Saturday, June 28, 2014

BCHL Well Represented at 2014 NHL Entry Draft:

(Martin Gendron photo credit: Senators Twitter Account)

The BCHL once again had a red letter day in terms of representation at the NHL Entry Draft, with five players selected who played in the league last season, two who will play in the league this season, one who was a stalwart in the league before moving on to play college hockey, and one who used the league as a springboard to a three year WHL career.

Incoming Penticton Vees D Miles Gendron
Selected in the 3rd round, 70th overall by Ottawa  
Former Surrey Eagles D Devon Toews
Selected in the 4th round, 108th overall by New York Islanders  
Incoming Salmon Arm SilverBacks F Sam Lafferty
Selected in the 4th round, 112th overall by Pittsburgh  
Surrey Eagles F Danton Heinen
Selected in the 4th round, 116th overall by Boston 
Vernon Vipers F Liam Coughlin
Selected in the 5th round, 130th overall by Edmonton Victoria Grizzlies G Alec Dillon
Selected in the 5th round, 150th overall by Los Angeles  
Former Coquitlam Express F Austin Carroll
Selected in the 7th round, 184th overall by Calgary Langley Rivermen F Matt Ustaski
Selected in the 7th round, 192nd overall by Winnipeg Penticton Vees F Jack Ramsey
Selected in the 7th round, 208th overall by Chicago

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Roster Details Confirmed for 2014-15 BCHL Season:

In an interview with The Chilliwack Progress, Chiefs GM and Head Coach Jason Tatarnic confirmed the details behind the BCHL roster changes for the 2014-15 season, which were approved by league governors at last week's annual general meeting. 

This is what was released from the league earlier this week after the AGM:
Roster stability and reduction of player transactions are primary goals for the BCHL. Representatives of each club at the AGM strongly supported the league’s direction to keep players on the teams they are recruited to for the start of each season.
In detail, the first change is the reduction from 45 cards to 35. Every time a team adds a player to its roster, the team is required to "card" the player with Hockey Canada. Now with only 35 cards available between June 1st and January 10th, teams must be more efficient when it comes to signing players. A regular season roster is 22 players (or cards), which leaves just 13 additional cards to make changes with.

The second change is a cap on player transfers during the season. The league has put a limit of eight per team for the upcoming season. The key here is that the BCHL doesn't mean a cap of eight trades per team, it's a cap of eight player transfers per team.

Using a trade from last season as an example, when Penticton traded Clint Filbrandt and Mathew Berry-Lamontagna to Cowichan Valley for Steen Cooper, it would now count as three player transfers for both the Vees and Capitals, leaving each team with five remaining.

It might seem dramatic, but in reality, eight player transfers should be very manageable for each team. 16 teams times eight transfers each = 128 transfers overall for the league. 

According to the BCHL Transactions page, last season saw 69 transfers involving players being acquired by teams, led by Trail. The Smoke Eaters acquired nine new players via transfer between September 6th and January 10th. Alberni Valley, West Kelowna and Cowichan Valley were next with seven, followed by Vernon with six, Surrey, Penticton and Chilliwack with five, Merritt, Salmon Arm, Victoria, and Nanaimo at three, Coquitlam and Prince George with two, Langley with one, and Powell River at none.

Once again, according to the BCHL Transactions page, 2013-14 saw 78 player transfers to other teams between September 6th and January 10th. Trail led the way with 13 players moved out, followed by Penticton, Vernon, Cowichan Valley, and Surrey with seven, West Kelowna and Merritt with six, Alberni Valley and Coquitlam at five, Chilliwack and Salmon Arm with four, Langley, Victoria, and Prince George with two, and Nanaimo with one. The Powell River Kings made no transfers to other teams with their players.

Thirdly, the BCHL has now put a restriction on transfers involving future considerations. Basically any team transferring a player to another team as futures means the player can't return to the team which transferred him the following season. In simpler terms, this eliminates the potential of a player being a playoff "rental" for one team, only to see him return to the team that transferred him.

The link to The Chilliwack Progress full article is here:

Monday, June 9, 2014

Trio of BCHL Alumni Hoist the Kelly Cup as ECHL Champions:

The Alaska Aces are the champions of the ECHL for the third time in the last nine years after a 4-0 win over the Cincinnati Cyclones in Game Six of the Kelly Cup Final series.

The Aces, which are the affiliate of the AHL's Adirondack Flames and the NHL's Calgary Flames, feature three former BCHL players in defenseman Zach Davies and forwards Jordan Kremyr and Evan Trupp.

Davies played 174 games for the Prince George Spruce Kings from 2006-09 while Kremyr skated in 184 career BCHL games, 19 with Chilliwack and 165 with Alberni Valley, from 2003-07. Trupp played 94 games with the Penticton Vees from 2005-07.

Zach Davies (Prince George 2006-09) Jordan Kremyr (Chilliwack 2003-04, Alberni Valley 2004-07) Evan Trupp (Penticton 2005-07)

Here's the release from the ECHL on the Aces championship win:

The Alaska Aces defeated the Cincinnati Cyclones 4-0 on Monday at U.S. Bank Arena to claim the 2014 ECHL Kelly Cup championship 4 games to 2.

The title is Alaska's third Kelly Cup championship, following titles in 2006 and 2011. The Aces join South Carolina (1997, 2001 and 2009) as the only three-time Kelly Cup champions in League history. Hampton Roads also has three ECHL titles, winning Riley Cup titles in 1991 and 1992 and the Kelly Cup in 1998.

Nick Mazzolini scored the only goal Alaska needed, his 11th of the postseason, on the power play with just 23 seconds remaining in the first period. Drew MacKenzie added a power-play marker of his own at 17:09 of the second period to make it 2-0. Alex Belzile and Turner Elson added third-period goals to set the final.

Gerald Coleman stopped all 23 shots he faced to record his second shutout of the Finals series. The win was Coleman's eighth career win in the Kelly Cup Finals, tying Nick Vitucci's record for most career wins in the Riley/Kelly Cup Finals.

Cincinnati goaltender Rob Madore was named Most Valuable Player of the 2014 Kelly Cup Playoffs, becoming the first player from the losing team to win the award in the ECHL's 26-year history. Madore played every second for the Cyclones in the playoffs, posting a 14-10 record with a 2.29 goals-against average and a .930 save percentage. Madore led all goaltenders in the postseason in games played (24), wins (14), minutes played (1,493) and saves (756).

BCHL Releases Details from 2014 Annual General Meeting.

The BC Hockey League made public today the results of its annual general meeting, which wrapped up Saturday in Richmond.

A few details from the AGM were pretty much already confirmed, namely the implementation of the one-fight rule and the fact that the Bauer BCHL Showcase is in Chilliwack once again next season.

We knew the Showcase would be in Chilliwack this season, but what we didn't know was the exact dates. It's interesting to note that the start of the season is two weeks later than last year, with the Showcase running September 19th, 20th and 21st at Prospera Centre.

The one-fight rule is polarizing among teams, fans and media as to whether it's a good idea, but basically it means if players drop the gloves in any game, they'll be ejected.

According to, the BCHL saw 180 fights in the regular season and playoff combined, with Langley's Brendan Gulka, Surrey's Colton Mackie, Trail's Bryan Balsilico, West Kelowna's Mac Ferner, Salmon Arm's Jack Berezan and Nanaimo's Devin Brosseau leading the way with five each.

Here is last October's release from the CJHL regarding the rule:
The Canadian Junior Hockey League (CJHL) Board of Directors has overwhelmingly voted to support an automatic game misconduct for fighting (the one-fight rule) and new national minimum discipline guidelines. 
"The co-operation among our leagues and partners for standardized fighting rules and consistent discipline guidelines across all Junior A leagues is a significant step in the continuing development and evolution of the CJHL and Junior A hockey in Canada," said CJHL President Kirk Lamb.  "We will work closely with our stakeholders and key partners, such as Hockey Canada and provincial branches, on bringing these endorsements forward for consideration."
One-Fight Rule Endorsed as National Standard
The CJHL supports the automatic game misconduct penalty for fighting.   The automatic game misconduct penalty, commonly known as the 'one-fight rule', results in a 5-minute major as well as the immediate ejection of the player from the game.   Five CJHL leagues – SIJHL, NOJHL, OJHL, CCHL and LHJAAAQ – are currently using this rule.  In five other CJHL leagues – BCHL, AJHL, SJHL, MJHL and MHL – a player's first fighting penalty results in the same 5-minute major penalty, but does not carry with it in an automatic ejection from the game.  In those leagues, the automatic game ejection occurs after a player's second fight in the same game.   A move to a national rule for fighting would see all 10 CJHL leagues operate under the same automatic game misconduct penalty for fighting.
The note about roster stability is certainly open to interpretation, the wording is pretty vague. Last year saw a decrease in player transfers throughout the season and also at the January 10th carding deadline. Each of the 16 BCHL teams are striving to win the RBC Cup and will likely make any player transfer to improve their fortunes, regardless of the league's direction. It's definitely something to watch for as the 2014-15 season rolls on.

Here's the release from the BCHL regarding this year's AGM:

The British Columbia Hockey League (BCHL) held its annual general meeting (AGM) June 5 to 7 in Richmond, B.C. and has confirmed solidarity from all clubs on issues regarding roster composition, player safety, scheduling and playoff structure.

Roster stability and reduction of player transactions are primary goals for the BCHL. Representatives of each club at the AGM strongly supported the league’s direction to keep players on the teams they are recruited to for the start of each season.

The league will continue following the Junior A Supplement document which determines discipline on dangerous hits and fighting. Players will be ejected from a game following a fight. The Supplement was created by the four western Junior A leagues and will be followed by all 128 Canadian Junior Hockey League (CJHL) teams across the 10 Junior A leagues next season.

The BCHL will continue with the same playoff format as this past season. Again, this will see best-of-seven playoff action in Rounds 1 and 2, a three-team round robin in Round 3 designed to eliminate one team and a best-of-seven Fred Page Cup final between the two teams surviving Round 3. Dates of game nights and structure of the best-of-seven series will be determined by competing playoff clubs when matchups are determined.

A Scheduling Committee was established that will meet during the 2014-15 regular season.  The Committee’s mandate will be to review, establish guidelines and to make recommendations to the BCHL Board of Governors for consideration and possible implementation in preparation for the 2015 BCHL AGM scheduling sessions.  The Scheduling Committee is made up of Governors and Coaches from each of the three BCHL Divisions.

For the third-straight season, the Bauer BCHL Showcase will take place, running Sept. 19 to 21 at Prospera Centre in Chilliwack. All games played at the Showcase will count in the regular-season standings and a large contingent of NCAA coaches, professional scouts and Canadian university representatives are again expected to attend.

BCHL regular-season games will begin Friday, Sept. 26 and finish Sunday, March 1, 2015.

Congratulations are also in order for Chilliwack Chiefs governor Glen Ringdal who was named the 2014 BCHL Executive of the Year. Ringdal, whose career has seen him work for the B.C. Lions and Vancouver Canucks, is a tireless worker on the league’s Strategic Planning committee and has developed several valuable initiatives that will grow the BCHL brand into the future.

Talks on each team’s 2014-15 schedule are well underway and a final league grid should be in place before the end of June.