Bronco$ cash in on championship season . . . Winter Hawks get back star player . . . Pats add goalie from Royals


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The Swift Current Broncos, the reigning WHL champions, informed their annual general meeting on Tuesday that they had made a profit of $561,500 for the 2017-18 season.

According to a news release, it was the “largest (profit) in franchise history.”

(Andrew McCormack of swiftcurrentonline.com reports that the 1992-93 Broncos, who also won the WHL title, reported a profit of $567,000.)

“It was a tremendous season,” Trent McCleary, a former Broncos player who now is chairman of the board of directors, told the AGM. “We did a great job in all areas.

“Some of the highlights from last season were truly memorable and something that can never be taken away from this franchise.”

The Broncos’ average attendance in the 2017-18 regular season was 2,550, an increase of 544 from the previous season. They sold out 11 regular-season games and all 13 home playoff games.

The Broncos are one of four community-owned WHL teams and the last one to hold its annual general meeting.

The Lethbridge Hurricanes, who lost the Eastern Conference final to the Broncos, reported a profit of $422,443 after paying $167,000 to the City of Lethbridge to help cover the cost of arena improvements.

The Moose Jaw Warriors made $704,182 and have $1,157,466 in the bank, after putting $233,648 towards new boards and glass at Mosaic Place.

The Prince Albert Raiders, who lost a first-round series to the Warriors, reported a loss of $163,430 for 2017-18.


When Tuesday ended, the Swift Current Broncos had six 20-year-olds on their roster, that after adding D Matthew Stanley. The Broncos had included Stanley in last season’s monster deadline deal with the Lethbridge Hurricanes. . . . Lethbridge placed Stanley on 20-year-old waivers and the Broncos claimed him. . . . In Swift Current, Stanley joins F Kaden Elder, F Tanner Nagel, F Andrew Fyten, D Artyom Minulin and D Ryan Pouliot as the 20s who are scrapping for one of three spots. . . . Minulin, a Russian veteran, is injured so could go on the injured list, a move that would buy the Broncos some time on him. They still would have to cut two of the other five over the next two weeks. . . . The Broncos have two other import players, both freshman forwards from Finland, on their roster — Roope Pynnonen, 17, and Joona Kiviniemi, who will turn 17 on Dec. 17. . . .

The Hurricanes, meanwhile, have three 20s left on their roster — D Igor Merezhko, F Jake Elmer and F Taylor Ross. However, Merezhko is an import, so should they keep him they will have to release one of their two freshman imports, either Swiss G Akira Schmid, 18, who had been in camp with the NHL’s New Jersey Devils, or D Danila Palivko, who is from Belarus. Pavilko is to turn 17 on Nov. 30. . . .

Schmid, a fifth-round pick by the Devils in the NHL’s 2018 draft, joins Reece Klassen, 19, and freshman Carl Tetachuk, 17, as the goaltenders on Lethbridge’s roster.



The Portland Winterhawks added a major cog to their offence on Tuesday when the PortlandNHL’s Vegas Golden Knights returned F Cody Glass, 19, to the WHL team. . . . Glass, from Winnipeg, put up 102 points, including 37 goals, in 64 games last season. In three seasons with the Winterhawks, he has 223 points, 79 of them goals, in 201 games. . . . Glass will provide a huge boost to a Portland offence that is without F Ryan Hughes. He will sit for at least a month with a leg injury; at present, he is getting around with the help of a walking boot. Hughes had 17 goals and 24 assists in 46 games last season, his third in Portland, during which he missed time with a broken leg that required surgery. . . . The Golden Knights selected Glass with the sixth overall pick in the NHL’s 2017 draft. . . .

Meanwhile, the Winterhawks have solved their import and 20-year-old situations by releasing freshman F Dean Schwenninger, who is from Switzerland, and F Conor MacEachern. . . . Both moves became necessary after the NHL’s San Jose Sharks returned Danish F Joachim Blichfeld, 20, to Portland. . . . The Winterhawks’ second import is freshman F Michal Kvasnica, 18, who is from Ostrava, Czech Republic. . . . The remaining 20s are Blichfeld, D Brendan De Jong and F Jared Freadrich. . . .

The Winterhawks also released D Ryan Miley, 18, who played one game with them last season. He is expected to join the BCHL’s Surrey Eagles.


The Medicine Hat Tigers have decided to go with veteran Jordan Hollett and freshman import Mads Sogaard as their two goaltenders. . . . . On Tuesday, the Tigers released G Garin Bjorklund, 16, who is expected to join the midget AAA Calgary Buffaloes. Bjorklund was a first-round pick by the Tigers in the WHL’s 2017 bantam draft. . . . Hollett, 19, was a sixth-round selection by the Ottawa Senators in the NHL’s 2017 draft. . . . Sogaard, who turns 18 on Dec. 13, is from Aalborg, Denmark.


The Regina Pats have acquired G Dean McNabb, 18, from the Victoria Royals for a Patsconditional fifth-round selection in the WHL’s 2020 bantam draft. . . . The Royals also got a ninth-round pick in the 2019 draft in the deal. . . . McNabb, from Davidson, Sask., has been in one game this season, stopping the three shots he faced in relief. Last season, as a freshman, he was 4-10-0, 4.52, .870. . . . McNabb, the younger brother of D Brayden McNabb of the NHL’s Vegas Golden Knights, was a third round pick by Victoria in the 2015 bantam draft after playing two seasons with the midget AAA Regina Pat Canadians. . . . In Regina, McNabb presumably will back up starter Max Paddock, an 18-year-old sophomore from Brandon. However, Matthew Pesenti, 17, also is on the Pats’ roster. Pesenti backed up Paddock as the Pats dropped two games to the Prince Albert Raiders on the weekend. . . . Kyle Dumba, 20, had been on the Pats’ roster but his name disappeared sometime on Tuesday. . . .

In Victoria, McNabb’s departure leaves the Royals with veteran Griffen Outhouse, 20, and freshman Brock Gould, a 6-foot-4, 190-pounder from Colorado Springs who was an eighth-round selection in the 2016 bantam draft. Gould will turn 17 on Dec. 11.


F Gunnar Wegleitner, who has played 112 regular-season WHL games, has joined the BCHL’s Nanaimo Clippers after they acquired his junior A rights from the NOJHL’s Kirkland Lake Gold Miners. . . . Wegleitner, 20, is from Vancouver. He had 10 goals and nine assists in 57 games with the Brandon Wheat Kings last season. In 2016-17, he played with the Victoria Royals and Kirkland Lake. . . . He also has played with the Everett Silvertips. . . . The Wheat Kings dealt him to the Kootenay Ice over the summer. The Ice released him during training camp.


The Kamloops Blazers got down to two goaltenders on Monday by releasing Max Palaga, 18, and Rayce Ramsay, 17. Palaga, who backed up with the Blazers last season, is from Kamloops and is expected to join the BCHL’s Vernon Vipers. Ramsay, from Saskatoon, will join the SJHL’s Humboldt Broncos. . . . The moves leave the Blazers with veteran Dylan Ferguson, 20, and freshman Dylan Garand, 16, who is from Victoria and was a third-round pick by the Blazers in the WHL’s 2017 bantam draft. . . . The highly touted Garand got into three games as a 16-year-old last season, going 1-2-0, 3.14, .905.


The Seattle Thunderbirds got down to two goaltenders by releasing Eric Ward, a 17-year-old from Edmonton. He played last season with the midget AAA CAC Edmonton Canadians. . . . The move left the Thunderbirds with veteran Liam Hughes, 19, as their starter, and freshman Cole Schwebius, 17, as the backup. Schwebius, from Kelowna, was a 10th-round pick in the 2016 bantam draft.


D Alex Alexeyev of the Red Deer Rebels has signed a three-year entry-level deal with the Washington Capitals, who selected him in the first round of the NHL’s 2018 draft. The 6-foot-4, 200-pounder from St. Petersburg, Russia, is to turn 19 on Nov. 15. . . . Alexeyev is back for a third season with the Rebels and, in fact, scored a goal in each of Red Deer’s first two games.


The Tri-City Americans have four 20-year-olds on their roster after releasing D Dan Gatenby. The Americans had acquired him from the Kamloops Blazers for a conditional seventh-round selection in the WHL’s 2018 bantam draft. . . . He is the younger brother of D Joe Gatenby, who played for the Kelowna Rockets and Kamloops, and now is at the U of New Brunswick. . . . The Americans will have to move out one of F Parker AuCoin, D Anthony Bishop, F Brett Clayton or F Nolan Yaremko to get down to the maximum of three 20s.


It seems that the Edmonton Oil Kings didn’t have any choice but to acquire another EdmontonOilKingsgoaltender, thus the deal with the Brandon Wheat Kings for Dylan Myskiw, 19. . . . Myskiw and Boston Bilous, 17, are the Oil Kings’ two active goaltenders at the moment. . . . They also have veteran Todd Scott, 18, on the roster, but he is out week-to-week with an undisclosed injury. . . . Edmonton also had Sebastian Cossa, who turns 16 on Nov. 21, in camp and he remains on their roster, but he, too, is injured and out for up to six weeks. . . . Myskiw got off to a good start with Edmonton, stopping 28 shots as the Oil Kings beat the host Red Deer Rebels on Saturday. The Oil Kings are back in action tonight against the visiting Medicine Hat Tigers. . . . Derek Van Diest of Postmedia has more on Edmonton’s goaltenders right here.


The WHL’s latest roster report is right here.



Dave Matsos, the head coach of the OHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs, collapsed at his team’s bench with 19.8 seconds left in the third period of game in Barrie against the Colts on Saturday night. Matsos, 44, is in his first season as the Bulldog’s head coach; Hamilton won the game, 4-2, to present him with his first head-coaching victory with the team. . . . He was taken to hospital for tests, then was released on Monday. . . . Scott Radley of the Hamilton Spectator has more right here. . . . The Bulldogs are off until Saturday when they are to meet the Petes in Peterborough.


The BCHL’s Prince George Spruce Kings and head coach Adam Maglio have signed a contract extension that runs through the 2020-21 season. He is in his fourth season with the team, his second as head coach. Last season, the Spruce Kings reached the BCHL final where they lost in five games to the Wenatchee Wild. . . . Maglio, 32, is from Nelson, B.C.


The SJHL is encouraging its players to wear seatbelts if they are available on any bus on which they are riding. This comes, of course, after the April 6 crash involving the Humboldt Broncos’ bus in which 16 people died. . . . However, it seems that this will be a tough sell, especially for trips of any duration. . . . Jennifer Quesnel of CBC News has more on the story right here.


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Scattershooting on Sunday . . . Petes trade one player, get nine draft picks . . . Goaltenders in WHL news . . . Schlenker’s movin’ on up

Scattershooting

“San Francisco Giants first baseman Brandon Belt named his newborn son August,” reports Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times, “in honor of his college coach at Texas, the late Augie Garrido. Just be thankful the Longhorns hired Garrido instead of Oil Can Boyd.”



Jack Finarelli, who is at sportscurmudgeon.com, had this analysis of a recent trade between the Green Bay Packer and Seattle Seahawks: “The Packers sent backup QB, Brent Hundley to the Seahawks where he will carry a clipboard for Russell Wilson instead of Aaron Rodgers. Hundley showed last season that he might someday become a journeyman QB who will not throw up on his shoes.”



College football players are being ejected when ruled to have targeted another player’s head for a helmet-to-helmet hit. In the WHL, meanwhile, teenagers are allowed to punch each other in the face and get only major penalties.



Sally Jenkins of the Washington Post, writing about the mess at Ohio State: “Read the public documents Ohio State collected in its investigation of Urban Meyer and you will never again be able to view him as anything but boneless.”

The complete column is right here. After reading it you will never look at a plucked chicken the same way again.


Surely it is only a coincidence that Chris Jones, the vice-president of football operations, general manager, head coach and defensive co-ordinator, and his Saskatchewan Roughriders are 3-0 since ridding themselves of Duron (The Distraction) Carter. Right?


Here’s Janice Hough, who can be found at leftcoastsportsbabe.com: “Bottled water has an expiration date?! So what happens when it expires?”



With Air Canada and WestJet having increased the fees to check bags, perhaps it’s time people flew in the baggage compartment and the bags were strapped into the seats.


MacBeth

F Kris Versteeg (Lethbridge, Kamloops, Red Deer, 2002-06) signed a one-year contract with Avangard Omsk (Russia, KHL). Last season, he had three goals and five assists in 24 games with the Calgary Flames (NHL). . . .

F Ryan Hollweg (Medicine Hat, 1999-2004) has been released by Plzeň (Czech Republic, Extraliga) by mutual agreement due to “long-term health problems.” Hollweg signed a one-year extension with Plzeň in April. Last season, he had two goals and two assists in 41 games.


ThisThat

When the OHL held what it calls its priority selection — most of us call it a draft — the Peterborough Petes selected F Will Cuylle in the first round.

Cuylle, who played last season with the minor midget AAA Toronto Marlboros, and his ohlfamily had told the Petes that he wouldn’t report if they selected him. The Petes rolled the dice and took him anyway, then tried to convince him to report.

When that failed, they traded him to the Windsor Spitfires on Friday in a deal that resulted in the Petes acquiring nine draft picks. Yes, NINE!

Here are the particulars from a Petes news release:

In the deal, Peterborough acquires one first-round pick, four second-round picks, three third-round picks, and one fifth-round pick, as follows:

  • Kingston’s 2nd round pick in 2019
  • Kingston’s 3rd round pick in 2020
  • Windsor’s 5th round pick in 2020
  • Windsor’s 3rd round pick in 2021
  • Barrie’s 2nd round pick in 2022
  • Windsor’s 3rd round in 2023
  • Kitchener’s 2nd round pick in 2024* (conditional)
  • 1st round pick (5th overall) in 2019 (OHL Compensatory Pick)
  • 2nd round pick (end of round) in 2019 (OHL Compensatory Pick)

* Should Windsor acquire a 2nd round pick in 2020 or 2021, Peterborough will receive that pick and return Kitchener’s 2nd round pick in 2024.

The Petes also will receive the 5th overall pick and the last pick in the 2nd round of the 2019 OHL Priority Selection as compensation from the Ontario Hockey League.

——

In the OHL, if a team’s first-round selection doesn’t report to training camp he is considered to be a “defected” player and the team will get a compensatory pick if it trades the player prior to Sept. 15. The drafting team also gets a second-round pick if the player in question was a top five pick.

——

With the restrictions that the WHL apparently has placed on the trading of young players, we are left to wonder if we will start to see these kinds of deals happen in the WHL.

(ICYMI, I wrote about those restrictions right here.)

When a team is loading up because it is to play host to a Memorial Cup, will it be prepared to trade away six or seven bantam draft picks in order to land a star player who just might put that team over the top?


Chris Schlenker, a former WHL player and on-ice official, has been promoted by the NHL and will be a full-time referee this season.

Schlenker, 34, worked in the AHL and NHL last season.

From Medicine Hat, he played four seasons (2001-05) in the WHL, playing two-plus seasons with the Regina Pats and one-plus with the Prince Albert Raiders.

He also spent 10 years as a member of the Medicine Hat Police Service.

There is more on Schlenker right here, from scoutingtherefs.com.


The Prince Albert Raiders have added G Donovan Buskey, 18, from the Spokane Chiefs in PrinceAlbertexchange for a sixth-round selection in the WHL’s 2020 bantam draft.

Buskey, from Vancouver, was a third-round pick by the Chiefs in the 2015 bantam draft. Last season, he was 10-10-0, 3.56, .871, with one shutout, in 22 appearances with the Spokane.

Adding Buskey adds to the Raiders’ goaltending depth and could figure in the 20-year-old decision-making process as the start of the regular season grows near.

Ian Scott, 19, who will go to camp with the NHL’s Toronto Maple Leafs, is No. 1 on the depth chart. Curtis Meger, 20, and Brett Balas, 17, also are on the Raiders’ roster.

The other 20-year-olds on the roster are F Kody McDonald and F Sean Montgomery. They also hold the WHL rights to F Noah Gregor, 20, who could end up with the San Jose Barracuda, the AHL affiliate of the NHL’s San Jose Sharks. The Raiders acquired Gregor’s rights from the Victoria Royals earlier in the summer.



The Prince George Cougars will open the regular season with Isaiah DiLaura, 18, and Taylor Gauthier, 17, as their goaltenders.

Gauthier is atop the depth chart. Last season, he was 8-18-3, 3.96, .885. This summer, he PrinceGeorgeplayed with the Canadian U-18 team that won the Hlinka Gretzky Cup. In fact, Gauthier, from Calgary, was the winning goaltender in the final, coming on with his side down 2-0 and stopping 16 shots as Canada beat Sweden, 6-2.

The 10th overall selection in the 2016 bantam draft, Gauthier was 8-18-3, 3.96, .885 last season.

DiLaura, from Elko New Market, Minn., was 3-3-2, 3.94, .888, in 14 appearances.

The third goaltender on their roster at the moment is Tyler Brennan, a first-round selection in the 2018 bantam draft who won’t turn 15 until Sept. 27. From Winnipeg, he will return to the Rink Hockey Academy and play for the midget prep team.

Ted Clarke of the Prince George Citizen has more right here.


Because of injuries, the Edmonton Oil Kings used five goaltenders last season as they went 22-42-8 and missed the playoffs.

This season, with exhibition games just having started, they already are down to three EdmontonOilKingsand one of those, Sebastian Cossa, won’t turn 16 until Nov. 21.

Chances are that the Oil Kings, under first-year head coach Brad Lauer, will open the regular season with Todd Scott, 18, who was acquired last season from the Vancouver Giants, and Boston Bilous, 17, a fourth-round selection in the 2016 bantam draft, as their goaltenders.

Scott, from Albertville, Minn., was 4-5-0, 3.89, .883 after joining the Oil Kings last season. He had been 8-7-4, 4.11, .869 with the Giants when they sent him east.

Bilous, from Langley, B.C., got into 16 games and went 0-10-1, 4.72, .838.

Cossa, from Fort McMurray, Alta., was a second-round pick in the 2017 bantam draft. Last season, he played for the midget AAA Fort Saskatchewan Rangers, going 3.37, .915 in 19 games. In seven playoff games, he was 2.28, .943.

With the three young goaltenders, Lauer told Derek Van Diest of Postmedia that age won’t have much to do with which two make the roster.

“They’re all young, so I don’t think the age part of it comes into play,” Later said. “It’s going to be how you’re playing that comes into play. I know we’ll be good defensively and responsible so, for me, goaltending is going to be how the exhibition seasons goes and how they develop through that.”

Van Diest’s complete story is right here.


The Saskatoon Blades are down to three goaltenders after releasing Cameron Beson, 16, who is from Grande Prairie, Alta. He has been in two Blades’ training camps now, and Saskatoonhas been placed on their protected list.

Sophomore Nolan Maier, a 17-year-old from Yorkton, is the Blades’ starter after going 23-17-2, 3.31, .895 in 43 appearances last season. He spent part of his summer winning gold with Canada’s U-18 team at the Hlinka Gretzky Cup, going 3.12, .872 in four games.

The other two goaltenders on the roster are Dorrin Luding, 19, of Prince George, and Koen MacInnes, a 16-year-old from Burnaby, B.C.

The Blades re-acquired Luding on June 21, getting him from the Seattle Thunderbirds on June 21 for a conditional seventh-round pick in the 2020 bantam draft. Saskatoon had selected him in the third round of the 2014 bantam draft.

Last season, Luding got into 11 games with the Everett Silvertips (3-6-0, 3.64, .891) and 17 with Seattle (6-9-1, 3.81, .881). In 30 career games, he is 9-15-1, 3.75, .886.

Saskatoon picked MacInnes in the second round of the 2017 bantam draft. Last season, he played with the Burnaby Winter Club’s Elite 15s, going 2.36, .926 in 17 regular-season games.

The Blades have opened the exhibition season by going 3-0-0.


The Brandon Wheat Kings, who wrapped up training camp with their intrasquad game BrandonWKregularon Sunday, also are down to three goaltenders after releasing Connor Ungar, 16.

That leaves the Wheat Kings with Ethan Kruger, Dylan Myskiw and Jiri Patera as the remaining goaltenders.

Myskiw, 19, got into 22 games with Brandon last season, going 11-5-2, 3.41, .887. He spent the season backing up Logan Thompson, who was playing out his eligibility.

Patera, 19, is from Praha, Czech Republic. He played last season with the USHL’s Cedar Rapids RoughRiders, after the Vegas Golden Knights selected him in the sixth round of the NHL’s 2017 draft. He has yet to sign a pro contract, and will leave later this week to attend the Golden Knights’ camp.

Kruger, who turns 17 on Sept. 27, is from Sherwood Park, Alta. He was a fifth-round selection in the 2016 bantam draft. Last season, he played with the midget AAA Sherwood Park Kings.


F Ryan Vandervlis of the Lethbridge Hurricanes, who was badly burned during an incident involving a firepit on June 15, is back home after being released from a Calgary hospital on Friday.

Vandervlis, 20, suffered burns to as much as 60 per cent of his body and spent four weeks in a medically induced coma. For the last part of his hospital stay, he was in the burn unit at Foothills Hospital.

Two other hockey players — Jordy Bellerive and Matt Alfaro — were injured in the incident that took place at the home of former Hurricanes captain Tyler Wong near Calgary. Bellerive, the Hurricanes’ captain, is in camp with his club. Alfaro will be going into his second season with the U of Calgary Dinos.

Bellerive scored twice, including the OT winner, as Lethbridge opened its exhibition season with a 5-4 victory over the visiting Medicine Hat Tigers on Friday night.



The junior B Creston Valley Thunder Cats found themselves without a general manager and head coach earlier this week when Brad Tobin left to join the BCHL’s Surrey Eagles as an assistant coach. . . . Tobin, 29, worked as an assistant with the Eagles for six seasons (2010-16) before leaving to join the Thunder Cats. . . . In Surrey, Tobin will work alongside Peter Schaefer, who took over as head coach on Aug. 28 following the departure of Brandon West. . . . One week before Tobin handed in his resignation, the Thunder Cats lost assistant coach Carter Duffin, who left to join the KIJHL’s Castlegar Rebels. . . . Earlier, Jeff Wagner, another Creston assistant coach, joined the Fernie Ghostriders as GM and head coach. After he left, Tobin hired Duffin, who had been with the SJHL’s Estevan Bruins, as an assistant coach.


G Kyle Dumba, 20, had his junior A rights swapped this week when the Nanaimo Clippers acquired them from the Salmon Arm Silverbacks, who got back D Sam MacBean, 20. . . . Dumba, who has split 41 career regular-season WHL games between the Calgary Hitmen, Kamloops Blazers and Everett Silvertips, is in camp with the Regina Pats. He finished last season on the Pats’ roster, but didn’t get into any regular-season games. Last season, he also got into 30 regular-season and three playoff games with Salmon Arm.


Karablog
Kara is answering the phone and taking pledges as her grandma, Dorothy Drinnan, prepares for her fifth straight Kamloops Kidney Walk on Sept. 23. (Todd Drinnan photo)

Dorothy, my wife of 46 years, will celebrate the fifth anniversary of her kidney transplant by taking part in the 2018 Kamloops Kidney Walk. If you would like to support her with a donation — and she is closing in on $2,000 — you are able to do so right here.


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Wednesday’s WHL trades, Part I: Blades, Pats get together, again … Gerlach’s on the move … Giants, Oil Kings agree on Koch

WHEELING AND DEALING …

NUMBER OF TRADES (since Nov. 13): 48

PLAYERS: 91

BANTAM DRAFT PICKS: 61

CONDITONAL BANTAM DRAFT PICKS: 12

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


THE DEAL: The Regina Pats acquired F Cam Hebig, 20, and G Ryan Kubic, who turned 20 on Jan. 7, from the Saskatoon Blades for G Tyler Brown, 20, F Bryan Lockner, 17, a first- ReginaPats100and second-round selections in the WHL’s 2020 draft, and third-round picks in the 2019 and 2021 bantam drafts.

THE NUMBERS: The 6-foot-0, 180-pound Hebig has 30 goals and 28 assists in 48 games. In 238 career games, he has 193 points, including 87 goals. . . . Kubic, 5-foot-11 and 185 pounds, was 8-11-1, 3.96, .871 with the Blades this season. In 129 career appearances, the first 109 of those with the Vancouver Giants, he is 40-69-13, 3.59, .892. . . .

Brown, a list player, was in his fourth season with the Pats. He has made 152 career appearances, going 76-47-16, 3.02, .904, with seven shutouts. He was Regina’s starter last season as it reached the WHL’s championship final. In that playoff run, he was 14-9 (five of the losses came in OT), 2.56, .915. . . . This season, Brown was 15-13-3, 3.31, .891 with the Pats. . . . This season, Lockner has seven goals and five assists in 39 games. In 101 career games, he has recorded 11 goals and 14 assists.

THE INFO: Including the first five rounds of the bantam draft, Alan Caldwell, who tracks such things at smallatlarge.blogspot.ca, believes Regina cupboard includes only a third-Saskatoonround pick in 2018, a fourth- and two fifth-rounders in 2019, and a fourth- and a fifth-rounder in 2020. . . .

Hebig, from Saskatoon, had been with the Blades since the age of 16. He was an NHL free agent until signing a three-year entry-level contract with the NHL Oilers on Dec. 28. He missed all of last season with an injury that was first believed to be a concussion but Hebig has since indicated that he never did get a clear-cut diagnosis. . . . The Blades selected Hebig in the third round of the 2012 bantam draft. . . . Kubic, from St. Andrews, Man., has made one appearance with the Blades since returning from an injury that had kept him out since Dec. 16. He was selected by Vancouver in the second round of the 2013 bantam draft. They dealt him to the Blades on Sept. 21, getting back a second-round pick in the 2019 bantam draft. The Pats also have two other goaltenders — Max Paddock, 17, and Jacob Wassermann, who turned 18 on Tuesday — on their roster. Paddock has been injured, so Wassermann was brought in from the SJHL’s Humboldt Broncos to back up Brown. . . . While Kubic has yet to play even one minute of playoff hockey in the WHL, Brown helped the Pats to the WHL’s championship final last season. . . . Brown, from Winnipeg, was listed by the Pats before the 2014-15 season. . . . Lockner is from Windsor, which is in the northern part of Colorado. he was a third-round pick by the Pats in the 2015 bantam draft.

WHY: The Pats are the host team for the 2018 Memorial Cup — it is the team’s 100th season and it will be the 100th anniversary of the Memorial Cup — so Regina is more than all-in. They wanted Hebig’s offence, and in adding a 20-year-old had to give up one, which turned out to be Brown. . . . The Blades got Lockner, and then, in adding a sniper to their lineup, flipped him to the Medicine Hat Tigers.


THE DEAL: The Saskatoon Blades acquired F Max Gerlach, 18, from the Medicine Hat Tigers for F Bryan Lockner, 17, Saskatoon’s first-round selection in the 2020 WHL bantam draft and a second-round pick in 2021.

THE NUMBERS: In 2015-16, as a freshman, the 5-foot-11, 175-pound Gerlach had 30 goals Tigers Logo Officialand 15 assists in 72 games. Last season, he recorded 34 goals and 28 assists in 72 games. This season, he has 16 goals and 19 assists in 35 games. . . . Add it all up and Gerlach has 80 goals and 62 assists in 179 career games. . . . For Lockner’s numbers, see the previous trade.

THE INFO: From Flower Mound, Texas, Gerlach was a sixth-round selection by the Tigers in the 2013 bantam draft. He played in the Colorado Thunderbirds organization before joining the Tigers.

WHY: The Blades got a pure scorer in Gerlach and that’s what they wanted. They expect him back next season as a 20-year-old. “Players like (Gerlach) do not come available very often,” Blades GM Colin Priestner said in a news release, “and the fact he can play for this year and next year as an overage made this decision easy for us.” . . . Gerlach was one of eight 19-year-olds on the Tigers’ roster, so they get younger with this deal.


THE DEAL: The Everett Silvertips acquired D Jameson Murray, 18, from the Calgary EverettHitmen for a conditional sixth-round selection in the WHL’s 2019 or 2020 bantam draft.

THE NUMBERS: Murray had one goal and five assists in 28 games with Calgary this season. Last season, his first in the WHL, he had a goal and two assists in 35 games. In 2015-16, he had 14 goals and 36 assists in 56 games with the major midget Okanagan Rockets, who are based in Kelowna.

THE INFO: The 6-foot-3, 185-pounder is from Kelowna. He is a right-hand shot, always a valuable commodity among defencemen.

WHY: Everett adds some size and depth to its back end. . . . The rebuilding Hitmen add another draft pick to their collection.


THE DEAL: The Victoria Royals acquired F Lane Zablocki, who turned 19 on Dec. 27, from the Lethbridge Hurricanes for second- and sixth-round selections in the 2018 WHL VictoriaRoyalsbantam draft and a conditional third-round pick in the 2019 bantam draft.

THE NUMBERS: This season, the 6-foot-0, 190-pound Zablocki has 11 goals and 14 assists in 40 games split between the Hurricanes and Red Deer Rebels. In 176 career games, he has 57 goals and 59 assists.

THE INFO: Zablocki, from Wetaskiwin, Alta., joins his third team this season and the fourth in two seasons. . . . The Prince George Cougars selected Zablocki in the fifth round of the 2013 bantam draft. He never played for the Cougars, who dealt him to theRegina Pats on Aug. 11, 2015. The Pats moved him to Red Deer on Jan. 10, 2017, and the Rebels traded him to Lethbridge on Dec. 9. . . . The Detroit Red Wings picked him in the third round of the NHL’s 2017 draft.

WHY: The Royals continue the attempt to remake their image by adding size and grit. They will be looking for that and some offence from Zablocki, who just might be back as a 20-year-old. . . . Lethbridge adds three draft picks to its coffers, something GM Peter Anholt no doubt will be able to use.


THE DEAL: The Saskatoon Blades acquired F Eric Florchuk, who was traded on his 18th birthday, from the Victoria Royals for first-round selections in the 2019 and 2021 WHL bantam drafts and a fourth-round selection in 2018.

THE NUMBERS: The 6-foot-1, 165-pound Florchuk, a WHL sophomore, had seven goals and 21 assists in 43 games with the Royals. In 94 career games, he has 10 goals and 27 assists.

THE INFO: From Fort Saskatchewan, Alta., Florchuk was selected by the Royals in the first round, 13th overall, of the 2015 bantam draft. In 2014-15, he had 24 goals and 22 assists in 33 games for the bantam AAA Fort Saskatchewan Rangers.

WHY: The Blades added to their roster of young forwards whom they feel have lots of upside. . . . The Royals moved out a forward whose ice time may have decreased with the trade additions they have made and you can’t scoff at a return that included two first-round draft picks.


THE DEAL: The Tri-City Americans acquired D Austin King-Cunningham, 17, from the TriCity30Vancouver Giants for a conditional fifth-round selection in the WHL’s 2019 bantam draft.

THE NUMBERS: King-Cunningham was pointless in five games with the Giants this season. Last season, he had one assist in three games. . . . he has been playing with the SJHL’s Estevan Bruins for whom he has three assists in 16 games.

THE INFO: The 6-foot-4, 195-pound King-Cunningham is from Pilot Butte, Sask. . . . He was an undrafted bantam who was added to Vancouver’s protected list.

WHY: Tri-City adds a prospect who will provide some depth in their organization while staying in Estevan. . . . The Giants get a draft pick for a player who wasn’t able to crack their roster.


THE DEAL: The Vancouver Giants acquired F Davis Koch, 19, and an conditional third-round pick in the WHL’s 2019 bantam draft from the Edmonton Oil Kings for F Brendan VancouverSemchuk, 18, G Todd Scott, 17, and a third-round selection in the 2018 bantam draft.

THE NUMBERS: The 6-foot-0, 165-pound Koch has 18 goals and 21 assists in 40 games this season. In 225 career games with Edmonton, he has 59 goals and 99 assists. Last season, he put up 21 goals and 49 assists in 72 games. . . . Semchuk, 6-foot-0 and 185 pounds, had 17 goals and 24 assists in 127 games over three seasons with the Giants. This season, he had eight goals and 11 assists in 33 games. . . . Scott, a WHL freshman, was 8-7-4, 4.11, .869 with the Giants.

THE INFO: Koch, from Surrey, B.C., requested a trade from the Oil Kings. He was a EdmontonOilKingssecond-round pick by Edmonton in the 2013 bantam draft and was an alternate captain this season. . . . Semchuk, from Kamloops, was on Vancouver’s suspended list after leaving the team in a dispute over playing time. He was a first-round selection, 10th overall, in the 2014 bantam draft. . . . The 5-foot-11, 190-pound Scott, from Albertville, Minn., joins Boston Bilous, 16, Josh Dechaine, 19, and Travis Child, 20, as goaltenders on Edmonton’s roster. However, Child is injured and hasn’t played since Dec. 15. . . . With Scott gone, Vancouver added G Trent Miner, 16, to their roster for the remainder of the season. From Souris, Man., Miner was a first-round pick in the 2016 bantam draft. This season, he was 17-3-0, 1.64, .941 in 30 games with the midget AAA Brandon Wheat Kings.

WHY: In a news release, Vancouver GM Glen Hanlon described Koch as “dynamic” and a “game-changer.” The Giants also expect Koch to be excited about returning to the Lower Mainland and playing in front of friends and family. . . . The Oil Kings appear to have done OK, considering Koch had asked for a trade, something that sometimes puts the squeeze on the team. They will need Semchuk to live up to his potential and for Scott to continue to grow as a goaltender.


LOTS MORE TO COME . . .