Monday, January 28, 2013

Family fun day it wasn't

Michael St. Croix (Edmonton Oil Kings)
There are times when things don't match the advertising as Michael St. Croix (NYR 2011 4th) and Griffin Reinhart's (NYI 2012 1st) Edmonton Oil Kings were hosting the Lethbridge Hurricanes in what was billed as:
Family Fun SUN Day presented by Mott's Fruitsations and the Edmonton SUN. This game will feature a family friendly 4:00 p.m. puck drop!
If you don't know what this is leading up then you were not paying attention. What was turning into a Edmonton Oil King 7-1 blowout win turned very ugly in the last 2:18 of the game. A total of 10 fighting majors, 43 penalties for a total of 186 PIMs were handed out during the game that also saw one coach being ejected and 2 goalies also getting the early shower.

First the hockey portion of the game as Michael St. Croix, we can say is starting to heat up his game. St. Croix with 2 power play goals earned the game's 3rd star as well as extended his scoring streak to 6 games (4-5-9).

St. Croix with his first power play goals in 13 games if he is really starting heat up then it is coming at a great time for Edmonton. The Oil Kings will be spending most of the 2nd half of the season on the including a trip to Portland in a game that will be part rematch of the 2012 WHL Finals and part preview of the 2013 WHL Finals.

After this game St. Croix has 25 goals with 16 of them coming via the power play (leads WHL). The Rangers and Islanders would kill to have a power play that produces at 27.8% (tops in the WHL) as Edmonton does.

And remember this was without St. Croix scoring on the power play for almost a month. St. Croix is 25-33-58 after this game but that sadly got lost in the late game antics.

Where is Griffin Reinhart you are wondering? Reinhart didn't score and for those of you who remember the young Adam Graves then when we say there are just some people you don't anger that is the case with Reinhart.

Reinhart stands 6'4 210 and in his WHL career had 4 fights entering this season. Number 5 came Sunday when Jaimen Yakubowski of Lethbridge speared Reinhart late in the game which set off the brawls.

Going to break my rule on fighting videos for a day as what happens because of this fight is what is wrong with hockey. Yakubowski deserved what he got from Reinhart and hopefully the WHL will add to his punishment because he caused the brawls with his spear on Reinhart.


Like I said there are some people that it is just best you don't anger. And since we are already in with the Reinhart scrap then I don't feel bad about this because Lethbridge started the nonsense and Edmonton was in the right to respond.

Oh and details, the win was Edmonton's 5th straight and it allowed them to keep a 7 point lead on Calgary. This might also be the first time where the sons of NHL players got into fights in the same shift.

Keegan Lowe (son of Kevin), David Musil (son of Frank) and Henrik Samuelsson (son of Ulfie). The WHL's office will be rather busy Monday morning.

Maybe it was this article written by our friend Neate Sager of Buzzing the Net but Shane McColgan (NYR 2011 5th) and his Saskatoon Blades played one of their better games earning a 5-0 win over the Moose Jaw Warriors.

Sure the Warriors are a last place team but wins are wins when you are a Memorial Cup host who is rightfully being criticized in the hockey media. While McColgan was scoreless that is not the point; the point that everyone in the hockey media is forgetting and that is games in hand.

Yes the Blades are in 8th place in the WHL's Eastern Conference but the Blades hold games in hand on just about every team in front of them. The difference between 4th place and 8th place is just 7 points so you never know.

Of course Saskatoon needs to win those games but if they do then the criticism will quiet down.

Well they will until the Blades are eliminated in the WHL playoffs. Oh Shane you were not forgotten just because you didn't score; did not feel like pointing out that you haven't score a goal in 9 games.

Samuel Noreau (NYR 2011 5th)
had a secondary assist on what proved to be the game winning goal as his Baie-Comeau Drakkar defeated the Shawinigan Cataractes 7-3. Noreau had a solid night in addition to his assist which makes him 6-22-28 +15, Noreau was credit with a "dangerous" scoring chance on 3 shots.

The Drakkar were able to leapfrog idle Rimouski and reclaim 2nd place in the QMJHL standings on their 3rd straight win.

Ryan Strome (NYI 2011 1st) and Jesse Graham (NYI 2012 6th) combined on the Niagara IceDog's only goal as they fell 2-1 to the Brampton Battalion on Sunday. It was a battle for 5th place in the OHL's Eastern Conference but in the end the IceDogs saw their winless streak extended to a seventh game while Brampton is now ahead of the IceDogs by 2 points with a game in hand.

Strome scored his 24th off a feed from Graham at 15:26 of the 2nd period giving the IceDogs a 1-0 lead that they took into the 3rd period but they could not find anymore offense as Brampton rallied for 2 goals in the 3rd to earn the win.

Strome is now 24-43-67 which is 4th overall in the OHL while Graham is 2-18-20.

Andrey Pedan (NYI 2011 3rd) missed Sunday's game between his Guelph Storm and the Kitchener Rangers after being ejected in Saturday's contest with Owen Sound for a "slew-foot" and it was a costly game for Pedan to have missed. The Storm saw their 7 game win streak ended but the Rangers who came into the game with a 1 point lead over the Storm in the OHL's Western Conference now hold a 3 point lead.

No not saying Pedan was directly responsible for the loss but rather his presence would have helped the Storm. No word as of yet as to whether or not Pedan will be subject to further discipline by the OHL.

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