Saturday, April 23, 2011

A Lost Evening

Tonight Office Chris Kilcullen of the Eugene Police Department became the 62nd police officer to lose his life in the line of duty this year. That is 62 police officers too many as Office Kilcullen leaves behind a wife and 2 children. 

We extend our deepest condolences to the Kilcullen family, the Eugene Police Department and their families.

Friday night was a lost evening for the New York Ranger and New York Islander prospects who saw action in their league playoffs. In each case it was more about chances squandered and games that might come back to haunt them.

Kirill Kabanov (NYI 2010 3rd) and his Lewiston MAINEaics are huge underdogs against the Saint John Sea Dogs in the QMJHL semi-finals. The Sea Dogs were the top team in the QMJHL this season as well heading up the CHL Mastercard Top 10.

Nobody gives Lewiston any chance in this series and if you had watched the 1st period you would have seen why. Saint John jumped out to a 2-0 lead and held Lewiston to just 2 shots when on their 3rd one, Lewiston scored in the last minute of the period.

In the second period Lewiston tied the game and even took their first lead when Kabanov scored his 6th goal of the playoffs at 6:15 of the 2nd. The Maineaics ended the period with the lead and actually looked like they had a shot at the upset.

In the 3rd, Lewiston added a shorthanded goal to make it 4-2 and started to look like they were going to pull off the upset. Saint John pulled to within 1 at 14:28 and then tied the score 1:14 later to force overtime.

In the overtime Saint John scored to escape with the 5-4 win. For Kabanov his goal extended his scoring streak to 9 straight games (6-11-17) which is the 4th best so far in the QMJHL playoffs.

Game 2 is Saturday

The other QMJHL semi-final series is a matchup between Ryan Bourque (NYR 2009 3rd) and his Quebec Remparts against the Gatineau Olympiques. It is a series where Quebec is seen as their own worst stumbling block as their offense sometimes forgets to show up.

That is what happened as Ryan Bourque had a secondary assist on Quebec's only goal of the game as they lost Game 1 2-1. We have no complaints about Bourque as we asked that he play defense in this series against the first line of Gatineau's first line.

It worked for the most part as Gatineau's leading scorer Jonathan Huberdeau was not much of a factor but we fear that Bourque had best wear 2 hats and turn up his offense as well or this might be a short series.

In Portland Oregon, the whispers were that the Spokane Chiefs were inside the heads of the Portland Winterhawks when playing them in Portland. That was not the case but what was turned out to be Spokane's goalie James Reid.

Reid had several Winterhawks looking to the sky wondering how Reid had stopped them on what appeared to be sure thing scoring chances. Reid was the reason why Spokane took game 1 2-1 and a 1-0 series lead.

Time after time when it looked like Portland was going to score there was Reid with his glove as he stopped 28 out of 29 shots. Portland could not score until they scored with just 24 seconds left in the 3rd period but it was too late to matter.

It is a shame that Buzzing the Net took the day off for Good Friday as Reid would have been the 1st star of the day. It was a marvelous performance if only it had not come at Portland's expense.

Niederreiter had a secondary assist on the Portland goal to improve to 7-12-19 during the playoffs. Game 2 will be in Portland on Sunday.


Sometimes it takes something right in your face to understand and appreciate what you have. My brothers Paul and Lee as well as my brother-in-law Jeff have worn badges almost forever it seems.

Tonight I got reminded of how proud it is call all 3 my brothers. I get told how I have such a cool job but I think what I do is nothing compared to what my brothers do. 

(Images: Eugene PD Logo/ City of Eugene, Kabanov/NHL Media, Bourque/Quebec Remparts, Niederreiter/New York Islanders)

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