Neate Sager

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Neate Sager is a blogger for Yahoo! Sports.

  • Mark Reeds, OHL championship coach, mourned: the coast-to-coast

    Mark Reeds (left) guided Owen Sound to the 2011 OHL title before joining the Ottawa Senators (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)Mark Reeds (left) guided Owen Sound to the 2011 OHL title before joining the Ottawa Senators (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

    Combing all corners of the country and the blogosphere for your junior hockey headlines ...

    WHL

    Lack of discipline cost Medicine Hat dearly against Calgary, which took a road win to go up 2-1 in the Central final. (Medicine Hat News)

    Calgary goalie Mack Shields, one day after letting in an overtime goal from centre ice, proved that he's unbreakable mentally. (Calgary Sun)

    Does Victoria have a resurgence in against Kelowna in the B.C. final? (Kelowna Daily Courier, Victoria Times-Colonist)

    As if Regina's not up against it enough versus Brandon, defenceman Sergey Zborovskiy has been suspended indefinitely after receiving an interference major/game misconduct last weekend. (Regina Leader-Post, Luber's Lounge)

    Spokane Chiefs grad Liam Stewart has caught on with the Quad City Mallards. (Quad City Times)

    OHL

    There are heavy hearts across the league following the death of Ottawa Senators assistant coach Mark Reeds, who coached the Owen Sound Attack to the J. Ross Robertson Cup in 2011.

    Read More »from Mark Reeds, OHL championship coach, mourned: the coast-to-coast
  • Erie Otters, Soo Greyhounds take 3-0 leads: OHL post-game questions

    LONDON, ON - JANUARY 9: Connor McDavid #97 of the Erie Otters watches the replay board during a timeout against the London Knights in an OHL game at Budweiser Gardens on January 9, 2015 in London, Ontario, Canada. The Otters defeated the Knights 6-2. (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images)LONDON, ON - JANUARY 9: Connor McDavid #97 of the Erie Otters watches the replay board during a timeout against the London Knights in an OHL game at Budweiser Gardens on January 9, 2015 in London, Ontario, Canada. The Otters defeated the Knights 6-2. (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images)

    Connor McDavid now has 12 points against London and Erie is up 3-0, as is Sault Ste. Marie in the other Western semifinal. Oshawa put up another six-spot against Niagara, while Barrie and North Bay had another white-knuckle 

    On with the post-game questions:

    Read More »from Erie Otters, Soo Greyhounds take 3-0 leads: OHL post-game questions
  • Erie Otters' Devin Williams comes up big in Game 3 win: Sunday's 3 Stars

    Devin Williams and Erie are on a 7-game win streak (Terry Wilson, OHL Images).Devin Williams and Erie are on a 7-game win streak (Terry Wilson, OHL Images).No. 1 star: Devin Williams, Erie Otters (OHL)

    The oft-maligned netminder made Round 2-quality saves against the London Knights, stopping 27-of-28 shots to buy time for Connor McDavid (3A, +2) and the Otters to turn turned a tight game into a decisive 4-1 Game 3 victory and 3-0 series lead.

    The 19-year-old Williams didn't get the quintessential early wake-up call while called upon to make only five saves in the first period. The Saginaw, Mich., native got got on the level of Max Domi and Christian Dvorak while making 13 stops in the second. Williams got post-to-post quickly to rob the 100-point scorers' linemate, Matt Rupert, of a tying goal late in the period, and came up with two more Grade-A stops against the big London line in a frantic final 40 seconds of the period.

    Erie finally pulled away in the third after a McDavid between-the-legs pass out to Nick Betz for that elusive 2-0 goal against Knights goalie Michael Giugovaz (37 saves on 41 shots) in his first OHL playoff start). The lone goal against Williams came on a redirection by ex-Otter Joel Wigle with 6:34 remaining.

    No. 2 star: Adam Erne, Quebec Remparts (QMJHL)

    Erne scored his league-leading 10th of the playoffs 16:19 into overtime, giving Quebec a 4-3 win over Charlottetown and 2-0 lead in the quarter-final. The Tampa Bay Lightning prospect chased down his own rebound and stuffed a wraparound by Islanders goalie Daryl MacCallum (48 saves). Underdog

    Read More »from Erie Otters' Devin Williams comes up big in Game 3 win: Sunday's 3 Stars
  • No. 1 star: Jérémy Grégoire, Baie-Comeau Drakkar (QMJHL)

    Grégoire (3G-2A, +4) left no doubt while taking a 2-0 lead home to Baie-Comeau, trouncing the Val-d'Or Foreurs 9-1. The Drakkar captain and Montreal Canadiens draft pick scored goals five minutes apart, including one just two minutes after the Foreurs, looking to overcome a double-overtime loss in the series opener, had opened the scoring.

    Baie-Comeau, which lost out to Val-d'Or in last spring's playoffs, blew the game open by scoring five in the second. Grégoire completed his hat trick in that period and also assisted on veteran linemate Frédéric Gamelin's first goal of these playoffs.

    No. 2 star: Maxime Fortier, Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL)

    The 17-year-old Fortier (2G-1A, +3) and the Mooseheads' complementary scorers took the burden off Nikolaj Ehlers during the 6-3 win over the Moncton Wildcats that opened a 2-0 lead in the league quarter-final. The Montrealer scored unassisted with 2:18 left in the first, giving Halifax a 2-0

    Read More »from Habs prospect Jeremy Gregoire's hat trick helps Drakkar go up 2-0: Saturday's QMJHL & WHL 3 Stars
  • Ben Fox in December 2014, fewer than 4 months after his stroke (CTV News photo)Ben Fox in December 2014, fewer than 4 months after his stroke (CTV News photo)

    Last name called, first in determination.With all acknowledgement of the Ottawa Senators' playoff push, a truer homeback comeback story is that of Ben Fox, the Ontario midget player who's made a remarkable recovery after suffering a stroke during a practice last summer.

    If not for that life-altering and life-threatening carotid artery dissection — an occurrence more improbable than tFox "be(ing) hit by lightning" — Ontario Hockey League teams would have been angling to draft the defenceman from Fonthill, Ont., during Saturday's priority selection draft. As it happened, Fox, who managed to resume attending high school classes just five months after the stroke that affected his left side, got the validation he deserves. With permission from the OHL, the the Niagara IceDogs were given an extra selection, No. 302 overall, so they could select Fox.

    Read More »from Niagara IceDogs select 16-year-old stroke survivor Ben Fox with last OHL draft pick
  • Peterborough pick Simon Boyko will be one to watch come September (Aaron Bell, OHL Images)Peterborough pick Simon Boyko will be one to watch come September (Aaron Bell, OHL Images)

    Sniffing out which players' are serious about school and who might be more selective about his hockey destination is as much of a part of the Ontario Hockey League priority selection draft as evaluating a 16-year-old's inner fortitude. 

    The priority selection might no longer be the Dirtiest Day In Sports, in Chris Dilks' immortal phrasing, but the early to middle rounds still contained some intriguing choices, which certainly include but are not limited to the following:


    — The London Knights, who have proven willing to wait to get their man over the years, chose Western Michigan University-committed 

    Read More »from OHL draft 2015: London Knights' Ian Blacker pick, Saginaw Spirit taking Michael Pastujov highlight early rounds
  • At OHL draft, Flint Firebirds and Hamilton Bulldogs make Round 1 splash

    Ryan McLeod went No. 3 overall to the Flint Firebirds (Aaron Bell, OHL Images)Ryan McLeod went No. 3 overall to the Flint Firebirds (Aaron Bell, OHL Images)

    Ryan McLeod and Matthew Strome, who already share a unique hockey bond, now also have the distinction of being the first players selected by the OHL's two  new centres.

    The first round of the league's priority selection was more suspenseful than usual after the expected first two picks, Israel-born right wing David Levin to the Sudbury Wolves and Kingston centre Gabriel Vilardi to the Windsor Spitfires. Flint arguably made the first big splash/head-scratcher of the morning, nabbing McLeod at No. 3 overall one pick ahead of the Mississauga Steelheads, where his older brother Mike just completed a promising rookie season. There is storng suspicion that McLeod might not be eager to report to the Firebirds, as he did not appear at the media availabililty that the OHL usually holds with the first three picks.

    Read More »from At OHL draft, Flint Firebirds and Hamilton Bulldogs make Round 1 splash
  • Brendan Lemieux returned from being out 5 weeks to assist on the Colts' winning goal (Terry Wilson, OHL Images)Brendan Lemieux returned from being out 5 weeks to assist on the Colts' winning goal (Terry Wilson, OHL Images)

    Winnipeg Jets prospect Brendan Lemieux, playing his first game in 36 days, created the chance for the game-winner as the Barrie Colts won a spirited opener over the North Bay Battalion in the Eastern semifinal rematch. Oshawa topped Niagara in the other Eastern opener. Over in the Western Conference, Erie went up 2-0, because Connor McDavid.

    On with the post-game questions:


    Eastern Conference 

    Barrie 3 North Bay 2 (Colts lead 1-0, host Game 2 on Sunday) — What lift did Lemieux, whose last game was March 5, provide for Barrie? Colts coach Dale Hawerchuk did took the hoary 'you'll see him at some point in the series' tack regarding Lemieux, who missed a month due to a suspension and a hand injury. Lemieux came and his blend of aggression of skating gave the Colts some extra bite, particularly on the forecheck and especially on captain Joseph Blandisi's game-winner with 14:52 to play. The chance came about when Lemieux drove down left wing and cut around defenceman Marcus McIvor for a

    Read More »from Barrie Colts, Oshawa Generals open Eastern semis with wins: OHL post-game questions
  • Connor McDavid was the first Otter to have a 5-goal playoff game (Aaron Bell, OHL Images)Connor McDavid was the first Otter to have a 5-goal playoff game (Aaron Bell, OHL Images)

    It's about quality, not quantity, and Connor McDavid served up plenty of each in the course of an Erie Otters-playoff record five-goal game on Friday.

    The London Knights are a decimated team, so surely McDavid and the Otters will savour Friday's 7-3 win and 2-0 series lead for only a few seconds . The pièce de résistance for the generational talent came late in the first period, when McDavid gathered speed moving up the right wing, then shifted gears and left defenceman Aiden Jamieson standing still before swooping across the crease to best goalie Tyler Parsons. That was the No. 1 overall pick-in-waiting's second of the night.

    Nice synergy to have this go down on the same night that Jack Eichel won the Hobey Baker Trophy as college hockey's top player and the Buffalo Sabres secured either the first or second overall pick in the draft.

    McDavid scored his first on a snapshot from the slot after taking a shift with the Otters' fourth line and getting the puck off a faceoff win from

    Read More »from Connor-icles: McDavid shows spectacular speed, finish on way to 5-goal night (VIDEO)
  • Domi stayed with the Knights in Erie for Friday's game (Ryan Remiorz, The Canadian Press)Domi stayed with the Knights in Erie for Friday's game (Ryan Remiorz, The Canadian Press)

    Max Domi and Mitch Marner are not playing Friday, might not play for a while and the Erie Otters defenceman Kurtis MacDermid has to hope that his team can advance without him if he's to continue his Ontario Hockey League career.

    MacDermid's reaction after he was ejected for his check to the head of Domi during Thurday's London Knights-Otters series opener says it all. There was little grey area about the perils of such a play, or the viciousness. Ahead of Friday's Game 2, MacDermid has been suspended for eight games.

    Meantime, Domi and playoff scoring leader Mitch Marner are both listed as "day-to-day" with unspecified injuries. Marner's injury occurred after being checked in the third period by Erie forward Mason Marchment, who has been suspended indefinitely for head contact.

    Read More »from Max Domi, Mitch Marner out for London Knights; Erie Otters' Kurtis MacDermid suspended 8 games

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