Friday, December 30, 2011

Tigers Defeat Canes 3-2

Small Recap.

Tigers called up Gavin Broadhead for the game tonight.

I thought the Canes kinda shot themselves in the foot. The game winning goal was scored after the Hurricanes Coach Rich Preston went beaking off to the ref and got tossed. Their lack of discipline cost them the game. The Tigers scored right away on that Powerplay, and at that point it gave the Tigers a 3-1 lead.

It was nice to see some "other" goal scorers tonight with Kale Kessy, Jayden Hart, and Curtis Valk scoring goals. Jayden Hart was given a penalty shot and will probably get some ribbing from his teammates after falling over on the attempt.

Brad McEwen
I was able to listen to the radio broadcast during one of the intermissions. One of the Questions Ridley asked Tigers GM Brad McEwen was: Are the Tigers going to be "buyers or sellers" and how did the prospects look at the macs tournament?

Paraphrasing his words...

Tiger Prospects
McEwen mentioned that he got a good viewing of quite a few Tigers prospects at the macs tournament. A couple names he mentioned that impressed were alex mobray, chad labelle, ty stanton and there was one from shattucks I didnt quite catch his name.

He also mentioned that the Tigers brought a couple players up to have some time with Tigers developmental coach Jeff Ovens.

Trading Front
Regarding the trading front McEwen mentioned along the lines that quite a few teams were still uncertain a bit into the direction they wanted to take and were kinda waiting a bit to see how things played out.

Brad McEwen didnt mention specifically that they were going to be buyers but hinted that they would look at thier prospects and depth charts see where they could strengthen an age group, but also warned that making one move doesn't guarentee a championship team.

With the precedent set last year with the high prices for Cody Eakin and Brayden Schenn a couple teams who would be sellers may be trying and waiting for likewise returns on this years players.

The trading Deadline is January 10th.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Tigers Defeat Royals 4-2

Last game before the Christmas break.

First Time the Royals have visited the Arena. The Tigers faced them earlier in the year where they split back to back games in Victoria.

Tonights game was also the first game without Emerson Etem in the lineup. With Etem gone a couple other players would have to step up.

I thought Hunter Shinkaruk stepped up big-time for the Tigers. He was given a ton of ice-time and played an inspired hockey game. In just his second season in the whl he is tearing up the scoresheet. Their are some players you can just tell are destined for the NHL.

I saw good things from Kale Kessy. I thought he got a couple extra scoring chances from which he positioned himself in good spots. I thought Boston Leier came out with a very strong work ethic. Rhys Deino looked like a veteran on the Ice. I liked the poise of Reid Petryk at forward.

Patrik Parkkonen looked good tonight. I liked the goal that Scott Mckay scored. It looked like Victoria's netminder Jared Rathjen had the puck covered in his pads, but Mckay gave a little poke and pushed the puck into the net.

Trevor Cox also received a lot of icetime. I remember early in the pre-season when after watching the intrasquad game he looked a little out of place. He has come a looong ways from that. This kid is gonna be a gonna be a star for the Tigers one day, his future looks really bright.

Their were two major parts where the Tigers had a little trouble in their own zone, and in one occasion it cost them a goal. With thier new style it will take some time to get the kinks out.

From Victoria's side of things. They have a couple players who can really fly and are capable of scoring against any team. However what Killed them tonight was their inability to get the puck out of thier zone. They made a number of self made errors that kept the play in their own end. The reffing didn't really go their way early on either.

Happy Holidays Everyone!

Edit: Away on holidays...probably wont be back untill the december 30th home game.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Bunz Cut From Team Canada

The Final Cuts are still being made but TSN has announced that one of the Cuts is Tyler Bunz.

Medicine Hat Tigers netminder Tyler Bunz and Louis Domingue of the Quebec Remparts were sent back to junior, leaving 2011 returnee Mark Visentin as the starting goaltender and Plymouth's Scott Wedgewood in the backup role.

On the blue line, Alex Petrovic of the Red Deer Rebels, Kitchener Rangers defenceman Ryan Murphy, Portland's Joe Morrow and Ottawa's Cody Ceci didn't make the final cut.

Ottawa 67s winger Tyler Toffoli, Portland Winterhawks Brad Ross and Ty Rattie, Michigan winger Phil Di Giuseppe, Christian Thomas of the Oshawa Generals, Victoriaville's Phillip Danault and Brett Bulmer of the Kelowna Rockets were among the forwards sent home on Wednesday morning.

Bunz will probably be back in Time For Tonights game. But he has played 4 games in 4 nights so it is unknown on whether or not he will play tonight.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Bunz vs CIS

In the third game Bunz let in 2 goals and stopped all 4 shootout attempts. Both goals were scored on the powerplay. He played the first half of the game.

The CIS team didnt get a shot on goal untill about 8 minutes in. Moments later they had a 5 on 3 where the first goal was scored off of a deflection and the second goal was off a quick rebound in front by Former Tiger Taylor Gal.

His counterpart on the other Side Scott Wedgewood let in 3 goals and stopped all the shootout goals as well.

We will find out who makes the Team Wednesday Morning! It will be interesting, as Goalie Scott Wedgewood has played a pretty strong game as well. It appears to be a 3 horse Race

Bunz Survives First Cuts

Canada's world junior team cut seven players from its selection camp in Calgary on Tuesday morning to bring its roster down to 35.

The cuts included 17-year old Red Deer defenceman Mathew Dumba, Rimouski blueliner Jerome Gauthier-Leduc, Brenden Kichton of the Spokane Chiefs, Mark McNeill of the Prince Albert Raiders, Brandon forward Michael Ferland, Saint John Sea Dogs forward Zack Phillips, and Kootenay forward Max Reinhart.

No Goalies Have been cut. Final Cuts Come Wednesday Morning. Team Canada has a game tonight vs the CIS All-Stars in Calgary.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Former Tiger Devan Dubyk Goes To Red Deer

The Rebels keep getting more bad news as thier #1 goaltender Patrik Bartosak is rumoured to be done for the season. He suffered an "upper body injury" in Swift Current.

The Rebels have picked up 20 year old Former Tiger Devan Dubyk who was playing for the Humboldt Broncos.

World Junoir Camp Update
Bunz stopped 3 of 4 shootout attempts. TSN says Bunz let in 1 goal on 28 shots, but I wondering if that was a typo for 18 shots?

"All four goaltenders played really well and I thought there was more jump than last night," Canada's head coach Don Hay said. "Obviously we'd like to see more goal scoring, but the goalies played really well.

First Cuts Tuesday Morning.

Team Canada...Bunz Update

Team Canada held thier first scrimmage tonight.

Bunz played the first half of the game for Team White, who went on to win 3-2.
Bunz let in 1 goal off 15 shots. The goal came in from a bit of a tough angle, from near the outerline of the faceoff circle down low.

Bunz stopped 2 of 4 in the mini-shootout.
Ryan Stone outdeked Bunz
Zack Phillips deked Stopped by Bunz.
Ty Rattie deked Beats Bunz glove side.
Brandon Gormley deked and Bunz flashed a nice glove save.

Don Hay has mentioned that the #1 spot is Visentin's to lose.

One more Game Monday Night. First Cuts will be announced Tuesday Morning.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Kootenay Defeat Tigers 3-2

Short Recap

I thought the Tigers put in a pretty good effort tonight. They have changed up thier systems a little and it is working well for them. I thought It was a very close game and the Tigers deserved a better fate.

Kenny Cameron's first game in net at home and I thought he looked a little nervous at times. Their were 2 long goals he would have liked to take back, but he also came up with some very good saves including a nice stacking of the pads save early in the game.

Rhyse Dieno had a very good game and Spencer Jenson has really improved quite a bit over the last month. Thought Reid Petryk also played a good physical game. I thought Matt Konan played a nice physical game in the first half of the game.

I really like that the Tigers have bumped Trevor Cox's ice time up. He always seems to create good plays in the offensive zone. Trevor scored a very key goal to tie the game up at 2-2 after a bit of a momentum breaker when Kootenay scored off a long range slapper.

Thier were some real hard hits in the first period. I thought for sure thier were going to be some fights in this one but none developed.

Emerson Etem scored the Teddy Bear Toss goal halfway in the second period. He has one more game left before leaving for the World Juniors.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Tigers Defeat Ice 6-4

Tigers handed the Kootenay Ice thier 4 straight loss, as the Ice just returned from a 9 game road trip.

Scoring Summaries

1st Period
On the penalty kill Hunter Shinkaruk would poke a puck into the nuetral zone. Shinkaruk under extreme pressure from a Kootenay Defender on his back would drive across the net and flick a shot passed Nathan Leiwen to give the Tigers a 1- 0 Lead.

Kootenay Would respond seconds later on that same powerplay as Jesse Ismond would crawl into the slot area. The puck eventually squirted out right to Elgin Pearce who one timed it short side shot past Tyler Bunz. 1-1 Tie and the Teddy Bears would rain from the rafters, as both teams would get a quick break.

Tigers would respond a couple minutes later as Cole Grbavac had a mini breakaway in close but his weak shot on net was stopped. Reid Petryk had lots of time to scoop up the puck turn around and fire a shot low stick side against Nathan Lieuwen 2-1 Tigers.

2nd Period
The first ten minutes of the period was ALL Tigers. They probably spent 8 out of the first ten minutes deep in Kootenays Zone.

Cole Grbavac stole a puck at Kootenays Blueline. Trevor Cox would take control do a little toe drag and fired a shot top shelf glove side. 3-1 Tigers.

On the Powerplay James Bettauer would walk the line on the point, hesitate for a split second and fired a low wrister passed a partially screened Liewuen. Shinkaruk was on the doorstop and may have tipped it. 4-1 Tigers

THe Tigers 5th goal came off of some good work on thier powerplay powerplay. THe Tigers spent a good 3-4 minutes straight in Kootenays Zone, putting on all kinds of pressure. After the PP expired The puck would come out of the zone real briefly and 3 Ice headed off for a change as they were dead tired. The Tigers would quickly pounce on the opportunity and developed a 3 on 2.

Busenius would make a nice short pass to Riley Sheen who made a nice short Pass to Scott Mckay and buried it to to give the Tigers a 5-1 Lead. This goal would chase Kootenay's Starter Nathan Lieuweuen in favor of Mackenzie Slapski.

Kootenay would get a very quick one back as they started to push back late in the period. Dylen McKinley fired a shot on net and the rebound came right out Brendan Hurley on the tape who fired it in on a partial open net. 5-2 Tigers

3rd Period

Jesse Ismond on the Powerplay would win the faceoff in the Tigers end, pass it back to Max Reinhart who fed a quick pass over to Joey Leach who fired a wrist shot on net. Bunz wouldnt see it with traffic in front. 5-3 Tigers

The Ice would make the game very interesting as thier was a Massive scrum in front. 7 players whacking and slashing at a loose puck. Dylen Mckinley would pot his second of the game as he managed to get a back-hand shot off that bounced in off of Tyler Bunz shoulder.
5-4 Tigers.

With the goalie pulled the Ice called a timout with a faceoff in the Tigers end. Kootenay would fire a one-timer that missed. The puck would come back to the point as Scott Mckay managed to battle Joey Leach for the loose puck and come away with it. He had a 2-0 breakaway but kept it simple and scored his second of the game to salt the Victory 6-4 Tigers.



It looked like the Tigers changed up thier style a bit, and fed Kootenay Some of their own medicine. In the first period they completely sat back in the neutral zone, and pounced on Kootenay's Mistakes. In the second period when Kootenay ran into penalty troubles they were all over the Ice and played pretty aggressive. In the third period, the Ice really pressured the Tigers, and scored on a few rebounds/shots with traffic in front.

A very good road win. Arguably one of their better games in the last 10-15 game stretch. The Tigers second period had been thier downfall but they came out with fire and really opened the game up. I think only the 2nd victory when Emerson was held off the scoresheet.

I thought the Ice obviously didn't come out with thier best effort in the second period and it cost them.

Tyler Bunz played his last game before Heading off to the World Junoir Camp Saturday. The camp runs from the 10th-14th. THe Ice will also loose Max Reinhart for tomorows Re-match in Medicine Hat.

It is also Teddy Bear Toss night. Fans are encouraged to bring stuffed animals, gloves, mittens, toques and scarves to the game. Fans are also encouraged to bring a food donation to the game as well which will go to help feed those less fortunate at this time of year.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Tigers Defeat Hitmen 2-1

Tigers came out with fire again, and were all over the Hitmen in the opening Minutes. Curtis Valk would give the Tigers a 1-0 lead after Emerson Etem coralled a puck down low, and fed it to Valk in the slot who buried his shot top shelf glove side.

After that the Hitmen slowly started spending more time in the Tigers zone. The Hitmen started hammering shots on net and Tyler Bunz played an outstanding hockey game.

In the secod period Hitmen forward Calder Brooks would drive to the net and somehow squeak the puck past bunz as a big pile developed in front of him.

The third period was largely a repeat of the second, However Emerson Etem fed Curtis Valk on a 2 on 1 and made a nice backhand move to beat Hitmen goalie Chris Driedger.

The hitmen would press after that but Bunz played a phenominal hockey game. Bunz would stop 38 hitmen shots. THe Hitmen outshot the Tigers 38-17.

Tigers played an ok road game. Tyler Bunz was amazing in net, and was a huge reason why the Tigers won. I think the Tigers were a little lucky to come away with the 2 points, but it was a much needed win. Boston Leier was scratched after suffering an inury last night. Patrik Parkkonen is still out with a knee injury. Kale Kessy served the final game of his 4 game suspension

The Tigers have 2 huge games next weekend with a home and home against the Kootenay Ice.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Spokane Defeats Tigers 6-3

Well the Tigers played a strong first period building a 2-0 lead, but after that it was back to old habbits as Spokane brought much more intensity in the second period. The Tigers failed to give any pushback untill it was much to late in the third period, as Spokane scored 1 goal in the second and then piled on 5 goals in the third. Tyler Bunz played well but he couldn't hold spokane off the scoresheet forevor.

This team baffles me, they are a Dr. Jykyl, and Mr Hyde where each period is a different story. One period thier passes are crisp they are outworking the opponent down low, thier defenseman are breaking up cycles, and the forwards are hitting. The next period thier is no physicality from the forwards, the defense are a step behind, and no one can make a pass or hold onto one. Despite the Tigers literally falling from the sky I still think they have the tools to go far but....

I think a shakeup is needed. Perhaps even assigning a new Captain. Grbavac seems overwhelmed as his high energy aggressive forecheck has been non-existant. I liked his fight in the first period, but the second was out of pure frustration.

Thats All I'm saying for now....going out, perhaps later I'll add more but Just thinking about how the Tigers are playing is getting me quite angry.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Blades Defeat Tigers 2-1 OT

Blades looked like the better team through 2 periods of play, but the Tigers finally snapped back into focus and played a very good third period of hockey. The Tigers defense were making good pinches and the forwards were skating with some oomf in thier game. They had a chance to win the game but couldnt capitalize.

Quite the chess match where Saskatoon was trying to Get Defenseman Dalton Thrower and Duncan Siemens out against the Etem/Shinkaruk line.

The refs for the most part let them play, but with 3 seconds left in the third period Matt Konan took a High-Sticking penalty which meant a 4 on 3 disadvantage to start overtime. One minute into overtime Josh Nicholls potted a wrister past Bunz from the slot area for the Game Winner.

Total shots were 45-24 for the blades. Despite the disparity on shots I thought Prime scoring chances were both teams were relatively equal. The Tigers Emerson Etem was stopped on a breakaway and Trevor Cox had an open net but missed again. Boston Leier had a prime chance in the slot but tripped himself up. THe team seems to be holding thier sticks a little too tight.

I liked what I saw in the third period. Its something to build on for tomorows game against Spokane. Jayden Hart, Riley Sheen, and Rhys Deino saw more ice-time than usual and they flourished with it.

After Tigers Defenseman James Bettauer knocked over blades goaltender Andrey Makarov, Dalton Thrower engaged Bettauer in a fight.

From what we've seen at the arena this year, it hasn't mattered who throws off the gloves first or if their is small talk before the fight. The instigator has still been called.

Anyway they dropped the gloves, circled each other and Thrower threw quite a few rabbit punches in which knocked Bettauer down to one knee. Bettauer would get back up and the refs jumped in lickity split as soon as bettauer went down to one knee.

What was unusual is the refs gave both players a double minor for roughing which negated the potential instigator, and gave the blades the powerplay. The blades didnt score however that double roughing was clearly a fight.

Around the WHL
Calgary has been exploding lately. They have been getting some really good goaltending. THe Tigers have played 2 more games than the Hitmen however The hitmen could actually catch the TIgers in the standings if they were to win those games. They have already overtaken Red Deer who has fallen off the map since Rebel Adam Kambeitz has been out with injury. Regina has also slowed down considerably from thier very hot start.

5 points seperates 1st to 6th. It was tight last year, but this year there is no room to move. 1 loss and you fall 2 places in the standings.

Whos Next?
Saturday Night the Tigers take on Spokane a team that has also hasn't been at thier best lately. Spokane Got off to a white fire hot start, but has cooled off. Tomorow should be an intense battle of two teams trying to get back on a winning streak. The cheifs lost a 3-2 OT decision TO Calgary on Friday