Thursday, December 31, 2009

Today's Schedule: 12/31

As we prepare to bring in 2010, A lot of teams will be bringing in the New Year on the Ice. The Dallas Stars will once again play their traditional New Years Eve Game as the Stars welcome the Pacific Division last place team Anaheim Ducks to town. In the early days of the New Years Game, the Stars were nearly unbeatable, but recently, that tradition has been shot down on different occasions.

The Stars are looking to build momentum after an impressive 5-4 win over the Chicago Blackhawks back on Tuesday night. Overall, a busy night with 11 games on the schedule tonight including all 5 Pacific Division teams as the Sharks will travel to Phoenix to take on the Coyotes while the L.A. Kings will play Minnesota.

Also, a blast of the past as the Colorado Avalanche and Detroit Red Wings will head each other as the Red Wings are a shell of their former selves while the Colorado Avalanche are still on top of the Northwest Division and have been one of the biggest surprises this season with the young roster.

Also we have a battle of the leagues top teams as the Eastern Conference Leading New Jersey Devils travel to Chicago take on the 2nd place team out West in the Chicago Blackhawks. Could this be a sign of things to come in the playoffs?

The Texas Stars will look to get out of their slump as the Stars will travel to Winnipeg to take on the League Runner Up from last year in the Manitoba Moose for the first of 2 games starting tonight and then on 1/2 as well from the MTS Center. Like the Stars, the Moose have won 3 of their last 4 and are rapidly moving up the North Division Standings just 5 points back of the North Division Leading Rochester Americans.

Houston will continue to their Illinois road trip where after a 5-1 loss to Chicago last night. Tonight, it's the short trip to Peoria to take on the Rivermen where it's starting to look like a penitently playoff matchup as the Rivermen in a tie for 2nd with the Milwaukee Admirals.

After losing a 3-1 lead, the Brahmas will travel to Odessa to take on the Jackalopes who are leading the Southern Conference. Elsewhere, the Allen Americans will head to Kansas to take on the leagues worst team in the Wichita Thunder where an easy win should be in order as the Thunder have won just 3 out of 29 games this season.

Finally, the Corpus Christi Icerayz will play the 2nd half of a home and home against the Laredo Bucks as the league closes in on the CHL All Star Game as the Icerayz look to make up for a slow start and to close the gap between the Icerayz and fellow South Texas Rival Rio Grande Valley who currently hold the final playoff spot in the Southern Conference.

In the North American Hockey League, the Wichita Falls Wildcats will return from the league Christmas Break with a road trip to South Division leading Topeka.

If the Wildcats will look to improve on a bad start to the season, as the Wildcats have just won 9 of 30 games and are in danger of missing the playoffs, just one year after the team came so close to upsetting the Topeka Roadrunners last year. And they have been one of the leagues biggest disappointments in the first half of the season.

Professional Scores

National Hockey League

Montreal Canadians 5 Florida Panthers 4 (1-2, 2-1, 2-1)

NY Islanders 2 Ottawa Senators 3 (SO) (0-0, 1-2, 1-0, 0-0, 0-1)

Colorado Avalanche 2 Detroit Red Wings 4 (0-0, 1-2, 1-2)

Nashville Predators 2 Columbus Blue Jackets 1 (OT) (0-1, 0-0, 1-0, 1-0)

San Jose Sharks 3 Phoenix Coyotes 2 (SO) (0-0, 1-2, 1-0, 0-0, 1-0)

Vancouver Canucks 4 St. Louis Blues 3 (OT) (0-1, 1-2, 2-0, 1-0)

NY Rangers 2 Carolina Hurricanes 1 (1-1, 0-0, 1-0)

Los Angeles Kings 5 Minnesota Wild 2 (3-0, 1-1, 1-1)

Anaheim Ducks 3 Dallas Stars 5 (1-1, 1-3, 1-1)

Game Story:

New Jersey Devils 1 Chicago Blackhawks 5 (0-2, 0-1, 1-2)

Edmonton Oilers 1 Calgary Flames 2 (0-0, 0-1, 1-1)

American Hockey League

Albany River Rats 1 Adirondack Phantoms 0 (1-0, 0-0, 0-0)

Rochester Americans 1 Lake Erie Monsters 5 (1-2, 0-1, 0-2)

Texas Stars 2 Manitoba Moose 3 (1-1, 1-2, 0-0)

Game Story:

Worcester Sharks 3 Portland Pirates 1 (1-0, 1-1, 1-0)

Norfolk Admirals 2 Binghamton Senators 3 (OT) (0-1, 1-1, 1-0, 0-1)

Hamilton Bulldogs 7 Grand Rapids Griffins 3 (1-2, 6-0, 0-1)

Lowell Devils 5 Manchester Monarchs 2 (3-0, 1-0, 1-2)

Chicago Wolves 4 Peoria Rivermen 1 (3-0, 1-0, 0-1)

Houston Aeros 4 Rockford Icehogs 5 (OT) (0-0, 3-2, 1-2, 0-1)

Game Story:

Central Hockey League

Allen Americans 3 Wichita Thunder 0 (1-0, 1-0, 1-0)

Game Story:

Corpus Christi Icerayz 5 Laredo Bucks 3 (1-0, 2-2, 2-1)

Game Story:

Texas Brahmas 2 Odessa Jackalopes 4 (0-2, 1-1, 1-1)

Game Story:

Rapid City Rush 6 Amarillo Gorillas 5 (SO) (1-1, 2-2, 2-2, 0-0, 1-0)

Game Story:

Colorado Eagles 5 Missouri Mavericks 1 (3-0, 1-1, 1-0)

Mississippi Riverkings 2 Tulsa Oilers 3 (OT) (0-0, 0-0, 2-2, 0-1)

Game Story:

Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees 3 Arizona Sundogs 2 (2-0, 1-2, 0-0)

Game Story:

Major Junior

Western Hockey League

Brandon Wheat Kings 6 Edmonton Oil Kings 2 (2-0, 4-0, 0-2)

Regina Pats 4 Kootenay Ice 8 (1-0, 1-5, 2-3)

Kelowna Rockets 3 Chilliwack Bruins 4 (OT) (1-1, 0-2, 2-0, 0-1)

Saskatoon Blades 2 Everett Silvertips 1 (1-0, 1-1, 0-0)

Spokane Chiefs 2 Tri-City Americans 5 (1-2, 0-2, 1-1)

Seattle Thunderbirds 0 Portland Winterhawks 6 (0-1, 0-1, 0-4)

Ontario Hockey League

Mississauga St. Micheal's Majors 1 Brampton Battalion 4 (0-2, 1-1, 0-1)

Saginaw Spirit 3 Windsor Spitfires 4 (SO) (0-2, 2-1, 1-0, 0-0, 0-1)

Sarnia Sting 4 London Knights 3 (3-1, 1-1, 0-1)

Sudbury Wolves 3 Sault St. Marie Greyhounds 4 (OT) (1-2, 1-1, 1-0, 0-1)

Erie Otters 8 Niagara Icedogs 7 (3-4, 3-2, 2-1)

Belleville Bulls 0 Peterborough Petes 1 (0-1, 0-0, 0-0)

Owen Sound Attack 6 Barrie Colts 4 (0-1, 3-1, 3-2)

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Gatineau Olympiques 7 Lewiston Maineiacs 1 (2-0, 2-1, 3-0)

St. John Seadogs 4 Moncton Wildcats 3 (SO) (0-1, 1-2, 2-0, 0-0, 1-0)

U.S.A. Juniors

United States Hockey League

Chicago Steel 3 Indiana Ice 5 (0-1, 1-1, 2-3)

USNTDP 3 Fargo Force 4 (3-2, 0-1, 0-1)

Des Moines Buccaneers 1 Green Bay Gamblers 4 (0-1, 1-2, 0-1)

Omaha Lancers 5 Sioux City Musketeers 3 (2-0, 2-2, 1-1)

Lincoln Stars 3 Waterloo Blackhawks 4 (SO) (0-1, 2-1, 1-1, 0-0, 0-1)

Youngstown Phantoms 1 Cedar Rapids Roughriders 5 (0-0, 1-3, 0-2)

Sioux Falls Stampede 4 Tri-City Storm 2 (1-1, 2-1, 1-0)

North American Hockey League

Albert Lea Thunder 1 Owatonna Express 3 (1-1, 0-2, 0-0)

Traverse City North Stars 5 Alpena Ice Diggers 2 (1-1, 3-0, 1-1)

Wichita Falls Wildcats 2 Topeka Roadrunners 5 (0-3, 1-0, 1-2)

Alexandria Blizzard 3 Bismarck Bobcats 4 (1-1, 1-3, 1-0)

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

2010 World Junior Championship Knockout and Releguation Rounds

As we appoarch the End of the Group Stage. We are starting to set the stage for the Knockout Rounds as we march towards the 2010 World Junior Championship and who half to survive to keep their spot for the WJC 2011 in Buffalo, N.Y. next year. So far, we know that USA, Canada and Sweden have officaly clinched spots at least in the Quarterfinals and have a shot getting the automatic semifinals spots which will gurantee them a spot in the Medal Round on the final day of the WJC on January 5.

In the QF's, the 2nd and 3rd place teams will cross over and will play a single elinmation game where winners will play the group winners in the Semifinals. After that, the QF Losers will head to the 5th Place Game which is used for World Ranking and Seeding Purproses for next year's event in New York State.

Then the SF Losers will play each other for the Bronze Medal while the Winners will play for the Gold Medal next Saturday. Canada has won the Gold Medal at this level 5 straight years while their biggest rivals (Esp. the USA & Sweden) will look to knock them off. The USA was the last team to win the WJC Gold back in 2004 when the event was held in Finland.

For the Releguation Round, the 4th and 5th place teams will battle to survive to keep their spots for next year. Each team will play the 2 teams from the other group while the Game between the 2 releguated round teams will transfer over from the Group Stage. The 1st and 2nd place teams will finish 7th and 8th overall and will stay in this tournament for next season.

While the 3rd and 4th place teams will finish 9th and 10th overall and will be sent down to the 2011 WJC Division 1 Tournament for next year. So far, Latvia and Austria have been guranteed Relegation Round Spots while the loser of Switzerland VS. Slovakia game tomorrow and the 4th place team between Czech Republic and Finland will be battaling to keep their spot.

Relegation Round

1/2: Slovakia 3 Austria 2 (2-0, 0-2, 1-0)

1/3: Czech Republic 10 Latvia 2 (5-0, 2-2, 3-0)

1/4: Czech Republic VS. Slovakia 12:00 PM

1/4: Austria VS. Latvia 4:00 PM

Relegation Round Standings

1. Czech Republic 2-0-0-0 6 PTS 17-3

2. Slovakia 2-0-0-0 6 PTS 11-5

3. Austria 0-0-0-2 0 PTS 3-11

4. Austria 0-0-0-1 0 PTS 1-7

Czech Republic & Slovakia have kept their spot for the 2011 WJC in Buffalo

Austria & Latvia have been relegated to the 2011 U20 Division 1 Tournament


1/2: Russia 2 Switzerland 3 (OT) (0-0, 2-1, 0-1, 0-1)

1/2: U.S.A. 6 Finland 2 (2-0, 1-1, 3-1)

If Canada plays in the Quarterfinals, They will play at 4:00 PM.

If Canada reaches the Semifinals, Then the 2B VS. 3A Game will be changed to 4:00 PM will allow for Equal Rest for the teams before the Semifinals.


1/3: Canada 6 Switzerland 1 (1-0, 2-1, 3-0)

1/3: Sweden 2 U.S.A. 5 (0-1, 2-1, 0-3)

5th Place Game

1/4: Russia VS. Finland 8:00 PM

Bronze Medal Game

1/5: Switzerland VS. Sweden 3:00 PM

Gold Medal Game

1/5: Canada VS. U.S.A. 7:00 PM

Q & A with Fargo Force Chase Grant

A native of Oklahoma City, Chase Grant has had a strong junior career which includes a USHL Clark Cup Championship Final Appearance last spring and a recent commitment to Minnesota State University.

During his career in the USHL, he has been an increasing impact on the team by both a physical presence by registering over 120 penalty minutes in their career and has already surprised his goal scoring totals by scoring 11 goals in just 25 games while scoring just 10 goals in 57 games last season. He will also be looking surprise his assist totals this season with 7 assists while he had 18 last year.

In the playoffs last year, he scored 5 points (3G 2A) including an assist in game one of the Clark Cup Championship Series and in the opening game of the West Division Final against the Lincoln Stars where he scored twice. Long after his career ends, he hopes to be a part of a hockey boom in Oklahoma to tell players that players can have successful careers in a place like Oklahoma where the sport isn't that big.

1. Since Ice Hockey isn't big in Oklahoma, how did you get into the sport living in Oklahoma City?

We had a Canadian Neighbor that got me and my brother into the sport!

2. How were you first noticed by the Fargo Force?

I played for the Dallas Stars AAA team for 2 years and the Force recruited me at the national championship tournament in 2008.

3. After making the USHL Clark Cup Final in the team's first season, did you think that your team overachieved last year?

At the beginning of last year I wouldn't have dreamed of making it that far. By the end of the regular season were so used to winning that a 7-0 start in the playoffs wasn't too surprising to us.

4. How do you see yourself becoming a factor when you arrive at Minnesota State University next season?

I see myself doing the little things to be an impact player and doing whatever it takes to be a positive force for the team.

5. How do you think you can use your influence and success to help improve both the quality and the number of players playing Ice Hockey in Oklahoma?

I think just being one of the few guys that has made it out of Oklahoma to go on and get a scholarship in hockey is a good influence on the kids even though hockey is not big in Oklahoma.

Quick Hits

Best and Worst Road Trip in the USHL?
Best: Lincoln, Nebraska (Lincoln Stars)
Worst: Tie between Des Moines Buccaneers and the Indiana Ice

Thing you miss most about living in Oklahoma City?
My Family and the Warm Weather

What TV or Movie Charcter would make a great hockey player?
HAHA No Idea

How do you get pumped up for a game?
I Usually try to to visualize the game and get a little angry before the puck drops.

AHL All Star Game: Team Planet USA

Yesterday, the Canada Roster for the American Hockey League All Star Game was reveled. Today, the Planet USA All Star Team was revelled for players that are from the USA and Europe.

The 3 Texas Teams will be sending 3 players (1 each) which includes Texas Stars Defensemen Ivan Vishnevskiy who was named one of the starting defensemen for the Game. Also going to the Game for Planet USA are Anton Khudobin who's a goaltender for the Houston Aeros and San Antonio Defensemen Sean Sullivan who's the only player from the Rampage who will be making the trip to Portland, Maine next month.

I will take about Vishnevsiky in a minute, but first some info on Anton Khudobin of the Houston Aeros and Sean Sullivan of the San Antonio Rampage.

G: Anton Khudobin (Houston Aeros)
Basically spliting time between himself and fellow Aeros goalie Wade Dubielewicz. The Aeros goal tending was selected by being one of the most durable goalies in the AHL with a 1.98 GAA which ranks him in the top 5 overall in the AHL by playing 20 games thus far this season with a 9-8-1 record.

He probably have a better record if the teams offense had more support. Currently, the Aeros are out of the playoff picture but not be much as the Aeros currently sit in 5th place out West just 2 points back of 4th place Rockford, but the Aeros have 3 games in hand on the Icehogs. The native of Kazakhstan was a big factor in the teams run all the way to the league Semifinals when he got an 8-8 record with a 2.70 GAA and is looking to get the team back to the playoffs.

If Houston doesn't make the playoffs this year, then he could be looking at a trip to IIHF World Hockey Championships in Cologne and Mannheim, Germany coming up in May as the Kazakhs will play in Group A against Russia, Belarus and Slovakia as the Kazakhs were promoted last season from the IIHF World Championship Division 1 Tournament along with Italy.

D: Sean Sullivan (San Antonio Rampage)
For the Rampage Defensemen, he's the only player from the team heading to next month's All Star Game. As the Rampage look to turnaround a really bad start which included having the coach fired. Sullivan has been fantastic by being among the league leaders among defensemen scoring (4G 19A) for 23 points. Sullivan is typically a stay at home defensemen, but is starting to increase his scoring output which saw a break out year with just 8 points in 34 games in the 2007-08 season, to 32 points in 65 games last season.

He's hoping to increase those totals and a strong All Star Game could mean a shot of being called to the Phoenix Coyotes. The native of Boston will look to make a name for him self and to help the Rampage out of the West Division Basement and have a shot of getting back to the Calder Cup Playoffs in April.

This year's AHL All Star Game will take place on January 18-19 in Portland, Maine at the Cumberland County Civic Center (Home of the Portland Pirates). Where the Skills Competition will take place on 1/18 and then the game it self on 1/19.

Here's the full Team Planet Team USA Roster


X-Michal Neuvirth, Hershey Bears

Anton Khudobin, Houston Aeros

Alexander Salak, Rochester Americans


X-Mike Weber, Portland Pirates

X-Ivan Vishnevskiy, Texas Stars

John Carlson, Hershey Bears

Jonas Junland, Peoria Rivermen

Bobby Sanguintti, Hartford Wolfpack

Sean Sullivan, San Antonio Rampage

Viatcheslav Voynov, Manchester Monarchs

Andy Wozniewski, Providence Bruins


X-Keith Aucoin, Hershey Bears

X-Brandon Bochenski, Norfolk Admirals

X-Nathan Gerbe, Portland Pirates

Mark Cullen, Rockford Icehogs

Lars Eller, Peoria Rivermen

Dan Fritsche, Syracuse Crunch

Christian Hanson, Toronto Marlies

Mikko Lehtonen, Providence Bruins

(C) Mink Graham, Rochester Americans

Patrick Rissmiller, Grand Rapids Griffins

Sergei Shirokov, Manitoba Moose

Jack Skille, Rockford Icehogs

Brett Sterling, Chicago Wolves

Head Coach: Mark Morris, Manchester Monarchs

Assistant Coach: Scott Pellerin, Manchester Monarchs

Info on the All Star Game Starters.

G: Michal Neuvirth (Hershey Bears)
2nd year pro Michal Neuvirth ranks among the AHL's top 5 goaltenders in both GAA (1.99) and SV% (.929) while going 10-5-0 for the Hershey Bears this season. The 21 year old captured all AHL Playoff MVP Honors last spring as a rookie, leading the Bears to their league record 10th AHL Calder Cup Championship over the Manitoba Moose with a 16-6 mark and recording 4 shutouts. A native of Czech Republic, Neuvirth was drafted in the 2nd round by the Washington Capitals and is 5-3-0 in 10 career NHL Games with the Washington Capitals.

D: Ivan Vishnevskiy (Texas Stars)
Selected in the 1st round (27th overall) of the 2006 NHL Draft, Ivan Vishnevskiy scored goals in each of the teams first 3 games of the season and has gone on to post 13 points (4G 9A) in 35 games played this season. The 21 year old native of Russia, has factored in the scoring of 11 of the teams 25 power play goals this year and is also 2 for 3 in shootout attempts. Vishnevskiy has been recalled by Dallas twice already this season and shows two assists in 5 career NHL Games.

D: Mark Weber (Portland Pirates)
Tied for third in the AHL with a plus 16 rating, Mark Weber has played all 34 games for Portland this season and has scored 10 assists, including a helper in four straight contests from December 2-6. The third year pro from Pittsburgh, PA is already just 4 points shy of the career high 14 assists he registered in 59 games from his rookie season during the 2007-2008 season. Weber, 22, was drafted in the 2nd round by the Buffalo Sabres in 2006 and has registered 3 assists in 23 career NHL Contests with the Buffalo Sabres.

F: Keith Aucoin (Hershey Bears)
Keith Aucoin is making his 5th consecutive AHL All Star Appearance, but has been voted into the starting lineup by the fans for the first time. One of the top offensive players in the AHL during the decade, Aucoin is tied for first in goals (16) and ranks 2nd in points (36) in 27 games this season, and also shows a goal and 4 assists in 5 career NHL games with the Washington Capitals. Aucoin has totaled 564 career AHL Points and has finished in the top 10 in scoring four times in the last 7 seasons.

F: Brandon Bochenski (Norfolk Admirals)
Brandon Bochenski has led Norfolk's offense with nearly a point a game pace, putting up 16 goals (tied for the AHL Lead) and 16 assists in 34 outings. The 6th year pro has registered three or more points on 4 occasions and put together a six game scoring streak from December 5-19. Bochenski was previously an AHL All Star during his rookie season in 2005, and was voted to the starting lineup in 2007 but missed the event due to injury. Bochenski has 268 points in 248 career AHL games, along with 55 points in 128 NHL Games.

F: Nathan Gerbe (Portland Pirates)
The AHL's rookie of the year in the 2008-09 season, Nathan Gerbe has picked up where he left off with 20 points (5G 15A) in 23 games for Portland this season. A native of Oxford, Michigan was voted a starter for last year's All Star Classic but was injured and missed the event. The 22 year old was drafted by the Buffalo Sabres in 2005 and appeared in 2 games for the Sabres this year, scoring his first career NHL Goal vs. the Washington Capitals on December 9. Gerbe won an NCAA Title at Boston College in 2008 and lead the nation in scoring with 68 points.

Tonight's Schedule: 12/30

After the Stars won 5-4 against Chicago last night, the Stars are just outside of the playoff spots as the gap from 5th place Nashville to 10th place Detroit is just 5 points separating and several teams that are in that boat are in action tonight.

The biggest game being involved is the as the Los Angeles Kings VS. Calgary Flames at the Saddledome in Calgary as battles like this will be critical towards moving up or down the Western Conference Standings as that's the only All Western Conference Battle tonight as LA hasn't beaten Calgary at the Saddledome since 2005.

Within the Pacific Division, the San Jose Sharks is hosting the Eastern Conference Leading Washington Capitals as it's a battle of 2nd place teams in both Conferences, in addition to chasing down Conference Leaders Chicago and New Jersey, expect a lot of scoring as they are currently 2 of the top 3 scoring offenses in the NHL tonight.

Also, an important game that will most likely be for the Atlantic Division Title as the Pittsburgh Penguins travel to New Jersey where earlier this month, Martin Broduer shut out Sydney Crosby and company to win 3-0 and where Broduer set the All Time Shutout Mark back on December 21.

In the AHL tonight, the San Antonio Rampage will take on the Syracuse Crunch as the Crunch finish up a 3 game Texas Road Trip where both games have gone to OT. Back on Monday night against Houston, a 5-4 win for Houston came in OT while last night against the Texas Stars saw them go up 2-0 just 5 minutes into the game with 2 goals coming from Jared Aulin who scored twice in just 16 seconds.

Tonight, it's San Antonio's turn to take on the Crunch as the Rampage are starting to comeback after having former head coach Greg Ireland fired back in Mid November. Right now the Rampage have won 4 of their last 5 and despite still being last in the West Division, they are starting to catch up with the rest of the Division and being just 9 points back of 4th place Rockford right now.

The Houston Aeros will travel to Chicago as the Aeros and Wolves are neck and neck towards catching the Peoria Rivermen, Milwaukee Admirals, and the Rockford Icehogs who are just separated by just 2 points and are just 4 points back of division leading Texas.

Just one game in the Central Hockey League as the Texas Brahmas host the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs as both teams are in the midst of tight Conference Races. For Texas, the Brahmas, the Laredo Bucks and the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees where just 2 points separate 3rd thru 5th in the South.

It's a similar story in the North as the Mudbugs, Tulsa Oilers, Mississippi Riverkings and the Missouri Mavericks are just 4 points apart which separates 3rd thru 6th in the North. With both teams being in 3rd place, the Brahmas and the Mudbugs will want to separate themselves from the pack as we reach the midway point of the season as we approach the All Star Game which will be in Laredo, Texas on January 13.

Professional Scores

National Hockey League

Atlanta Thrashers 0 Boston Bruins 4 (0-3, 0-1, 0-0)

Pittsburgh Penguins 0 New Jersey Devils 2 (0-1, 0-0, 0-1)

Philadelphia Flyers 6 NY Rangers 0 (3-0, 2-0, 1-0)

Montreal Canadians 2 Tampa Bay Lighting 1 (OT) (0-0, 1-0, 0-1, 1-0)

Colorado Avalanche 4 Ottawa Senators 3 (2-1, 1-0, 1-2)

Los Angeles Kings 1 Calgary Flames 2 (0-1, 1-1, 0-0)

Toronto Maple Leafs 1 Edmonton Oilers 3 (0-1, 0-1, 1-1)

Washington Capitals 2 San Jose Sharks 5 (0-2, 0-1, 2-2)

American Hockey League

Adirondack Phantoms 4 Albany River Rats 2 (1-1, 2-0, 1-1)

Springfield Falcons 3 Hartford Wolfpack 5 (2-0, 1-3, 0-2)

Peoria Rivermen 2 Toronto Marlies 3 (0-2, 0-0, 2-1)

Binghamton Senators 3 W-B/Scranton Penguins 6 (1-3, 1-1, 2-2)

Rochester Americans 1 Hamilton Bulldogs 4 (0-2, 1-1, 0-1)

Houston Aeros 1 Chicago Wolves 5 (0-0, 0-2, 1-3)

Game Story:

Syracuse Crunch 2 San Antonio Rampage 3 (1-0, 1-2, 0-1)

Game Story:

Central Hockey League

Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs 4 Texas Brahmas 3 (SO) (1-1, 2-0, 0-2, 0-0, 1-0)

Game Story:

Major Junior

Western Hockey League

Moose Jaw Warriors 2 Prince Albert Raiders 1 (0-1, 2-0, 0-0)

Medicine Hat Tigers 2 Lethbridge Hurricanes 3 (OT) (2-0, 0-1, 0-1, 0-1)

Brandon Wheat Kings 2 Red Deer Rebels 4 (1-0, 0-3, 1-1)

Kamloops Blazers 4 Kelowna Rockets 1 (2-0, 0-1, 2-0)

Prince George Cougars 4 Vancouver Giants 1 (1-1, 0-0, 3-0)

Saskatoon Blades 4 Seattle Thunderbirds 3 (2-0, 2-0, 0-3)

Ontario Hockey League

Oshawa Generals 3 Kingston Frontenacs 5 (1-2, 1-3, 1-0)

Brampton Battalion 2 Mississauga St. Micheals Majors 3 (OT) (2-1, 0-1, 0-0, 0-1)

Niagara Icedogs 1 Owen Sound Attack 3 (0-0, 1-1, 0-2)

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Acadie-Bathurst Titans 5 P.E.I. Rockets 2 (1-0, 1-0, 3-2)

Cape Breton Screaming Eagles 4 Halifax Mooseheads 2 (3-0, 1-2, 0-0)

Drummondville Voltigeurs 5 Victoriaville Tigers 4 (2-1, 2-2, 1-1)

Gatineau Olympiques 4 Lewiston Maineiacs 6 (0-3, 1-1, 3-2)

Rimouski Oceanic 4 Quebec City Ramparts 3 (OT) (0-0, 1-3, 2-0, 1-0)

Chicoutimi Sagueneens 4 Baie-Comeau Drakkar 3 (1-1, 1-2, 2-0)

Shawinigan Cataractes 1 Montreal De Junior 2 (1-0, 0-1, 0-1)

U.S.A. Juniors

North American Hockey League

Alpena Ice Diggers 1 Marquette Rangers 5 (1-2, 0-2, 0-1)

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Central Hockey League: South Texas Starters

This year, the Central Hockey League All Star Game will be at the Laredo Entrainment Center in Laredo as the format will be South Texas teams comprised of the Corpus Christi Icerayz, Laredo Bucks and the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees.

This year's game will be at the Laredo Entrainment Center as the 3 teams are looking at a penitently Playoff Series in the Southern Conference Play In Round as the Laredo Bucks sit in 4th with 32 points, while the Killer Bees are just 1 point back in the 5th and final playoff spot. As for the Corpus Christi Icerayz, they sit in 7th place with 24 points who sit 7 points back of the 5th Place Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees.

For the Laredo Bucks, they have 3 starters as goaltender J.P. Levasseur who's making his 1st All Star Appearance while fellow teammates Darryl Smith and Adam Rivet will both be making their 2nd All Star Appearance at this level. The Bucks are also hosting the All Star Game for the first time in their history as the Bucks also look to get back to the playoffs after getting ousted by the Odessa Jackalopes last year in the Southern Conference Semifinals.

Rio Grande Valley gets 2 starters as Jesse Bennefield is among the league leaders in scoring with 38 points (17G 21A) which sits him at 6th on the league scoring list. Joining him will be Defensemen Nathan Ansell who's in the thick of the league scoring lead from defensemen with 22 points (Including 19 assists) who's 2nd in league among defensemen.

Rounding out the field is Corpus Christi Icerayz forward Justin Quenneville who's leading the team with 22 points (11G 11A) which despite being in 7th place in the Southern Conference as the Icerayz look to turn around their season in the 2nd half of the season.

Team Starting Line Up. It will have the Pos., The Player, Team and how many times they have been All Stars at this level.

G: J.P. Levasseur (Laredo Bucks) 1st

D: Adam Rivet (Laredo Bucks) 2nd

D: Nathan Ansell (Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees) 1st

F: Jesse Bennefield (Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees) 1st

F: Justin Quenneville (Corpus Christi Icerayz) 2nd

F: Darryl Smith (Laredo Bucks) 2nd

AHL All Star Game: Team Canada

The rosters for the upcoming AHL All Star Game which will be taking place in Portland, Maine are starting to come out. Earlier today, the Roster for Team Canada came out today and it's got 2 Southwest based players as goalie Brent Krahn for the Texas Stars and Houston Aeros defensemen Maxim Noreau have made the team and will get to play at the AHL All Star Game which will be at the Cumberland County Civic Center which in Portland, Maine (Home of the Portland Pirates). This year, the All Star Game will take place on January 18-19.

Tomorrow, look for The Planet USA Team for it's roster and a profile of any players from the Texas Stars, Houston Aeros and the San Antonio Rampage that make the team

G: Brent Krahn (Texas Stars)
For Krahn, he's been among the best goalies in the AHL with an impressive 1.41 GAA and a .958 SV%. Also in 12 games has a 10-2-0 record with 3 shutouts this season and has helped the Stars to a strong lead in the West Division that they have held on to for nearly the entire season to this point.

He was also named the AHL Goaltender of the month for November and is being looked at by the Dallas Stars about possibly being on the team next year if Marty Turco doesn't resign after this season. Being named to the All Star Team is just making his case for a shot at making the NHL that much stronger and will be looking to impress.

D: Maxim Noreau (Houston Aeros)
For Houston Defensemen Maxim Noreau, he's been a part of the grinding defense style that the Aeros have played to have them among the league leaders in team defense by giving up just 80 goals this season.

He's been among the scoring leaders with defense men with 21 points in 33 games (9G 12A), in addition, he's also leading the team in plus-minus with a +12 and not afraid to help set up the forwards and get involved himself in the attack.

The young defense men who is in his 3rd season with the Aeros is looking for an NHL Call up as he has scoring totals for defense men as he had an impressive 25 assists last season and is looking to blow that number out of the water. After being named to the All Star Team, he will look to prove to the Minnesota Wild that he worthy of being looked at in the NHL.

The All Star Teams were picked by a combo of fan voting and coaches picks. The Planet USA team will be announced tomorrow which is a combo of players from both the USA and Europe.

Here's a look at Team Canada for the AHL All Star Game.


X-Jonathan Bernier, Manchester Monarchs

Cedrick Desjardins, Hamilton Bulldogs

Brent Krahn, Texas Stars


X-(C) Nolan Baumgartner, Manitoba Moose

X-P.K. Subban, Hamilton Bulldogs

Tyler Eckford, Lowell Devils

Keaton Ellerby, Rochester Americans

Danny Groulx, Worcester Sharks

Mark Katic, Bridgeport Sound Tigers

Maxim Noreau, Houston Aeros

Bryan Rodney, Albany River Rats


X-Logan Couture, Worcester Sharks

X-Alexandre Giroux, Hershey Bears

X-Dustin Jaffary, W-B/Scranton Penguins

Tyler Ennis, Portland Pirates

Andrew Gordon, Hershey Bears

Darren Haydar, Lake Erie Monsters

Jason Jaffray, Abbotsford Heat

Ryan Kelly, Binghamton Senators

Charles Linglet, Springfield Falcons

Corey Locke, Hartford Wolfpack

Jon Matsumoto, Adirondack Phantoms

Cal O'Reilly, Milwaukee Admirals

Martin St. Pierre, Binghamton Senators



Head Coach: Mark French, Hershey Bears

Assistant Coach: Troy Mann, Hershey Bears

Info on the All Star Game Starters

G: Jonathan Bernier (Manchester Monarchs)
The Reebok/AHL Goalie of the Month for October, 2nd year pro Jonathan Bernier is tied for the league lead with 16 wins in 26 games (16-8-2) for the Atlantic Division Leading Manchester Monarchs. A first round draft pick of the by the Los Angeles Kings back in 2006, the 21 year old native of Laval, Quebec ranks 3rd in GAA (1.88), 2nd in SV% (.944), 2nd in minutes played (1,528) and tied for 2nd with 4 shutouts.

D: Nolan Baumgartner (Manitoba Moose)
Veteran Defensemen and Team Canada All Star Captain shows one goal-an OT Game winner on October 19 against the Hamilton Bulldogs-and six assists in 24 games this season for Manitoba this season. The Calgary native began his pro career in Portland after being drafted 10th overall by the Washington Capitals. and has gone on to play 739 AHL Contests, including 306 for the Moose. Previously an AHL All Star in 2005 and 2007, Baumgartner helped Manitoba to the Calder Cup Final and has also appeared in 131 NHL Games.

D: P.K. Subban (Hamilton Bulldogs)
Twenty year old P.K. Subban ranks 3rd among AHL Defensemen with 20 points (7G 13A) in 32 games for Hamilton this season. A 2nd round draft pick of the Montreal Canadians in 2007, Subban scored a goal in 3 straight games from November 20-24 and registered a season high 3 points on December 19 against the Hartford Wolfpack. The native of Rexdale, Ontario has scored 4 of his 7 goals on the PP and is tied for the AHL Overall lead with a +17.

F: Logan Couture (Worcester Sharks)
Center Logan Couture has been one of the AHL's most dynamic newcomers this season, leading all AHL Rookies with 11 goals (tied) and 29 points in just 20 games for Worcester. Tops in the league with 6 game winning goals, the 20 year old of London, Ontario has picked up at least one point in 17 of his 20 games thus far. Drafted ninth overall in 2007, Couture also has a goal and an assist in 11 NHL Games for the San Jose Sharks this season.

F: Alexandre Giroux (Hershey Bears)
Coming off a season where he won league MVP Honors, a scoring title and a Calder Cup. Hershey's Alexandre Giroux has shown no signs of slowing down. The Quebec City Native has registered 11 goals and 23 assists for 34 points in 23 games for the Bears this season and has also contributed a goal and 2 assists in nine NHL Games with the Washington Capitals. Giroux, whose 75 regular season games and playoff games were a league record, where he reached the 500 point plateau for his AHL Career back on December 19.

F: Dustin Jeffery (W-B/Scranton Penguins)
Dustin Jeffery leads W-B/Scranton and is tied for 2nd in the AHL with 35 points (10G 25A) in 31 games, already just two points shy of the total he put up in 63 games as a rookie in 2008-09. The 21 year old Jeffery has six 3 point games this season and went on a six game scoring streak from October 30 to November 13. The native of Sarnia, Ontario made his pro debut during the W-B/Scranton Penguins run to the 2008 AHL Calder Cup, and also shows 3 points in 14 career NHL Games with the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Today's Schedule: 12/29

It's another busy night across the Southwest as the Dallas Stars have the Versus Telecast as the Stars take on the Blackhawks at home tonight as the Stars begin a 3 game homestand which will include the New Years Eve Game and Celebration against the Anaheim Ducks currently sit in 10th place out west just 3 points back of 8th place Vancouver where getting any kind of winning streak can get back up in the Western Conference.

So far this season for the Stars, they have pulled off an impresive win over the way back in Mid October where they have been shown to beat the best teams this season. This also includes 2 wins against San Jose in the SO and some impressive performances against Detroit.

Elsewhere in the NHL Tonight, It's a battle of Division Leaders as the Pengins travel to Buffalo take on the Buffalo Sabres. Also the Phoenix Coyotes are hosting the Vancouver Canucks while the Ducks will take on Minnesota as both teams are both in the hunt as the Wild are currently tied for the Stars with them playing one more game then the Stars.

In the AHL, the Texas Stars will host the Syracuse Crunch that contuine their Texas Roadtrip after a 5-4 OT Game against Houston last night as the Crunch among the leagues worst teams at 10-18-5 for just 25 points and being in last place in the East Division. The Texas Stars look to end a recent slide that's seen them lose 5 of their last 7 games dating back to December 9 with a 5-1 loss to the Peoria Rivermen.

Also in the West Division is a critical match up between the Rockford Icehogs and the Milwaukee Admirals where a win by either side could take them to 2nd place in the West and could close the gap of the Division Leading Texas Stars to 3 points if Texas loses to Syracuse tonight. Also the Peoria Rivermen travel to Celevand to take on the Lake Erie Monsters tonight who are last in the North Division right now.

So it's imporant that the Texas Stars get the win tonight as the West Division contuines to tighten up. What's making it tough for Texas right now is that Matt Climie is out with a lower body injury right now so Brent Krahn is having to carry the load goaltending wise right now.

In the CHL tonight, it's the Laredo Bucks traveling to Corpus Christi as the Icerayz look to close in the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees who sit in the Southern Conference's 5th and final playoff spot. We also have the Tulsa Oilers making the long trip to South Texas to take on the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees as both teams sit on the cut line in their respective conferences as we reach the midway point of the CHL Season. Also the Amarillo Gorillas who sit in 6th place travel to Arizona to take on the last place Sundogs.

Professional Scores

National Hockey League

Pittsburgh Penguins 3 Buffalo Sabres 4 (2-0, 1-2, 0-2)

Columbus Blue Jackets 1 NY Islanders 2 (SO) (0-1, 0-0, 1-0, 0-0, 0-1)

Nashville Predators 4 St. Louis Blues 3 (2-1, 1-0, 1-2)

Chicago Blackhawks 4 Dallas Stars 5 (3-2, 1-2, 0-1)

Game Story:

Vancouver Canucks 2 Phoenix Coyotes 3 (SO) (0-0, 1-2, 1-0, 0-0, 0-1)

Minnesota Wild 2 Anaheim Ducks 4 (1-2, 0-1, 1-1)

American Hockey League

Peoria Rivermen 5 Lake Erie Monsters 3 (3-1, 0-0, 2-2)

Providence Bruins 3 Springfield Falcons 2 (OT) (1-0, 1-1, 0-1, 1-0)

Manchester Monarchs 2 Worcester Sharks 5 (0-2, 1-2, 1-1)

Hershey Bears 5 Norfolk Admirals 3 (2-0, 1-1, 2-2)

Rockford Icehogs 1 Milwaukee Admirals 7 (0-2, 0-3, 1-2)

Syracuse Crunch 4 Texas Stars 3 (SO) (2-1, 0-1, 1-1, 0-0, 1-0)

Game Story:

Central Hockey League

Missouri Mavericks 5 Mississippi Riverkings 2 (3-0, 1-1, 1-1)

Laredo Bucks 1 Corpus Christi Icerayz 4 (0-3, 1-1, 0-0)

Game Story:

Rapid City Rush 4 Wichita Thunder 2 (1-0, 1-0, 2-2)

Tulsa Oilers 2 Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees 1 (SO) (0-0, 1-0, 0-1, 0-0, 1-0)

Game Story:

Amarillo Gorillas 4 Arizona Sundogs 2 (2-0, 1-0, 1-2)

Major Junior

Western Hockey League

Prince Albert Raiders 3 Moose Jaw Warriors 6 (0-2, 1-2, 2-2)

Regina Pats 3 Calgary Hitmen 4 (1-3, 1-0, 1-1)

Lethbridge Hurricanes 2 Edmonton Oil Kings 1 (SO) (0-0, 1-0, 0-1, 0-0, 1-0)

Red Deer Rebels 4 Kootenay Ice 5 (SO) (1-2, 2-2, 1-0, 0-0, 0-1)

Prince George Cougars 1 Chilliwack Bruins 6 (0-3, 1-2, 0-1)

Spokane Chiefs 3 Portland Winterhawks 4 (1-1, 0-2, 2-1)

Everett Silvertips 0 Tri-City Americans 1 (0-0, 0-1, 0-0)

Ontario Hockey League

London Knights 4 Guelph Storm 2 (1-1, 3-0, 0-1)

Erie Otters 4 Saginaw Spirit 1 (2-0, 0-1, 2-0)

Barrie Colts 7 Kitchener Rangers 4 (3-2, 1-1, 3-1)

Belleville Bulls 2 Ottawa 67s 4 (1-2, 0-1, 1-1)

Plymouth Whalers 5 Sarnia Sting 2 (2-1, 1-1, 2-0)

Sault St. Marie Greyhounds 2 Sudbury Wolves 4 (1-2, 1-2, 0-0)

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Halifax Mooseheads 0 Cape Breton Screaming Eagles 6 (0-4, 0-1, 0-1)

P.E.I. Rockets 2 St. John Seadogs 5 (0-0, 0-5, 2-0)

Baie-Comeau Drakkar 5 Chicoutimi Sagueneens 4 (1-1, 3-0, 1-3)

Moncton Wildcats 4 Acadie-Bathurst Titans 3 (2-0, 2-1, 0-2)

Rouyn-Nornda Huskies 1 Val-dor Fourures 2 (0-0, 0-1, 1-1)

U.S.A. Juniors

United States Hockey League

Waterloo Blackhawks 3 Youngstown Phantoms 4 (0-1, 1-2, 2-1)

North American Hockey League

Marquette Rangers 2 Traverse City North Stars 3 (1-2, 0-1, 1-0)

Monday, December 28, 2009

Tonight's Games: 12/28

With the Christmas Holiday behind us. The leagues are slowly starting to return to action with the Major Junior Action getting back underway yesterday and the NCAA playing in different Holiday Tournaments throughout the country this week. I will hold off on the NCAA till the Conference Play returns to action after New Year.

Most of the Southwest teams are off tonight, but we have the Houston Aeros who are currently in 5th place in the very tight West Division hosting the Syracuse Crunch who are among the leagues worst. Also the Dallas Stars and both the Texas Stars and San Antonio Rampage are off tonight as well as the Central Hockey League not having any games tonight. Also, Dallas Stars Prospect Scott Glennie is with Team Canada at the WJC, but his team is in action against the Swift Current Broncos.

Professional Scores

National Hockey League

Atlanta Thrashers 2 New Jersey Devils 3 (1-2, 0-0, 1-1)

Carolina Hurricanes 6 Washington Capitals 3 (3-0, 1-2, 2-1)

Detroit Red Wings 0 Columbus Blue Jackets 1 (OT) (0-0, 0-0, 0-0, 0-1)

Montreal Canadiens 2 Ottawa Senators 4 (2-1, 0-1, 0-2)

Boston Bruins 1 Tampa Bay Lighting 2 (0-1, 0-1, 1-0)

Calgary Flames 4 Edmonton Oilers 1 (1-1, 1-0, 2-0)

Minnesota Wild 4 Los Angeles Kings 3 (0-0, 3-1, 1-2)

Phoenix Coyotes 2 San Jose Sharks 3 (SO) (0-1, 2-1, 0-0, 0-0, 0-1)

American Hockey League

Adirondack Phantoms 3 W-B/Scranton Penguins 4 (0-1, 1-2, 2-1)

Toronto Marlies 2 Hamilton Bulldogs 5 (1-1, 1-2, 0-2)

Grand Rapids Griffins 2 Milwaukee Admirals 5 (0-2, 2-2, 0-1)

Syracuse Crunch 4 Houston Aeros 5 (OT) (1-1, 1-2, 2-1, 0-1)

Game Story:

Abbotsford Heat 1 Manitoba Moose 2 (SO) (0-1, 1-0, 0-0, 0-0, 0-1)

Major Junior

Western Hockey League

Brandon Wheat Kings 2 Swift Current Broncos 4 (0-1, 2-1, 0-2)

Kamloops Blazers 3 Vancouver Giants 6 (0-3, 0-2, 3-1)

Ontario Hockey League

Erie Otters 2 Plymouth Whalers 3 (OT) (0-0, 1-1, 1-1, 0-1)

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Victoriaville Tigers 2 Lewiston Maineiacs 3 (1-0, 0-1, 1-2)

Montreal De Junior 2 Gatineau Olympiques 3 (0-1, 2-2, 0-0)

Quebec City Ramparts 1 Rimouski Oceanic 8 (1-4, 0-2, 0-2)

Shawinigan Cataractes 4 Drummondville Voltigeurs 7 (1-1, 3-1, 0-5)

U.S.A. Juniors

North American Hockey League

Marquette Rangers 4 Traverse City North Stars 7 (0-2, 2-4, 2-1)

USA VS. Switzerland, 12/27

After a 7-3 comeback win over the Slovakia, the USA kept the good start to Group A going with a 3-0 shutout win over Switzerland in their tournament opener as the Americans look stay unbeaten in anticipation with the New Year's Eve Matchup against Canada in the final game of the Group Stage.

Press Release from USA Hockey

Saskatoon, Saskatchewan: Jack Campbell stopped all 22 shots faced, as the U.S. National Junior Team shut out Switzerland, 3-0, in it's 2nd game of the IIHF World Junior Championship Game. The U.S. improved to 2-0-0-0, with two games remaining in the tournament's preliminary round.

"I thought we stuck to our game plan and eventually wore them down," said Dean Blais, head coach of the the USA National Junior Team. "Both goaltenders played extremely well. I thought Jack really made some key saves in the first period to keep the game scoreless.

Campbell started strong between the pipes, turning aside a pair of Swiss breakaway attempts and helping Team USA kill a two man advantage in the opening frame.

The U.S. grabbed a 1-0 lead six minutes into the 2nd period on it's first power play of the game. Chris Kreider redirected a Cam Fowler slap shot under the Swiss goalie Benjamin Conz for his first tally of the tournament.

Team USA sealed its victory with a pair of third period goals. Matt Donovan scored his 2nd goal of the tournament with seven and a half minutes remaining after collecting a pass from Ryan Bourque and beating Conz low to the stick side. A.J. Jenks tally four minutes later to complete the scoring.

Next action for Team USA comes Tuesday (Dec. 29) at 3 PM CST against Latvia. The game can be seen live in the U.S. on the NHL Network. It will also be streamed live in the U.S. on

NOTES: Chris Kreider was named Team USA's player of the Game. Nine Players have combined to score USA's 10 goals to date in the tournament. The 2010 IIHF World Junior Championships run Dec. 26 thru Jan 5. in Regina and Saskatoon, Sask, for Team USA's Full Schedule, click here. The NHL Network (U.S.) and will air every U.S. game live from Saskatoon. In other Tournament Action, Sweden defeated Austria, 7-3, while the Czech Republic will take on Finland and Slovakia will take on Latvia later in the day. For Complete Results and stats from the tournament, visit for full coverage of the 2010 U.S. National Junior Team, including photos, videos and features click here.

Game Summary

Switzerland 0 U.S.A. 3 (0-0, 0-1, 0-2)

1st Period: No Scoring

2nd Period: 4, USA Kreider (Fowler, Stepan), 5:57 (PP)

3rd Period: 2, USA, Donovan (Bourque, Palmieri), 12:35; 3, Jenks (Warsofsky, Morin)

Shots By Period

Switzerland 14-5-3 22
U.S.A. 11-23-15 49

Goaltenders (SH, SV)

Switzerland, Conz 11-11 23-22 15-13 49-46
U.S.A., Campbell 14-14 5-5 3-3 22-22

Power Play: SUI 0/3 USA 1/5
Penalties: SUI 5 PEN/10 PIM USA 3 PEN/6 PIM
Attendance: 12,853

USA VS. Slovakia 12/26

Despite a bad start, the Americans came back to prove that they want to end a 2 year Medal Drought in the WJC with a 7-3 win over the Slovaks who are looking prove that last year's 4th place finish was no fluke.

Press Release from USA Hockey!

Saskatoon, Saskatchewan: Team USA overcame an early two goal deficit and defeated Slovakia by a count of 7-3 here tonight in its first game at the 2010 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship.

"I was happy with our resiliency after falling behind early," said Dean Blais, head coach of the U.S. National Junior Team. "We created a lot of scoring chances, and showed a lot of poise after those two quick goals.

Slovakia est. a 2-0 lead just more then 5 minutes into the contest with a pair of power play goals.

Team USA Cut the Slovakia lead in half midway through the period when John Carlson fired a slap shot through the traffic and past goalie Marek Ciliak. Then just, two minutes into the 2nd period, Jeremy Morin knotted the score at 2-2 when he drove to the net, collected his own rebound and fired a shot over Ciliak's glove.

U.S. captain Derek Stepan gave Team USA the lead when he fired a shot from the slot past Ciliak five minutes into the middle frame. The U.S. took a 4-2 lead when Matt Donovan shot from the high slot found the back of the net.

Following a Slovakia power play goal, Danny Kristo restored Team USA's two goal lead heading into the 3rd period when he buried a post to post pass from Stepan.

Jordan Schroeder extended Team USA's advantage to 6-3, chipping a centering pass from Kyle Palmieri over Ciliak blocker less then a minute into the 3rd period. Jerry D'Amigo who was named Team USA's player of the game, completed the night's scoring on a give and go play with Kristo.

Team USA's goalie Mike Lee turned aside 17 shots in the win, while Ciliak stopped 39 saves in the losing effort.

Next action for Team USA comes tomorrow (Dec. 27) at 3 PM CST against Switzerland. The game can be seen live in the U.S.A. on the NHL Network. It will also be streamed live in the U.S. on the website

NOTES: Team USA won it's first game of the World Junior Championship for the third straight year and the sixth time in 7 years. The 2010 IIHF World Junior Championships runs Dec. 26 thru Jan. 5 in Regina and Saskatoon, Sask. For Team USA's full schedule, click Here. The NHL Network and will air every U.S.A. Game live from Saskatoon. For Complete Results and stats from the World Juniors, visit For Full coverage of the 2010 U.S. National Junior Team, including photos, video and features, click here.

Game Summary

Score by Period

U.S.A. 7 Slovakia 3 (1-2, 4-1, 2-0)

1st Period: Scoring: 1, SVK Gasparovic (Illo) 2:15 (PP); 2, SVK Bakos (Illo, Marincin), 5:33 (PP); 3, USA, Carlson (Stepan), 9:34

2nd Period: Scoring: 4, USA, Morin (Unassisted), 2:50; 5, D'Amigo (Carlson, Stefan), 5:39, 6, USA, Donovan (Kreider, Fowler), 6:36 (PP); 7, SVK, Panik (Siska, Viedensky), 13:14 (PP), 8 USA, Kristo (Stepan, D'Amigo), 13:54

3rd Period: Scoring: 9, USA, Schroeder (Palmieri), 0:58; 10, USA, D'Amigo (Kristo), 6:34

Shots on Goal

USA 11-16-19 46
Slovakia 9-7-4 20


USA, Lee 9-7, 7-6, 4-4 20-17
SVK, Ciliak 11-10, 16-12, 19-17 46-39

World Junior Championship Update

We are 2 days into the World Junior Championships in Saskatchewan and the Americans have won both games so far into the tournament where the USA came back from a bad start against Slovakia to come back to win big 7-3 over the Slovaks, then yesterday, the USA had their way against Switzerland with a 3-0 shutout win that got the team to 2-0 overall.

Elsewhere, the first day was a full for blowouts the opening day saw 2 double digit as the tournament favorites Canada took out Latvia 16-0 while Sweden beat the Czechs 10-1, in addition, last year's Bronze Medalist Russia took down Austria 6-2 in their opening game.

Today we will reach the midway point of the group stage with 2 games. Tournament Host Canada will take on Switzerland whose looking to come back after a loss yesterday while the Fins have some things to figure out, where after a 3-0 lead in the 2nd period, the Fins allowed the Czech Republic got a late goal in the 2nd period. Then the Czech Republic scored 3 times in the 3rd including Sami Vatanen for plays for JYP Jyvaskyla in Finland's SM Liiga and is also a recent draft pick of the Anaheim Ducks helped the Czechs comeback to beat the Fins.

The Czechs are dealing with major injury problems this year and with having the smallest roster in terms of number of players this year, that win could be huge towards attempting to get them through to the Knockout rounds of the tournament after New Years.

If the Czechs want to prove that the comeback was no fluke, they need to control an Austrian team that is just looking to avoid being relegated this season after scoring just 5 goals so far in their first two games.

Look for a Standings update after today's games between Canada VS. Switzerland then later today it's Finland VS. Russia.

Tomorrow is the Final Day of the Group Stage which will lead up to the Final game of the day where the USA VS. Canada will determine the Automatic Semifinal Spot in Group A. But first, a critcal game between Switzerland and Slovakia will determine the 3rd and final QF Spot out of Group A.

While in Group B, we have the Scandevindal Rivals Sweden and Finland where a Sweden Win will clinch Group B and the Automatic Semifinal Spot, for Finland, they need this to improve their chances of a Quarterfinal Spot while any slip up, even in OT will open the door for the Czech Republic to sneak in and force Finland to the Relguation Round for the 2nd straight year.

In a tournament where they have been few upsets and everything for the most part has gone to plan, this is where the WJC usually kicks into high gear as we get ready for the knockout rounds and the relegutation where it will determine who will keep their spots for the 2010-2011 season and who will be sent down to Division 1 next year. As for the 2 promoted teams, it will be Germany and Norway that will be bumped up for next season.

Tournament Standings

Group A

1. Canada 3-1-0-0 11 PTS 35-6

2. U.S.A. 3-0-1-0 10 PTS 26-9

3. Switzerland 2-0-0-2 6 PTS 17-11

4. Slovakia 1-0-0-3 3 PTS 8-18

5. Latvia 0-0-0-4 0 PTS 9-43

Group B

1. Sweden 4-0-0-0 12 PTS 28-6

2. Russia 3-0-0-1 9 PTS 14-8

3. Finland 1-0-0-3 3 PTS 15-13

4. Czech Rep. 1-0-0-3 3 PTS 13-20

5. Austria 0-0-0-4 0 PTS 7-30

Sweden & Canada have advanced to the Semifinals

The Quarterfinals will be USA VS. Finland & Russia VS. Switzerland

Slovakia, Latvia, Czech Republic & Austria will play in the Releguation Round

Slovakia and Czech Republic will enter the Releguation Round with 3 points while Austria and Latvia will have 0 points.

Here's the scores from the first 2 days of the Tournament.


Czech Republic 1 Sweden 10 (0-4, 1-2, 0-4)

Latvia 0 Canada 16 (0-5, 0-6, 0-5)

Russia 6 Austria 2 (4-1, 1-1, 1-0)

Slovakia 3 U.S.A. 7 (2-1, 1-4, 0-2)


Austria 3 Sweden 7 (0-2, 3-2, 0-3)

U.S.A. 3 Switzerland 0 (0-0, 1-0, 2-0)

Czech Republic 3 Finland 4 (2-0, 1-1, 0-3)

Slovakia 8 Latvia 3 (5-0, 2-2, 1-1)

Here's the schedule for the rest of the Group Stage!


Canada 6 Switzerland 0 (2-0, 3-0, 1-0)

Finland 0 Russia 2 (0-1, 0-1, 0-0)


Austria 1 Czech Republic 7 (1-1, 0-3, 0-3)

Latvia 1 U.S.A. 12 (0-6, 1-1, 0-5)

Sweden 4 Russia 1 (2-0, 1-1, 1-0)

Canada 8 Slovakia 2 (3-0, 4-1, 1-1)


Finland 10 Austria 1 (5-0, 3-1, 2-0)

Switzerland 7 Latvia 5 (2-3, 1-1, 4-1)


Sweden 7 Finland 1 (1-0, 3-0, 3-1)

Switzerland 4 Slovakia 1 (0-0, 1-0, 3-1)

Russia 5 Czech Republic 2 (1-0, 1-1, 3-1)

U.S.A. 4 Canada 5 (SO) (1-1, 2-1, 1-2, 0-0, 0-1)

Professional Standings as of 12/28

It was a slow week in the pro ranks due to the Christmas Holiday where the NHL, AHL and the CHL all took a few days off the Holidays so you won't see to much movement this week. As for the USA & Major Juniors, these leagues took basically the whole week and they starting to get back in the grove as they start the 2nd half of the season.

I will post the Major Junior and USA Junior Standings again next week. As for the NCAA, it's holiday tournament time as teams will play in mini tournaments through the week in different parts of the country that won't count in the conference standings. Conference play in the NCAA will get back underway after the New Year.

National Hockey League

Eastern Conference

1. Washington 38 GP 24-8-6 54 PTS 139-103

2. New Jersey 36 GP 26-9-1 53 PTS 107-79

3. Buffalo 38 GP 23-11-4 50 PTS 103-87

4. Pittsburgh 39 GP 26-12-1 53 PTS 127-101

5. Boston 37 GP 19-11-7 45 PTS 98-92

6. Ottawa 38 GP 19-15-4 42 PTS 105-113

7. Montreal 40 GP 19-18-3 41 PTS 105-110

8. Atlanta 37 GP 18-15-4 40 PTS 122-118

9. NY Rangers 38 GP 18-16-4 40 PTS 105-106

10. Florida 40 GP 16-17-7 39 PTS 113-128

11. Philadelphia 38 GP 18-18-2 38 PTS 106-109

12. Tampa Bay 38 GP 14-15-9 37 PTS 97-117

13. NY Islanders 40 GP 15-18-7 37 PTS 97-125

14. Toronto 40 GP 14-17-9 37 PTS 113-139

15. Carolina 38 GP 9-22-7 25 PTS 93-140

Western Conference

1. Chicago 38 GP 26-9-3 55 PTS 117-79

2. San Jose 38 GP 23-8-7 53 PTS 127-99

3. Colorado 40 GP 22-12-6 50 PTS 119-115

4. Phoenix 39 GP 24-13-2 50 PTS 103-87

5. Los Angeles 38 GP 22-13-3 47 PTS 113-111

6. Nashville 39 GP 22-14-3 47 PTS 112-114

7. Vancouver 39 GP 23-16-0 46 PTS 123-96

8. Calgary 37 GP 20-12-5 45 PTS 103-94

9. Detroit 38 GP 19-14-5 43 PTS 100-100

10. Dallas 38 GP 16-11-11 43 PTS 111-117

11. Minnesota 38 GP 19-16-3 41 PTS 100-107

12. St. Louis 38 GP 17-16-5 39 PTS 99-107

13. Anaheim 38 GP 15-16-7 37 PTS 105-122

14. Columbus 39 GP 14-18-7 35 PTS 107-136

15. Edmonton 38 GP 15-19-4 34 PTS 109-127

Here's a look at how the playoffs matchups would look as we apparoch the halfway point of the season.

Eastern Conference

#1 Washington Capitals VS. #8 Atlanta Thrashers

#2 New Jersey Devils VS. #7 Montreal Canadaiens

#3 Buffalo Sabres VS. #6 Ottawa Senators

#4 Pittsburgh Penguins VS. #5 Boston Bruins

Western Conference

#1 Chicago Blackhawks VS. #8 Calgary Flames

#2 San Jose Sharks VS. #7 Vancouver Canucks

#3 Colorado Avalanche VS. #6 Nashville Predators

#4 Phoenix Coyotes VS. #5 Los Angeles Kings

American Hockey League

Eastern Conference

Atlantic Division

1. Manchester 35 GP 23-9-3 49 PTS 99-71

2. Lowell 35 GP 19-13-3 41 PTS 114-98

3. Bridgeport 36 GP 19-14-3 41 PTS 90-90

4. Worcester 32 GP 18-12-2 38 PTS 94-96

5. Portland 34 GP 16-12-6 38 PTS 99-98

6. Hartford 34 GP 16-13-5 37 PTS 98-101

7. Providence 34 GP 16-17-1 33 PTS 86-95

8. Springfield 35 GP 10-17-8 28 PTS 84-126

East Division

1. Hershey 33 GP 23-8-2 48 PTS 127-72

2. Albany 34 GP 18-13-3 39 PTS 93-84

3. W-B/Scranton 32 GP 16-14-2 34 PTS 87-81

4. Binghamton 31 GP 14-13-4 32 PTS 103-91

5. Norfolk 33 GP 15-17-1 31 PTS 84-90

6. Adirondack 29 GP 14-13-2 30 PTS 68-89

7. Syracuse 32 GP 10-18-4 24 PTS 76-125

Western Conference

North Division

1. Rochester 34 GP 22-10-2 46 PTS 113-97

2. Hamilton 32 GP 19-8-5 43 PTS 94-68

3. Manitoba 36 GP 18-14-4 40 PTS 84-95

4. Grand Rapids 33 GP 18-14-1 37 PTS 107-102

5. Abbotsford 35 GP 16-15-4 36 PTS 94-101

6. Toronto 32 GP 13-14-5 31 PTS 83-112

7. Lake Erie 33 GP 13-17-3 29 PTS 89-101

West Division

1. Texas 34 GP 20-10-4 44 PTS 94-75

2. Peoria 32 GP 18-11-3 39 PTS 100-95

3. Rockford 36 GP 18-15-3 39 PTS 98-95

4. Milwaukee 31 GP 16-10-5 37 PTS 82-87

5. Houston 33 GP 16-14-3 35 PTS 81-76

6. Chicago 32 GP 15-15-2 32 PTS 96-96

7. San Antonio 32 GP 13-15-4 30 PTS 87-97

Here's a look at how the playoffs matchups right now as start to apporach the halfway point of the season.

Atlantic Division

#1 Manchester Monarchs VS. #4 Worcester Sharks

#2 Lowell Devils VS. #3 Bridgeport Sound Tigers

East Division

#1 Hershey Bears VS. #4 Portland Pirates

#2 Albany River Rats VS. #3 W-B/Scranton Penguins

North Division

#1 Rochester Americans VS. #4 Grand Rapids Griffins

#2 Hamilton Bulldogs VS. #3 Manitoba Moose

West Division

#1 Texas Stars VS. #4 Milwaukee Admirals

#2 Peoria Rivermen VS. #3 Rockford Icehogs

Central Hockey League

Northern Conference

1. Colorado 26 GP 20-5-1 41 PTS 118-75

2. Rapid City 27 GP 18-8-1 37 PTS 107-79

3. Bossier-Shreveport 27 GP 15-11-1 31 PTS 80-80

4. Mississippi 28 GP 14-12-2 30 PTS 89-90

5. Tulsa 27 GP 14-12-1 29 PTS 96-99

6. Missouri 27 GP 12-14-1 25 PTS 79-97

7. Wichita 28 GP 3-22-3 9 PTS 54-112

Southern Conference

1. Odessa 30 GP 23-4-3 49 PTS 129-82

2. Allen 28 GP 19-7-2 40 PTS 89-77

3. Texas 29 GP 15-10-4 34 PTS 85-84

4. Laredo 27 GP 13-8-6 32 PTS 89-88

5. Rio Grande Valley 28 GP 14-11-3 31 PTS 92-92

6. Amarillo 30 GP 10-15-5 25 PTS 89-114

7. Corpus Christi 28 GP 10-14-4 24 PTS 85-94

8. Arizona 28 GP 9-16-3 21 PTS 83-101

Here's a look at how the playoffs would look right now as the season reaches the midway point of the season.

Northern Conference

Play In Round

#4 Mississippi Riverkings VS. #5 Tulsa Oilers

Conference Semifinals

#1 Colorado Eagles VS. Play in Winner

#2 Rapid City Rush VS. #3 Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs

Southern Conference

Play In Round

#4 Laredo Bucks VS. #5 Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees

Conference Semifinals

#1 Odessa Jackalopes VS. Play In Winner

#2 Allen Americans VS. #3 Texas Brahmas