The Bobby Orr and Wayne Gretzky Trophies are on the line as Eastern and Western Conference Championship Series action is underway this week.
BULLDOGS, FRONTENACS BATTLE IN EASTERN CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES:
The Hamilton Bulldogs and Kingston Frontenacs continue their East Division rivalry, both battling for their first Bobby Orr Trophy in the Eastern Conference Final. Series Preview and Schedule
GREYHOUNDS, RANGERS SQUARE OFF IN WESTERN CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES:
The 2018 OHL Western Conference Championship Series for the Wayne Gretzky Trophy featuring the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds and Kitchener Rangers starts Friday April 20. Series Preview and Schedule
WATCH #OHLPLAYOFFS ON OHL LIVE:
The Ontario Hockey League, in association with its digital media partner NeuLion, are proud to offer special packages and rates for OHL Live coverage of the 2018 OHL Playoffs. All Access subscriptions can be purchased for $49.99, and third round team packages are available for $25.99. Details.
OHL COMMUNITY COMES TOGETHER IN SUPPORT OF HUMBOLDT:
Since the tragic accident on April 6 that claimed the lives of 16 members of the Humboldt Broncos family, the entire hockey community has rallied together to express their love and support on social media. Here’s a look at a collection of posts from across the Ontario Hockey League in honour of the Humboldt Broncos. Read more
COLTS’ ANDREI SVECHNIKOV VOTED OHL ROOKIE OF THE YEAR, ALL-ROOKIE TEAMS ANNOUNCED:
2018 NHL Draft prospect Andrei Svechnikov of the Barrie Colts has been voted the 2017-18 recipient of the Emms Family Award for OHL Rookie of the Year. Svechnikov led all OHL rookies with 40 goals and 32 assists in just 44 games for a point total of 72 that ranked 25th overall in league scoring and a points-per-game mark of 1.64 that was fifth best. The OHL also unveiled All-Rookie teams as voted by OHL General Managers on Friday. Read more
61 OHL PLAYERS IN FINAL 2018 NHL CENTRAL SCOUTING DRAFT RANKINGS:
61 OHL players have been listed by NHL Central Scouting in their Final Rankings for the 2018 NHL Draft which takes place June 22-23 in Dallas, TX. The 61 players includes 56 skaters of the 217 ranked by NHL Central Scouting in North America while five of the 31 goaltenders ranked are also from the OHL. In total, nearly 25% of all players ranked by NHL Central Scouting are currently competing in the OHL. Eleven of the top 31 ranked North American prospects are from the OHL led by top-ranked skater Andrei Svechnikov (Barrie Colts). Read more
NINE OHL PLAYERS SET TO REPRESENT CANADA AT WORLD U18 CHAMPIONSHIP:
Nine OHL players will represent Canada at the IIHF World Under-18 Hockey Championship in Chelyabinsk and Magnitogorsk, Russia beginning on Thursday. Kevin Bahl (Ottawa 67’s), Ty Dellandrea (Flint Firebirds), Aidan Dudas (Owen Sound Attack), Liam Foudy (London Knights), Cam Hillis (Guelph Storm), Allan McShane (Oshawa Generals), Ryan Merkley (Guelph Storm), Serron Noel (Oshawa Generals) and Akil Thomas (Niagara IceDogs) will wear the maple leaf as Canada opens tournament action against the United States on Thursday. Read more
OHL INTRODUCES PERFORMANCE DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE:
The OHL Performance Development League is an off-season development initiative targeted at young players incorporating Small Area 3 on 3 Games and skills development sessions. The concept of the OHL PDL has developed with full support from Hockey Canada and the Ontario Hockey Federation (OHF). All parties are excited to introduce a progressive and engaging development platform that creates an opportunity for minor hockey players to be exposed to OHL quality teaching methods, technical skill development, and new skill acquisition. More Details
FRONTENACS’ JEREMY HELVIG NAMED OHL ‘ON THE RUN’ PLAYER OF THE WEEK:
Carolina Hurricanes prospect Jeremy Helvig of the Kingston Frontenacs is the OHL ‘On the Run’ Player of the Week for the playoff week ending April 15 after posting a 3-0 record with a goals-against-average of 1.33 and save percentage of .958. Helvig turned aside 91 shots in a trio of victories over the Barrie Colts last week backstopping the Frontenacs to a 4-2 series triumph and a berth in the Eastern Conference Final. Read more
VOTE JEREMY HELVIG IN #CIBCSHOWDOWN:
Kingston Frontenacs goaltender Jeremy Helvig is this week’s OHL representative featured in #CIBCShowdown which showcases one great play from all three leagues allowing fans the opportunity to choose their favourite play. See all the plays and vote at chlshowdown.ca.
#OHLPLAYOFFS SECOND ROUND HIGHLIGHTS:
It’s another special playoff edition of the Wawanesa OHL Plays of the Week featuring a collection of the league’s best goals and saves from the second round of the 2018 post-season. Watch
DEVELOPMENT CAMPS UNDERWAY ACROSS THE OHL:
While the OHL Playoffs are in full swing, many clubs have already turned their focus toward next season with Spring Development Camps underway across the league. The camps give coaches and staff an opportunity to meet new prospects and get players prepared for on and off-ice training throughout the offseason. The Sudbury Wolves, Guelph Storm and Ottawa 67’s held camps last weekend. This weekend, the Barrie Colts, Flint Firebirds, Kitchener Rangers, London Knights, Mississauga Steelheads, Oshawa Generals, Peterborough Petes and Windsor Spitfires will all host camps.
OHL PLAYERS JUMP TO AHL RANKS:
With their teams eliminated from the OHL Playoffs, several standouts have made the jump to the American Hockey League to conclude the 2017-18 campaign in the Calder Cup Playoffs. The following players have been called-up by AHL clubs: Cam Dineen (Tucson Roadrunners/Sarnia Sting), Justin Fazio (Grand Rapids Griffins/Sarnia Sting), Jordan Kyrou (Chicago Wolves/Sarnia Sting), Ryan McGregor (Toronto Marlies/Sarnia Sting), Sam Miletic (Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins/Niagara IceDogs), Nick Suzuki (Chicago Wolves/Owen Sound Attack)
JAMES HARDIE COMMITS TO STEELHEADS:
The Mississauga Steelheads have received a commitment from 2018 first round (8th overall) selection James Hardie. A native of Innisfil, Ont., Hardie recorded 70 points (41 goals, 29 assists) in 34 regular season games with the Barrie Jr. Colts Minor Midgets this year. He added six goals and seven assists in eight playoff games. Read more
REID VALADE COMMITS TO RANGERS:
The Kitchener Rangers have received a commitment from 2018 first round (17th overall) selection Reid Valade. The 16-year-old, Caledon, ON native was the first round, 17th overall pick by the Rangers in the 2018 OHL Priority Selection. He was a member of the GTHL’s Toronto Marlboros during the 2017-18 season where he tallied 31 goals and 69 points in 55 regular season games played. Read more
JACK THOMPSON COMMITS TO WOLVES:
The Sudbury Wolves have received a commitment from 2018 second round selection Jack Thompson. The Wolves selected the 6-foot, 180lb. defenceman 30th overall in the 2018 OHL Priority Selection. In 36 games with the Clarington Toros last season, Thompson had 17 goals and 21 assists. Read more
BRENDAN HOFFMANN COMMITS TO OTTERS:
The Erie Otters have received a commitment from 2017 seventh round selection Brendan Hoffmann. The 6-foot-2, 190-pound forward was selected 140th overall by the Otters from the Toronto Jr. Canadiens. The Charlotte, North Carolina native spent the 2017-18 season with the Toronto Jr. Canadiens Midget AAA of the GTHL where he posted 33 goals and 37 assists for 70 points in 42 games. Hoffmann also suited up with the Toronto Jr. Canadians Jr. A team in the OJHL where he recorded a goal in nine games played, including two playoff games. Read more
SECOND ROUND PICKS LENNOX AND CARDWELL COMMIT TO SPIRIT:
The Saginaw Spirit has received commitments from 2018 second round selections Tristan Lennox (26th overall) and Ethan Cardwell (33rd overall). Lennox, 15, from Mississauga, Ontario was the first goaltender taken in the 2018 Priority Selection Draft (26th overall). Lennox played for his hometown Mississauga Reps Minor Midget team during the 2017-18 season and appeared in the OHL Cup, posting a 1.91 goals against average and a .915 save percentage. Cardwell, 15, from Courtice, Ontario was selected by the Spirit with the 33rd overall pick in the 2018 Priority Selection Draft. Cardwell played the Clarington Toros Minor Midget during the 2017-18 season, positing 30 goals and 24 assists in 35 games. Read more
VOTE FOR THE CHL’S TEAM OF THE CENTURY:
In celebration of the 100th edition of the Mastercard Memorial Cup, the Canadian Hockey League is asking fans to cast their vote for the Team of the Century. Check out the online voting platform at http://chlteamofthecentury.ca which features photos, rosters, and tournament recaps for the first 99 Memorial Cup champions who represent the candidates eligible for the distinction of CHL Team of the Century. Voters are eligible for great prizes including a trip for two to the 2019 Mastercard Memorial Cup.
Doughty and Subban named Norris Trophy nominees: Guelph Storm graduate Drew Doughty and Belleville Bulls graduate P.K. Subban have both been nominated as finalists for the NHL’s Norris Trophy awarded to the league’s Defenceman of the Year. Doughty had 10 goals, 50 assists and 60 points in 82 games with the Los Angeles Kings while recording a plus-23 rating. The 28-year-old from London, Ont. wrapped up his 10th NHL season. He played three seasons with the Guelph Storm from 2005-08. Subban registered 16 goals, 43 assists and 59 points in 82 games with the Nashville Predators. The 28-year-old native of Rexdale, Ont. concluded his eighth NHL season. He played four seasons in Belleville from 2005-09. Doughty, Subban and Tampa Bay’s Victor Hedman were named as the three award nominees.
OHL grad Alphonso rises to NHL officiating ranks: Sudbury Wolves graduate Shandor Alphonso has gone from financial advisor to the NHL’s only active black official. Sportsnet’s Donnovan Bennett sat down with Alphonso to discuss his path to the NHL as he followed in the footsteps of Jamaica-born, British Columbia-raised Jay Sharrers to become the second black official in NHL history. The 34-year-old Alphonso played three seasons in Sudbury from 2001-04 before five years playing at Lakehead University. Read more of his story at sportsnet.ca.
Varone voted AHL MVP: Erie Otters graduate Phil Varone has been voted as the Most Valuable Player in the American Hockey League for the 2017-18 season. The Lehigh Valley Phantoms forward earns the Les Cunningham Award after finishing with 70 points (23-47–70) over 74 games. The 27-year-old native of Vaughan, Ont. has totalled 368 points (112-256–368) over 465 AHL games in seven seasons. Varone played parts of five OHL seasons between Kitchener, London and Erie from 2006-11, amassing 230 points (78-152–230) over 228 regular season games while being San Jose’s fifth round pick in 2009.
Terry wins AHL scoring title: Plymouth Whalers graduate Chris Terry of the Laval Rocket has won the American Hockey League scoring title, leading all players with 71 points including 32 goals and 39 assists over 62 games. The 29-year-old from Brampton, Ont. wrapped up his ninth pro season by skating in his 500th career AHL contest and has collected 440 points (183-257–440) over that span. Terry played four OHL seasons with the Plymouth Whalers from 2005-09, earning the Dan Snyder Trophy as Humanitarian of the Year in 2009. He finished his OHL tenure with 289 points (114-175–289) over 253 regular season contests and was Carolina’s fifth round pick in 2007.
108 OHL grads embark on Calder Cup Playoffs: The 2018 Calder Cup Playoffs get underway tonight and 108 OHL graduates will be competing for the American Hockey League’s prestigious championship trophy. Included in that figure are 13 players who competed in the OHL this past season while an additional 15 graduated following the conclusion of the 2016-17 campaign. Read more
Bailey added to Canada’s World Championship roster: Windsor Spitfires graduate Josh Bailey of the New York Islanders has been added to Canada’s roster for the upcoming World Hockey Championship set to begin May 4th in Copenhagen and Herning, Denmark. Bailey joins fellow OHL grads in Bo Horvat (Vancouver Canucks/London Knights), Ryan O’Reilly (Buffalo Sabres/Erie Otters), Connor McDavid (Edmonton Oilers/Erie Otters), Aaron Ekblad (Florida Panthers/Barrie Colts) and Darnell Nurse (Edmonton Oilers/Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds) on the roster. An NHL All-Star this past season, Bailey recorded 71 points (18-53–71) over 76 games. He played three OHL seasons between Owen Sound and Windsor from 2005-08, recording 183 points (58-125-183) over 191 regular season contests.
14 OHL grads win Allan Cup with Stoney Creek: A total of 13 OHL graduates are 2018 Allan Cup Champions with the Stoney Creek Generals. The Generals win the 110th Senior A National Championship with a 7-4 win over the Lacombe Generals in Rosetown, Saskatchewan. Stoney Creek was led by an OHL graduate in head coach Bryan Hamm (Erie Otters) and saw other grads in Rob Hisey (Barrie Colts), Matt Dzieduszycki (Barrie Colts), Ryan O’Marra (Saginaw Spirit), Nick Tuzzolino (Sarnia Sting), Chris Hulit (Ottawa 67’s), Tyler Donati (Belleville Bulls), Justin Donati (Sudbury Wolves), Scott Hotham (Barrie Colts), Matt Bragg (Barrie Colts), Cam Fergus (Kitchener Rangers), Sean Blanchard (Ottawa 67’s), Cody Thornton (Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds), Justin DaCosta (Mississauga IceDogs), Igor Gongalsky (Owen Sound Attack) and Justin Sawyer (Oshawa Generals) hoist the Allan Cup. For more on the story visit hockeycanada.ca.
Friday April 20th:
Kingston at Hamilton (Game 2) – 7:00pm
Kitchener at Sault Ste. Marie (Game 1) – 7:07pm
Saturday April 21st:
Kitchener at Sault Ste. Marie (Game 2) – 7:07pm
Sunday April 22nd:
Hamilton at Kingston (Game 3) – 6:00pm
Be sure to catch all of this weekend’s action at ohllive.com.