Monthly Archives: January 2016

2016 BMO CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game

IMG_1406.JPG

I was on hand for the Top Prospects Game in Vancouver this week, chatting with a couple prospects, watching the game and drinking upwards of three beers after the game. I spoke with Ty Ronning, Vancouver Giants’ forward, son of Cliff and filling in for the injured Tyler Benson on Team Cherry.

Benson and Ronning are having polar opposite seasons. Ronning’s climbing the NHL Central Scouting Rankings every week and Benson continues to fall, projecting to go late in the 1st round of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft. Ronning is cruising with 26 goals and playing a completely fearless game like his similar shorter counterparts in the game. All while Tyler Benson’s been injured multiple times, pre-season surgery and possibly feeling the pressure of being a “Franchise” player at 17 years old.

I spoke to him after the morning skate with Team Cherry, chatting about his late addition to the roster, playing with a chip on his shoulder and the impact his old man had on his development.

Speaking of kids with famous NHL dads, I also chatted with Team Orr captain Matthew Tkachuk, son of Keith, proud London Knights forward and a player ranked 1st overall by NHL Central Scouting’s Midterm rankings and 3rd by our pal Craig Button at TSN. He chatted as well, about having a famous old man, the NHL’er factory in London and just what type of player ol Matty Tkachuk is… a lot of on the west coast know very little about the second generation kid other than what he did in the world juniors for team USA

The game itself was a bit of a snoozer. Ty Ronning scored a goal early in the first and got the loudest reaction of the night. A definite home town bias for Team Cherry. Ronning was arguably the hardest worker on Team Cherry, and rightfully so. He was an injury replacement for a teammate and if Vancouver wasn’t the host city, he’d probably be watching at home. But that didn’t happen. He showed up and impressed a lot of people.
A LOT.

If you want my opinion, the most impressive players in this game were the goalies. In particular Evan Fitzpatrick of the Sherbrooke Phoenix (QMJHL) and Dylan Wells of the Peterborough Petes (OHL). They stood on their head and were both incredibly structurally sound like those boring Cory Schneider-like goalies are.

Jordan Kyrou, right wing for the Sarnia Sting (OHL) was a fancy pants player that really stood out for me too. He set up the Ty Ronning goal and made some nice plays, including one whilst falling on his ass.
Kyrou, Fitzpatrick and Wells. Three names to remember come the NHL Draft. Three names to say “OMG ____ insert GM’s name here____ is a complete moron! He’s gotta draft ___insert top prospect here___”.  You’ll like a learned and smug hockey nerd. Chicks dig it, man!

All the best,
Ryan, PON

Episode #94 – The Hockey Wives Curse

cropped_GettyImages-506624808

A two man booth this week! Ryan and Geeta get together for the final podcast before the NHL All-Star Break…aka John Scottapalooza.

Dhiren Mahiban (NY Times, VICE Sports, The Hockey News) skypes in to talk all things Toronto Maple Leafs, their trading block, injury problems, the Jonathan Drouin saga and of course, Babsocks.

IMG_1364

They also talk about Shawn Horcoff’s suspension, Milan Lucic’s freak out and eventual suspension and Geeta tries to figure out just who is going to the NHL All-Star Game.

They make a surprising observation about the cast of Hockey Wives and the terrible luck each of the husbands have been facing this year…especially Carey Price and the struggling Montreal Canadiens

They also look at Sidney Crosby, arguably the first NHL millennial, the possibility of Patrick Roy making an emergency comeback, lots of kids getting puppies thanks to NHL’ers scoring goals and much more!

Enjo

Click here to listen
iTunes  Stitcher radio  RSS

Episode #93 – John Scott, Last of The Goons

The John Scott controversy has finally come to an end in the NHL. The only question remains is what jersey he will wear to the skills competition?

Ryan and Dave are joined by Stu Walters (TSN 1040, CTV, WHL on Shaw) to talk about the Vancouver Canucks’ most recent injury, captain Henrik Sedin who will miss a few weeks after a hit from behind. They look at the alleged West Coast bias and the inconsistency of the NHL’s suspensions and Department of Player Safety.

The guys look at the John Scott All-Star situation, from the trade to Montreal, to being sent down to the AHL and the NHL’s final decision to allow him to play. It’s a last hurrah for the dying breed of hockey players known as the goon and this is John Scott’s chance to go to the game and celebrate the goons and enforcers of years past.

They also look at the Canadiens’ fall from grace, the Maple Leafs’ goaltending problems and give their picks for Hart Trophy winners at this point in the season.

Enjoy!

Click here to listen
iTunes  Stitcher radio  RSS

Episode #92 – Bowie Horvat And The Spiders From Mars

A little Rebel Rebel off the top of the program in honour of The Thin White Duke, David Bowie.

Geeta, P Mac, Dave and Ryan are here this week 24 hours after one hell of a Vancouver Canucks game. A 3rd period comeback with a huge goal from Jake Virtanen, a Daniel Sedin OT winner, a controversy about comments made by Florida Panthers, a bench clearing brawl and one hell of a team building exercise… oh, and not to mention some weird comments by Denis Potvin on everything going on.

The gang also talks about an usual Tinder date of Geeta’s, talk about what they would do if they won the Powerball and where they would relocate their recently purchased franchises.

Finally, they touch on the Emerson Etem trade, if Radim Vrbata will get moved and the unfortunate task of waiving Chris Higgins.

They look at the Ryan Johansen/Seth Jones trade and the embarrassing video of the Edmonton Oilers prospects getting shut down by a group of girls on TMZ!

Enjoy!

Click here to listen
iTunes  Stitcher radio  RSS

Episode XCI – Return Of The Podcast

Can someone explain to us what the hell is going on in Tampa Bay and just what the hell people are thinking giving Jake Virtanen death threats for a double minor penalty!?!

Christmas break is over and the whole gang is back together to talk about the world of hockey right now.  Geeta, P Mac, Dave & Ryan sit around and discuss Canada’s rough showing at the 2015 World Juniors, the problems faced in the tournament and the awful, AWFUL backlash against Canucks’ prospect Jake Virtanen.

They also look at the stinker that is the Pacific Division and how “tanking” this season isn’t exactly black and white in a division as weak and unpredictable as the Pacific. The Canucks could win a couple playoff series if they make it!

They also talk about the weird problems in Tampa Bay, P Mac’s play by play gig with Garry Valk over the Christmas break, NHL All-Star Captain John Scott and the 2015 NHL Winter Classic and Alumni Game and whether a former player could make a return!

Enjoy!

Click here to listen
iTunes  Stitcher radio  RSS