.

His family also is looking at the NCAA route. In fact, Matthew’s brother Carter, who turned 16 on Tuesday, already has made a verbal commitment to the U of Denver. Carter has 40 points, 13 of them goals, in 24 games with the X-Treme prep team in the CSSHL. He was a ninth-round selection by the Regina Pats in the WHL’s 2017 bantam draft.

Dhiren Mahiban of The Canadian Press has more right here.


A few roster notes (all injuries undisclosed unless otherwise noted): The Edmonton Oil Kings list G Boston Bilous as being out week-to-week with an illness. Here’s hoping the mumps haven’t made a return. . . . The Kelowna Rockets have two goaltenders out — James Porter is week-to-week and Roman Basran is indefinite. That may mean a lengthy stay on the roster for G Cole Tisdale, 15, of the minor midget AAA Lethbridge Hurricanes. . . . The Moose Jaw Warriors are listing D Jett Woo as week-to-week. . . . F Regan Nagy of the Prince Albert Raiders is out indefinitely. He appeared to injure his right knee during Saturday’s 3-2 OT victory in Medicine Hat. . . . The Seattle Thunderbirds show F Tyler Carpendale as having a season-ending injury. A freshman from Powell River, B.C., he had three goals and two assists in 19 games. Carpendale, who will turn 18 on Friday, was a sixth-round pick in the 2015 bantam draft. . . . The Tri-City Americans continue to list four top-end players on their injury list — D Roman Kalinichenko, four weeks; D Juuso Valimaki, one week; F Michael Rasmussen, one week; F Kyle Olson, four-to-six weeks. . . . The Victoria Royals show D Chaz Reddekopp as being out four-to-six weeks.


F Sean Richards of the Everett Silvertips has drawn a two-game suspension for match penalty he was given at 14:59 of the third period of Sunday’s 4-1 victory over the visiting Swift Current Broncos. . . . Richards, who has 18 goals and 21 assists in 46 games, served a one-game suspension for a headshot major earlier in the season. . . . He will miss a home-and-home weekend series with the Seattle Thunderbirds, then be eligible to return for Sunday’s game against visiting Spokane.


Scoreboard

TUESDAY:

At Cranbrook, B.C., the Kootenay Ice scored four times in a span of 2:39 in the second period en route to a 7-3 victory over the Lethbridge Hurricanes. . . . The Ice (21-23-3) is Kootenaynewthird in the Central Division, three points behind the Hurricanes (22-21-4). . . . Kootenay is 1-1-0 on a seven- game homestand. . . . The Hurricanes went 2-2-1 on a trip into B.C. They hurried home from Cranbrook because they’re home to the Kelowna Rockets tonight. . . . F Jordy Bellerive (30) gave the visitors a 1-0 lead at 11:14 of the first period. . . . The Ice responded with five straight goals. . . . F Brad Ginnell (7) got it started at 18:05. . . . F Peyton Krebs (10) started the second-period explosion, on a PP, at 0:56. . . . F Kaeden Taphorn (4) made it 3-1 at 1:37. His twin brother, Keenan, upped it to 4-1 with his sixth goal, at 2:28. . . . The home team went up 5-1 when F Brett Davis scored at 3:35. . . . The Hurricanes got the next two goals, from F Keltie Jeri-Leon (4), at 12:44, and F Brad Morrison (17), at 17:35. . . . The Ice put it away with third-period goal from F Colton Veloso (16), on a PP, at 0:26, and Davis (16), shorthanded, at 17:38. . . . Kootenay got three assists from F Colton Kroeker, two from D Martin Bodak, and one each from Veloso, Krebs and Ginnell. . . . Jeri-Leon added two helpers for Lethbridge, with Morrison and Bellerive each getting one. . . . Kootenay was 2-4 on the PP; Lethbridge was 0-2. . . . The Ice got 24 saves from G Duncan McGovern. . . . Lethbridge stared Logan Flodell gave up five goals on 21 shots in 23:35. Reece Klassen finished up, stopping nine of 10 shots in 35:14. . . . The Ice had F Gillian Kohler back in the lineup after he received medical clearance following the second concussion of his season. The Swiss freshman hadn’t played since Jan. 1. . . . D Calen Addison was among Lethbridge’s scratches. He is at the Top Prospects Game in Guelph Ont. . . . The Hurricanes remain without F Dylan Cozens (week-to-week) and F Taylor Ross (day-to-day), both of whom are out with undisclosed injuries. . . . The Ice scratched D Dallas Hines, who is listed as day-to-day on the WHL’s weekly roster report. They also scratched D Loeden Schaufler and D Bobby Russell, who weren’t on the report. . . . Before the game, the Ice announced it has brought back D Nolan Orzeck, 16, and he was in the lineup last night. From Calgary, Orzeck has three goals and 10 assists in 24 games with the midget AAA Calgary Northstars. He was a fourth-round pick in the 2016 WHL bantam draft. Orzeck played one game with the Ice earlier in the season. . . . Announced attendance: 2,054.


At Red Deer, F Mason McCarty scored twice to help the Rebels end a 13-game losing skid Red Deerwith a 4-1 victory over the Medicine Hat Tigers. . . . Red Deer (11-25-11) had been 0-7-6 in its previous 13 outings. . . . Medicine Hat (24-19-5) has lost four in a row (0-2-2). It leads the Central Division by five points over Lethbridge. . . . The visitors took a 1-0 lead when F Jaeger White (7) scored at 4:42 of the first period. . . . McCarty, who has 24 goals, got the next two goals, at 13:53 of the first period and 16:23 of the third. . . . F Grayson Pawlenchuk (16) gave the Rebels a 3-1 lead at 17:52, and F Kristian Reichel (16) added the empty-netter at 18:28. . . . Pawlenchuk also had an assist. . . . Each team was 0-1 on the PP. . . . G Ethan Anders stopped 36 shots for Red Deer, eight more than Medicine Hat’s Michael Bullion. . . . The Rebels were without D Alex Alexeyev, who has returned to Russia following the sudden death of his mother on Monday morning. . . . Announced attendance: 3,392.


At Kent, Wash., the Seattle Thunderbirds erased a three-goal deficit and then scored three times in the shootout to beat the Brandon Wheat Kings, 6-5. . . . Seattle (25-16-6) has Seattlewon five in a row. It is third in the U.S. Division, four points behind Portland. . . . Brandon (28-15-5) has lost six in a row (0-3-3). It is third in the East Division, nine points behind Swift Current and eight ahead of Regina. . . . The Wheat Kings went 0-3-2 in the U.S. Division. . . . Brandon’s road trip continues with games in Cranbrook, B.C., against the Kootenay Ice on Friday and Saturday. . . . The Wheat Kings got the game’s first two goals, from F Connor Gutenberg (15), at 6:55 of the first period, and F Ty Lewis, at 10:16. . . . F Donovan Neuls (18) got Seattle on the scoreboard at 15:25. . . . Brandon went ahead 4-1 on second-period goals from F Stelio Mattheos (32), shorthanded, at 3:15, and F Linden McCorrister (14), on a PP, at 8:56. . . . The Thunderbirds closed to within a goal as D Jake Lee (3) scored at 14:48 and F Noah Philp got his 11th at 17:22. . . . Lewis (28) restored Brandon’s two-goal lead at 4:53 of the third period. . . . Seattle tied it on goals from F Dillon Hamaliuk (12), at 12:29, and F Zack Andrusiak (22), at 18:46. . . . Andrusiak also had two assists, giving him two goals and five helpers over his past two games. In a seven-game point streak, he has four goals and nine assists. . . . Philp, F Blake Bargar and Neuls scored for Seattle in the shootout, with only Lewis counting for Brandon. . . . Philp and Lee each had an assist for Seattle. . . . F Evan Weinger and Lewis each picked up two assists for Brandon, with McCorrister and Mattheos adding one apiece. . . . Brandon was 1-4 on the PP; Seattle was 0-4. . . . The Thunderbirds got 24 saves from G Dorrin Luding, while Brandon’s Logan Thompson stopped 35 shots. . . . The Thunderbirds had G Liam Hughes back from injury and backing up Luding, so G Cole Schwebius has been returned to the major midget Okanagan Rockets. . . . The Wheat Kings were without F Luka Burza, who is taking part in the Top Prospects extravaganza in Guelph, Ont. . . . Announced attendance: 4,362.


At Spokane, D Filip Kral, with his mother in the stands, had two goals to lead the Chiefs to a 4-2 victory over the Swift Currrent Broncos. . . . Spokane (25-19-3) has won three in a SpokaneChiefsrow and will play its next seven games on the road. Spokane and Tri-City are tied for the Western Conference’s two wild-card spots. They also are three points behind third-place Seattle in the U.S. Division. . . . The Chiefs went 6-0-0 against the East Division this season. . . . The Broncos (33-12-4) have lost three straight (0-2-1). They went 2-2-1 in the U.S. Division, and remain second in the overall standings, nine points behind Moose Jaw. . . . F Kailer Yamamoto (6) gave the Chiefs the lead 31 seconds into the game. . . . F Giorgio Estephan (23) tied it, on a PP, at 16:39 of the first period. . . . Kral, who is from Czech Republic, gave Spokane a 2-1 lead at 17:26. . . . The Broncos tied it on D Artyom Minulin’s ninth goal at 4:31 of the second period. . . . F Ethan McIndoe snapped the tie with his 14th goal, at 16:15 of the second period. . . . Kral (5) added insurance at 13:10 of the third. . . . Spokane got two assists from each of F Jaret Anderson-Dolan and D Jeff Faith, with McIndoe and Yamamoto each getting one. . . . Broncos F Aleksi Heponiemi had his 28-game point streak snapped. He put up 19 goals and 50 assists during the streak. . . . Swift Current was 1-5 on the PP; Spokane was 0-2. . . . The Chiefs got 28 saves from G Dawson Weatherill, who hadn’t played since Jan. 6 due to injury. . . . G Stuart Skinner stopped 21 shots for the Broncos. . . . D Ty Smith of the Chiefs was scratched. He’s at the Top Prospects Game in Guelph, Ont. . . . Announced attendance: 3,410.


WEDNESDAY (all times local):

Saskatoon at Regina, 7 p.m.

Medicine Hat at Edmonton, 7 p.m.

Kelowna at Lethbridge, 7 p.m.

Spokane vs. Vancouver, at Langley, B.C., 7 p.m.

Wings win in Hicketts’ debut . . . Two WHLers out of prospects’ game . . . Chiefs send goalie back to Bobcats

MacBeth

F Fredrik Pettersson (Calgary, 2005-07) has signed a three-year contract extension with the ZSC Lions Zurich (Switzerland, NL A). This season, he has 21 goals and 20 assists in 38 games. He leads the Lions in goals and points, and is second in the league in goals and seventh in points. He has been named to Sweden’s Olympic team. . . .

F Ned Lukacevic (Spokane, Swift Current, 2001-06) has signed a contract for the rest of this season with the Odense Bulldogs (Denmark, Metal Ligaen). He started the season with Újpesti TE Budapest (Hungary, Erste Liga), going pointless in two games. He was released from a tryout contract on Sept. 28. . . .

F Chase Witala (Prince George, 2010-16) has signed a contract for the rest of this season with Starbulls Rosenheim (Germany, Oberliga) after being released from a tryout contract by Žilina (Slovakia, Extraliga). He was pointless in two games. . . . Witala started the season with the Atlanta Gladiators (ECHL), putting up three goals and seven assists in 11 games. He also was pointless in five games with the Norfolk Admirals (ECHL).

F Curtis Hamilton (Saskatoon, 2006-11) has signed a contract for the rest of this season with SaiPa Lappeenranta (Finland, Liiga) after being released by mutual agreement on Monday by Tappara Tampere (Finland, Liiga). He was pointless in five games after signing with Tappara on Dec. 31. . . . Hamilton played 43 games with SaiPa last season before being assigned on loan to TPS Turku (Finland, Liiga) on Feb. 15. He had 14 goals and 13 assists in 43 games SaiPa, and one goal in two games with TPS.


A LITTLE OF THIS . . .

D Joe Hicketts became the first product of the WHL’s Victoria Royals to reach the NHL when he made his debut with the Detroit Red Wings as they beat the host New Jersey VictoriaRoyalsDevils, 3-0, on Monday night.

Paired with 6-foot-4 Jonathan Ericsson, the 5-foot-8 Hicketts took a regular shift and killed penalties — he played 23 shifts totalling 15 minutes 13 seconds. He had one hit, three blocks and two giveaways. He also was plus-1, just missing a second plus when he left the ice on a change. In fact, the replay from the camera behind the New Jersey net shows Hicketts still on the ice by the gate as his replacement heads into the Devils’ zone.

Hicketts was recalled by the Red Wings on Sunday after D Trevor Daley was injured on Saturday. 

Hicketts, 21, is from Kamloops. His parents, Lee-Gaye and Mike, were in New Jersey for last night’s game.

Hicketts played four seasons (2012-16) with the Royals, and represented Canada twice at the World Junior Championship. He signed with the Red Wings as a free agent and was in his second season with the AHL’s Grand Rapids Griffins.

“He’s excelled at every level,” Detroit head coach Jeff Blashill told Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press. “His skill set doesn’t scream NHL in terms of skating, size, body, all that, but he’s proven people wrong his whole life. He was one of the best defensemen when he played for the Canadian world junior team, was out there in big moments. He was a big piece of the Calder Cup championship team last (season) in Grand Rapids.

“He brings stuff to the table that I think can help our team.”

The Red Wings are at home to the Philadelphia Flyers tonight and Daley isn’t expected to play, so Hicketts may get in another NHL game. The Red Wings then are at home to the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday before the NHL goes into its all-star break.


Two WHL players have been taken off rosters for Thursday’s Top Prospects Game that is whlscheduled to be played in Guelph, Ont.

D Alex Alexeyev of the Red Deer Rebels has returned home to St. Petersburg, Russia, following the sudden death of his mother, Julia, on Monday morning.

D Jett Woo of the Moose Jaw Warriors also has been replaced. He didn’t play in Sunday’s 5-3 victory over the Blades in Saskatoon. At the time, it was said that the Warriors wanted to get D Matthew Benson into the lineup so were giving Woo some rest. Now it seems that he is injured.

Matthew Gourlie, who follows the Warriors for DUBnetwork.ca, tweeted Monday afternoon that “Woo said he ‘didn’t feel good’ during warm-up” prior to Friday’s 5-3 victory over the Pats in Regina. According to Gourlie, Woo played a few shifts, “then sat the rest of the game and was scratched Sunday.”

D Xavier Bernard of the QMJHL’s Drummondville Voltigeurs and D Giovanni Vallati of the OHL’s Kitchener Rangers were named as replacements.


The Spokane Chiefs have returned G Bailey Brkin, 18, to the AJHL’s Lloydminster Bobcats.

The Chiefs acquired Brkin’s rights from the Kootenay Ice earlier in the month and listed SpokaneChiefshim as an AP while he was with the Bobcats. The Chiefs added him to their roster when G Dawson Weatherill suffered an undisclosed injury that has kept him out six games.

In four starts with the Chiefs, Brkin went 3-1-0, 2.51, .921.

“The terms of our affiliated player loan agreement with Lloydminster dictated that Bailey would be returned as soon as Dawson was available to play,” Chiefs’ general manager Scott Carter said in a news release. “With Weatherill ready to return to the lineup this week, we had to return Brkin to his regular club.”

Weatherill is 12-9-3, 3.23, .888 this season. Donovan Buskey, the other goaltender on the roster, is 8-8-0, 3.65, .868.


A tweet from TBird Tidbits (@TBirdTidbits) informs us of another set of WHL twins, although Connor and Curtis Honey didn’t play together.

From Edmonton, the twins now are 23.

Connor, a forward, played two plus seasons (2011-14) with the Seattle Thunderbirds. Curtis was a goaltender with the Brandon Wheat Kings at the same time.

“In their one game against each other,” TBird Tidbits notes, “Curtis won the battle, not allowing a goal by his brother.”

Earlier, with the help of readers, we had identified Bob and Ted McAneeley, Rich and Ron Sutter, Darren and Trevor Kruger, and Trevor and Troy Pohl as twins who were teammates in the WHL. Of course, the Kaphorn twins, Kaeden and Keenan, now are with the Kootenay Ice.

We also were informed via email of Chad and Cody Huseby, twin brothers who work as WHL linesman based in Red Deer.


Scoreboard

MONDAY:

No Games Scheduled.


TUESDAY (all times local):

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

Medicine Hat at Red Deer, 7 p.m.

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

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


TWEET OF THE DAY