Scattershooting after watching the GOAT vs. The Kid . . . Chiefs’ Larson OK, just sore . . . Boyko sparks Ams’ victory

Scattershooting

Tony Romo is in his second season as an analyst on CBS-TV’s No. 1 NFL crew. He already is No. 1 in his field. He was at his best — and then some — on Sunday as he worked the game between the New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs. Oh my, was he good!


grandma

By now you may have heard that Gladys Knight is to sing The Star Spangled Banner at the Super Bowl in her hometown of Atlanta. Richmond, B.C., blogger TC Chong expects her to arrive on The Midnight Train To Georgia.

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Here’s RJ Currie of SportsDeke.com: “Gladys Knight will sing the national anthem at this year’s Super Bowl. Pip Pip hooray!”


Chong also reports that “China has successfully grown cotton on the moon. President Trump immediately put a 25-per-cent tariff on it.”



If you’re like me and spend time watching PTI five days a week, would you agree that we are watching Michael Wilbon grow into an angry old man? Or is it all part of a shtick?


I really wish someone could explain how the Excited States got to the point where the Clemson Tigers, the NCAA’s top football team, were treated to fast food in the White House one day before Michael Strahan, a host on the TV show Good Morning America, invited the team for a visit and a feast of lobster and caviar. I mean, shouldn’t it be the other way around?



If you are a gatherer of hockey cards, you may want to get them out and start taking a good look at the backgrounds. That’s because Stephen Zerance has discovered the Menendez brothers, who killed their parents in 1989, in front row seats at an NBA game that is part of a 1989-90 card that features Mark Jackson of the New York Knicks. . . . This is an interesting story and it’s all right here.


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You think it’s easy being a reporter in this day and age of high technology? Here’s a tweet from Perry Bergson, who covers the Brandon Wheat Kings for the Brandon Sun . . .


A quiz from Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times . . .

President Trump was widely panned for the Clemson football team’s White House visit because he:

a) Served the players fast-food hamburgers and pizza

b) Regaled them with nonstop political-football stories

c) Kept all the Happy Meal prizes for himself.

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Here’s another note from Perry, about something he saw on social media . . .

Jim DeBow, via Twitter, on President Trump feeding the Clemson football team hamburgers and pizza during their White House visit: “He was going to get Taco Bell but found out that Mexico wouldn’t pay for it.”


A couple of NBA-related notes from Bruce Jenkins of the San Francisco Chronicle . . .

“History won’t view the (Houston) Rockets as a significant powerhouse, but (James) Harden is lodging himself among the all-time greats of individual scoring.”

DeMarcus Cousins made his debut with the Golden State Warriors on Friday, and that resulted in this from Jenkins . . .

“When Cousins fouled out and returned to the bench to rousing applause, (Steph) Curry was beaming. He looked like a parent at his kid’s school play. Harden may win his second consecutive MVP award, and (Boston’s Kyrie) Irving surely will dazzle fans right to the end. In the category of pure leadership, Curry stands alone.”



ThisThat

F Cordel Larson of the Spokane Chiefs, who left a Saturday night game on a stretcher and SpokaneChiefswas taken to hospital, is on the road to recovery.

Larson, 17, was injured in the second period of a 2-1 shootout loss to the visiting Tri-City Americans when he crashed heavily into the end boards.

Larson was released from hospital on Sunday and is expected to join his teammates at the arena today. He won’t take part in practice, but he will be reunited with his teammates.

Dan Lambert, the Chiefs’ head coach, told Taking Note on Sunday night that Larson “is doing well . . . just soreness.”

Lambert also told Taking Note that the play on which Larson was injured “wasn’t a dirty hit . . . just unfortunate.”

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So . . . pretend for a moment that you work for the WHL and your main responsibility is to mete out discipline.

On Saturday night in Spokane, F Cordel Larson of the Chiefs skated down the right side of the offensive zone and went wide on Tri-City Americans D Aaron Hyman.

Hyman put a hip into Larson, who went heavily into the end boards and was down for about seven minutes.

When all was said and done, Hyman had a boarding major and game misconduct, while Larson was on a stretcher and on his way to hospital.

Larson, a 17-year-old freshman from Weyburn, Sask., is listed on the Chiefs’ website at 5-foot-9 and 168 pounds.

Hyman, a 20-year-old Calgarian, is in his fourth full WHL season. The Americans list him at 6-foot-5 and 221 pounds.

As you watch the video in the above tweet, ask yourself: Does that hit warrant a suspension?

The WHL decided it didn’t because Hyman was in the Americans’ lineup on Sunday as they met the Winterhawks in Portland.



The above tweet was posted on Saturday.

If you aren’t familiar with one of the great stories in WHL history, it all began on Jan. 19, 1983, when the Seattle Thunderbirds traded F Tom Martin to the Victoria Cougars in exchange for a bus. Yes, it really happened.

Evan Weiner of nhl.com wrote about the trade on Oct. 31, 2008, and it’s all right here.


SUNDAY HIGHLIGHTS:

The Red Deer Rebels built up a 3-0 lead and went on to beat the host Calgary Hitmen, 4-1. . . . Red Deer (27-14-3) now is second in the Central Division, one point behind Edmonton Red Deerand a point ahead of Lethbridge and Medicine Hat. . . . Calgary (21-19-4) has lost three in a row and now is 10 points behind Medicine hat. . . . The Rebels were playing for the third time in fewer than 48 hours; they went 2-1-0. . . . F Brandon Hagel (27) got Red Deer started with a shorthanded goal at 1:49 of the first period. . . . F Alex Morozoff (8) upped it to 2-0 at 14:59, and F Arshdeep Bains (4) got it to 3-0 at 1:40 of the second. . . . Calgary got its goal fro F Hunter Campbell (2), shorthanded, at 9:50. . . . D Carson Sass (7) scored Red Deer’s fourth goal, on a PP, at 14:41. . . . Red Deer was 1-7 on the PP; Calgary was 0-2. . . . The Hitmen lost F Mark Kastelic at 16:32 of the second period when he was ejected with a match penalty for head-butting. . . . At 3:47 of the third period, Calgary D Egor Zamula was hit with a headshot major and game misconduct. . . . G Byron Fancy stopped 23 shots for Red Deer. . . . With G Carl Stankowski still out of action, G Jack McNaughton made his 19th straight start for the Hitmen. He stopped 28 shots. . . . The Hitmen scratched F Jake Kryski and F James Malm. . . . The Rebels were without D Alex Alexeyev. He left Saturday’s game in the second period, but came back and finished. However, he obviously was unable to play yesterday. . . . Red Deer also was without F Jeff de Wit, who was injured Saturday in a goal-mouth collision. . . . F Sean Tschigerl, a 15-year-old from Whitecourt, Alta., made his WHL debut with the Hitmen. The fourth-overall selection in the WHL’s 2018 bantam draft, he has 43 points, including 18 goals, with the OHA Edmonton prep team.


The Kamloops Blazers scored the game’s last two goals and beat the Cougars, 3-2 in OT, in Kamloops1Prince George. . . . Kamloops (17-24-3) went into the doubleheader in Prince George having lost six straight. Now the Blazers have won two in a row. They beat the Cougars 3-1 on Saturday night. . . . Kamloops is tied with Seattle for the Western Conference’s second wild-card spot, one point ahead of the Cougars. . . . Prince George (16-24-4) has lost three in a row. . . . Kamloops is 5-0-0 against the Cougars this season, having outscored them 20-8. On top of that, Kamloops now has won 10 straight games in Prince George. . . . The Blazers went 2-1-0 in playing three games in fewer than 48 hours. . . . F Josh Maser (18) gave the Cougars a 1-0 lead at 12:01 of the second period. . . . The Blazers tied it at 12:27 when D Montana Onyebuchi (5) scored. . . . F Matěj Toman (5) put the Cougars ahead 2-1 at 15:50. . . . F Martin Lang (10) pulled the Blazers even at 8:38 of the third period. . . . F Zane Franklin won it with his 21st goal, at 4:10 of OT. . . . Lang, who had a goal and an assist on Saturday, added an assist to his Sunday goal. . . . The Cougars failed to score on the game’s lone PP. . . . G Dylan Ferguson stopped 27 shots for Kamloops, eight fewer than the Cougars’ Taylor Gauthier, who made his ninth straight start. . . . F/D Jeff Faith returned to the Blazers’ lineup after serving a five-game suspension, but D Luke Zazula missed his second game in a row.


G Griffen Outhouse turned aside 39 shots to lead the Victoria Royals to a 2-1 victory over VictoriaRoyalsthe Silvertips in Everett. . . . Victoria (23-19-1) had lost its previous four games. The Royals are third in the B.C. Division, five points ahead of Kelowna with two games in hand. . . . Everett (33-12-2) has lost three straight. It leads the U.S. Division by nine points over Portland. . . . Outhouse stopped 13 shots in the first period, 12 in the second and 14 in the third. . . . F Tarun Fizer (10) put Victoria ahead at 1:40 of the second period. . . . Everett F Bryce Kindopp (23) tied it 57 seconds into the third. . . . F Kody McDonald (10) broke the tie at 7:54. . . . The Silvertips got 20 saves from G Max Palaga. . . . Both teams were playing for the third time in fewer than 48 hours — Victoria went 1-2-0; Everett was 0-3-0. . . . The Royals scratched D Ralph Jarratt, who apparently was injured while blocking a shot on Saturday night. . . . Victoria was able to dress only 16 skaters, two under the maximum. . . . D Gianni Fairbrother, who had been ill, was back in Everett’s lineup after a two-game absence.


G Talyn Boyko made 45 saves to lead the Tri-City Americans to a 3-2 victory over the tri-cityWinterhawks in Portland. . . . Tri-City (24-16-3) has points in four straight (3-0-1). It holds down the Western Conference’s first wild-card spot by 14 points, and also is fourth in the U.S. Division, just two points behind Spokane. . . . Portland (27-13-5) had won its previous two games. It is second in the U.S. Division, nine points behind Everett. . . . The Americans lead the season series, 5-0-0; Portland is 1-3-1. . . . The Americans played their third game in fewer than 48 hours and finished 3-0-0, with the first two victories both coming in shootouts. . . . Tri-City took a 1-0 lead at 10:49 of the first period when F Kyle Olson scored, on a PP, and never trailed. . . . Olson, who has 13 goals, made it 2-0 at 19:09. . . . F Cross Hanas (6) scored for Portland at 2:49 of the second period. . . . F Paycen Bjorklund (3) restored Tri-City’s two-goal lead at 5:59 of the third. . . . F Joachim Blickheld (40) pulled Portland to within one at 14:31 but the Winterhawks weren’t able to equalize. . . . The Winterhawks outshot the visitors 15-8, 14-5 and 18-5 by period. . . . Boyko, a 16-year-old freshman from Drumheller, Alta., was making his fourth start — his fifth  appearance — of the season. He is 2-1-1, 4.08, .886. The 6-foot-6 Boyko was a third-round pick by the Americans in the 2018 WHL bantam draft.


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Mattheos hat trick finishes Blades . . . Almeida, Langan too much for Pats . . . Fyten shines in his Edmonton debut


On the fourth day of our annual Christmas countdown, here are the Three Tenors, with Silent Night, and it’s all right here.


MacBeth

D Tomáš Kudělka (Lethbridge, 2005-07) has signed a contract for the rest of this season with Innsbruck (Austria, Erste bank Liga). He was released by Medveščak Zagreb (Croatia, Erste Bank Liga) on Friday for financial reasons. In 24 games, he had two goals and four assists. . . .

F Levko Koper (Spokane, 2006-11) has been released by Innsbruck (Austria, Erste Bank Liga). He had four goals and four assists in 27 games.


ThisThat

Germany won the IIHF World Junior Championship (Division I Group A) by going 4-1 (four regulation victories, one in OT) in the five-team tournament that was played on home-ice in Fussen. . . . By finishing first, Germany moves up to play with the big boys next season when the 2020 WJC is scheduled for the Czech Republic. . . . The German roster included F Yannik Valenti of the Vancouver Giants and F Sebastian Streu of the Regina Pats. Valenti had two goals and an assist in five game, while Streu had one assist. . . . Germany beat France, 6-1, in the final round on Saturday. . . . Belarus, which finished second at 3-2, dropped a 3-1 decision to Latvia on Saturday. The Belarusian roster included D Vladislav Yeryomenko of the Calgary Hitmen, F Vladimir Alistrov (Edmonton Oil Kings), F Igor Martynov (Victoria Royals), F Alexei Protas (Prince Albert Raiders), D Sergei Sapego (Prince Albert) and F Andrei Pavlenko (Edmonton).


The Swift Current Broncos have signed D Chase Lacombe, 16, to a WHL contract. Lacombe, from Moose Jaw, has three assists in 29 games with the SJHL’s Humboldt Broncos. . . . He was a fifth-round selection by the Edmonton Oil Kings in the WHL’s 2017 bantam draft. . . . The Oil Kings dealt Lacombe to the Broncos on Aug. 21, along with F Matthew Culling, a fourth-round pick in the 2019 bantam draft and a second-rounder in 2020 for D Jacson Alexander, D Chad Smithson and a sixth-round pick in 2020.


Scout Truman of the AJHL’s Drumheller Dragons has committed to the U of Massachussetts-Lowell and the River Hawks for 2021-21. Truman, 16, is from Lethbridge. He was a second-round selection by the Medicine Hat Tigers in the WHL’s 2017 bantam draft. . . . His brother Roc, 17, a forward who also plays for the Dragons, also has committed to the River Hawks for 2021-22.


With the WHL heading into the Christmas break after today games, don’t forget that there is a trade moratorium in place. It will be lifted on Dec. 27 at 12:01 a.m.

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COUNTDOWN TO DEADLINE

(WHL trade deadline: Jan. 10, 3 p.m. MT)

Saturday’s action:

No. of trades: 0.

Players: 0.

Bantam draft picks: 0.

Conditional draft picks: 0.

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Total deals (since Nov. 26):

No. of trades: 13.

Players: 29.

Bantam draft picks: 21.

Conditional draft picks: 5.

(Note: On Nov. 30, Kelowna traded F Jack Cowell, 19, to Kootenay for a third-round selection in the 2020 bantam draft. Cowell chose not to report and the deal was voided, so isn’t included in these totals.)


If you stop off here and enjoy what you see — or even if you don’t — feel free to click on the DONATE button over there on the right and make a contribution. Thanks in advance, and Merry Christmas.


The SJHL’s Weyburn Red Wings fired head coach Wes Rudy on Saturday. Rudy started with the Red Wings as their goaltending coach, then was promoted to assistant coach for 2015-16. He was in his third season as head coach, having replaced Bryce Thoma after the 2015-16 season. . . . The Red Wings reached the playoffs each of the previous two seasons. . . . This season, they were 10-19-3-0 going into last night’s game with the visiting Estevan Bruins. The Red Wings gave up six third-period goals and dropped an 8-2 decision to the Bruins. . . .  Assistant coach Kyle Haines, a former player in his first season on the coaching staff, was listed as Weyburn’s head coach on the online scoresheet.


SATURDAY HIGHLIGHTS:

F Stelio Mattheos completed his hat trick in OT to give the host Brandon Wheat Kings a 6-BrandonWKregular5 victory over the Saskatoon Blades. . . . Brandon (15-10-6) had lost its previous three games. . . . Saskatoon (21-10-4) has points in five straight (4-0-1). . . . The teams met Friday in Saskatoon, with the Blades prevailing, 3-2. . . . Last night, F Connor Gutenberg’s shorthanded goal, at 11:39 of the first period, gave the Wheat Kings a 1-0 lead and was the Teddy Bear goal. . . . The Blades went ahead 2-1 on first-period goals from F Chase Wouters (5), at 15:04, and F Max Gerlach, at 19:09. . . . The Wheat Kings took a 3-2 lead as F Cole Reinhardt (5) scored 37 seconds into the second period and F Ben McCartney (8) counted, on a PP, at 3:43. . . . Saskatoon D Dawson Davidson (7) tied it at 11:34. . . . Brandon took a 5-3 lead before the period ended as Mattheos scored twice, at 12:15 and 16:32. . . . The Blades forced OT on third-period goals from Gerlach (19), at 10:05, and F Tristen Robins (6), at 11:30. Robins is a Brandon native. . . . Mattheos, who also had an assist, scored his 26th goal, at 2:25 of OT, to win the game and complete his third career hat trick. . . . F Luka Burzan drew four assists for Brandon. . . . The Wheat Kings got 35 saves from G Ethan Kruger, 10 more than Saskatoon’s Nolan Maier. . . . Saskatoon F Riley McKay was unsuccessful on a penalty shot at 1:07 of OT. . . . The Wheat Kings remain without five injured players — D Braden Schneider, D Jonny Lambos, D Vince Iorio, F Jonny Hooker and F Lynden McCallum. . . . F Nolan Ritchie, who played for the Wheat Kings on Friday, was returned to the midget AAA Wheat Kings after the game.


F Justin Almeida had two goals and four assists — his first career six-point game — to MooseJawWarriorshelp the Moose Jaw Warriors to a 6-3 victory over the visiting Regina Pats. . . . Moose Jaw (17-8-5) had lost its previous two games. . . . The Pats slipped to 9-24-1. . . . On Friday night, the Pats beat the visiting Warriors, 2-1. . . . Last night, the Pats went ahead 1-0 when F Robbie Holmes scored 56 seconds into the game. . . . The Warriors tied it just 14 seconds later when F Tristin Langan scored the Teddy Bear goal, just like he did a year ago. . . . Almeida added a PP goal at 19:56. . . . F Austin Pratt (13) got Regina into a 2-2 tie, on a PP, at 11:41, only to have the Warriors grab a 4-2 lead on goals by D Dalton Hamaliuk (2), at 17:04 and Langan, at 18:57. . . . Holmes (6) scored Regina’s final goal, on a PP, getting the Pats to within 4-3 at 19:42. He also had an assist for a three-point game. . . . The Warriors put it away on goals from Almeida (8), on a PP, at 6:25 of the third period, and Langan (24), on another PP, at 14:59. . . . Moose Jaw was 3-7 on the PP; Regina was 2-6. . . . Almeida had six previous four-point games, but never more than that. He now has 42 points, including 34 assists, in 26 games. . . . Langan, who also had an assist, recorded his third career hat trick and fifth four-point outing while playing on his 20th birthday. . . . Langan has 54 points, including 30 assists, in 30 games. Last season, he finished with 42 points, 16 of them goals, in 70 games. . . . The Warriors were without F Luke Ormsby, who, according to the WHL website, was suspended for two games “for g.m. at Regina on Dec. 14.” Originally, the online scoresheet from Regina’s 2-1 victory on Friday showed Ormsby as having received a roughing minor and a game misconduct at 17:26 of the second period. But that was changed to a misconduct at some point after the game. Then, sometime Saturday evening, it was switched back to a game misconduct. No matter. Ormsby sat last night and will sit again on Dec. 27 when the Swift Current Broncos come to town. . . . The WHL doesn’t indicate what Ormsby did to warrant a suspension, but he apparently may or may not have spit his mouthguard at an opponent during an altercation.


The Prince Albert Raiders ran their home-ice record to 16-0-0 with a 7-5 victory over the PrinceAlbertSwift Current Broncos. . . . The Raiders (31-2-1) have won three in a row, including a 6-4 triumph in Swift Current on Friday. . . . The Broncos (6-25-2) have lost two straight. . . . The Raiders, who had a 56-18 edge in shots, took a 1-0 lead 4:48 into the game when F Sean Montgomery scored the Teddy Bear goal. . . . F Dawson Springer, 16, made his WHL debut with the Broncos after signing a WHL contract on Thursday and scored his first goal at 13:46 of the first period to forge a 1-1 tie. . . . Springer was acquired from the Everett Silvertips in a Dec. 3 deal that had F Max Patterson go the other way. Springer leads the Saskatchewan Midget AAA Hockey League with 21 goals in 27 games for the Prince Albert Mintos. . . . F Justin Nachbaur scored for the Raiders, on a PP, at 15:35. . . . The Broncos then scored three in a row to take a 4-2 lead. F Ethan O’Rourke (2) counted at 18:16, with F Joona Kiviniemi (9) scoring at 2:14 of the second and F Matthew Culling (4) finding net at 6:08. . . . The home side took control by scoring four times before the second period ended. Nachbaur (9) got his second at 8:22, before F Ozzy Wiesblatt (7), on a PP, tied it at 12:38. F Noah Gregor broke the tie with two goals, at 16:14 and 19:12. He’s got 19 goals. . . . F Alec Zawatsky (11) got the Broncos’ final goal on a PP, with F Parker Kelly (15) finishing the Raiders’ scoring. . . . The Broncos got 49 saves from G Joel Hofer. . . . G Brett Balas made his WHL debut for the Raiders, coming on in relief of starter Donovan Buskey, who gave up four goals on 10 shots in 26:08. Balas surrendered one goal on eight shots in 33:52. . . . Kivniemi, a Finnish freshman who will turn 17 on Monday, scored for a third straight game and also earned his first WHL assist. He has nine goals and one assist in 31 games. . . . The Broncos scratched veteran D Garrett Sambrook, who left Friday’s game in the second period after absorbing a high hit from Kelly.


The Lethbridge Hurricanes scored the game’s last three goals, all in the third period, to Lethbridgebeat the visiting Kamloops Blazers, 5-2. . . . Lethbridge (17-9-6) has points in three straight (2-0-1). . . . Kamloops (12-16-3) has lost six in a row going 0-5-1 on a Central Division trip that ended with this game. . . . F Kyrell Sopotyk (5) gave the visitors a 1-0 lead at 1:55 of the first period. . . . The Hurricanes grabbed a 2-1 lead on goals from F Jake Leschyshyn (21), at 6:07, and F Jordy Bellerive (14), on a PP, at 9:12. . . . F Connor Zary (9) got Kamloops back into a tie on a PP, at 13:34. . . . The home side won it in the third period as F Dylan Cozens (17) scored at 4:44, F Taylor Ross (19) counted at 10:12, and F Nick Henry (16) got the empty-netter at 18:35. . . . Bellerive added two assists to his goal. . . . Kamloops F Jermaine Loewen was back in the lineup after serving a three-game suspension.


F Andrew Fyten, who was acquired in a Thursday trade, scored in OT to give the host EdmontonOilKingsEdmonton Oil Kings a 3-2 victory over the Calgary Hitmen. . . . Edmonton (17-12-6) had lost its previous two games (0-1-1). . . . Calgary (15-14-4) has points in six straight (5-0-1). . . . The Oil Kings overcame a 2-0 deficit to win this one. . . . F Kaden Elder (13) gave Calgary a 1-0 lead at 18:30 of the first period, with F Jake Kryski (17) making it 2-0, on a PP, at 2:19 of the second. . . . F Vince Loschiavo (15), at 13:19 of the seocnd, and F David Kope (6), at 11:32 of the third, got Edmonton into a tie. . . . Fyten, in his first game with his new club, won it 40 seconds into OT with his ninth goal of the season. . . . Fyten also drew an assist on Kope’s goal. . . . The Oil Kings held a 44-34 edge in shots, including 16-8 in the third period. . . . Calgary G Jack McNaughton stopped 41 shots, nine more than Edmonton’s Dylan Myskiw. . . . F Trey Fix-Wolansky and F Quinn Benjafield were among the Oil Kings’ scratches. Both were injured in Wednesday’s 6-5 OT loss to the Raiders in Prince Albert. . . . F Kobe Verbicky, 15, made his WHL debut with the Oil Kings. From Victoria, he was a second-round pick by Edmonton in the WHL’s 2018 bantam draft. Verbicky plays for the North Island Silvertips of the B.C. Major Midget Hockey League.


F Leif Mattson scored twice, one of them of the bizarre variety, as the Kelowna Rockets KelownaRocketsskated to a 2-1 victory over the Tigers in Medicine Hat. . . . Kelowna (16-17-2) had lost its previous two games. It went 2-2-0 on a four-game dip into the Central Division. . . . Medicine Hat (17-15-3) had won its previous four games. . . . Mattson was credited with the game’s first goal, an empty-netter, after G Jordan Hollett vacated the Medicine Hat net during a delayed penalty against the Rockets and an errant Tigers pass ended up in their vacated goal. . . . At 11:09 of the second period, Mattson scored a more conventional goal, on a PP, for a 2-0 lead. He’s got 16 goals. . . . F James Hamblin (17) had Medicine Hat’s goal at 14:08 of the third period. . . . The Rockets got 31 stops from G Roman Basran, including 12 in the second period and 10 in the third. . . . Among Kelowna’s scratches were D Lassi Thomson, who has joined the Finnish national junior team, and D Libor Zabransky, who is with the Czech Republic. . . . Hollett stopped 18 shots for the Tigers. . . . G Mads Søgaard of the Tigers was on the bench, but will be joining Denmark’s national junior team. Medicine Hat is bringing in Garin Bjorklund, a 16-year-old from the Calgary Buffaloes, to backup Hollett. . . . Bjorklund was a first-round pick in the WHL’s 2017 bantam draft.


D Aaron Hyman scored in OT to give the Tri-City Americans a 3-2 victory over the tri-cityPortland Winterhawks in Kennewick, Wash. . . . Tri-City (16-12-2) has won two in a row. . . . Portland (19-11-3) has points in two straight (1-0-1). . . . They’ll play again today, this time in Portland. . . . Last night, the Winterhawks held a 2-0 lead with fewer than six minutes left in the third period. . . . Portland had gotten goals from F Joachim Blichfeld (30), shorthanded, at 18:27 of the second period, and F Michal Kvasnica (4), at 12:47 of the third. . . . F Nolan Yaremko got the Americans even with two goals, the first at 14:34 and the second, on a PP and with the extra attacker on the ice, with 9.6 seconds left in the period. . . . Hyman won it with his eighth goal at 3:26 of extra time. . . . Tri-City had an 18-9 edge in shots in the third period; Portland had a 4-1 edge in OT. . . . The Americans dressed 17 skaters — 10 forwards and seven defencemen. . . . F Booker Daniel, 17, made his WHL debut with the Americans. He plays for the major midget Cariboo Cougars, who play out of Prince George.


F D-Jay Jerome scored twice, including the Teddy Bear goal, as the host Victoria Royals VictoriaRoyalsdoubled up on the Vancouver Giants, 4-2. . . . Victoria (16-13-1) has won two straight. . . . Vancouver (21-8-2) has lost two in a row. . . . Jerome, who has 14 goals, got things started at 4:50 of the first period. . . . The Giants took a 2-1 lead before the period ended, with F Owen Hardy (7) scoring at 9:22 and F Tristen Nielsen (3) scoring, on a PP, at 17:29. . . . F Ty Yoder (2) got the Royals into a 2-2 tie at 15:20 of the second period. . . . Jerome’s second goal, at 8:46 of the third, snapped the tie, and F Dante Hannoun (13) got the empty-netter at 19:40. . . . Victoria G Griffen Outhouse turned aside 25 shots in recording his 100th career regular-season victory. . . . F Milos Roman was among Vancouver’s scratches. He has left to join the Slovakian national junior team. . . . The Royals again scratched D Ralph Jarratt, who has played only 13 games this season, two of them since Nov. 2. . . . Vancouver leads the B.C. Divison by 10 points over Kelowna and 11 over Victoria. The Giants hold four games in hand on Kelowna; the Royals have one game in hand on Vancouver.


The host Everett Silvertips built a 5-0 lead en route to a 6-1 victory over the Seattle EverettThunderbirds. . . . Everett (27-7-2) has points in 14 straight games (12-0-2). . . . Seattle (11-16-3) has lost two in a row. . . . F Martin Fasko-Rudas (9) started it for the Silvertips with the Teddy Bear goal at 7:57 of the first period. . . . Everett added four more goals before the second period ended. . . . F Bryce Kindopp (17), D Gianni Fairbrother (4) and F Riley Sutter scored before the first period ended. F Jackson Berezowski (6) made it 5-0 at 19:11 of the second. . . . F Jaxon Kaluski (2) got Seattle’s goal at 4:15 of the third. . . . Sutter ended the scoring with his 13th, at 12:48. . . . Everett outshot Seattle, 39-22. . . . The Silvertips lead the U.S. Division by 15 points over Portland; they lead the Western Conference by 12 points over Vancouver.


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Deal between Ice, Rockets voided . . . Fix-Wolansky, Woo trying to prove point? . . . Silvertips double up on Chiefs


MacBeth

G Barry Brust (Spokane, Calgary, 2000-04) has been released by Kunlun Red Star Beijing (China, KHL). In nine games, he was 4-3-1, 3.11, .895. . . .

D Tomáš Kundrátek (Medicine Hat, 2008-10) has signed a contract for the rest of this season with Třinec (Czech Republic, Extraliga) after requesting and receiving his release from Kunlun Red Star Beijing (China, KHL). He had three assists in 25 games while averaging 20:05 TOI. . . .

D Marek Hrbas (Edmonton, Kamloops, 2010-13) a signed contract for the rest of this season with Amur Khabarovsk (Russia, KHL) after obtaining his release from Vítkovice Ostrava (Czech Republic, Extraliga). He had one goal and three assists in 22 games with Vítkovice this season.


ThisThat

Taking Note has been told that a Nov. 30 trade between the Kelowna Rockets and Kootenay Ice has been stamped null and void.

On Nov. 30, the Rockets traded F Jack Cowell, a 19-year-old from Winnipeg, to the Ice for Kootenaynewa third-round pick in the 2020 WHL bantam draft.

Cowell, however, chose not to report. Rather, Taking Note was told Wednesday night that he has gone home to Winnipeg.

As a result, although nothing has been announced by the league or either team, the trade has been voided and, in fact, has been removed from the transaction page on the WHL’s website.

The Ice was at home to the Lethbridge Hurricanes last night. There was no mention of Cowell anywhere in the Ice’s digital pre-game notes package.

This season, Cowell had two goals and three assists in 26 games. In 182 career games with Kelowna, he had 18 goals and 38 assists.


In the lead up to Hockey Canada naming the selection-camp roster for its national junior team, many observers of the WHL anticipated that F Trey Fix-Wolansky of the Edmonton Oil Kings and D Jett Woo of the Moose Jaw Warriors would be on the list.

However, their names were conspicuous by their absence when the camp roster was revealed on Monday.

Judging by their performances on Wednesday night, both players are using the snubs for motivation.

Fix-Wolansky had a goal and three assists to lead the host Oil Kings to a 6-1 victory over the Regina Pats. Meanwhile, in Moose Jaw, Woo had a goal and three assists in the Warriors’ 6-5 OT loss to the Medicine Hat Tigers.

Fix-Wolansky, who has six four-point games to his credit, moved back into a tie for the WHL scoring lead. He and F Brett Leason of the Prince Albert Raiders have 61 points apiece. Leason leads the WHL in goals (28); Fix-Wolansky has a WHL-leading 41 assists in 31 games.

This was Woo’s first career four-point outing. He’s got five goals and 15 assists in 22 games.

Woo was a second-round pick by the Vancouver Canucks in the NHL’s 2018 draft. The Columbus Blue-Jackets took Fix-Wolansky in the seventh round.


COUNTDOWN TO DEADLINE

(WHL trade deadline: Jan. 10, 3 p.m. MT)

Wednesday’s action

No. of trades: 0.

Players: 0.

Bantam draft picks: 0.

Conditional draft picks: 0.

——

Total deals (since Nov. 26):

No. of trades: 9.

Players: 30.

Bantam draft picks: 17.

Conditional draft picks: 4.

(Note: On Nov. 30, Kelowna traded F Jack Cowell, 19, to Kootenay for a third-round selection in the 2020 bantam draft. Cowell chose not to report and the deal was voided.)


Jeremy Fraser of the Cape Breton Post wrote an interesting piece this week about American players in the CHL. . . . It seems that QMJHL teams are struggling to attract Americans, especially from the New England area. . . . Using rosters as of Monday afternoon, Fraser reported that the QMJHL’s 18 teams had only seven American players on rosters. . . . The 20-team OHL, Don Cherry’s favourite junior league, was home to 52 American players at that point, while the WHL’s 22 teams had 37 on rosters as of Monday. . . . Fraser’s complete story is right here.


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WEDNESDAY HIGHLIGHTS:

F Ryan Jevne’s second goal of the game gave the Medicine Hat Tigers a 6-5 OT victory Tigers Logo Officialover the Warriors in Moose Jaw. . . . Medicine Hat improved to 14-14-3. . . . Moose Jaw (15-7-4) has lost two in a row. . . . D Jett Woo had a goal, his fifth, and three assists for the Warriors. . . . D Joel Craven, playing only his third game after being out since Oct. 19, scored his first goal of the season for the Tigers. . . . F James Hamblin (14) gave the Tigers a 5-3 lead, on a PP, at 16:10 of the second period. . . . D Josh Brook (9) got Moose Jaw to within a goal, on a PP, at 18:08. . . . F Keennan Taphorn (7) pulled the Warriors into a tie at 4:01 of the third. . . . Jevne, who has 12 goals, won it on a PP at 1:16 of OT. He also had an assist. . . . D Daniel Baker scored his first career goal and added two assists for the Tigers. A 17-year-old freshman from Edmonton, Baker’s first goal and first multi-point night came in his 42nd game, 31 of them this season. . . . F Ryan Chyzowski had three assists for Medicine Hat. . . . Warriors F Tristin Langan scored his 19th goal and added an assist as he played his 200th regular-season game. . . . F Kjell Kjemhus, who was acquired this week from the Prince George Cougars, and F Luke Ormsby, who came over from the Everett Silvertips, both made their Moose Jaw debuts. . . . They started on a line with F Tate Popple, who was back after a one-game absence. . . . Ormsby’s fourth goal of the season, at 19:44 of the first period, cut into the Tigers’ 3-1 lead. . . . Medicine Hat, which held a 46-45 edge in shots, was 2-3 on the PP. The Warriors were 3-4.


The host Edmonton Oil Kings scored the game’s last six goals as they beat the Regina Pats, EdmontonOilKings6-1. . . . Edmonton (15-11-5) had lost its previous five games (0-3-2). . . . Regina (8-21-0) has lost six in a row. . . . F Riley Krane (4) gave the Pats a 1-0 lead at 8:00 of the first period. . . . But it was all Oil Kings after that point. . . . F Trey Fix Wolansky, who also had three assists, tied it with his 20th goal at 19:47. . . . F Dylan Guenther, the first overall selection in the WHL’s 2018 bantam draft, broke the tie with his first career goal at 5:47, on a PP. Guenther scored in his third game; he also played on Nov. 2 and 3. . . . Guenther, from Edmonton, has 20 goals and 18 assists in 18 games with the Northern Alberta X-Treme prep team. . . . The Oil Kings were 3-5 on the PP. . . . F Vince Loschiavo scored his 13th goal and added two assists. . . . The Oil Kings were without F Vladimir Alistrov and F Andrei Pavlenko, both of whom are with the Belarusian team at the IIHF World Junior Championship (Division 1 Group A) that opens Sunday in Fussen, Germany. . . . Regina F Sebastian Streu also is there as he hopes to crack Germany’s roster.


F Dylan Cozens scored in OT to give the Lethbridge Hurricanes a 3-2 victory over the LethbridgeKootenay Ice in Cranbrook, B.C. . . . Lethbridge (15-8-5) has points in seven straight (6-0-1). . . . Kootenay (7-20-5) has lost 10 in a row (0-8-2). . . . The visitors took a 1-0 lead when D Alex Cotton (2) scored at 8:24 of the first period. . . . The Ice went in front on second-period goals from F Cole Muir (6) and F Jakin Smallwood (2). . . . F Jake Leschyshyn (18) got Lethbridge into a tie at 16:28 of the second. . . . Cozens won it with his 15th goal at 1:17 of extra time. . . . Leschyshyn also drew the primary assist on the winner. . . . The Hurricanes got 28 saves from G Reece Klassen, eight fewer than the Ice’s Jesse Makaj. . . . The Ice is without F Connor McClennon, who has one foot in a walking boot.


F Josh Pillar broke a 2-2 tie at 8:53 of the third period as the host Kamloops Blazers beat Kamloops1the Victoria Royals, 3-2. . . . Kamloops (12-11-2) has won three in a row, all at home where it is 5-6-1 after starting 2-6-1. . . . Victoria (13-11-0) has lost two in a row. . . . The Blazers overcame a 2-0 deficit to win this one. . . . Victoria led 2-0 on first-period goals from F D-Jay Jerome (12) and F Phillip Schultz (5). . . . F Kyrell Sopotyk (3) got the Blazers on the scoreboard at 7:07 of the second period. . . . F Jermaine Loewen (11) tied it, on a PP, at 8:53 of the third period. . . . Sopotyk set up the winner with a pass off a spin-o-rama in tight that Pillar was able to tuck into the net. . . . Kamloops lost F Jeff Faith to a checking-from-behind major and game misconduct for a hit on Victoria F Dante Hannoun after Pillar’s goal. . . . Moments after Pillar scored, Hannoun shoved him into the boards. Faith then came in and hit Hannoun from behind. . . . Kamloops was 1-6 on the PP; Victoria was 0-5, including a two-man advantage for 1:51. . . . The game featured a battle of two young goaltenders. With starters Griffen Outhouse (Victoria) and Dylan Ferguson (Kamloops) injured, Brock Gould, who turns 17 on Dec. 11, and Dylan Garand, 16, were the starters. . . . Garand, who is from Victoria, stopped 19 shots, while Gould turned aside 26. . . . Ferguson sat out a third straight game since being injured during a 3-1 loss to the Chiefs in Spokane on Nov. 24, while Outhouse also has missed three in a row. . . . Garand has won five straight starts and now is 5-1-1, 2.41, .912. . . . After the game, the Blazers returned G Rayce Ramsay to the SJHL’s Humboldt Broncos, signalling that Ferguson is ready to return. . . . The Royals also continue to play without D Ralph Jarratt, who has gotten into only 11 games. For this one, they also scratched F Igor Martynov, who is in Fussen, Germany, with the Belarussian team that will play in the IIHF World Junior Championship (Division I Group) that begins Sunday in Fussen, Germany. Martynov snapped an 18-game goal-less drought in a 5-1 victory over the Cougars in Prince George on Saturday, then was blanked in a 5-3 loss on Sunday. . . . Victoria F Tanner Sidaway left the game in the last minute of the second period after falling awkwardly into the boards while killing a penalty. He looked to injury his left shoulder and crawled off the ice. . . . The Blazers won’t play at home again until Dec. 28. In the meantime, they’ll play six games in eight days on a Central Division trip that opens in Edmonton on Saturday.


The Kelowna Rockets scored the only two goals of a shootout to beat the visiting Tri-City KelownaRocketsAmericans, 4-3. . . . Kelowna (13-15-2) has points in three straight (2-0-1). . . . Tri-City has lost four in a row (0-2-2). . . . The Rockets held a 3-0 lead late in the second period on goals from F Erik Gardiner (5) and F Liam Kindree (6) in the first period, and F Nolan Foote (17), at 1:54 of the second. . . . The Americans got back into it with two PP goals from F Parker AuCoin, at 19:56 of the second and 8:53 of the third. He’s got 15 goals. . . . D Aaron Hyman (6) forced OT with a goal at 17:24. . . . That was Hyman’s first goal with the Americans, who acquired him from the Regina Pats. . . . Kelowna held a 3-1 edge in OT shots. . . . Kelowna shot first in the shootout and got goals from Foote and F Leif Mattson, their second and third shooters. . . . Tri-City was 2-7 on the PP; Kelowna was 0-2. . . .The Rockets got 28 saves from G James Porter. . . . G Talyn Boyko, who turned 16 on Nov. 16, made his second career start for the Americans. He made 24 saves. Boyko was a third-round selection in the WHL’s 2017 bantam draft.


In Everett, the Silvertips built a 3-0 lead en route to a 4-2 victory over the Spokane Chiefs. Everett. . . Everett (23-7-1) has points in nine straight (8-0-1) and has closed to within six points of the Prince Albert Raiders (26-1-1), who lead the overall standings. The Raiders do hold three games in hand. . . . Spokane (14-10-4) has lost three straight (0-2-1). . . . The Silvertips grabbed a 3-0 lead on goals from F Jackson Berezowski (5), at 17:33 of the first period, and F Bryce Kindopp (11), at 1:47 of the second, and D Jake Christiansen (7), on a PP, at 14:48. . . . The Chiefs made it interesting with third-period PP goals from Ethan McIndoe (8), at 0:48, and F Riley Woods (21), at 9:26. . . . F Sean Richards (9) gave Everett some breathing room with an empty-netter, at 18:25. . . . F Max Patterson, acquired this week from the Swift Current Broncos, made his Everett debut and drew an assist on Berezowski’s goal. . . . G Dustin Wolf stopped 25 shots for Everett. He now is 21-7-1, 1.93, .923. . . . The Silvertips lost F Martin Fasko-Rudas aat 15:31 of the first period after he was hit in the neutral zone by Spokane F Egor Arbuzov, who was penalized for interference. . . . Former NHL D Kevin Bieksa took part in the ceremonial faceoff. He has been skating with the Silvertips as he prepares to play for Canada at the Spengler Cup that begins on Dec. 26 in Davos, Switzerland.


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Blazers move vets, get four picks . . . Americans add Hyman from Pats . . . More on Carcillo’s hazing story

MacBeth

F Garrett Mitchell (Regina, 2006-11) has signed a contract for the rest of this season with Zvolen (Slovakia, Extraliga). Last season, with the Hershey Bears (AHL), he had seven goals and one assist in 47 games. He was the Bears’ team captain.


ThisThat

The Kamloops Blazers’ new braintrust waited until the regular-season was one-third done before acting.

On Monday, the Blazers moved out two veterans — F Luc Smith and D Nolan Kneen — in exchange for two players and four selections in the WHL’s 2020 bantam draft.

Smith, 20, was dealt to the Spokane Chiefs for F/D Jeff Faith, 20, a third-round selection Kamloops1and one in the sixth round.

Kneen, 19, went to the Saskatoon Blades for D Jackson Caller, 19, who is from Kamloops, a second-round pick and a third-rounder. The second-rounder was acquired by the Blades from the Regina Pats on Jan. 10, while the third-rounder originated with Kelowna, moving to Saskatoon on Oct. 11 in a deal that had F Michael Farren go to the Rockets.

Interestingly, the Blades are scheduled to visit the Blazers on Friday night.

The Blazers traded away two players with 12 goals and 27 assists between them, getting three goals in exchange.

Obviously, this trade wasn’t made for this season, nor was it made because general manager Matt Bardsley is infatuated with either Faith or Caller. Bardsley replaced the displaced Stu MacGregor — he now scouts for the NHL’s Dallas Stars, who are owned by Blazers’ majority owner Tom Gaglardi — on June 1. And, 22 games into this season, Bardsley has seen enough.

Still, Bardsley is adamant that he hasn’t given up on this season.

“I’m not suggesting that we’re selling,” Bardsley told Marty Hastings of Kamloops This Week for a story that is right here. “I don’t believe we’re selling. Some people are probably going to look at it like we are.

“We’re a bit inconsistent, not so much in how we play, I guess a little bit, but also just with where we’re at. I just felt for the organization it was time to make a change.”

As of now, according to Alan Caldwell, who tracks these things right here, the Blazers hold two firsts and two fourths in the 2019 draft, and they have two seconds and three thirds in 2020. In 2019, they hold Everett’s first- and fourth-round selections. In 2020, the Blazers have Regina’s second-rounder, and third-round picks that originated with Kelowna and Spokane.

At the same time, Bardsley and head coach Serge Lajoie, who also is in his first season with Kamloops, are trying to figure out this edition of the Blazers, a team that is 2-6-1 on home ice and 7-5-0 on the road.

Still, at 9-11-1, the Blazers are only three points out of third place in the B.C. Division and three points shy of the Western Conference’s second wild-card spot.

“I believe we should be further up in the standings,” Bardsley told Hastings. “I’d like to see our team more consistent in how we play night in and night out.

“I wanted to address it now, rather than wait to closer to the deadline. By that time, we might have a better feel about where we’re at. I want to correct it and we still give ourselves time to do anymore changes. If we need to add or whatever, then we can do that, as well.”

The 6-foot-5, 210-pound Smith is from Stony Plain, Alta. He was a third-round selection SpokaneChiefsby Regina in the 2013 bantam draft. In 270 regular-season WHL games, he has 47 goals and 53 assists. This season, he has eight goals and 11 assists in 22 games. Last season, he had career highs in goals (21) and assists (23) in 62 games.

Smith will bring some offence and a lot of physical play to the Chiefs’ forward ranks, especially on the forecheck.

Faith, 6-foot-4 and 200 pounds, is from Wilcox, Sask., and has played his entire career with the Chiefs, who picked him in the first round of the 2013 bantam draft. This season, he has one goal in 24 games. Last season, he had five goals and 12 assists, both career highs, in 60 games. A defenceman by trade, he has been playing up front this season.

The Blazers selected Kneen, who is from Kelowna, with the third overall pick of the 2014 Saskatoonbantam draft; that is the earliest selection they have made in the draft’s history. The 6-foot-0, 190-pounder is off to a fine start this season, with four goals and 16 assists in 22 games, after finishing last season with seven goals and 30 assists in 68 games.

This season, Kneen’s 20 points have him eighth among all WHL defencemen. In Saskatoon, he will be reunited with D Dawson Davidson, with whom he partnered at times in Kamloops. Davidson has 26 points, leaving him fourth among defencemen.

Kneen should be in the Blades’ lineup tonight as they meet the Vancouver Giants in Langley, B.C. The Blades are scheduled to play in Victoria on Wednesday, before heading for Kamloops and Friday’s engagement.

Caller, 6-foot-2 and 190 pounds, was a seventh-round pick by the Portland Winterhawks in the 2014 bantam draft. He was in his third full season with the Blades; in 157 games, he had five goals and 27 assists. This season, he had two goals in 20 games.

“There’s always a significant price to pay to add a top-end 19-year-old, but we still have Regina’s first, Swift’s second and our third-round picks in 2020, so we feel we had the assets to make a deal like this happen,” Blades GM Colin Priestner said in a news release.


The Tri-City Americans have acquired D Aaron Hyman, 20, from the Regina Pats for F Brett Clayton, 20, and a third-round selection in the WHL’s 2019 bantam draft.

Hyman had five goals and 19 assists in 25 games with the Pats this season. A 6-foot-5, tri-city220-pound Calgarian, he was a third-round pick by the Calgary Hitmen in the 2013 bantam draft. The Hitmen dealt him to the Seattle Thunderbirds, and he helped them win the Ed Chynoweth Cup in the spring of 2017. Seattle traded him to Regina last season and he played in the Memorial Cup with the Pats, who were the host team.

In 189 career regular-season games, Hyman has 11 goals and 45 assists.

Hyman could make his Tri-City debut tonight against the visiting Prince George Cougars.

Clayton, from Abbotsford, B.C., was picked by the Saskatoon Blades in the 10th round of Patsthe 2013 bantam draft. In 163 regular-season games, he has nine goals and 21 assists.

The Pats next play Friday when they travel to Brandon to face the Wheat Kings.

The Americans also placed D Anthony Bishop, 20, on waivers.

Bishop played Saturday night for the first time since Sept. 22. His return left the Americans with four 20-year-olds, one more than the mandated maximum.

Bishop has two goals and 23 assists in 174 career regular-season games.

By putting him on waivers, the Americans are left with Hyman, F Nolan Yaremko and F Parker AuCoin as their 20s.

The Pats’ three 20s now are Clayton, D Brady Pouteau and D Liam Schioler.


After Daniel Carcillo’s stirring weekend tweets detailing the bullying and hazing to which he was subjected during his freshman season with the OHL’s Sarnia Sting, John Chidley-Hill of The Canadian Press did a deep dive into the story. Thankfully, this kind of stuff doesn’t happen a whole lot these days, but it used to be pretty standard behaviour, at least in junior hockey. . . . Chidley-Hill’s story is right here and it’s well worth your time.


D Gianni Fairbrother of the Everett Silvertips has drawn a two-game suspension after taking a headshot major and game misconduct during a 2-1 victory over the visiting Kelowna Rockets on Saturday night. . . . The penalty came after a hit on Kelowna F Kyle Crosbie. . . . Fairbrother sat out Sunday’s 5-3 victory over the Winterhawks in Portland and will miss Wednesday’s rematch in Everett.


The Vancouver Giants have dropped F Tyler Ho, 18, from their roster, and he is expected to join the BCHL’s Vernon Vipers. Ho, who is from North Vancouver, had one goal and one assist in 12 games with the Giants this season. . . . Ho was a third-round selection by the Prince George Cougars in the 2015 WHL bantam draft. In 76 regular-season games, he has two goals and 10 assists. Last season, he had one goal and eight assists in 57 games with the Giants.


If you stop off here and enjoy what you see — or even if you don’t — feel free to click on the DONATE button over there on the right and make a contribution. Thanks in advance.


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Scattershooting on Sunday, after a flat World Series . . . Will you pay to watch Phil vs. Tiger? . . . Blazers complete dominating weekend sweep

Scattershooting

Jack Finarelli, who writes daily at sportscurmudgeon.com, with a tip for all of us: “The latest news related to the Tiger Woods/Phil Mickelson challenge match that will be on pay-per-view is that the only way you will be able to see it is on pay-per-view.  The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports that no tickets will be available for the event; the only folks on the course with Woods and Mickelson will be those who are there to provide the TV coverage, sponsors and guests of the sponsors.  So, just in case you were thinking of heading out to Las Vegas over Thanksgiving weekend and trying to score tix to the event at Shadow Creek Golf Club, stay home.”



The neatest statistic from this season’s World Series is this one and it isn’t close. . . . Game 3 between the Boston Red Sox and Los Angeles Kings went 18 innings and took seven hours 20 minutes to complete on Friday night. It took longer to play that one game than it did to play the entire 1939 World Series when the New York Yankees swept the Cincinnati Reds with the four games taking a combined 7:05.



Cam Hutchinson, in the Saskatoon Express: Toronto-based Postmedia columnist Steve Simmons is at it again. “Where does Auston Matthews fit in with this question: Best wrist shot in Leafs history? I’m figuring Wendel Clark and Lanny McDonald are 1-2. Matthews has the most deceptive shot. Over time he may wind up ahead of Clark and McDonald.” Please give us a break from this crap.


Hutchinson also passes along this one . . . From the Twitter account of @wrestlingbubble: “A woman at the grocery store asked me what self-checkup meant, so I told her grocery stores are on the honour system now, and she should just pay what she thinks is fair.”



“Now,” comedy writer Alex Kaseberg says of Boston pitcher Chris Sale, “I don’t want to say Sale is skinny, but if the Red Sox wore pinstripes, he would wear a pinstripe.”


From Vancouver comedy writer Torben Rolfsen: “John Tortorella says he misses ‘the hate’ in today’s NHL. He should go on Twitter.”


The readerboard at Beerhaus Las Vegas recently carried this message: “Marty, I just got back from 2078. Canucks still haven’t won a Cup.”



RJ Currie of SportsDeke.com has a question: “With hurricanes being named after both genders, shouldn’t we call them himicanes and hericanes?”


“SI.com reports Jon Gruden is on a three-year rebuild so the Raiders win the Super Bowl in 2020,” Currie writes. “Why not use his old formula? Have Tony Dungy build the team, then take over.”



Well, that World Series was definitely a letdown. I really expected more out of the Los Angeles Dodgers, who were clearly inferior to the Boston Red Sox in all areas of the game. . . . Who knew the Dodgers wouldn’t seem to get any kind of lift from the 18-inning victory in Game 3? . . . But it was only fitting that Manny (The Hustler) Machado should make the series’ last out.


SUNDAY NIGHT NOTES:

D Aaron Hyman set up three goals and was plus-4 as the host Regina Pats skated to a 7-Patsvictory over the Swift Current Broncos. . . . Regina (4-11-0) had lost five in a row. This was the Pats’ first victory on home ice in nine starts — yes, they are 1-8-0. . . . The Broncos (1-14-0) have lost seven in a row. They are scheduled to entertain the Kootenay Ice on Tuesday. At 0-4-0, Swift Current is the only one of the WHL’s 22 teams not to have won at home. . . . In Regina, the Pats took a 1-0 lead in the first period and stretched it to 4-0 before the second was seven minutes old. . . . F Austin Pratt and F Sergei Alkhimov each scored twice for Regina. Pratt has seven goals; Alkhimov has four. . . . Regina held a 40-22 edge in shots. . . . The Broncos are 13 points out of a playoff spot, while the Pats are seven points back. . . . Regina went 1-2-0 as it played three games in fewer than 48 hours.


F Kirby Dach scored twice and added an assist to help the Saskatoon Blades to a 5-3 Saskatoonvictory over the Hitmen in Calgary. . . . Saskatoon (9-5-1) had lost its previous three games (0-2-1). . . . Calgary (4-9-2) has lost three in a row. . . . Dach has 27 points, 10 of them goals, in 16 games. . . . The Blades had 2-1 and 3-2 leads. . . . Calgary tied it, 3-3, at 4:02 of the third period when F Zach Huber (4) scored. . . . F Kristian Røykås Marthinsen (5), a freshman from Norway, snapped the tie at 12:43 and Dach added the empty-netter at 19:50. . . . Saskatoon D Brandon Schuldaus played in his 200th regular-season game. A 20-year-old from Calgary, he has played 90 games with the Seattle Thunderbirds, 71 with the Red Deer Rebels, 28 with the Moose Jaw Warriors and 11 with the Blades. . . . Saskatoon was playing its third game in fewer than 48 hours. It went 1-1-1.


F Trey Fix-Wolansky continued to pile up the points as the host Edmonton Oil Kings EdmontonOilKingsdoubled the Lethbridge Hurricanes, 6-3. . . . Edmonton (9-7-1) has won four in a row. . . . Lethbridge (7-5-3) had points in its previous six games (4-0-2). . . . The Oil Kings went 3-0-0 in playing three times in fewer than 48 hours. . . . Fix-Wolansky finished with a goal, his 11th, and three assists. In 17 games, he has put up 32 points, including a WHL-leading 21 assists. He is second in the scoring race, three points behind F Brett Leason of the idle Prince Albert Raiders. . . . Edmonton F David Kope (2) broke a 1-1 tie at 8:05 of the first period. That was the first of five straight goals for the Oil Kings as they took control. . . . F Quinn Benjafield (7) scored twice — once while shorthanded and once on the PP — while F Jake Neighbours (5) scored twice and added an assist.


The Red Deer Rebels got out to a 6-2 lead before the second period was 12 minutes old Red Deerand went on to an 8-5 victory over the Kootenay Ice in Cranbrook, B.C. . . . The Rebels (10-4-1) have won two in a row. . . . The Ice (4-7-3) has lost two straight. . . . Red Deer F Reese Johnson scored twice early in the first period — at 1:11 and 2:29 — for a 2-0 lead. . . . The Ice pulled even when F Brad Ginnell (3), at 4:06, and F Cam Hausinger (5), at 4:42, quickly replied. . . . F Blake Sydlowski (1) put Red Deer ahead at 7:59, and the visitors took control with three second-period goals. . . . The Ice got to within 6-5 early in the third period, scoring three PP goals, but F Jeff de Wit (9) upped Red Deer’s lead to 7-5 at 10:59 and Johnson (8) completed his hat trick with an empty-netter at 19:58. . . . D Alex Alexeyev had a goal (7) and two assists for Red Deer, with F Brandon Hagel drawing three assists. . . . Ginnell added two assists to his goal. . . . The Ice had a 41-26 edge in shots. . . . The Ice has played two home games since a committee hoping to keep the franchise from moving to Winnipeg held a town hall meeting on Thursday. The announced attendance at those games was 2,208, for a 7-2 loss to the Edmonton Oil Kings, and 2,094 yesterday. . . . The Ice’s next home game is scheduled for Friday when the Oil Kings make their third and final visit of the season.


G Trent Miner stopped 37 shots through OT and wasn’t beaten in the shootout as the VancouverVancouver Giants beat the Brandon Wheat Kings, 3-2, in Langley, B.C. . . . The Giants improved to 11-3-2. . . . Brandon (6-3-5) has lost five straight (0-2-3). The Wheat Kings are 0-2-2 on a seven-game road trip that continues Tuesday in Prince George. . . . Miner is from Souris, Man., and played one season with the bantam AAA Wheat Kings and two with the midget AAA Wheat Kings. . . . This season, Miner is 4-0-1, 1.41, .953. . . . Vancouver F Brayden Watts, the last shooter in the third round, scored the only goal of the shootout. . . . Three of the game’s four ‘real’ goals came via the PP, with Vancouver getting two of those. . . . F Connor Gutenberg (5) gave Brandon a 1-0 lead at 9:01 of the first period; Vancouver F Milos Roman (7) tied it at 13:26. . . . Brandon went ahead 2-1 at 12:29 of the second as F Caiden Daley (2) scored the game’s only even-strength goal. . . . Watts  (4) tied it at 10:30 of the third. . . . The Giants won 42 of the game’s 63 faceoffs. . . . Vancouver continues to play without D Bailey Dhaliwal, D Dylan Plouffe, D Matt Barberis, D Joel Sexsmith and F James Malm, all of whom are out with injuries. The Giants play once between now and Nov. 10, so hope to have some bodies back before then.


The Kamloops Blazers completed a weekend sweep with a 5-2 victory over the host Kamloops1Portland Winterhawks. . . . Kamloops (6-6-1) has won four in a row. . . . Portland (7-6-1) has lost three straight. . . . This was the final game of the season series with each team winning twice on the road. . . . The Blazers beat the Seattle Thunderbirds 7-2 in Kent, Wash., on Friday, then won 6-2 in Portland on Saturday. . . . The Winterhawks also played three games in fewer than 48 hours, but they went 0-3-0. They lost 4-1 in Spokane on Friday. . . . Kamloops G Dylan Garand stopped 32 shots and then, like a number of other WHL players, left for the U-17 World Hockey Challenge that runs from Nov. 3 through Nov. 10 in Quispamsis and Saint, John, N.B. . . . Garand, who backs up Dylan Ferguson, is 1-1-1, 2.52, .916 in five appearances. . . . The Blazers took control with the game’s first three goals — two in the second period and one in the third. F Josh Pillar and F Kobe Mohr each had a goal and an assist. . . . The Winterhawks were without D Jared Freadrich, who drew a one-game suspension for a cross-checking major and game misconduct in Saturday’s game. He hit D Luke Zazula on the play in question.


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The numbers are in: Since Nov. 13 … 58 trades … 110 players … 77 bantam draft picks … 12 conditional picks

WHEELING AND DEALING …

NUMBER OF TRADES (since Nov. 13): 58

PLAYERS: 110

BANTAM DRAFT PICKS: 77

CONDITONAL BANTAM DRAFT PICKS: 12

THE DEADLINE: It came and went on Wednesday, Jan. 10.


Why did I start counting on Nov. 13? Because that’s the day when the trading season got serious; that is the day when the Regina Pats, the host team for the 2018 Memorial Cup, went out and got D Cale Fleury from the Kootenay Ice.


THE DEAL: The Portland Winterhawks acquired D Dennis Cholowski, 19, and G Ty Taylor, 18, from the Prince George Cougars for F Ilijah Colina, 17, F Connor Bowie, 16, Portlandfirst- and third-round picks in the 2020 WHL bantam draft, and second-rounders in 2018 and 2019.

THE NUMBERS: The 6-foot-1, 200-pound Cholowski, in his first WHL season, had 13 goals and 26 assists in 37 games with the Cougars. Among WHL defencemen, he is second in goals and sixth in points. . . . The 6-foot-3, 200-pound Taylor is 16-3-3, 1.90, .929 in 22 games with the BCHL’s Vernon Vipers. Last season, also with Vernon, he was 13-12-2, 2.96, .908. . . . Colina had four goals and 23 assists in 83 career games with Portland. This season, he had three goals and 12 assists in 37 games. . . . Bowie, 6-foot-1 and 180 pounds, is playing for the NEBC Yukon Trackers in the Northern Alberta Midget AA Hockey League, where he has 20 goals and 15 assists in 18 games. He had a goal and four assists with Portland in the exhibition season.

THE INFO: Cholowski was the Cougars’ captain. From Langley, B.C., Cholowski was a first-round pick, 20th overall, by the Detroit Red Wings in the NHL’s 2016 draft. He has PrinceGeorgesigned with the Red Wings. The Cougars selected him in the 10th round of the 2013 bantam draft. . . . The Winterhawks selected Taylor’s brother Trey in the ninth-round of the WHL’s 2017 bantam draft. Neither Taylor has signed a WHL contract. . . . Colina, from Delta, B.C., was an eighth-round pick by Portland in the 2015 bantam draft. . . . Bowie, from Fort St. John, B.C., was a seventh-round pick by Portland in the 2016 bantam draft.

WHY: Cholowski, one of the WHL’s top defencemen, should be a perfect fit with the Winterhawks. As GM/head coach Mike Johnston put it in a news conference: “It’s always been our philosophy to have transitional defencemen on our back end and he fits in perfectly with out style of play.” . . . The Cougars, reloading after going all-in last season, have added a roster forward, a prospect and draft picks to the cupboard.


THE DEAL: The Moose Jaw Warriors acquired D Kale Clague, 19, from the Brandon Wheat Kings for F Luka Burzan, who turned 18 on Jan. 7, D Chase Hartje, who turned 18 MooseJawWarriorson Dec. 17, first-round selections in the WHL’s 2019 and 2021 bantam drafts, and a second-round pick in 2018.

THE NUMBERS: Clague, 6-foot-0 and 180 pounds, had 10 goals and 37 assists in 28 games with Brandon this season. His 47 points have him second among WHL defencemen. In 169 career games, he has 25 goals and 118 assists. In 40 playoff games, he has eight goals and 13 assists. He was part of Brandon’s 2015-16 championship roster. . . . Burzan, 6-foot-0 and 180 pounds, has six goals and 13 assists in 42 games this season. Last season, as a freshman, he had 14 goals and 13 assists in 27 games. . . . The 5-foot-11, 185-pound Hartje had four goals and 21 assists in 25 games with Bemidji, Minn., High School last season. He had 17 assists in 31 games with the Warriors.

THE INFO: Clague, from Lloydminster, Alta., is fresh of winning a gold medal with Team BrandonWKregularCanada at the WJC in Buffalo; he won silver with Team Canada at the previous year. The Wheat Kings selected him in the first round, sixth overall, of the 2013 bantam draft. Clague was picked by the Los Angeles Kings in the second round of the NHL’s 2016 draft and he has signed with them. . . . Moose Jaw selected Burzan, who is from Surrey, B.C., with the sixth overall pick of the 2015 bantam draft. In his draft season, he had 80 goals and 51 assists in 62 games with a bantam A1-T1 team at the North Shore Winter Club. . . . Hartje was listed by the Warriors. Last season, he also played in 16 games with Great Plains of a U.S. high school league and had two goals and four assists in nine games with the NAHL’s Bismarck Bobcats.

WHY: The Wheat Kings, third in the overall standings and third in the East Division, behind Moose Jaw and Swift Current, who were buying, decided the prices were too high so they sold. This deal, and the one below with Victoria, has allowed Brandon to feel positive about its future. . . . The Warriors, meanwhile, add one of the WHL’s top defencemen, something that allows it to keep pace with Swift Current and Regina, at least on paper.


THE DEAL: The Victoria Royals acquired F Tanner Kaspick, 19, and F Cameron MacDonald, 15, from the Brandon Wheat Kings for D Jonathon Lambos, who will turn 17 on Jan. 14, F Ty Thorpe, who will turn 16 on Jan. 27, and first-round picks in the WHL’s 2019 and 2021 bantam drafts.

THE NUMBERS: Kaspick had 11 goals and 25 assists in 35 games with the Wheat Kings VictoriaRoyalsthis season. Last season, he had 19 goals and 26 assists in 49 games with his hometown team. In 191 career games, he has 45 goals and 86 assists. . . . MacDonald has 22 goals and 14 assists in 20 games with the West Valley Hawks of the B.C. Major Midget Hockey League. The 5-foot-8, 160-pounder also has two assists in four games with the BCHL’s Powell River Kings. . . .

Lambos, 5-foot-10 and 165 pounds, has two goals and 12 assists in 21 games with the Rink Hockey Academy’s prep team in Winnipeg. He played last season in the Omaha Lancers organization. . . . Thorpe has seven goals and eight assists in 18 games with the Rink Hockey Academy Prep team.

THE INFO: Kaspick was selected by the St. Louis Blues in the fourth round of the NHL’s 2016 draft and he has signed with them. The Wheat Kings picked him in the second round of the WHL’s 2013 bantam draft. He was part of the Brandon team that won the 2016 WHL title. . . . MacDonald, who is from Surrey, B.C., was picked by Brandon in the fifth round of the 2017 bantam draft. He has yet to sign a WHL contract. . . . Lambos, from Winnipeg, was a third-round pick by Victoria in the 2016 bantam draft. He hasn’t yet signed a WHL deal. . . . The 5-foot-11, 145-pound Thorpe, from Brandon, was a third-round pick by Victoria in the 2017 bantam draft. He also hasn’t yet signed a WHL contract.

WHY: As Royals president and GM Cam Hope said in a news release: “There are very few opportunities to acquire a player with Tanner’s skill, character and experience.” Kaspick will fit nicely into Victoria’s top six forwards. . . . Hope and Brandon GM Grant Armstrong also moved three prospects; keep in mind that Armstrong worked with the Royals before signing with Brandon prior to 2016-17. Armstrong also got two more first-round draft picks for his scouts to drool over, at least for now.


THE DEAL: The Lethbridge Hurricanes acquired F Keltie Jeri-Leon, 17, from the LethbridgeKamloops Blazers for a seventh-round pick in the WHL’s 2019 bantam draft.

THE NUMBERS: Jeri-Leon had a goal and two assists in 21 games with the Blazers. Last season, he had two goals and an assist in 46 games with Tri-City. He was pointless in two games there this season.

THE INFO: The Blazers acquired Jeri-Leon, who is from West Kelowna, B.C., from the Tri-City Americans on Oct. 8 for a seventh-round bantam pick in 2018. . . . He turns 18 on Jan. 19. . . . The Americans selected him in the fifth round of the 2015 bantam draft.

WHY: Kamloops gets a draft pick for a player they acquired but was having trouble getting into their lineup. . . . Lethbridge adds a depth forward.


THE DEAL: The Everett Silvertips acquired F Spencer Gerth, 19, from the Victoria Royals Everettfor a seventh-round selection in the 2019 WHL bantam draft.

THE NUMBERS: This season, Gerth, an undrafted list player, had three goals and three assists in 43 games with the Royals. In 156 games split between Victoria and, yes, Everett, he has five goals and five assists.

THE INFO: Gerth, from Langley, is 6-foot-3 and 200 pounds. The Royals acquired him from Everett on Nov. 22, 2016, for a conditional seventh-round pick in the 2018 bantam draft.

WHY: Gerth is an energy guy and that’s what the Silvertips wanted.


THE DEAL: The Everett Silvertips acquired F Bronson Sharp, who turned 18 on Dec. 29, from the Portland Winterhawks for a fifth-round pick in the WHL’s 2020 bantam draft.

THE NUMBERS: Sharp had two goals and one assist in 38 games with Portland this season. In 84 career games, all with Portland, he has two goals and three assists. . . . He had 16 goals and 21 assists in 22 games with the Yale Hockey Academy prep team in the CSSHL in 2015-16.

THE INFO: From Mission, B.C., the 5-foot-11, 170-pound Sharp was listed by Portland.

WHY: Sharp will add more depth to Everett’s forward ranks.


THE DEAL: The Lethbridge Hurricanes acquired the WHL rights to F Michael Horon, 16, from the Everett Silvertips for a sixth-round selection in the WHL’s 2019 bantam draft.

THE NUMBERS: Horon has nine goals and 13 assists in 24 games with the midget AAA Lethbridge Hurricanes. . . . Last season, he had 77 points, including 38 goals, in 37 games with the minor midget Hurricanes.

THE INFO: From Lethbridge, Horon was a ninth-round pick by Everett in the 2016 bantam draft.

WHY: The Hurricanes have the opportunity to recruit a hometown lad into their organization.


THE DEAL: The Seattle Thunderbirds acquired F Jaxan Kaluski, 18, from the Moose Jaw SeattleWarriors for a sixth-round selection in the WHL’s 2019 bantam draft.

THE NUMBERS: Kaluski had two goals and an assist in 22 games with the Warriors this season. He had one assist in 16 games last season.

THE INFO: Kaluski, from Lloydminster, Alta., was listed by the Warriors. He was limited to 16 games by a fractured ankle that required surgery.

WHY: Kaluski adds depth and energy to Seattle’s roster.


THE DEAL: The Regina Pats acquired D Aaron Hyman, 19, from the Seattle Thunderbirds ReginaPats100for F Owen Williams, 17, and a second-round pick in the WHL’s 2019 bantam draft.

THE NUMBERS: Hyman had a goal and six assists in 26 games with Seattle. Last season, he had a goal and six assists in 20 playoff games. . . . The 6-foot-2, 180-pound Williams, a freshman, had one goal and six assists in 26 games with the Pats.

THE INFO: If he stays healthy, Hyman will get a chance to play in a second straight Memorial Cup tournament. He was on Seattle’s championship team last season. From Calgary, Hyman was selected by the Hitmen in the third round of the 2013 bantam draft. They traded him to Seattle on Dec. 27, 2016, for a third-round pick in the 2018 bantam draft. . . . Williams, from Delta, B.C., was picked by Regina in the ninth round of the 2015 bantam draft.

WHY: The Pats wanted size and they got it in Hyman, who is 6-foot-5 and 220 pounds. He’ll play hard in his zone. . . . The Thunderbirds move him for a defenceman with some upside and an early draft pick.


THE DEAL: The Regina Pats acquired D Brady Pouteau, who turned 20 on Tuesday, from the Lethbridge Hurricanes for a seventh-round pick in the WHL’s 2018 bantam draft.

THE NUMBERS: Poteau had a goal and 10 assists in 31 games with Lethbridge this season. In 122 career games, the first 61 with Regina, he has four goals and 26 assists.

THE INFO: Poteau, from Oak Bluff, Man., was selected by the Pats in the fourth round of the 2013 bantam draft. They traded him to the Lethbridge Hurricanes on Jan. 5, 2017 for a seventh-round pick in the 2018 bantam draft.

WHY: The 6-foot-3, 200-pound Poteau brings more size and experience to Regina’s back end.


THE END