Cam Charron

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Cam Charron is a blogger for Yahoo! Sports

  • Tim Bozon of the Kootenay Ice (CP Images - Larry MacDougal)

    A dangerous situation is developing in a Saskatoon hospital.

    After scoring his 33rd goal on the season against the Blades on Friday night, Kootenay Ice forward Tim Bozon was held out of the lineup for the team's Saturday night contest in Prince Albert. News surfaced Monday that Bozon had been returned to a Saskatoon hospital where he was being treated for meningitis, and remains there today, according to Guillaume Lefrançois of Radio-Canada. Dominick Saillant, the director of communications for the Montreal Canadiens, confirmed to Radio-Canada that the NHL team's doctors had been in contact with the medical staff in Kootenay.

    The 19-year-old Bozon was a third round pick of the Habs in 2012. The Swiss-born winger was traded to the Ice from Kamloops earlier this season, and has picked up 62 points in 50 games thus far.

    Via the Mayo Clinic's website, the cause of meningitis, an "inflammation of the membrances surrounding the brain and spinal cord", determines the severity. Viral infections tend to go away on their own, but the rarer bacterial and fungal infections require immediate medical treatment. The Ice are refusing to comment on the situation, which can feed speculation that the situation is serious.

    Read More »from Habs prospect Tim Bozon in Saskatoon hospital being treated for meningitis
  • Nikolaj Ehlers (CP Images)

    No. 1 Star - Connor Gay, Regina Pats (WHL)

    Friday's Regina-Swift Current contest was probably the most important played in Canada in terms of postseason implications. The Pats came into the game with a six-point lead over the Broncos with eight games to play (nine for Swift Current) for the lead in the Western Hockey League's East Division. With so many teams jamming the league's Central Division, the difference between winning the East and coming second will mean the difference between a 2-seed and a 6-seed come playoff time.

    The Pats cemented control of the division with a big home win. The game featured a couple of lead changes and ended up being won by 95-born Connor Gay late in the overtime frame for his 15th goal on the season, on a pass from Dyson Stevenson, who also had a one-goal, one-assist game. Gay had also scored early in the third period to tie the contest at 2s, so both of his goals were of the timely variety. The Pats got to exit the game with a seven-point lead over Swift Current instead of a four-point lead, a near-insurmountable gap at this stage in the season.

    No. 2 Star: Nikolaj Ehlers, Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL)

    Stop me if you've heard this one before: a draft-eligible player on the Halifax Mooseheads scored a natural hat-trick and recorded four points in his team's 6-0 win over Acadie-Bathurst. Sometimes les Trois Étoiles on Buzzing the Net are reserved for players that produce in key situations in close games, but there weren't an awful lot of close affairs in the Q Friday, and it's tough to discount a three-goal performance from a draft-eligible player. In Friday's case, it was the Danish Ehlers (good name for a band) recording the trick.

    Ehlers' three consecutive goals came within a 7:14 span in the second period, scoring twice in the first minute and adding a shortie for his 40th of the season. Teammate Jonathan Drouin recorded a pair of assists, and defenceman Austyn Hardie had a rare three-point night, bringing his season points total to 17. He was also a +6 in the 6-0 game. To most teams that's an excellent night from a defenceman, but to the Mooseheads it's an indication that the team's powerplay needs to shape up after going 0-for-4 in Acadie-Bathurst.

    No. 3 Star: Sam Bennett, Kingston Frontenacs (OHL)

    This game also wasn't close, but the prospective No. 1 pick in the upcoming National Hockey League draft scored a hat-trick of his own in Kingston's dominant 10-2 win over Belleville. After going down 1-0 early in the first, the Fronts rallied and took a commanding 5-1 lead into the break, with Bennett factoring in on two goals. First, he drew the primary assist on Spencer Watson's 33rd of the year before scoring his own 39 seconds later, and then tacking on another in the final minute of the frame.

    Bennett completed the hat-trick 5:38 into the second on a pass from Samuel Schutt, the second of Schutt's two assists on the night. Head coach Todd Gill gave started Matt Mahalak the night off, giving Lucas Peressini the pipes to stop 37-of-39 shots on goal. Draft-eligible Roland McKeown recorded an assist and was also a +4.

    Honourable Mention: The Sudbury Wolves (OHL) - The Wolves strung together a comeback against one of the league's best teams Friday night. Despite being down 5-0 with a little over 7 minutes to go in the second period, Sudbury rallied in front of the home fans, getting goals from Jacob Harris and Radek Faksa before the period was out, before going into Beast Mode in the third. Trevor CarrickNathan Pancel and Ray Huether all scored in the final minutes of the period to tie the score (Faksa, Carrick, and Pancel's goals were all on the powerplay) before Nick Baptiste blew the roof off the Sudbury Community Arena to give the Wolves a 6-5 lead with 2:17 on the clock. The Wolves hung on for the win, and do London and Erie a huge favour in the process.

    Read More »from Gay scores OT winner, Wolves rally, big night for draft eligibles Ehlers and Bennett in Friday’s 3 Stars
  • Guelph newcomers Nick Ebert (10) and Justin Nichols (39) - Terry Wilson:OHL Images

    The Canadian Hockey League's much-awaited Dynamic Dozen returns after taking a week off. The theme so far in 2014 is the dogfight at the top of the rankings between Kelowna, Guelph and Portland, but two of those teams pulled a little further ahead over the two-week period.

    You'll note how Guelph and Portland are separated by just a single point of RPI. They are, objectively, as close as close can be at this point although both teams face tough tasks in their own conference before we can pencil them in to face off on the final Sunday of the Memorial Cup tournament in London.

    1. Guelph Storm, OHL (.586 RPI, +2.3 SRS, +1) — The Storm have won six consecutive games, enough to push them back up to first place. Only the Kitchener Rangers, a distant 41st in RPI rankings, have a more difficult strength of schedule among OHL teams, and it's still incredible that they haven't already created a giant gap in the standings between themselves and rivals Erie and London.

    New challenge, could the Storm score more goals against the Norwegian, Austrian, Finnish and Latvian national teams than a team of Canadian NHL all-stars?* The Storm are most recently coming off a game they scored nine against Plymouth, during which Nick Ebert became the third Storm defenceman to hit the 40-point mark. A fourth, Steve Trojanovic, is at 37, and the rest of the league combined have just eight. With 280 goals, the Storm are in a class of their own on offence, and it doesn't end there: goaltender Justin Nichols is second in the league in save percentage.

    * - not a serious question

    2. Portland Winterhawks, WHL (.585 RPI, +2.0 SRS, -1) — It's not uncommon for major junior teams to enjoy long winning streaks, which is why it's a bit of a shock that Portland's current 17-game win streak is a franchise best. You might think that at some point, they'd have reached that during their four seasons of laying waste to the WHL's Western Conference.

    After a four-game-in-six-days road trip in which he scored ten points, Taylor Leier was named the CHL's Player of the Week, and he's shown during the streak how he can be leaned on offensively by a good hockey team. Mat Dumba is also fitting in to his new team, with 12 points and a +19 rating through 15 games. Dumba added the punch on D the Winterhawks needed, but rookie Garrett Haar has also stepped up with 13 points in his 17 games since 2013 began.

    Read More »from Portland streaking, but Guelph hold onto top spot in Dynamic Dozen rankings
  • Russell Maxwell scored with 26 seconds to go to give the Seattle Thunderbirds a 4-3 win over division rival Tri-City Americans, but the main event was a series of "disagreements" in the third period leading to a massive line brawl.

    As you can see in the video below, Americans forward Devon McAndrews crosschecked the Thunderbirds defenceman in the back following the customary hey-get-away-from-my-goalie shove by Wardley:

    (Headline idea: 'NO LOVE LOST ON VALENTI—')

    Then all hell broke loose. The 3,482 fans in attendance at the ShoWare Center in Kent all seemed to enjoy the sound of teenagers fists cracking on hockey helmet shells, with the sequence resulting in 17 infractions resulting in 84 penalty minutes.

    Read More »from Seattle Thunderbirds score winner with 26 ticks left; participate in line brawl with Tri-City Americans
  • Tieja MacLaughlin in court (via KNDU-TV's Facebook page)

    Just in time for Valentine's Day, it looks like we have a conclusion to the most talked-about love story in Canada so far this year.

    When we last checked in on Kelowna reporter Tieja MacLaughlin, she had been charged with one count of felony harassment with domestic violence after driving across the U.S. border after having threatened her boyfriend Jackson Playfair of the Western Hockey League's Tri-City Americans. That charged was later reduced to gross misdemeanour harassment.

    The 26-year-old MacLaughlin agreed to a plea deal offered by Benton County, Wash., prosecutors Wednesday afternoon:

    Under terms of the deal, MacLaughlin must undergo counseling and has been placed on probation. She is also not to have any further contact with Jackson Playfair, a 19-year-old hockey player with the Tri-City Americans of the Western Hockey League.

    Part of those conditions is court mandated weekly cognitive-behavioural therapy for at least 10 sessions.

    Read More »from Reporter Tieja MacLaughlin, charged with threatening WHL player boyfriend, agrees to plea deal
  • Now a minor hockey coach, Paul Coffey may be in some hot water (CP Images)Well here's a mystery that needs solving: What was it that Hall of Fame defenceman Paul Coffey said to the coach of the Mississauga Senators that warranted a three-game suspension from coaching his own son's Greater Toronto Hockey League team?

    The Hockey News was the first outlet to break this story. It seems that Coffey was found guilty of a new Hockey Canada rule protecting players, coaches and officials from "discriminatory slurs." Coffey coaches the midget 'AAA' Toronto Marlboros, and, per THN.com, was assessed a gross misconduct penalty for "a discriminatory slur" last Friday:

    Coffey, according to the game sheet, was originally assessed a gross misconduct penalty for a discriminatory slur, which carries with it an indefinite suspension. After an investigation by the GTHL, Coffey was handed a three-game suspension. Coffey was not behind the bench for his team Tuesday night, which was the fourth game of his team’s league semifinal playoff series. (The series is tied 4-4 in points, with the first team to eight winning the series.)

    GTHL executive director Scott Oakman would not even confirm that Coffey was suspended, saying only the Marlies had been informed of the league’s decision. Oakman said the GTHL does not make public its suspensions and saw no reason to deviate from that policy in this case.

    For their part, neither the Marlies nor Coffey was willing to comment. But thn.com has learned an official from the opposing Senators team lobbied the GTHL to be lenient on Coffey, saying the situation was being blown out of proportion.

    Read More »from Hall of Fame defenceman Paul Coffey reportedly suspended by GTHL following “discriminatory slur”
  • Denny Morrison prepares during a practice run. He'll skate in the 1000m later Wednesday (Adrian Wyld:CP)

    Later this afternoon, or this morning, depending on which side of the planet you're on, Denny Morrison will compete for Canada in the 1000m long track speed skating Olympic event, along with countrymen William Dutton, Muncef Ouardi and Vincent de Haitre. Morrison, the Fort St. John, B.C. native, was the first alternate in the event for Team Canada, and will be skating only thanks to what Speed Skating Canada is calling a "heartfelt gesture" on the part of one of his teammates.

    [Related: Denny Morrison wins Canada’s 10th medal at Sochi 2014, silver in men’s speed skating]

    Individual men's long track isn't exactly an event where Canada has been a medal threat. Not since 1998 has a Canadian man won an individual medal on the track—not counting the team pursuit medals, not since Jeremy Wotherspoon and Kevin Overland earned silver and bronze medals and men's 500m has Canada medaled and not since the legendary Gaétan Boucher has a Canadian won gold. The team's best result four years ago was Jamie Gregg's 8th place finish in the 500m, with Morrison earning 13th in the 1000m and 9th in the 1500m.

    Morrison, at 28, is in his physical prime, and represents a medal hope for Canada at the 1000m. Problem was, he fell on his last turn at the Canadian trials and failed to qualify for the distance. One of the skaters who did, however, Gilmore Junio of Calgary, withdrew from the event to allow the first alternate—Morrison—to take his spot.

    Read More »from ‘Heartfelt gesture’ by teammate will allow Denny Morrison to skate in 1000m event
  • Victoria's Joe Hicketts (CP)Midway through Friday's contest between the Vancouver Giants and Victoria Royals at the Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre in downtown Victoria, the public address announcer turned the attention of the game's 5339 fans in attendance to one of the private suites. The parents of Royals players had been brought in to enjoy the back-to-back home weekend set, and the polite applause from the fans turned to giddy laughter as a woman in the suite began dancing, and unfortunately for her son on the ice, turned around to display the name on the back of her blue Royals jersey: HICKETTS #2.

    "Everybody knows Lee-Gaye now," said Joe Hicketts with a wide smile when asked about his mother's brief five-second clip on the jumbotron. Hicketts is a 17-year-old draft hopeful who made his return from a shoulder injury Friday night. "They mentioned the parents were here and everybody kind of knows her now. It was something special for me to see on the bench."

    The timing worked out perfectly for Lee-Gaye, who had travelled down from her home (and Joe's birthplace) in Kamloops. The timing of the trip coincided with Hicketts' first two Western Hockey League games since October 26 and he scored three points, including an incredible goal on an individual effort in the overtime of the Saturday game in front of a sellout crowd.

    Hicketts is not built like most defencemen. He is built like few hockey players are. He's 5-foot-8 and listed at 186 pounds, and to put it kindly, not all of that appears to be muscle. Despite this, he's physically-imposing on the ice, and talented to boot. He was one of the better players on the ice for either team in both games of the set, with the ability to skate away from forecheckers and connect on long stretch passes. One of those, in the first game, led directly to a Logan Nelson goal, with Hicketts finding Nelson through a maze of players and hit the overage forward perfectly on the tape with the puck to set up a clear two-on-one.

    Read More »from Return of defensively talented, yet small, Joe Hicketts provides boost for Victoria Royals
  • Vancouver's Dalton Sward #9 celebrates his goal against Victoria with teammate Mason Geertsen. (Getty Images)

    If observers of the Don Hay-coached Vancouver Giants can agree on anything, it's that the team is better than their 26-19-6-3 record indicates. After earning three of four points on the road in Victoria this past weekend, the Giants moved ahead of Everett in the Western Hockey League's Western Conference, up to sixth place. They're going to be in an important fight with the Silvertips for the remainder of the season, in an effort to avoid a dreaded first round match against the loaded Portland Winterhawks, who appear to be locked in the second seed.

    But the playoffs are a long way away, and there's work ahead. The Giants have had a much better record than they had at the start of the season. The slogan for the year, which was plastered on posters surrounding the Pacific Coliseum and even the team's press passes "champions under construction". The team is building for a potential MasterCard Memorial Cup host bid in 2016, which will coincidentally be the draft year of their most recent

    Read More »from Sleeping Giants: Beware the potential of the Pacific puck-possession powerhouse
  • Halifax coach Dominique Ducharme did not tread lightly in his comments Friday (Jacques Boissinot - CP)Halifax Mooseheads coach Dominique Ducharme suggested Friday that his team got into "trouble with penalties" against the Quebec Remparts in a Thursday night contest between the two Quebec league powerhouses. That may qualify as the understatement of the year. The Remparts won 8-2 and went an unprecedented 6-for-17 on the powerplay, with Ducharme's group taking 36 penalties for a total of 63 minutes in penalties, most coming in the third period.

    The other problem the Mooseheads ran into was suspensions. The QMJHL dinged the Mooseheads with one-game suspensions to Luca Ciampini and to Andrew Ryan for their role in provoking a brawl in the second period. "At one point the referees were seeing red a bit," Ducharme told John Moore of the Halifax Chronicle-Herald. "But we certainly deserved a few of them. 15… 17… 12, we won't go back and analyze every penalty that we got and that's just behind us."

    Ciampini earned a match penalty at 13:41 of the second period for cross-checking Adam Erne. There's obviously a bit of bad blood between the two clubs, as back in December, Erne avoided suspension for boarding Mooseheads star forward and follow Tampa Bay Lightning prospect Jonathan Drouin. Unsurprisingly, Ducharme disagreed with the suspension, suggesting that his team is "treated differently than the Remparts", also bringing up Remparts' Nick Sorensen's crosscheck earlier on the season on Darcy Ashley. "At some point I think [the referees] were calling things that were not happening."

    Read More »from Halifax coach Dominique Ducharme critical of QMJHL standard following suspensions after brawl

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