The Brandon Wheat Kings year after year seem to find a way to the medical ward. Injuries have been the story every season for the Wheat Kings and this year is no exception. As of this date Dan Tetrault has a groin problem, others on the shelf include Brett Thurston with a shoulder problem. Wade Skolney has an injured back; Richard Mueller has yet another concussion and Jamie Hodson is still laid up until late November from his knee problems. J.D. Kehler just returned from a long absence from well back in last year.
Add in the fact this Wheat Kings edition is the smallest team I have seen in the Western Hockey League and one would think you would have a recipe for disaster. Not necessarily so.
In spite of all the challenges there is a lot of good things going on with the Wheaties. Only two games out of third and 3 recent road wins on their West Coast swing and things look okay for a very young team.
Here is each player’s progress report so far this fall:
Jamie Hodson – still laid up from last years’ season ending injury, Hodson is the Wheat Kings best goalie as he proved last year and one of the best three in the Western Hockey League. Stay tuned for my prediction on his future. Brandon now has three 19 year old goaltenders in the fold…hmmmmmm?
Aleksey Morozov, the 6’1″ 180lb winger, who scored a mere 19 points (9+10) last year, is finally showing the flashes of brilliance Pittsburgh had hoped he would. Now, just 8 games into a brand new season, Aleksey already has 6 points (3+3) to show for his efforts. So what’s changed? The moment he hits the ice it’s all about finding the net. Defenders be warned however, Aleksey’s not as easy to shake off a puck as he used to be. Brilliant puck handling, incredible speed, and world of desire and determination are turning this young forward into a rising star. It’s not yet certain whether Aleksey has the ability to become a complete player, but he is definitely heading in the right direction. In the meantime, the Penguins organization and it’s fans are in for a real treat. The keys to a successful season for Morozov will be concentration and health. Currently, Pittsburgh anxiously awaits his return from an injury sustained in a game against Los Angeles last week.
List done in association with former Midget AAA Elite coach, and current head coach of the National 18 Team.
1. Martin Samuelsson, Modo, F.
189 cm, 87 kg.
1982 01 25
Comments: Big strong forward, good ability to score goals. Will get his
hockey education from the top-notched coaching staff in Örnsköldsvik, who
have thaught the Sedin brother´s and Peter Forsberg and all of the other
supreme talent coming up from the ”hockey factory” of the northern part of
Sweden. That factor is a guarantee for success.
2. Tim Eriksson, Västra Frölunda HC, F.
174 cm, 71 kg.
1982 02 05
Comments: Fast player who can handle the puck. Only weakness is size. Might
have better speed than Samuelsson.
3. Magnus Hedlund, Mora IK, D.
169 cm, 62 kg.
1982 01 02
Comments: Should had been ranked first if he had been bigger. Strong player
though, who has dominated the Allsvenskan (South) League this
season.Unbelivable player who has everything except size. But size will
come, his body hasn´t start to develop yet, but count on this player. Also a
good hitter despite his size.
4. Niklas Kronwall, Djurgårdens IF, D.
179 cm, 71 kg.
1981 01 12
Comments: Playing with the big mighty Djurgården team of the Swedish Elite Read more»
The Pittsburgh Penguins headed out on a 4 day/3 game West Coast road trip with the intention of shaking off a few cob webs and reestablishing their presence in the NHL. Instead, they discovered the California clubs had a different game plan in mind. If there was any way they could take advantage of the Penguins stagnant start, the Ducks, Kings, and Sharks would do so…and that’s exactly what they did.
First stop Anaheim. On Wednesday, October 27th, the Penguins skated away with a decent performance against the Mighty Ducks despite the lack of key players: Barasso, Slegr, Kasparaitis and Hrdina, and a 2-1 loss in overtime. The highlight came when Teemu Selanne challenged Jean-Sebastian Aubin to a penalty shot. The young netminder did however stand his ground, made the save, and had an overall impressive evening.
Los Angeles, on the other hand, proved itself to be an even greater foe than it’s inner state rivals, the Ducks. What seemed to be Pittsburgh’s night, soon turned into a nightmare. With a mere 26 seconds left of the first period, Aubin was forced out by a hamstring injury. By the third period the Penguins had totally lost control of the game, facing a barrage of Kings goals in a span of less than 3 minutes. Sean O’Donnell, Luc Robitaille and Glen Murray scored to lead their squad to a 5-3 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins.
They call him Maddog. He’s big. He’s rugged. He’s tough. He’s Marc Moro.
Marc Moro might not be the most talked about Nashville Predator prospect but, he might be the most entertaining and one of the most popular. The Milwaukee Admirals defenseman has had a long time following no matter where he has gone. Whether he played in Kingston or Cincinnati, the fans loved him and opponents loathed him. And for good reason.
See, Moro could never be called an offensive guy. In just over 400 games played, he has scored 14 goals and racked up about 70 points since first joining the Kingston Frontenacs. In that time, he has played for the Soo, the former PEI of the AHL, Cincy of the AHL and now, Milwaukee of the IHL. So, what is the fascination? He has over 1,250 penalty minutes.
He doesnt lose many fights and would bring excitement to anybody who enjoys a good scrap. Apparently, thats a lot of people. He has his own fanclub, Maddog’s Mob and they have devoted an entire website (http://www.maddogsmob.com/) to Moro. Not bad, for a guy who is looked at as just a minor league role player by some. His teamates dont mind him either. This season, he was named as Milwaukee’s captain.