Gavin Klassen had to make only 17 saves to lead the Pembina Valley Hawks past the Parkland Rangers 5-0 in the opening game of the Manitoba Triple A Midget Hockey League playoffs. Meanwhile, the Winnipeg Jets traded away Alexei Ponikarovsky and Winnipeg’s Alexander Steen scored the overtime winner for the St. Louis Blues. It was an interesting day.
Let’s start with the National Hockey League…
The Winnipeg Jets, coming off that 3-2 loss to Philadelphia on Tuesday were certainly busy yesterday. First they called up goaltender Eddie Pasquale from the St. John’s Ice Caps of the AHL to replace the injured Al Montoya. Then they sent a seventh-round draft pick in 2013 to Pittsburgh to acquire 6-foot-4, 221-pound forward Eric Tangradi, a former second round pick of the Anaheim Ducks. Then they sent forward Alexei Ponikarovsky to the New Jersey Devils in exchange for a seventh round pick in 2013 and a fourth round pick in 2014. Ponikarovsky had two goals and no assists in 12 games with the Jets.
Meanwhile, yesterday, The Hockey News announced that in its next print issue there is a long feature with the Jets Evander Kane. Kane says he believes some of the criticism he has received in Winnipeg is because, and we’re quoting here, “A good portion of it is because I’m black and I’m not afraid to say that.” Obviously, Kane believes he’s a dislkiked and is a victim and probaby can’t play in Winnipeg any longer.
The 5-6-1 Jets, the 11th place team in the NHL’s Eastern Conference, play again tomorrow night when the Pittsburgh Penguins invade MTS Centre at 7 p.m. The game is on CBC.
There were three games in the NHL last night:
Pittsburgh 4 Ottawa 2
James Neal had two goals and an assist and Sidney Crosby had a goal and two assists.
St. Louis 4 Detroit 3 (OT)
The Blues trailed 2-0 late in the second and stormed back. Winnipeg’s Alexander Steen scored the winner 52 seconds into overtime.
Calgary 7 Dallas 4
Mike Cammalleri had three goals and an assist to lead the Flames
In some very sad NHL news yesterday, Ottawa Senators Norris Trophy winning defenseman – and their best player — Erik Karlsson will need surgery to repair his left Achilles after the tendon was cut by a skate blade late in the second period Wednesday night against Pittsburgh. He is dome for the season.
There were no games in the Manitoba Junior Hockey League last night and none tonight, but five tomorrow night: Dauphin is at OCN, Winkler is at Steinbach, Waywayseecappo is at Swan Valley, Portage is at Neepawa, and Selkirk plays the Blues at MTS Iceplex.
Our next game on the MJHL on NCI FM presented by Manitoba Lotteries, goes next Monday afternoon, from the Recreation Complex in Selkirk, Man., as the Selkirk Steelers play host to the Winnipeg Blues. It’s a Louis Riel Day hockey special. We begin with the Recycle Everywhere Pre-Game Show at 2:15, then at 2:30 p.m. we’ll have the game between the Steelers and the Blues brought to you by Birchwood Credit Solutions. Join the great Curt Keilback and me as we Bring Hockey Back to Your Community.
BRANDON WHEAT KINGS
The Medicine Hat Tigers shut out the Brandon Wheat Kings 3-0 at Westman Place in Brandon last night. That leaves the last place Wheat Kings with a record of 20-34-2-2. The Wheaties, who have lost three straight at home, play again tomorrow night, when the Kootenay Ice invade Westman Place at 7:30.
MANITOBA TRIPLE A MIDGET LEAGUE
There were two games in the Manitoba Triple A Midget Hockey League playoffs last night: Meyer Nell scored the winning goal as Southwest topped Central Plains 4-3 to take a 1-0 lead in that best-of three series while Gavin Klassen made only 17 saves to get the shutout as Pembina Valley beat Parkland 5-0. Pembina Valley leads that series 1-0. No games tonight but four tomorrow: Eastman is at Kenora; Pembina valley plays Parkland in Dauphin; Interlake faces Norman in Thompson; and Southwest plays Central Plains in Portage.
MANITOBA MAJOR JUNIOR HOCKEY LEAGUE
There were no games in the Manitoba Major Junior Hockey League last night but two tonight: River East beat Pembina Valley 4-2; and St. Boniface came back to beat Stonewall 5-4 in overtime. There are two games tonight: the Twins are at Transcona and Stonewall plays at St. Vital.
KEYSTONE JUNIOR B HOCKEY
The playoffs in the Keystone Jr. B Hockey League begin this weekend with Norway House at Arborg on both Friday and Saturday night. Lundar plays at St. Malo on Saturday and St. Malo returns to Lundar on Sunday. And North Winnipeg opens against Selkrk on Sunday. Peguis opens up against Ste. Rose on Monday night.