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Tuesday, June 30, 2015

VIGR Lifestyles Wednesday Thriller

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Happy Canada Day!! Lots to talk about this week so lets get too it.

CHL IMPORT DRAFT. The Regina Pats made one selection in Tuesdays CHL Import Draft. Russian defenceman Nikolai Knyzhov was picked 41st overall in the 1st round.

Knyzhov has played hockey in the United States for the last two years with the Phoenix Junior Coyotes. He says he grew up wanting to move to North America to play the game. "I came here to the camp (in Phoenix) two years ago and we just had a scrimmage and the coach came and watched me and asked if I wanted to play in the United States. I always wanted to play in the U.S. because I think the hockey is better here, I like it better the style of hockey so I decided to stay."

Knyzhov stands 6'2 and weighs in at 186 lbs. He had four points and 14 PIM's in 24 games last year in Pheonix. He says his goal was to hear his name called and get a chance to play major junior hockey. "This whole last year I wanted to play in the WHL. It was just so exciting for me to just get my name called. I can't explain how excited I was and I am looking forward to the future."

Pats Head Coach and Senior VP of Hockey Operations John Paddock says Knyzhov was a guy that head scout Dale McMullin and scout Barry Trapp both had a chance to see this last year. "He was one of quite a few that we had information on, that we had a good feel about. Dale happened to see him this year and Barry Trapp saw him three times. We think that there is a very good chance he will play on the team this year but I don't think there are any guarantees. Nobody knew what Sergey Zborovskiy was like when he came. It was enough for us to take him, he's been in Arizona for two years, he speaks pretty good English, so there are a lot of positive things."

Knyzhov says he brings a good solid game to the ice. "I'd say I'm a skilled defenceman. Can play both offense and defence pretty good, neutral zone, have a good gap, can play on the point on the blueline."

He joins fellow Russian and now New York Rangers prospect Sergey Zborovskiy on the Pats blueline.

GRAHAM TUER IS BACK. So cool to see Graham Tuer back with the Regina Pats. Tuer formerly was the Pats head scout and assistant GM but was most recently a scout with the Kelowna Rockets. Tuer will be doing some scouting and working as a liaison to Hockey Regina in his new role with the Pats. Truly one of the best guys you will ever meet and it's good to have him back on the good side.

PATS NHL DRAFT. The Regina Pats had five players selected in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft over the weekend. The best single draft for the organization since 1989 when there were also five players taken.

Defenceman Sergey Zborovskiy was the first to go at number 79 in the 3rd round to the New York Rangers. Zborovskiy was ranked 103rd by Central Scouting ahead of the draft. What a rise for the Russian D-man who had an outstanding final month to the regular season and a great payoffs. Sergey was unable to attend the draft because he had yet to obtain his VISA but was ecstatic when he found out in Calgary and even shed some tears.

Next Austin Wagner went in the 4th round to the Los Angeles Kings, 99th overall. Wagner held the 35th ranking by CSS going in. Personally I thought Wagner would go earlier on in the draft but what a perfect fit for the speedy winger from Calgary. He has the size as well which is always a staple of the Kings these days.

Still in the 4th round the Boston Bruins selected forward Jesse Gabrielle 105th. Gabrielle was ranked 73rd. Probably an even better fit than Wagner in L.A. Gabrielle's favorite team is Boston, he models his game after Bruins forward Brad Marchand and even wears number 63. He plays a Bruins type game.

In the 5th round, the Washingon Capitals selected defenceman Connor Hobbs with the 143rd pick. Hobbs was ranked 72nd ahead of the draft. Hobbs came a long way in the last year, from playing Junior A in Nipawin to the Pats and then the NHL Draft. He is a steal in round 5 in my opinion, the Capitals get another good Regina Pat.

Then in the 6th round the Capitals took defenceman Colby Williams at number 173. Williams was not ranked by CSS going in. What a fantastic surprise it was to see Colby's name called in the draft. It came out of left field, no one expected him to go including Colby himself. Williams was competing in a Spartan race in Edmonton when he got picked and didn't find out until about two hours later. Now the only question is whether or not the Capitals decide to let him play his 20-year-old season in junior of if they elect to play him in the AHL or ECHL. He would have to be signed first of course but what a blow that would be to the Pats if their 2014/15 MVP does not return. Fingers crossed!

I couldn't be happier for all five of these guys, good people who have worked hard and deserve everything they got.

NHL DRAFT TAKEAWAYS. No surprise as to the first three picks in the draft on Friday night. McDavid, Eichel and Strome. There were not a whole lot of surprises through the whole first round except for maybe one. The Minnesota Wild drafted Swedish centre Joel Eriksson Ek 20th overall. The kid had 6 points with Farjestad last year... Doesn't seem like first round numbers to me but I've never seen him play.

The Oilers traded the 16th and 33rd overall picks to the New York Islanders for defenceman Griffin Reinhart at the draft. It's a lot to pay for an unproven guy in my opinion. Yes Griffin was a great junior player and Memorial Cup Champion and from the Edmonton perspective they need to acquire older guys and not draft prospects. If Griffin turns into a good pro then it's a great trade for the Oilers but it is a little high risk.

The Oil also picked up goaltender Cam Talbot and a pick from the Rangers for three picks. I knew Edmonton would add a goaltender but I didn't think it would be him. Thought a Niemi or a Lack or Cam Ward might be in the cards. Again a little risky but Talbot had a heck of a year with the blue shirts last year.

FLAMES MOVE. The Calgary Flames are the second team to benefit from the Boston Bruins trading away a young prospect. First it was the Dallas Stars with Tyler Seguin and now the Flames get defenceman Dougie Hamilton and have signed him to a 6 year extension worth under 6 million a year. The Flames only paid an extra second round pick for Hamilton than the Oilers paid for Reinhart. That's hard to fathom because Dougie is established, a different player yes but right now a much better one. Great trade for Calgary.

SEVEN PLAYER DEAL. Wow what a trade between the Chicago Blackhawks and Columbus Blue Jackets. Brandon Saad and two prospects are headed to the Jackets in exchange for Artem Anisimov, 3 other players and a drat pick. It's not very often these types of deals are done, the Blackhawks obviously needing cap room allowed them to trade Saad but he will be missed. One of the best power forwards in the game.

MOLLEKEN RETURNS TO COACHING. Congrats to former Regina Pats and Saskatoon Blades Head Coach Lorne Molleken on being named the new bench boss of the Vancouver Giants. He has been out of hockey for the last two years but said on the 620 CKRM Sportscage Tuesday that he felt the itch to get back behind the bench and has found a good fit in Vancouver. He has a franchise player to start with right off the bat in Tyler Benson. Plus some other good young players around him. Are they contenders yet?no, will they make the playoffs this year? maybe. But the Giants need some consistency behind the bench after hiring two head coaches last year. This is a start.

PATS ALUMNI HEADED INTO HHOF. Former Regina Pats forward and Saskatoon native Bill Hay is among the 2015 Hockey Hall of Fame induction class as a builder. Hay played with the Pats in 1952-53 and then again in 1954-55 where he went to the Memorial Cup but lost to the Toronto Marlboros. He went on to play College in Colorado and became the first player to make the NHL out of the college ranks. He won the Calder Memorial Trophy as rookie of the year in 1960 and then the Stanley Cup with the Chicago Blackhawks in 1961, the franchises first championship since 1938. Hay says it's great to be recognized. "It really is quite an honour to go into the HHOF. Especially with the players and builders that have been inducted. In the game of hockey to be be inducted into the HHOF is the greatest honour a player or a builder can have."

Hay says he hopes he had an impact on the game over his career as a builder. "My career highlights were being the first college graduate to play in the NHL and that opened some gates. Scouts knew there was some talent south of the border and they used it and you can see the amount of college players that are in the NHL right now. From there what I really enjoyed, well I really enjoyed playing and winning the Stanley Cup, but when I came out of the game and got involved with Hockey Canada and research and development of the game, we were falling behind the rest of the world. In the late 50's and early 60's we had to put some smarter thinking in at the grassroots level and we established centers of excellence across the country and the game really improved. The coaches improved, the referees improved and we had some smart people, not just old hockey players, talking about the game of hockey and what the problems were."

Hay went on to be named the President and CEO of the Calgary Flames in 1991 and then served on the selection committee for the HHOF before being named chairman.

Hay says he has fond memories of where he started his hockey career in Regina. "I tell ya, that was the most fun I had playing the game. Murray Armstrong was our coach and Del Wilson was there as well and we went to the Memorial Cup. Moose Jaw was always a good rivalry. The one story I remember as a 16-year-old was playing Crows Nest Past and I took a run at this guy and he cut me for about 15 stitches. So I got sewed up and then I told myself I was really going to get hi in the second period and he knocked three teeth out. So you learned early when you were there. But man there were a lot of tough guys back then."

Hay will be inducted alongside fellow builder Peter Karmanos Jr. Players Nicklas Lidstrom, Chris Pronger, Phil Housley, Sergei Federov. and US female player Angela Ruggiero.

INJURY WOES. The Riders were bit hard in week one with injuries. I could not believe it sitting in the broadcast booth after the loss to Winnipeg. The defeat didn't even seem to matter, what mattered was that Darian Durant, Shea Emery, Nic Demski, Marshay Green and Keenan MacDougall all left the game and did not return. Durant is done for the year, Emery doubtful this week, MacDougall out for a while and Demski and Green are up in the air. That's an unbelievable number of injuries to Canadians and impact starters. Way too many for one game. AT least it looks like Weston Dressler and Tyron Brackenridge will be back. I do not think the season is lost in the slightest. Kevin Glenn will be fine behind center and while there will be some new faces on defense, this is not the end of the world. I trust Brenden Taman will bring in the guys needed and Corey Chamblin will have them ready.

TACKLING. One thing that has to get better for week 2 is the tackling. It was a tough night for the entire defense against the Blue Bombers on Saturday. While you do have to credit Winnipeg and their offensive line and running game, the Riders shot themselves in the foot giving up way too many yards after first contact. What's comforting is that tackling is a correctable fundamental. It will get better.

TORONTO. The Argos visit Mosaic on Sunday and are coming off a big win over the Edmonton Eskimos in week 1. Trevor Harris was outstanding at QB and set a franchise record for completion percentage in a game. Their defense looked solid and the offense moved the ball. Will be another tough game for the Green and White.

WEEK 1 TAKEAWAYS. I know it's only been a week but from watching all four games, I don't think there is going to be as big a disparity between the West and the East this season. Last year the Ti-Cats won the East with a 9-9 record. It will be a winning record this year for that team in my opinion. Toronto is better, Montreal can beat you and Ottawa while still behind the pack looks improved and will win more than two games. Meanwhile in the West, Mike Reilly is done for 3 months in Edmonton, Durant is gone for the year, Bo-Levi Mitchell looked average in Calgary and Winnipeg might be the best team in the early part of the season. After a week of judgement I see a lot more parity and that is good for the league.

That's it from me today, Have a great week!

Phil
@PhilTheThrill18




Red Sox lose in Medicine Hat

The Regina Red Sox fell 6-3 in Medicine Hat Tuesday night.  Regina led 3-2 heading into the bottom of the 8th inning but gave up 4 runs to the Mavericks.

Zach Weatherford was the Red Sox offensive star going 3 for 4 with 2 RBIs and a run scored. Brandon Vaughn also added a pair of hits for Regina.

Skyler Shaw-Fuss got the start for the Red Sox giving up 8 hits while facing 29 batters. Tommy Lay replaced Shaw-Fuss and was tagged for 4 runs before giving way to Mike Thill.

The two teams will meet again in a Canada Day rematch in Medicine Hat. Game time is set for 7 pm.

Tony Playter, ABC
Outlaw Communications

Graham Tuer is back with the Regina Pats

Regina, Saskatchewan – The Regina Pats Hockey Club is pleased to announce Graham Tuer has joined the organization as a Scout and Liaison to Hockey Regina.


Graham Tuer’s name is synonymous with hockey in the Queen City having been involved with the sport for over fifty years.  The Regina native has coached and/or managed hockey teams at every level of minor and junior hockey in Saskatchewan.  Tuer served as the Regina Pats’ Assistant General Manager and Director of Player Personnel in the early ‘90s and was recognized by the club as one of the organization’s ‘builders’ in 2008.  In addition to his work with the Pats, Tuer managed the Regina Pat Canadians, winning an Air Canada Cup national Midget-AAA championship in 1988.  In 2007, Hockey Regina recognized Tuer by naming a tournament, the Graham Tuer Bantam AA Tournament, in his honour.


The Regina Sports Hall of Fame inductee (2012) has been on the board of the Saskatchewan Midget AAA Hockey league since 1983 and was an important contributor to creating the Saskatchewan Development Model.  Throughout his career in hockey, Tuer scouted for numerous WHL Teams and NHL Central Scouting.  He was awarded the WHL Distinguished Service Award in 2010.

This spring, Tuer was awarded the Hockey Canada Order of Merit (West), recognized as an individual who has served amateur hockey faithfully.


“I’m happy to be back and pleased with the organization and how it’s taking shape,” commented Graham Tuer.  “In my discussions with the coaching staff, I was very impressed with their vision and the empathy they show toward their players and their development.  It was difficult for me to leave a great organization like Kelowna, but it is wonderful to be a part of the Regina Pats again.  I’m told it looks natural for me to be a Regina Pat.”

Named for the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, the Western Hockey League’s Regina Pats are the oldest major junior hockey franchise in the world operating from its original location.  Since their founding in 1917, the Pats have won three Memorial Cup championships and compete in the WHL’s Eastern Division.  To learn more about the Pats, call 306-337-1535 or visit www.reginapats.com.

Daniel Fink

Director Media and Communications

Regina Pats Hockey Club

Pats select Knyzhov in CHL Import Draft


The Regina Pats made one selection in this mornings CHL Import Draft.

The Pats took 17 year old Russian defenceman Nikolay Knyzhov from the Phoenix Jr Coyotes Under 16 with the 41st overall pick.

Knyzhov who stands 6'2 and weights 186 pounds had four points and 16 penalty minutes in 24 games last season.

“This is a rarity for the import draft in that our scouts had an opportunity to see Nikolai multiple times throughout the season,” said Regina Pats Head Coach and GM John Paddock.  “We know he wants to come play junior hockey in Canada so it made the pick much easier.  We look forward to seeing him in Regina for training camp in August.”

He is shown scoring a shorthanded goal in this highlights pack at the 55 second mark.




Monday, June 29, 2015

Regina Pats CHL Import Draft Preview


The 2015 CHL Import Draft starts Tuesday morning at 9 AM Regina time.

The Pats hold the 41st overall pick in the first round and will only pick one player in the draft with Sergey Zborovskiy returning for his 18-year-old season.

Pats Senior VP of Hockey Operations, GM and Head Coach John Paddock says he is not sure what will be available at 41. "It's just like pulling a needle out of a hay stack. Where we are picking would be an issue to start with if you knew all the players. When you don't know the players and you are depending on NHL lists and depending on agents it makes you feel inadequate as a group. I really have no idea, hopefully something is there that we have a little bit of information on when it comes to the pick."

Paddock and Assistant GM Dave Struch were at the NHL draft over the weekend but Paddock says they didn't glean anything they didn't already know ahead of the draft. "This has been going on for six weeks where we have talked to some of the people we are closer too at the NHL level and stuff and their lists. But all it is, is their lists, I mean they might have 8 Europeans on their list they would like to draft and maybe no matter who drafted them none of them are ever coming to play. Dave Struch says everybody always feels there's nothing you feel more inadequate at because you are pulling a needle out of a hay stack."

The Pats already have defenceman Sergey Zborovskiy filling one of the two import spots and Paddock says he has no preference on drafting a forward of another defenceman. "I think even more so we will take the best player available that we have information on. I mean we might go past a better player that comes some day or some year or whatever and that's because we just don't know him. I think we have a lot of good young players at both positions and we will just weight that with our information when it comes closer to our pick."

Previous Regina Pats CHL Import Picks:

2014: D Sergey Zborovskiy, 1st Round, 39th overall.

2013; D Dmitry Sinitsy, 1st Round, 16th overall.
          F Maximillian Kammerer, 2nd Round, 76th overall.

2012: F Emyl Sylvegard, 1st Round, 32nd overall.

2011: F Dominik Volek, 1st Round, 9th overall.

2010: D Ricard Blidstrand. 1st Round, 46th overall.

2009: F Michal Poletin, 1st Round, 59th overall.

2008: F Tomas Hricina, 1st Round, 27th overall.

2007: F Rudolf Cerveny, 1st Round, 37th overall.
          F Marco Insam, 2nd Round, 71st overall.

2006: F Niko Snellman, 1st Round, 41st overall.

2005: F Petr Kalus, 1st Round 3rd overall.
          F Anze Kopitar, 2nd Round, 59th overall.


Tuesday's draft starts at 9 AM Regina time.




Lorne Molleken is the new Head Coach in Vancouver


The Vancouver Giants will officially introduce Lorne Molleken as their new head coach at a news conference on Tuesday morning.

Molleken last coached in the WHL in 2012/13 with the Saskatoon Blades. He has spent 17 seasons as a coach in the league along with 3 seasons in the AHL and 5 in the NHL.

Molleken is a Regina product and will become the 6th head coach in the history of the Giants.



Chiefs trade Laday to Medicine Hat

SPOKANE, Wash. - The Spokane Chiefs announced today they have traded Hungarian defenseman Tamas Laday to the Medicine Hat Tigers in exchange for an 8th Round pick in the 2016 WHL Bantam Draft. 

"This trade was initiated on a couple of fronts," said Chiefs General Manager Tim Speltz. "First, we have an abundance of good, young defensemen that we feel are ready to play. Second, with the 26th pick in the upcoming import draft, we are only allowed to draft an import player if we have an available import spot."

Spokane now has one European import roster position to fill heading into Tuesday's CHL Import Draft; Austrian forward Dominic Zwerger occupies the second. The 26th overall pick marks the highest import draft position the Chiefs have held since 2005. Laday was originally acquired by the Chiefs as the 42nd overall pick in the 2014 CHL Import Draft.

"Tamas improved greatly last year after adjusting to the North American game," Speltz continued. "We appreciate his contribution and wish him the best with his opportunity in Medicine Hat."

Laday played 60 games for the Chiefs last season, recording six assists while piling up 104 penalty minutes (second-highest on the team). He added an assist and 12 penalty minutes in six playoff games.

Courtesy Chiefs PR




Sunday, June 28, 2015

Red Sox Walk Off the Indians Sunday

On a near perfect day for baseball, the Regina Red Sox defeated the visiting Swift Current Indians 6-5 at Currie Field.  The Red Sox took an early lead only to have the Indians score runs in five consecutive innings to tie the contest in the top of the 9th.

Local product, Jordan Schulz came through in the clutch with a 2-out walk off single to score Geoff Seto in the bottom of the 9th inning for the Regina win.

Close to 500 fans enjoyed the warm weather and Tyler Shumpert’s pitching performance. Shumpert, pitched 6.2 innings with 5 strikeouts before head coach Scott Douglas summoned Kendal Daniels and Jeremy Sylvester from the bullpen. Louis Cohen came on in the 9th and got credit for the win.

Gabriel Montero continued to be red hot for the Red Sox as he contributed 2 hits, a walk, a run, a stolen base and two RBIs in the victory. Montero now has a team high 7 stolen bases.

Centre Fielder Zach Weatherfield had a pair of singles, a run and RBI.  

The Red Sox take to the road for a 2 game series against Medicine Hat and a visit to Swift Current before coming home for 5 straight games Currie Field.

With the win the Red Sox are now 12-10 on the season.

Tony Playter, ABC
Outlaw Communications

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Five Regina Pats Drafted, Five Interviews


For the first time since 1989 the Regina Pats had five players elected in the NHL Entry Draft.

I caught up with all five on Saturday afternoon after the draft concluded.

Up first the New York Rangers 3rd round pick, 79th overall, defenceman Sergey Zborovskiy.



Check this out on Chirbit

Forward Austin Wagner, 4th round, 99th overall to the Los Angeles Kings.



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4th round, 105th overall to the Boston Bruins, forward Jesse Gabrielle.



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In the 5th round to the Washington Capitals at 143, defenceman Connor Hobbs.



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Defenceman Colby Williams, 6th round, 173rd overall to the Washington Capitals.



Check this out on Chirbit

A great day and a huge congrats to all five guys!



Regina Pats see 5 Players taken in 2015 NHL Entry Draft


The Regina Pats had their best showing at the NHL Draft since 1989 on Saturday.

5 players were taken on day 2 of the draft between rounds 3 and 6.

Defenceman Sergey Zborovskiy was the first to go at number 79 in the 3rd round to the New York Rangers. Zborovskiy was ranked 103rd by Central Scouting ahead of the draft.

Next Austin Wagner went in the 4th to the Los Angeles Kings, 99th overall. Wagner held the 35th ranking by CSS going in.

Still in the 4th round the Boston Bruins selected forward Jesse Gabrielle 105th. Gabrielle was ranked 73rd.

In the 5th round, the Washingon Capitals selected defenceman Connor Hobbs with the 143rd pick. Hobbs was ranked 72nd ahead of the draft.

Then in the 6th round the Capitals took defenceman Colby Williams at number 173. Williams was not ranked by CSS going in.

Saturday was the first time since 1989 that the Pats organization saw five players selected. Back then it was Mike Sillinger, Kevin Haller, Jamie Heward all in the 1st round. Then Jim Mathieson in the 3rd and Scott Daniels in the 7th. The Pats had seen 5 players drafted 4 times prior to 2015.

The franchise record was set back in 1974 and was duplicated again in 1983 when 8 players were picked.



Connor Hobbs goes in Round 5 to Washington

Regina, Saskatchewan – The Regina Pats Hockey Club congratulates defenceman Connor Hobbs on his selection in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft by the Washington Capitals.  The Saskatoon, SK native was picked in the fifth round, 143rd overall.

Connor Hobbs joined the Pats prior to the 2015 WHL Trade Deadline in a blockbuster deal with the Medicine Hat Tigers.  The 6’1”, 190 lbs defender totaled 18 points (2G, 16A) with 16 of those points coming in his final 24 games.  Hobbs also added two goals in eight playoff games.

Hobbs has already made his mark as one of the top blue-liners in Canada after he dressed for Team Canada’s U18 squad at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament where he posted two assists in five games.  During his brief stint in the SJHL this season, Hobbs played for Team Canada West at the World Junior-A Challenge in December.

Hobbs is the fourth Pats player selected this weekend’s draft.  The Pats have a total of six players ranked by Central Scouting for the 2015 NHL Entry Draft.  Follow updates from Sunrise, Florida on Twitter, Facebook and ReginaPats.com.

Named for the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, the Western Hockey League’s Regina Pats are the oldest major junior hockey franchise in the world operating from its original location.  Since their founding in 1917, the Pats have won three Memorial Cup championships and compete in the WHL’s Eastern Division.  To learn more about the Pats, call 306-337-1535 or visit www.reginapats.com.

Mark Rathwell
VP of Communications
Regina Pats Hockey Club

Pats Jesse Gabrielle goes to Boston in Round 4

Regina, Saskatchewan – The Regina Pats Hockey Club congratulates forward Jesse Gabrielle on his selection in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft by the Boston Bruins.  The Moosomin, SK native was picked in the 4th round, 105th overall.

Jesse Gabrielle joined the Pats ahead of the 2015 WHL Trade Deadline in a trade with the Brandon Wheat Kings.  Gabrielle had a standout rookie year in 2013-14 where he posted 26 points (12G, 14A) in 49 games and picked up 6 points (3G, 3A) in nine playoff games.  He also joined Team Canada West at the 2014 World U17 Hockey Challenge tallying two points (1G, 1A) in five games.

The gritty winger quickly surpassed his rookie totals in 2014-15, posting 25 points (13G, 12A) in his first 33 games.  After joining the Pats, Gabrielle continued to put up solid numbers with 19 points (10G, 9A) in the final 33 games of the year.  He also added four points (1G, 3A) in nine playoff games.  Leading up to the NHL Draft, Gabrielle turned heads at the NHL Scouting Combine in Buffalo, N.Y. where he set three records in the physical testing (mean power output, fatigue index test and bench press).

Gabrielle is the third Pats player selected this weekend’s draft.  The Pats have a total of six players ranked by Central Scouting for the 2015 NHL Entry Draft.  Follow updates from Sunrise, Florida on Twitter, Facebook and ReginaPats.com.

Named for the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, the Western Hockey League’s Regina Pats are the oldest major junior hockey franchise in the world operating from its original location.  Since their founding in 1917, the Pats have won three Memorial Cup championships and compete in the WHL’s Eastern Division.  To learn more about the Pats, call 306-337-1535 or visit www.reginapats.com.

Mark Rathwell
VP of Communications
Regina Pats Hockey Club

Pats Wagner goes to the LA Kings in Round 4

Regina, Saskatchewan – The Regina Pats Hockey Club congratulates forward Austin Wagner on his selection in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft by the Los Angeles    The Calgary, AB native was picked in the 4th round, 99th overall.

Wagner was a fifth round pick (94th overall) of the Pats in the 2012 WHL Bantam Draft.  The speedster made his debut in the 2012-13 season, suiting up as an affiliate player for the Blue and White.  Wagner earned a spot on the Pats roster as a 16-year old rookie in the 2013-14 season, recording two points (1G, 1A) in 42 games played.

2014-15 was a true breakout season for Wagner as he raced up the Central Scouting rankings throughout the year.  It only took five games for Wagner to surpass his totals from the previous season.  He went on to post 39 points (20G, 19A) in 61 regular season games and three points (1G, 2A) in nine playoff games.

Wagner is the second Pats player selected in this weekend’s draft.  The Pats have a total of six players ranked by Central Scouting for the 2015 NHL Entry Draft.  Follow updates from Sunrise, Florida on Twitter, Facebook and ReginaPats.com.

Named for the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, the Western Hockey League’s Regina Pats are the oldest major junior hockey franchise in the world operating from its original location.  Since their founding in 1917, the Pats have won three Memorial Cup championships and compete in the WHL’s Eastern Division.  To learn more about the Pats, call 306-337-1535 or visit www.reginapats.com.

Mark Rathwell
VP Communications
Regina Pats Hockey Club

Rangers take Sergey Zborovskiy 79th overall

Regina, Saskatchewan – The Regina Pats Hockey Club congratulates defenceman Sergey Zborovskiy on his selection in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft by the New York Rangers.  The Moscow, RUS native was picked in the 3rd round, 79 overall.

Sergey Zborovskiy was acquired by the Pats through the 2014 CHL Import Draft.  The lanky defenceman was the 39th overall selection in the annual European intake.  Zborovskiy put together an excellent rookie season, accumulating 19 points (3G, 16A) and a +15 plus/minus rating while playing in 71 games this season, missing just the final game of the year.  In the playoffs, Zborovskiy led the Blue and White in plus/minus with a +5 in six games.

Zborovskiy was one of the fastest risers on the Central Scouting Rankings throughout the season.  He raced from 197th at the mid-term all the way to 103rd in the final list.

Zborovskiy is the first Pats player selected this weekend’s draft.  The Pats have a total of six players ranked by Central Scouting for the 2015 NHL Entry Draft.  Follow updates from Sunrise, Florida on Twitter, Facebook and ReginaPats.com.

Named for the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, the Western Hockey League’s Regina Pats are the oldest major junior hockey franchise in the world operating from its original location.  Since their founding in 1917, the Pats have won three Memorial Cup championships and compete in the WHL’s Eastern Division.  To learn more about the Pats, call 306-337-1535 or visit www.reginapats.com.
 Mark Rathwell
VP Communications
Regina Pats Hockey Club

Friday, June 26, 2015

Darrin McKechnie named Pat Canadians Head Coach

Photo courtesy the Vancouver Sun
The Regina Pats and Regina Pat Canadians have ended up swapping coaches for the 2015/16 season.

The Pats hired Brad Herauf as an assistant, he was formerly the head coach with the Pat C's.

News came down Friday that the Pat C's in turn have hired the man Herauf replaced as their head coach in Darrin McKechnie.

McKechnie stepped down from the Pats after one season because of his increased duties with the Regina Police.




Five WHLer's Selected in 1st Round of 2015 NHL Draft

Sunrise, Florida – Five players from the Western Hockey League heard their named called in the first round of the 2015 NHL Draft at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, FL on June 26, including seventh overall pick Ivan Provorov (Brandon Wheat Kings).

Ivan Provorov of the Brandon Wheat Kings was the first WHL player selected in the 2015 NHL Draft, chosen by the Philadelphia Flyers with the seventh overall pick.  Provorov, a product of Yaroslavl, Russia, recently completed his rookie season with the Wheat Kings after electing to play in the WHL.

A 6’0”, 200 lb defenceman, Provorov was voted the Eastern Conference Defenceman of the Year after posting 61 points (15g-46a) in 60 games played which was also tops amongst WHL rookie skaters. Provorov went on to put up 13 points (2g-11a) in 19 games during the 2015 WHL Playoffs. Provorov was selected by Brandon 30th overall in the 2014 CHL Import Draft.

Forward Jake DeBrusk of the Swift Current Broncos was the second WHL player selected with the Boston Bruins’ 14th overall pick. DeBrusk recently completed his second season in the WHL in which he posted 81 points (42g-39a) and played in all 72 games. DeBrusk becomes the second-highest Broncos player to ever be selected in the NHL Draft. The Edmonton, AB native was selected by the Broncos 137th overall in the 2011 WHL Bantam Draft.

After a trade that saw the New York Islanders acquire the 16th overall pick, Seattle Thunderbirds forward Mathew Barzal heard his name called by the Islanders. The first overall pick from the 2012 WHL Bantam Draft posted 57 points (12g-45a) in just 44 games during the 2014-15 WHL Regular Season. Barzal is the 15th Thunderbird to be selected in the first round of the NHL Draft.

Rounding out the first round of WHL selections, Everett Silvertips defenceman Julius Noah Juulsen was selected 26th overall by the Montreal Canadiens and Kelowna Rockets forward Nick Merkley was selected 30th overall by the Arizona Coyotes.

2015 NHL Draft, WHL Players

1st Round

#7. Philadelphia Flyers – Ivan Provorov; Yaroslavl, Russia; Brandon Wheat Kings

#14. Boston Bruins – Jake DeBrusk; Edmonton, AB; Swift Current Broncos

#16. New York Islanders – Mathew Barzal; Coquitlam, BC; Seattle Thunderbirds

#26. Montreal Canadiens – Noah Juulsen; Abbotsford, BC; Everett Silvertips

#30. Arizona Coyotes – Nick Merkley; Calgary, AB; Kelowna Rockets


Past WHL – NHL Draft Results

-A total of 37 WHL players were selected in the 2014 NHL Draft, including nine in the first round

-A total of 33 WHL players were selected in the 2013 NHL Draft, including eight in the first round.

-A total of 32 WHL players were selected in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, including six in the first round.

-A total of 33 WHL players were selected in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, including five in the first round.

-A total of 43 WHL players were selected in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, including seven in the first round.

-A total of 31 WHL players were selected in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, including five in the first round.

-A total of 37 WHL players were selected in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft, including nine in the first round.

-A total of 37 WHL players were selected in the 2007 NHL Entry Draft, including nine in the first round.

-A total of 24 WHL players were selected in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft

-A total of 43 WHL players were selected in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft

Corey St. Laurent
Senior Manager, Communications
Western Hockey League




Long Ball Drives Red Sox Past Edmonton

Jager Toffan’s 2 run home run in the 6th inning powered the Regina Red Sox past the Edmonton Prospects 5-2 Friday night. Over 500 fans were on hand to enjoy the 11th Red Sox victory of the year.

Regina starter Parks Smithey recorded the win as he pitched into the 5th inning, giving up just 2 hits. The bullpen combination of Kendal Daniels, Mike Thill and Louis Cohen blanked the Prospects the rest of the way.

Gabriel Montero also added two hits for the Red Sox, who ended a 2 game losing streak.

The Red Sox have Saturday off before hosting the Swift Current Indians on Sunday at 2 pm.

Tony Playter, ABC
Outlaw Communications

Pats Players ready for NHL Draft

Regina, Saskatchewan – The Regina Pats roster features six players ranked by Central Scouting ahead of this weekend’s NHL Entry Draft in Sunrise, Florida.  Austin Wagner, Connor Hobbs, Jesse Gabrielle, Sergey Zborovskiy, Adam Brooks and Adam Berg all sit within the CSS top 210 among North American Skaters.

Austin Wagner is the Pats’ highest ranked player at 35th among North American skaters.  Wagner found his scoring touch this season, picking up 39 points (20G, 19A) in 61 games.  The speedster became one of the WHL’s top shorthanded threats with eight shorthanded points (5G, 3A).  In the playoffs, Wagner registered 3 points (1G, 2A) in nine games.

Connor Hobbs finished the year 72nd on the North American list despite only playing 45 games in the WHL this season.  Hobbs totaled 18 points (2G, 16A) with 16 of those coming in his final 24 games.  The defender also tallied two goals in nine playoff games.  The Saskatoon, SK product dressed for Team Canada’s U18 squad at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament and Team Canada West at the World Junior-A Challenge.

Jesse Gabrielle is right on Hobbs’ heels at 73rd in the rankings.  The forward joined the Pats just ahead of the 2015 WHL Trade Deadline from the Brandon Wheat Kings.  Gabrielle tallied 44 points (23G, 21A) in 66 games this season.  Gabrielle also finished second on the Pats with 112 penalty minutes.  The Moosomin, SK also added four points (1G, 3A) in nine playoff contests.

Sergey Zborovskiy leapt up the rankings late in the season, moving all the way to 103 in the final rankings from 197 at the mid-term. Zborovskiy put up 19 points (3G, 16A) and a +15 plus/minus rating while playing in 71 games this season, missing just the final game of the year.  He led the Pats in the playoffs with a +5 plus/minus rating.

Adam Brooks sits 176th among North American skaters.  The 19-year old is in his second year of draft eligibility.  Brooks enjoyed a break out season leading the Pats in goals (30) and points (62).  Brooks finished ahead of teammate Austin Wagner leading the WHL with nine shorthanded points (4G, 5A).  He posted 7 points (4G, 3A) in nine playoff games.

Recent call-up Adam Berg rounds out the list at 200th.  Berg played most of his season with the Calgary Mustangs in the AJHL, finishing with 36 points (16G, 20A) in 49 games.  Berg played in 12 regular season games with the Pats, picking up three points (1G, 2A).  He had three assists in nine playoff games.

The Pats media department is at the draft in Florida to provide comprehensive coverage of the weekend.  Follow updates on TwitterFacebook and ReginaPats.com.  For media requests contact Mark Rathwell at 306-537-9015 or mrathwell@reginapats.com.

Named for the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, the Western Hockey League’s Regina Pats are the oldest major junior hockey franchise in the world operating from its original location.  Since their founding in 1917, the Pats have won three Memorial Cup championships and compete in the WHL’s Eastern Division.  To learn more about the Pats, call 306-337-1535 or visit www.reginapats.com.


Daniel Fink

Director Media and Communications

Regina Pats Hockey Club

Rebels - Broncos Trade

SWIFT CURRENT SK  The Swift Current Broncos have acquired overage forward Scott Feser from the Red Deer Rebels.

 

The Broncos dealt a 2017 4th round WHL bantam draft pick to the Rebels in return for the 1995 born player.

 

“He’s a strong 2-way player who will bring us veteran leadership” said Bronco coach and GM Mark Lamb of Feser.

 

He takes face-offs, kills penalties and can play the power-play. We’re really happy to get him” added Lamb.

 

The Broncos open the 2015-16 regular season September 25th in Brandon while hosting their home-opener September 26th


Ryan Switzer, Director of Communications/Digital Media, Swift Current Broncos 

Red Sox drop first of two versus Edmonton

The Edmonton Prospects scored 4 unearned runs to grab an early lead and cruise to a 4-1 victory over the Regina Red Sox at Currie Field.   

The loss dropped the Red Sox back to .500 with a 10-10 record. Edmonton improved to 9-9.

Over 700 fans watched as starter Tommy Lay threw 8 solid innings for the Sox scattering 9 hits and striking out 4 Edmonton batters.  Tyler Vavra and Brandon Radmacher closed out the game for the Red Sox.

Regina was also tagged with 4 errors that resulted in all 4 Prospect runs.

Regina managed 8 hits off Prospect pitching and scored their only run in the bottom of the 8th inning when Brandon Vaughn doubled in Gabe Snyder.

The same two teams will be back on the diamond Friday night at Currie Field. The first pitch is set for 7:05 pm

Tony Playter, ABC 
Outlaw Communications 

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Zac Mackay not returning to Swift Current

Photo courtesy panow.com
SWIFT CURRENT SK  Swift Current Broncos forward Zac Mackay has chosen to end his WHL career to pursue other endeavors. Mackay’s time with the Broncos spanned over 5 seasons.

As a 15 year old, Mackay made his Bronco debut in 2010 after being drafted by Swift Current in 4th round of the WHL bantam draft.

Mackay would play 229 games with the Broncos, scoring 19 goals, 18 assists and compiling 189 penalty minutes. 

“Zac was a big part of our team’s identity and was a fantastic ambassador in the community” said Broncos coach and general manager Mark Lamb of Zac Mackay. 

“Zac will be a success at whatever he chooses to pursue and we wish him all the best” added Lamb. 

Ryan Switzer, Director of Communications/Digital Media, Swift Current Broncos



WHL Releases 2015/16 Schedule

Calgary, AB - The Western Hockey League today released the schedule of games for the 2015-16 WHL Regular Season.

The WHL’s 50th regular season schedule commences on Thursday, September 24th as the Moose Jaw Warriors host the Regina Pats. In 1967, the Moose Jaw Canucks and Pats battled in the final series as the Canucks were crowned the WHL's first champion in the League's inaugural season.

The defending WHL Champion Kelowna Rockets open their 2015-16 campaign on Friday, September 25th when they host the Kamloops Blazers. The defending Eastern Conference Champion Brandon Wheat Kings will open their season on Friday night as well when they host the Swift Current Broncos in an Eastern Division battle. Opening weekend continues with six additional games on Friday night and nine games on Saturday nightincluding the Red Deer Rebels, hosts of the 98th MasterCard Memorial Cup, who will take on the Edmonton Oil Kings.

In addition to the WHL Regular Season schedule, the WHL and the cities of Kelowna, BC and Kamloops, BC will serve as the official hosts for two games of the 2015 SUBWAY® Super Series in November. Team WHL will face the Russian National Junior Team in Kelowna on Monday, November 9th, and in Kamloops on Tuesday, November 10th. 
The 2016 CHL/NHL Top Prospects game will also be held in Vancouver on January 28th.

Once again, the majority of WHL Regular Season games will be played on weekends. Of the 792 total games, 561 are scheduled for the weekend, with 236 to be played on a Friday, 237 on a Saturday and 88 on a Sunday. During the week, Wednesday night has 114 matches scheduled, 84 games will be played on Tuesday, 22 games on Monday, and 11 contests will be played on a Thursday. Altogether, 593 games will be played on weekends, holidays and over the Christmas break which accounts for nearly 75% of all games in the 2015-16 WHL Regular Season.

Day – No. of Games (Percentage) 
Monday – 22 (2.8%) 
Tuesday – 84 (10.6%) 
Wednesday - 114 (14.4%) 
Thursday - 11 (1.4%) 
Friday – 236 (29.8%) 
Saturday - 237 (29.9%) 
Sunday – 88 (11.1%)

The 792 game regular season concludes on Sunday, March 20th, with the 2016 WHL Playoffs and the battle for the Ed Chynoweth Cup beginning on Friday, March 25th. 

Corey St. Laurent
Senior Manager, Communications
Western Hockey League

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Well it's almost the end of June but there is a fair bit of news when it comes to hockey and the Regina Pats so that is where I will start this week...

It's NHL draft week and for the 6 Regina Pats who are ranked by Central Scouting the excitement is certainly mounting. Friday night the draft will start with the first round and on Saturday it gets started again at 8 AM Regina time. The six Pats ranked are Austin Wagner (35), Connor Hobbs (72), Jesse Gabrielle (73), Sergey Zborovskiy (103), Adam Brooks (176) and Adam Berg (200).

Calgary native Austin Wagner who will likely be a second round pick this weekend could follow in the footsteps of his former teammate Morgan Klimchuk in being drafted by the hometown Calgary Flames. He says that would be pretty incredible. "It would be cool, just growing up in the city and getting to watch those guys growing up. But anywhere would be nice to get drafted, I would lucky to just get a look from a team and I'm lucky enough to have some teams that are interested so anywhere is fine with me for sure. I am not going to complain but Calgary would be pretty special." The Flames hold the 45th overall pick in the second round so anything is possible but Wagner interviewed with 22 of the 30 teams at the Draft Combine so he very well be off the board by then.

Saskatoon product Connor Hobbs is the 72nd ranked played by the Central Scouting Service ahead of the draft and he says he is very excited. " 100 percent excited. It wasn't for sure that I was going down to Florida but I am going down now after the Combine went well. I am going down there and hopefully getting drafted."

Gabrielle, the Moosomin product is one spot back in the CSS rankings at 73. He says he just wants to get picked and get the opportunity with an organization. "For me just getting drafted to a team would be awesome and that would become my favorite team after. Just giving me the opportunity to go a try out for a team is all I need. I just want to get drafted and hopefully drafted high."

Sergey Zborovskiy is a guy who is a slam dunk to get picked in my opinion after the strong last few months of the season and into the playoffs. He attended a prospect camp with the Chicago Blackhawks after the combine and has a number of teams taking a look at him.

Adam Brooks as a 19-year-old is a long shot but you never know. I had lunch with a certain NHL scout who told me a team may decide to take him in the later rounds and what a day that would be for Brooks considering how far he has come in his three years in the WHL. 8 goals in his first two seasons to 30 last year. He says it would be an incredible thing to get picked but it's not the be all end all. "For me to hear my name called this weekend would be a huge honor and very uplifting. Every kids dream is to go to an NHL camp and play in the NHL and this would be the first step in that dream of mine. After my first two years in the league I didn't know which way my career was going to go, but John (Paddock) Strucher (Dave Struch) and kecks (Darrin McKechnie) showed that they believed in me and I couldn't thank them enough for that. Without our coaching staff and my teammates I don't think I would have had the season I had and even be in the talk of having a chance to be drafted . On the flip side of things, if my name doesn't get called well it won't be the first time and I won't let it bother me. I feel like I made big strides in my game this year and hope to do the same again this upcoming season."

For Adam Berg it's hard to say whether or not he will get picked. He didn't spend a lot of the season with the Pats but did have some NHL exposure playing Junior A. He has speed, size and the smarts and I believe he will play pro hockey one day.

- Four younger Regina Pats got some good news on Tuesday. Regina will be well represented at Hockey Canada’s inaugural National Teams’ Summer Showcase with Sam Steel (U18), Jordan Hollett (U17), Erik Gardiner (U17) and Jake Leschyshyn (U17) attending the camp. Steel looking to play the the U18 Championships and the rest at the U17 World Hockey Challenge. A total of 194  players invited to attend the showcase from July 29-Aug. 6 at the Markin MacPhail Centre at WinSport’s Canada Olympic Park in Calgary.

- The WHL released it's pre-season schedule on Tuesday morning. The Pats will host a pre-season tournament for a second straight year from September 3rd to 5th. The Moose Jaw Warriors, Calgary Hitmen and Prince Albert Raiders will be in attendance. The Pats will play four more games after that, two against Brandon and two against Prince Albert for a total of 7.

- The Kelly McCrimmon wait is over. The Wheat Kings Owner, GM and Head Coach is sticking with the WHL club instead of heading to the NHL and the Toronto Maple Leafs. Must have been a tough job to turn down but it makes sense considering where the Wheat Kings are heading into this season, plus getting to be an assistant coach for Team Canada at the World Juniors is another perk of sticking around.

- The Swift Current Broncos announced they have released three veteran players on Tuesday. Forwards Tanner LeSann and Linden Penner as well as defencemen Ayrton Nikkel have all cleared waivers and are free agents. All three are heading into their overage seasons.

- The Riders open the 2015 season on Saturday at home to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. I still think that sounds weird, he two clubs aren't supposed to play until Labour Day but bring em on. You have to think the game is going to be better than the last pre-season one against Calgary which was thoroughly entertaining. The big question is whether or not Weston Dressler and Tyron Brackenridge will play in the game. Both missed day one of practice Tuesday. They would be missed but I still have confidence in a Rider win to open the year at home.

- Why is the opening game of the CFL season Thursday featuring the Ottawa RedBlacks? It does not make much sense to me that you would start the season with the worst team in the league. Why not a Grey Cup rematch or even a Conference rematch of some kind. That makes way more sense to me.

- As for the other two match ups, I am taking the Edmonton Eskimos over the Toronto Argonauts and the Stampeders to beat the Ti-Cats.

That's it from me today. Have a great week!

Phil
@PhilTheThrill18

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

T-Birds sign 2015 1st Round Pick

KENT, June 23, 2015 - Seattle Thunderbirds general manager Russ Farwell today announced center Elijah Brown has signed a WHL Standard Player Agreement with the team.

 

"It was awesome to come to Kent and meet the hockey staff and see ShoWare Center," said Brown. "Russ, Steve, Matt and Tyler made me feel a part of the team and I was amazed by the ShoWare Center. I can't wait to play there one day hopefully.I am very happy and excited to sign with Seattle and it is something I will never forget." 

 

"We are excited to have Elijah signed and firmly in our plans for the future," said Farwell. "Elijah plays the game wide open and he will be a fan favorite from day one."

 

Brown, who is from Edmonton, Alberta, was the T-Birds first round selection, 15th overall, in the 2015 Bantam Draft. Brown played for the Southside Athletic Club Bantam AAA last season. He appeared in 31 games and had 18 goals and 23 assists for 41 points.

 

The Seattle Thunderbirds home opener for the 2015-16 season is Saturday, October 3, against the Prince George Cougars at 7:05pm at ShoWare Center.


Courtesy Ian Henry. T-Birds PR

Broncos Release Three

SWIFT CURRENT SK-Linden Penner, Tanner Lesann and Ayrton Nikkel have been released by the Swift Current Broncos.

 

Penner played 36 regular season games with the Broncos scoring 4 goals and 2 assists. 

 

Over three seasons, Lesann played 195 games as a Bronco scoring 16 goals, 20 assists and adding 332 penalty minutes.

 

Ayrton Nikkel played 67 games with Swift Current scoring 2 goals, 9 assists and compiling 99 penalty minutes. 

 

Penner, Lesann and Nikkel have cleared WHL waivers and are free agents. 

 

All three are 1995 born players. 


Ryan Switzer, Director of Communications/Digital Media, Swift Current Broncos