Buzzing The Net

  • Senyshyn is rated as a B prospect by NHL Central Scouting (Mike Carroccetto, special to Yahoo! Canada Sports)Senyshyn is rated as a B prospect by NHL Central Scouting (Mike Carroccetto, special to Yahoo! Canada Sports)

    Unlike many players with his body type, being light on his feet does not a pose a problem for Zach Senyshyn.

    The Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds rookie winger has stood out through the first half of the season due to having exceptional speed, particularly for a 17-year-old who is 6-foot-1 and 192 pounds. Last month, NHL Central Scouting gauged Senyshyn, who has helped the 'Hounds to the Ontario Hockey League's third-best record, as a candidate to be drafted in the second or third round next summer. That all owes to the Nepean, Ont., native getting started young at working with aptly named Ottawa Senators skating coach Mark Power.

    "I started with Mark Power when I was around minor bantam [age 13] and he's helped me a lot with my skating stride and a lot of technical stuff," says Senyshyn, who has six goals and 10 points across 25 games with a balanced Greyhounds team. "It just helped a lot. I owe [his speed] to lots of hard work at a young age, lots of power skating lessons that my parents

    Read More »from NHL draft tracker: Zach Senyshyn, Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds
  • Justin Bailey has had a fantastic start for Kitchener but was left out of Team USA's tryouts (Terry Wilson, OHL Images)Justin Bailey has had a fantastic start for Kitchener but was left out of Team USA's tryouts (Terry Wilson, OHL Images)

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

    World junior

    The case against the Vancouver Canucks lending Bo Horvat to Team Canada. (Vancouver Province)

    Team Canada head scout Ryan Jankowski, Team USA general manager Jim Johnansson and top NHL draft prospect Jack Eichel all on one radio show? You're coming for that, but you're staying for Moose Jaw Warriors play-by-player James Gallo. (The Pipeline Show)

    Per Dale Hunter, Max Domi is "relaxed and playing the best hockey I've seen him play." (The Canadian Press)

    Buffalo Sabres prospect Justin Bailey has been the Kitchener Rangers' best player, but that wasn't enough for USA Hockey. (Waterloo Record)

    WHL

    The Washington state labour department is still looking into the practices of WHL teams. That can't be pretended away. (KING 5)

    Meantime, again, it's raining money all across the WHL, really. (Victoria Times-Colonist)

    Regina Pats defenceman Kyle Burroughs is atop the plus/minus rankings.

    Read More »from Justin Bailey miffed; labour probe of Washington WHL teams ongoing: the coast-to-coast
  • Player of Drummondville Voltigeurs, season 2012-13. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Ghyslain BergeronPlayer of Drummondville Voltigeurs, season 2012-13. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Ghyslain BergeronNo. 1 star: Joey Ratelle, Drummondville Voltigeurs (QMJHL)

    Ratelle (2G-1A, +2) and the Voltigeurs took down the top team in their division on the road by shading the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada 5-4. In what's as close as its get to a home game for the native of the Montreal suburb of Otterburn Park, Ratelle helped Drummondville start strongly by scoring in the first period with assists from Benjamin Gagné and Alex Barré-Boulet. The Armada twice came back to tie the game; just 64 seconds after they pulled even in the second, Ratelle struck for the Voltigeurs' fourth goal on just 12 shots. Ratelle also had an assist on Georgs Golovkovs' eventual game-winner with 1013 remaining. The 18-year-old, with 20 goals and 27 points over 30 games, has nearly matched his sophomore season totals (21 and 35 over 67 games).

    No. 2 star: Robby Fabbri, Guelph Storm (OHL)

    The trio of Fabbri (1G-2A, +2), Tyler Bertuzzi (3A, +2) and freshly arrived overage Luke Cairns (2G, +2) did most of the heavy lifting during a 5-2 Storm win at Niagara. The IceDogs began auspiciously when Arizona Coyotes first-rounder Brendan Perlini, making his season debut after breaking his hand in September, scored just 4:02 into the contest.

    Read More »from Joey Ratelle helps Voltigeurs shock division-leading Armada: Thursday's QMJHL & OHL 3 Stars
  • All eyes are on Jack Eichel with Connor McDavid out with a hand injury. (Boston University)All eyes are on Jack Eichel with Connor McDavid out with a hand injury. (Boston University)

    If Jack Eichel is going to get an opportunity to steal some of the 2015 draft spotlight away from Connor McDavid, it’s right now. The Boston University freshman is as healthy as can be while the Erie Otters superstar is sidelined with a hand injury that he suffered in a fight.

    Having a better points-per-game ratio than some former NCAA greats has helped Eichel garner more attention. The 6-foot-2, 194-pounder’s eights goals and 21 points in 13 games (1.61 per game) puts him at a pace to outscore the freshman years of Minnesota Wild sniper Zach Parise (1.56), former No. 2 overall pick Dany Heatley (1.47) and NHL veteran Brian Gionta (1.46). Only Paul Kariya’s incredible 1992-93 freshman season with the University of Maine where he averaged 2.56 points-per game tops Eichel’s current pace.

    Among the enticing aspects of his game, scouts have been most impressed with how the 18-year-old centre brings his A-game night in and night out against opponents who are mostly much older than him. The

    Read More »from The Friesen Files: While McDavid sits on the sidelines, Eichel earns high praise
  • OHL player of the month Mitchell Marner is not going to Canada's camp (Aaron Bell, OHL ImagesOHL player of the month Mitchell Marner is not going to Canada's camp (Aaron Bell, OHL Images

    Come one, come all for the Buzzing The Net CHL Chatravaganza that is slated for Thursday at 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT.

    Please join Sunaya Sapurji, Mike Sanderson, Kelly Friesen, Neate Sager and the rest of the Yahoo! Jr. Hockey crew for the blogetariat's most popular, approximately one hour long discussion dedicated to all things junior hockey. Topics typically range far and wide, but our spidey senses figure that people might want to discuss the selection camp roster for Team Canada, who's not on the selection camp roster for Team Canada and why it's generally bad policy to have people learn of the coach's firing during the middle of a game each figure to be topical.

     

    Read More »from Buzzing The Net CHL Chatravaganza, Thursday, Dec. 4, 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT
  • #28-Brandon Gignac, a player for the Shawinigan Cataractes during the 2013-14 QMJHL season, Drummondville, Que., October 27, 2013. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Ghyslain Bergeron#28-Brandon Gignac, a player for the Shawinigan Cataractes during the 2013-14 QMJHL season, Drummondville, Que., October 27, 2013. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Ghyslain BergeronNo. 1 star: Brandon Gignac, Shawinigan Cataractes (QMJHL)

    It was a Gignac-tic night for the sophomore centre and the Cataractes during a 5-1 road win over the Baie-Comeau Drakkar. Gignac (2G-3A, +2) set a career high for points while factoring in all of Shawinigan's goals.

    The Repentigny, Que., native, whose No. 28 corresponds to where he was chosen in the midget draft two years ago, came into the night with only one goal in 28 contests. Gignac opened the scoring 6:59 in to help quiet the Baie-Comeau crowd, then assisted on two power-play goals later in the opening stanza. Gignac set up Dylan Labbé (2G, +1) in the second period and then scored again in the third.

    No. 2 star: Nikita Scherbak, Everett Silvertips (WHL)

    Scherbak (2G-1A, +2) helped Everett win a metaphorical four-pointer by edging U.S. Division rival Spokane 4-2. The Montreal Canadiens first-rounder scored twice on breakaways for his outshot team, including the dagger with exactly three minutes left in the third. The 18-year-old also converted a breakaway feed from Noah Juulsen (1A, +1) for a go-ahead goal in the second after the Chiefs had kept Everett hemmed into its own zone for an extended period. Scherbak also had the primary assist on a Kohl Bauml tally to give him 10 points in his last six games. The win gave Everett a seven-pont lead over Spokane for second in the U.S. Division.

    Read More »from Shawinigan's Brandon Gignac has career-high 5 points: Wednesday's 3 Stars
  • Connor Rankin (right) had 6 points on Tuesday (Larry MacDougal, The Canadian Press).jpgConnor Rankin (right) had 6 points on Tuesday (Larry MacDougal, The Canadian Press).jpg

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

    World junior

    Ryan Pyette expounds on the "golden age" that USA Hockey might have on the horizon. (London Free Press)

    Bob McKenzie looks at the Yanks' roster. (TSN)

    Brad Coccimiglio looks at why some notable name-brand prospects are not on Canada's preliminary roster. (Soo Today)

    New York Rangers goalie prospect Brandon Halverson has a tough challenge to play his way on to Team USA. (Sault Star)

    WHL

    Remember, it's just raining money in junior hockey puck precincts such as Prince Albert, Prince George, and Lethbridge. (National Post)

    The Calgary Hitmen's Connor Rankin had reservations for six (points) in Red Deer on Tuesday. (Calgary Herald)

    Read More »from Otters buy time for sale, Hitmen's Rankin has six-point night: the coast-to-coast
  • Madison Bowey (#4), of Team Canada during Canada's National Junior Team summer development camp, Sherbrooke, Que., Aug. 6, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Ghyslain BergeronMadison Bowey (#4), of Team Canada during Canada's National Junior Team summer development camp, Sherbrooke, Que., Aug. 6, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Ghyslain Bergeron

    The first Double-D of December sees the Kelowna Rockets enconseced in top spot.

    The Rockets have experienced a little regression all the way down to a mere 22-3-3-0 overall record and a three-point lead over Brandon for first overall in the Western Hockey League. Nevertheless, the team captained by Washington Capitals blueline prospect Madison Bowey still maintains a slim lead over Rimouski and Oshawa in our weekly exercise in ranking the performance of all 60 Canadian Hockey League teams.

    Read More »from Kelowna Rockets back on top of Buzzing The Net Dynamic Dozen
  • Storm Phaneuf was shutting out Drummondville when he kicked an opponent (La Presse photoStorm Phaneuf was shutting out Drummondville when he kicked an opponent (La Presse photo

    It is unclear what Storm Phaneuf was thinking, but the Chicoutimi Sagueneens goalie will have a while to think about it.

    The Quebec Major Junior Hockey League typically isn't as harsh with suspensions as its central Canada neighbour. In that contest, the nine-game ban that Phaneuf received on Tuesday for kicking the Drummondville Voltigeurs' Dylan Montcalm qualifies as severe. (Montcalm did crash the crease and was called for goalie interference, but there's always a line for acceptable retaliation.) Verily, one has to wonder what it would actually take to shelved for 10 games in the Q because this is a dirty, disrespectful and dangerous act. Kicking an a fellow competitor is traditionally taboo in hockey since skates, even goaltenders' are sharp. 

    The hell of it is that Phaneuf, a 19-year-old Gatineau, Que., native in his fourth QMJHL season, was working on a 1-0 shutout when the play happened.


    There's no knowing what prompted what might be called a heat-of-the-moment decision, but

    Read More »from QMJHL goalie Storm Phaneuf gets 9-game ban for kicking crease crasher (VIDEO)
  • Overage Taylor Dupuis leads the OHL with a .932 save percentage (Terry Wilson, OHL Images)Overage Taylor Dupuis leads the OHL with a .932 save percentage (Terry Wilson, OHL Images)

    With their two first overall picks out of the lineup, the Sarnia Sting have managed to get on a roll.

    Sixteen-year-old defenceman Jakub Chychrun has been out since Oct. 25, while 17-year-old Pavel Zacha is also serving a supension for boarding. Yet Sarnia, with goalie Taylor Dupuis making an early case for overage of the year honours with a league-leading .932 save percentage, is managing to stay afloat in the Western Conference. It bears highlighting since they were so far down last season.

    Here is the weekly look at who is flowing and who is ebbing across the Canadian Hockey League.

    Read More »from Sarnia Sting surging, and an exemption for Ehlers: CHL Hot & Cold
  • Combing all corners of the country and the blogosphere for your junior hockey headlines ...

    World junior

    It’s never too late to speculate who will wear letters for Team Canada. Surprise: Buffalo writer suspects Sam Reinhart to wear the C. (The Buffalo News)

    A young man named Eichel was among the 30 players named Tuesday morning to USA Hockey's selection camp for the world junior team that'll wear the Stars and Stripes. Also, nine players come from Canadian Hockey League teams.  (CBSSports.com)

    Anthony Duclair’s status is up in the air, but Rangers blogger Andrew Gross makes a pretty good case for loaning him to the WJC. (NorthJersey.com)

    Another take on the positives of NHLers being loaned to Team Canada, this one by Halifax Chronicle-Herald columnist Chris Cochrane. (ChronicleHerald.ca)

    TSN’s Bob McKenzie gives his thoughts on Team Canada’s selections. (TSN.ca)

    No snubbing Max Domi from Team Canada’s camp this year. (London Free Press)

    WHL

    Red Deer and Lethbridge make a move: The

    Read More »from Sam Reinhart an early favourite to captain Canada at WJC? Tuesday's coast-to-coast
  • Tolchinsky was signed by Carolina in 2013 (Aaron Bell, OHL Images)Tolchinsky was signed by Carolina in 2013 (Aaron Bell, OHL Images)

    With Sergey Tolchinsky, it's not how many, it's how did he do that.

    There are not many players in the Ontario Hockey League who bob and weave around the offensive zone successfully like the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds' small wonder. It's almost, excuse the inside baseball, like the Carolina Hurricanes prospect just decided to bring the kind of finesse and flair more commonly seen in the QMJHL to the OHL, and is good enough to get away with it.  The 19-year-old was, by his admission, "forcing plays" early in the season with the Greyhounds, but he's been prolific for nearly a month.  

    That was illustrated brilliantly with the two goals that Tolchinsky, who's on Russia's preliminary national junior team roster (at the  expense of, among others, Montreal Canadiens first-rounder Nikita Scherbak), scored in the Greyhounds' Satureday win over the Guelph Storm. The 19-year-old Moscow native pulled off a between-the-legs move for what could be a goal of the year submission. 

    Sure, you (the

    Read More »from Sault Ste. Marie's Sergey Tolchinsky scores between-the-legs breakaway goal (VIDEO)
  •  

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

    World junior

    The New York Rangers seem amenable to loaning Anthony Duclair to Team Canada. The 19-year-old left wing is a scratch for their Monday night game. (New York Daily News, Blueline Station)

    Hockey Canada vice-president of operations Scott Salmond, on Connor McDavid: "Even with one hand, he might be one of the best players in the world." (Montreal Gazette)

    If you  were thinking Canada's roster was light on WHL forwards, you're not alone.

    According to people who don't watch junior hockey, the rift between Hockey Canada and Josh Ho-Sang has widened. They must have been hiding it well when he was playing in the Subway Super Series. (Pro Hockey Talk)

    WHL

    The Regina Pats had to send athletic therapist Greg Mayer to the league scheduling meeting in the summer. How did that work out? Quite well, actually. (Regan's Rant)

    Cautionary tale for coaches: Saskatoon Blades forward Alex Forsberg had to leave a game because of a clerical error. His name was left off the lineup sheet. (Saskatoon StarPhoenix)

    Seattle rookie defenceman Sahvan Khaira getting his first junior goal came up organically. (CBS Seattle)

    Read More »from Anthony Duclair scratched for Rangers, adding to WJC speculation: the coast-to-coast
  • Canada's Connor McDavid (17) celebrates his goal against the U.S. at the World Junior Championship in Malmo, Sweden, December 31, 2013. REUTERS/Alexander DemianchukCanada's Connor McDavid (17) celebrates his goal against the U.S. at the World Junior Championship in Malmo, Sweden, December 31, 2013. REUTERS/Alexander Demianchuk

    Hockey Canada is banking on Connor McDavid being ready for the world junior championships. It came as no surprise to see the 17-year-old phenom – who turns 18 next month – named to Canada's preliminary world junior roster on Monday.

    McDavid, who continues to recover from broke a bone in his hand, is expected to visit a specialist on Dec. 9 in Toronto. He's already been skating with his Ontario Hockey League club, the Erie Otters, and has been able to make light passes despite a cast on his right hand.

    As one of seven returnees from last year's fourth-place finish in Malmo, Sweden, McDavid was a lock to make the team though there was some concern over the timing of his injury. Hockey Canada has until Dec. 25, a day before the tournament opens on Boxing Day, to submit their roster, but they have the ability to hold one of the 22 roster spots open after that date.

    "I really believe that we (have) to wait until the decision is made by the doctor on December 9," said Team Canada head coach

    Read More »from Connor McDavid expected to answer world junior call for Canada
  • The joy of analytics having come to the junior hockey world is the surprises are actually pleasant.

    Hockey Canada is promising not to get too cute any more with picking the national junior team after five consecutive years without a gold and two without any medal. In the big picture, then, that explains why there really weren't many brow-furrowing inclusions among the 17-forward, 10-defenceman, two-goalie camp roster named Monday. Head scout Ryan Jankowski and the Program of Excellence management group are trying to get away from what's somewhat derisively called the Canadian model, especially now that the fancystats can back up their decisions.

    "I think every player has to have an underlying ability of skill and talent and yet, you still need players to put over the boards that the coach feels comfortable playing a penalty kill, to play defence," Jankowski said on Monday. "These are all world-class players and the fact of being world class is they can adapt to different roles. We

    Read More »from Team Canada camp surprises and omissions: Joe Hicketts is in, Josh Ho-Sang is out
  • Connor McDavid is among several juniors who were part of Canada's team in 2014 (Graham Hughes, The Canadian Press)Connor McDavid is among several juniors who were part of Canada's team in 2014 (Graham Hughes, The Canadian Press)

    Including Connor McDavid, Canada has at least seven players with world junior championship seasoning who can return for the momentous U20 tournament.

    Hockey Canada announced the roster for the Dec. 11-15 selection camp on Monday. Out of the 29-player group, a team will take form under head coach Benoit Groulx that will vie to win the country's first WJC gold medal in five years during what will a massively followed event in Montreal and Toronto, the country's two largest media markets.

    "We understand there's a huge mandate, not just with performing at home, but performing well," Hockey Canada president Tom Renney said at a news conference in Montreal.

    Hockey Canada will learn by Dec. 19 whether 19-year-old NHLers Bo Horvat, Jonathan Drouin, Anthony Duclair and Curtis Lazar will be loaned from the Vancouver Canucks, Tampa Bay Lightning, New York Rangers and Ottawa Senators respectively.

    Here is the complete roster, with players' junior teams and NHL organizations. The distinction

    Read More »from Team Canada names selection camp roster for world junior championship
  • Hunter Smith was chosen No. 54 overall by Calgary in the NHL draft (Terry Wilson, OHL Images)Hunter Smith was chosen No. 54 overall by Calgary in the NHL draft (Terry Wilson, OHL Images)

    Many major junior hockey teams have a custom of inviting a minor hockey player to come out and skate around during the pregame warmup, as a cute rite of passage, getting up close and personal with one's heroes sort of thing. On Friday, there was a mishap at the Oshawa Generals game when the player selected to skate with the Ontario Hockey League ran smack dab into the arm of hulking Hunter Smith, the 6-foot-6, 210-pound forward whom the Calgary Flames chose in the NHL draft in June.

    The way the boy popped up and resumed skating around with the Generals is priceless, especially since the Oshawa fans responded with a warm ovation.

    Pro tip: keep your head up, kid. There's a story his parents can tell, probably within 20 minutes of him bringing his new significant other to a family dinner for the first time. Moms are good like that.

    Read More »from Flames prospect Hunter Smith accidentally clotheslines minor hockey player during warmup (VIDEO)
  • Mississauga's Everett Clark had 3 goals on Sunday (Aaron Bell, OHL Images)Mississauga's Everett Clark had 3 goals on Sunday (Aaron Bell, OHL Images)

    No. 1 star: Everett Clark, Mississauga Steelheads (OHL)

    This meets the Alanis Morrissette definition of irony: the London Knights, captained by the son of a beloved Toronto Maple Leafs tough guy, were done in by someone wearing a blue-and-white sweater with CLARK 17 on the back. The 18-year-old Clark (3G, +2), who had never had a multi-goal game in 74 previous Ontario Hockey League contests, scored a natural hat trick to help the Steelheads sting the undisciplined Knights 6-2.

    The Knights, up 2-1, took consecutive penalties just past the midpoint of the game and were burned overage Brandon Delvin buried to tie the game 2-2. Following another Knights penalty to St. Louis Blues draft pick C.J. Yakimowicz, Clark was on the spot to score and vault Mississauga into the lead. It took all of another 96 seconds before the Whitby, Ont., native struck again, exacerbating the Knights' fraying nerves. Clark scored again 1:51 into the third via a setup from Winnipeg Jets pick Jimmy Lodge (1G-1A, +1), who's been thriving since his inter-conference trade from Saginaw.

    Read More »from Steelheads' Everett Clark crowns Knights with his first OHL hat trick: Sunday's 3 Stars
  • Claude Noel is the new head coach of the Vancouver Giants. (NHL.com)Claude Noel is the new head coach of the Vancouver Giants. (NHL.com)

    Just four days after axing Troy Ward, the Vancouver Giants have a new bench boss. The WHL organization has hired former Winnipeg Jets head coach Claude Noel according to multiple reports.

    Noel joins the Giants with no shortage of coaching experience as he has spent 22 years behind benches in the NHL, AHL, ECHL and IHL, but he hasn’t been involved at the junior level since 1989-90 when he was an assistant for the OHL’s North Bay Centennials. It’s not that surprising that Vancouver wasn't afraid to go with a coach lacking junior experience based on the precedents set this summer. The Moose Jaw Warriors (Tim Hunter) and Regina Pats (John Paddock) both hired bench bosses without CHL experience who have went on to make fairly smooth transitions to junior hockey.

    Noel takes over a Vancouver team that has seemed to underachieve this year or at least not reach the expectations laid upon them by management. The Giants sit dead last in the B.C. Division with a 10-18-0-0 record and are 3-7-0-0

    Read More »from Vancouver Giants to hire former NHL coach Claude Noel – report
  • Jets pick Nikolaj Ehlers scored six points as the Mooseheads beat the Huskies. (David Chan/Mooseheads)Jets pick Nikolaj Ehlers scored six points as the Mooseheads beat the Huskies. (David Chan/Mooseheads)

    No. 1 Star: Nikolaj Ehlers, Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL)

    The Winnipeg Jets first-round pick made came up big for the Mooseheads when they needed it against the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies. It all started when he scored a short-handed marker at the 14:24 mark in the second period to give Halifax a 3-2 lead. After setting up a Danny Moyniahn (2G-1A, +3) goal later in the frame, Ehlers really came to life in the final 20 minutes as he put together a four-point period. He scored just seven seconds into the frame and later assisted a second Moyniahn goal before netting a pair of goals, one being an empty-netter, in the final two minutes of the 8-5 contest.

    Ehlers, 18, has been a scoring machine in his second major junior season. He has 11 points in his last two games and 32 points throughout 11 November matches.

    No. 2 Star: Tim Wieser, Sherbrooke Phoenix (QMJHL)

    The Switzerland native will be in Acadie-Bathurst Titan goalie Jacob Brennan’s nightmares tonight. He scored three straight goals on him

    Read More »from Winnipeg Jets pick Nikolaj Ehlers notches 6 points for Halifax: Saturday’s 3 Stars