With just two days until the club's season opener on Thursday Kootenay still has 28 bodies on the roster with three (Negrin, Sylvester and King) still at NHL camps. Leaving 25 for the weekend but it's likely that Sylvester and King will return when their respective rookie camps/tournaments end Wednesday night. Tough to say if they'll be in the lineup Thursday but Negrin will still be in Calgary, leaving a swelled roster. Nothing's being said yet but likely the club will make 2-4 cuts before opening day. I'll have something here Tuesday or Wednesday if it happens. Thursday's going to be a busy day as I'm finishing the paper's season preview and will be doing a guest spot on Shaw's Pre-game 'panel' show before the home opener.
Some news on Negrin and Ice alumni Adam Cracknell here with the Calgary Flames Rookies dumping the Vancouver Canuck Rookies 6-3 in Camrose, Alta.... There's also a story on Negrin on the Flames website. Anybody else get a funny feeling about him returning yet????.... Forward Kevin King notched an assist in Minnesota's shoot-out loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets in a rookie tournament loss Saturday... Finally the Calgary Hitmen have Dustin Sylvester's brother Cody in the lineup still looking for a spot. The Hitmen also released former Ice first round pick Jordan Wilkins.
For the News-Advertiser...
Ice open scoring floodgates as real season starts
by Jeff Bromley
Ask and you shall receive. Kootenay Ice head coach Mark Holick asked his club last week for some scoring, zeroing-in on the veterans for the upcoming season to fill the nets. He got the goals, twelve of them in fact, in a 6-2 win over the Lethbridge Hurricanes Friday at the Rec Plex and a 6-3 result Saturday night in the Windy City, but it was the rookies providing the punch. Scoring six goals on consecutive nights Kootenay’s scoring came from the likes of Jesse Ismond, with a five point weekend (3 goals, 2 assists), Max Reinhart, Drew Czerwonka, Jordan Bauer and Mike Cassivi, all with a goal, and defenseman Cason Machacek who notched the Gordie Howe hat-trick Friday night with two goals, an assist and a scrap. It was a weekend that the Lethbridge product hopes will go a long way to solidifying a position on the club’s blueline. “(The club’s brass) haven’t really talked to us individually yet,” Machacek said Monday following practice about his future with the club. “I hope it was enough. I gave it my all and if you can look yourself in the mirror and the end of the day and say you gave everything, that’s all you can do, right?”
Machacek opened the scoring Friday halfway through the first period to put the Ice up 1-0 on his hometown team after one period. Early into the second Machacek doubled his goal total with a power play marker just over two minutes in. Bauer, Ismond, Czerwonka and Reinhart rounded out the scoring over a Hurricane line-up that was missing ten regulars all weekend. With Kootenay missing forwards Dustin Sylvester and Kevin King along with defenseman John Negrin all at NHL rookie camps along with rotating four other regulars out of the line-up over the weekend the Ice rookies seized the opportunity. “In practice this week we really focussed on our power play and burying our chances,” added Machacek. “We only had the one goal last weekend and we really needed to improve on that front.”
“We wanted to win this weekend and maybe prove we can be a better team.”
Scoring 2 goals and 6 assists last season with the Alberta Midget league’s Lethbridge Y’s Men Titans in 35 games and losing in the AMHL’s semi-finals to his now-teammate Hayden Rintoul’s Calgary Buffalos, the 17-year-old younger brother of Vancouver Giant forward and Atlanta Thrasher draft pick Spencer Machacek isn’t exactly known for his offensive output. But it’s a bonus if he helps the cause. “It was definitely fun and exciting and playing with a lot of confidence helps. This past summer I was trying to develop more of a scoring touch but I’m more of a rough and tumble-type of d-man.”
Quick Hits - Kootenay will open the regular season Thursday at the Rec Plex in the league’s only game that will be televised by Shaw TV. The unaccustomed 7:30 start will accommodate the usual start to the season festivities along with a special tribute to the club’s late owner, Ed Chynoweth, who passed away following a battle with Kidney Cancer last spring… Forward Adam Rossignol, 15, of Cloverdale, BC, was called up for last weekend’s exhibition games. Rossignol was a 7th round pick (147th overall) in last May’s Bantam Draft… D Ian Barteaux was penalized for with a major for checking-from-behind and a game misconduct on his first shift in Lethbridge on Saturday. As of press time the WHL had not yet handed down any supplementary discipline.