Get caught up on the latest news and notes from around the Ontario Hockey League and a preview of what’s in store for the weekend.
ROGERS OHL CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES CONTINUES FRIDAY:
The Erie Otters have a chance to hoist the Robertson Cup on home ice Friday leading the best-of-seven series 3-1 against the Mississauga Steelheads. The Otters are in search of their first OHL title since 2002 but the Trout have played exceptionally well on the road this post-season carrying an 8-2 record away from home. Watch Live.
BROTHERLY LOVE IN ROGERS OHL CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES:
For the second time in OHL history two sets of brothers clash in the Championship Series as Michael and Ryan McLeod of the Steelheads meet Darren and Taylor Raddysh of the Otters. Twins Matt and Ryan Rupert of the London Knights are the last set of brothers to hoist the Robertson Cup back in 2013, one year after facing Freddie and Dougie Hamilton of the Niagara IceDogs in the 2012 final. Read more.
LITTLE BOLTS MAKE BIG IMPACT WITH OTTERS:
The Tampa Bay Lightning have kept a close eye on the 2017 OHL Playoffs. Tampa prospects Anthony Cirelli, Taylor Raddysh and Erik Cernak are into the 2017 Rogers OHL Championship Series, making big contributions with the Midwest Division champion Erie Otters in their push for the franchise’s first OHL title since 2002. Read more
STEELHEADS MAKE MISSISSAUGA A SCOUTING HOT SPOT:
Often driving long distances to see the OHL’s top young talent, NHL scouts can find some of the league’s best right in the middle of the map in Mississauga as the Steelheads continue to develop players brimming with pro upside. With top NHL Draft targets in 2016, ’17, and ’18 the Mississauga Steelheads have created a scouting hotbed at the Hershey Centre. Read more
OTTERS’ STROME BECOMES NEW CAREER FRANCHISE PLAYOFF SCORING LEADER;
Arizona Coyotes prospect Dylan Strome of the Erie Otters penned another new entry in the club’s franchise record books on Wednesday. Strome had a goal and an assist in Erie’s 5-2 Game 4 victory in his hometown of Mississauga to come within a win of the club’s first OHL Championship since 2002. In the process, Strome surpassed Brad Boyes‘ (1998-2002) prior mark of 81 career playoff points to become the new career franchise leader. Read more
STORM’S McFADDEN NAMED OHL HUMANITARIAN OF THE YEAR:
Defenceman Garrett McFadden of the Guelph Storm is the 2016-17 recipient of the Dan Snyder Memorial Trophy awarded annually to the OHL’s Humanitarian of the Year. In September, 2016, the Storm captain introduced ‘McFadden’s Movement’; a mental health campaign that strives to change, help, and develop mental health among athletes. This season McFadden has been hosted by 15 different minor hockey teams and local schools highlighting the pressures of sport and the importance of talking about mental health and eliminating the stigma. Read more
LIFTMASTER ROAD TO THE MASTERCARD MEMORIAL CUP:
Get caught up on what’s going on around the entire CHL Playoffs in the fifth edition of LiftMaster Road to the Mastercard Memorial Cup. Championship Finals are underway from coast-to-coast featuring the final six teams in the hunt to join the Windsor Spitfires May 18-28 at the 2017 Mastercard Memorial Cup. LiftMaster is the Official Garage Door Opener of the Canadian Hockey League. Watch
OTTERS’ FOEGELE NAMED PIONEER ENERGY OHL PLAYER OF THE WEEK, REPRESENTING OHL IN #CIBCSHOWDOWN:
Carolina Hurricanes prospect Warren Foegele of the Erie Otters is the Pioneer Energy OHL Player of the Week for the playoff week ending May 7 after scoring two goals in two games with a plus-minus rating of plus-1. Foegele scored a timely goal in each of the first two games of the Rogers OHL Championship Series helping the Western Conference champion Otters take a 2-0 lead against the Eastern Conference champion Mississauga Steelheads. Read more
Foegele is also the OHL’s representative in this week’s edition of CIBC Showdown, a weekly contest that features one great play from all three leagues. Watch his play and vote at chlshowdown.ca.
TEAM GTHL RED CROWNED OHL GOLD CUP CHAMPIONS:
Team GTHL Red has been crowned 2017 OHL Gold Cup Champions following a 3-1 win over Team OMHA Black on Sunday in Kitchener. A total of 54 OHL prospects came away with medals as Team HEO placed third, claiming bronze. OHL prospects made their mark at the annual event with Niagara IceDogs first round selection Philip Tomasino leading all players in points (10) and goals (6) while Saginaw Spirit first rounder Nicholas Porco finished a close second with eight points (3-5–8). Read more
CHAMPS AGAIN: 5 REPS WIN OHL GOLD CUP:
Among the players on OHL Gold Cup champion GTHL Red are five members of the OHL Cup champion Mississauga Reps who have been reunited as victors once again, steering their club to a 5-0 finish with a 3-1 victory on Sunday. First round selections Jamieson Rees (Sarnia Sting) and Lucas Rowe (London Knights) were joined by Kingston Frontenacs selections in goaltender Ryan Dugas and defenceman Zachary Wright while Kitchener Rangers prospect and OHL Cup MVP Mike Petizian rounds out the Reps quintet of repeat champions. Read more.
BATTALION, GREYHOUNDS, SPIRIT HOST DEVELOPMENT CAMPS:
The North Bay Battalion, Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds and Saginaw Spirit host Spring Development Camps this weekend after several clubs have done so over the past month. Players taken in the 2016 and 2017 OHL Priority Selections in addition to 2017 OHL Under-18 Priority Selection picks and other free agent invitees are attending the Development Camps that will typically feature a fitness testing element in addition to on-ice scrimmages and information sessions over the course of the weekend. Read more
PHILIP TOMASINO COMMITS TO ICEDOGS:
The Niagara IceDogs have received a commitment from 2017 first round (5th overall) selection Philip Tomasino. The 5-foot-11 forward was dominant in minor midget as a member of the Mississauga Rebels of the Greater Toronto Hockey League (GTHL). He showed off his offensive capabilities with an astonishing 37 goals and 68 points over 54 games, helping his team to championship titles in the Toronto Titans Tournament, the Whitby Silver Stick as well as the GTHL Playoffs. Read more
MITCHELL BREWER COMMITS TO GENERALS:
The Oshawa Generals have received a commitment from 2017 first round (15th overall) selection Mitchell Brewer. The Waterdown, ON native was drafted out of the Halton Hurricanes Minor Midget AAA program. Brewer suited up for 31 games this past season tallying four goals and 11 assists along with 36 penalty minutes. The 5-foot-11, 189-pound defenceman finished out his season by winning a Buckland Cup title with the Georgetown Raiders Jr. A club. Read more
HAYDEN FOWLER COMMITS TO GREYHOUNDS:
The Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds have received a commitment from 2017 first round (19th overall) selection Hayden Fowler. The 5-foot-10, 166lb. centreman spent last season with the Kingston Frontenacs Minor Midget AAA Hockey Club. In 35 regular season games played he tallied 22 goals and 18 assists, good for 40 points before adding 10 points in the postseason. Fowler finished in eighth in scoring in last week’s OHL Gold Cup in Kitchener, tallying four goals and an assist in five games for second place Team OMHA Black. Read more
OHL COACHES CONFERENCE SET FOR JUNE 3RD:
The 2017 OHL Coaches Conference is under a month away, taking place on Saturday June 3rd on the campus of UOIT in Oshawa. Many of the guest speakers for the 4th annual installment of the day-long conference have been confirmed and will provide minor hockey coaches the opportunity to learn from OHL, AHL, and NHL personnel in an interactive professional development day. Programs are open to any coach registered within the OHF, OHA, OWHA, HEO, or HNO, coaching Pee-Wee ‘AAA’, Minor Bantam and Major Bantam ‘AE to AAA’, Minor Midget and Midget ‘AE to AAA’. Read more
OHL ALUMNI GOLF TOURNAMENT FAST APPROACHING:
The 2017 OHL Alumni Association Golf Tournament is fast approaching! The 2nd annual event is set to take place on Monday June 5th at the Devil’s Pulpit, one of Canada’s most acclaimed private golf clubs located in Caledon, Ont. This event is one of several networking events focused on bringing together former players from all generations. Proceeds from the tournament will be donated to the Gudbranson Stem Cell Research Grant, which helps fund research for Stem Cell Treatments. Space is limited! Be sure to sign up before Friday June 2nd. Read more
OTTERS’ CIRELLI FEATURED ON MASTERCARD JUNIOR HOCKEY MAGAZINE:
Tampa Bay Lightning prospect Anthony Cirelli of the Erie Otters is featured on the latest edition of Mastercard Junior Hockey Magazine with Gino Reda. Cirelli and the Otters are currently locked up in the 2017 Rogers OHL Championship Series against the Mississauga Steelheads. Listen
SPITFIRES OPEN 2017 MASTERCARD MEMORIAL CUP AGAINST SEA DOGS:
The first of six round-robin matchups at the 2017 Mastercard Memorial Cup has been determined and will feature the host Windsor Spitfires against the QMJHL champion Saint John Sea Dogs on Friday May 19. Single game tickets are still available at a cost of $90+HST for Spits games while contests featuring two of the other three participating teams are priced at $75+HST. Read more
MEMORIAL CUP REMEMBRANCE GARDEN CEREMONY:
In an emotional and inspirational event on Monday, the Memorial Cup Remembrance Garden Dedication Ceremony was held at the WFCU Centre in Windsor. The Remembrance Garden is in the roundabout leading into the facility where the 2017 Mastercard Memorial Cup will be staged May 18-28 and is one of several legacy projects. The ceremony included elementary school children singing and reading poems, tributes to fallen soldiers, a wreath presentation, comments from Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens and a flyover by vintage planes from the Canadian Heritage Aircraft Association. Watch.
VOLUNTEERS NEEDED FOR 2017 MASTERCARD MEMORIAL CUP:
Host Organizing Committee Volunteer Coordinator Niva Segatto says volunteers are still needed to fully staff the 2017 Mastercard Memorial Cup, which runs May 19th to 28th at the WFCU Centre. Positions are available in a variety of capacities, including hospitality and transportation. Read more
GET READY FOR MOTHER’S DAY WITH OHLSHOP:
OHL graduates commit to U SPORTS programs: A number of recent OHL graduates have committed to U SPORTS Men’s Hockey Programs for the 2017-18 season, continuing to play at a high level while pursuing an education. Commitments include Nathan Billitier (Kingston Frontenacs/Queen’s Gaels), Justin Brack (Niagara IceDogs/Brock Badgers), Connor Brown (Saginaw Spirit/Brock Badgers), Michael Cramarossa (Hamilton Bulldogs/McGill Redmen), Dylan Di Perna (Kitchener Rangers/Saint Mary’s Huskies), Jaden Lindo (Sarnia Sting/Queen’s Gaels), Brent Moran (North Bay Battalion/Nipissing Lakers), Alex Peters (Flint Firebirds/Saint Mary’s Huskies), Brandon Prophet (Peterborough Petes/Queen’s Gaels).
8 OHL grads representing Canada at IIHF World Hockey Championship: Canada is off to a running start at the 2017 IIHF World Hockey Championship in Cologne, Germany and Paris, France this week, going 3-0 to start the tournament while outscoring opponents 17-3 in the process. A team consisting of eight OHL graduates defends Canada’s back-to-back gold medals, their 25th and 26th respectively won in 2015 and 2016 as a pool of 15 other nations vie for international hockey supremacy. Among the 18 CHL grads on the roster are a pair that played in the Ontario Hockey League last season including CHL Player of the Year Mitch Marner (London Knights) of the Toronto Maple Leafs, high-speed winger Travis Konecny (Sarnia Sting) of the Philadelphia Flyers. Read more
Ritchie’s winner sends Ducks to West Final: Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds graduate Nick Ritchie came up big when it mattered most on Wednesday, sending the Anaheim Ducks to the Western Conference Final after scoring a Game 7 third period winner against the Edmonton Oilers. Ritchie took a feed from defenceman Sami Vatanen before wiring a wrist shot under the arm of Oilers goaltender Cam Talbot 3:21 into the third frame as the Ducks would hang on for a 2-1 victory on home ice. They advance to face the Nashville Predators in the Western Conference Final. Ritchie has two goals over nine playoff contests for Anaheim after posting 14 goals, 14 assists and 28 points in 77 regular season games. The Orangeville, Ont. native played four OHL seasons from 2011-15, recording 102 goals, 108 assists and 210 points over 212 career regular season games between Peterborough and Sault Ste. Marie. He was Anaheim’s first round (10th overall) pick in 2014.
26 OHL grads remain in Stanley Cup Playoffs: 26 former OHL players are still in the hunt for Lord Stanley competing among the Ottawa Senators, Pittsburgh Penguins, Anaheim Ducks, and Nashville Predators. The Sens lead the way with eight OHL alumni while all three other teams carry six OHL grads each. Full list.
Puempel’s kind gesture makes headlines: Kitchener Rangers graduate Matt Puempel is in the news following the New York Rangers’ Game 6 loss to the Ottawa Senators on Tuesday. Puempel gave away two tickets to Tuesday’s game at Madison Square Garden to a pair of homeless bystanders outside the arena. The 24-year-old has formed a reputation for humanitarian acts including his charity ‘Puempel’s Purpose’ that was formed when he was a member of the Ottawa Senators. Puempel, who recorded nine points between New York and Ottawa this season, played four OHL seasons with Peterborough and Kitchener from 2009-13. He recorded 213 points (119-94–213) over 195 career OHL regular season games and was named the OHL Rookie of the Year in 2010. For the full story, visit nypost.com.
Wednesday May 10th:
Erie 5 at Mississauga 2 (Game 4) – Highlights
Friday May 12th:
Mississauga at Erie (Game 5) – 7:00pm
Saturday May 13th:
Erie at Mississauga (Game 6) – 7:00pm*
Monday May 15th:
Mississauga at Erie (Game 7) – 7:00pm*
* – if necessary
Be sure to catch all of this weekend’s action at ohllive.com.