Sunday, 18 June 2017

A not so friendly Hockey Canada reminder

This comes out every year at this time and should be nothing new. Last season it caught a KIJHL  player , don't let it happen to you.

Hockey Canada, its member Branches, Major Junior and registered Junior Hockey Leagues in Canada are concerned with the proliferation of leagues that operate outside the auspices of Hockey Canada.
Hockey Canada offers the best development programs worldwide. It has invested significant resources in the development of officials, coaches, administrators and players countrywide. We have a committed strategy toward a cohesive long term athlete development model.
These non-member organizations do not support the development of these programs. Further, they operate in a vacuum, with no consideration to the impact of their programs on minor, junior, senior, adult recreational hockey, female hockey, officiating development, coaching development or administrator development in Canada. These non-member leagues instead choose to utilize the resources already developed by Hockey Canada and its member Branches. The teams who make up these "leagues" operate in this fashion because they do not agree with the existing overall vision of Hockey Canada. They profess to have a better program yet often operate without a constitution, by- laws, create their own rule book and may not provide adequate insurance for their participants. Further, they offer the lure of "Rep" or "Junior" level competition when this is clearly not the case.
Hockey Canada, its member Branches, Major Junior Leagues as well as registered Junior Hockey Leagues wish to be exceedingly clear with our response to these programs.
Hockey Canada and its member Branches view all leagues that operate outside the auspices/sanctioning of Hockey Canada programs to be classified as non-member leagues. This currently does not include summer hockey leagues/teams, adult recreational hockey leagues/teams, high school hockey, and/or hockey schools.
  1. 1)  Any individual who participates (knowingly or otherwise) in non-member programs after September 30 of the season in question ("the Cut-Off Date") will lose all membership privileges with Hockey Canada for the remainder of that season, and may only reapply for membership with Hockey Canada after the end of that season. "Participation" in an non-member program will be considered to have occurred if the individual takes part in one game (including an exhibition, tournament, league or playoff game) after the Cut-Off Date.
    If a participant makes the choice to participate in these non-member programs, they must understand the ramifications of that choice and that the sanctions described in this paragraph will remain in effect even if the league or team folds, or the individual is released, suspended or fired.
  2. 2)  Hockey Canada and its member Branches across the country will make every effort to ensure that local minor hockey and female hockey associations in areas where non-member leagues exist are not supporting these leagues in any manner whatsoever. For greater certainty, "supporting" includes, but is not limited to, assisting an non-member league directly or indirectly through
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advertisement, promotion, ticket sales, volunteer activities, assigning Officials, sharing resources or enabling such a league to participate in Hockey Canada sanctioned activities. We will withhold tournament sanctions and will preclude such associations from benefitting from any Hockey Canada/Branch/CHL sanctioned event by whatever means necessary, including the withdrawal of any such event from any community within the geographic boundaries of that association if need be to stress this point.
This policy is aimed at those leagues that choose to operate outside the hockey structure established by Hockey Canada, its member Branches and the Canadian Hockey League.
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Wednesday, 14 June 2017

The KIJHL AGM Hi Lites

Fifth year Fernie Ghostrider President Barb Anderson and Head Coach and GM Craig Mohr went to Kamloops June 9-10-11 for the KIJHL AGM. Here are a few of the hi lights of that meeting that fans should be interested in.

First of all we will have a 47 game schedule and there will be no crossovers again this year, meaning that we will not see any teams from the  Okanagan. This will be the second season of a cost saving experiment that worked for most teams but not for all. 

I hate not seeing teams like Osoyoos and Summerland but I like the 47 vs 52 game schedule. I believe the volunteers get  burned out by game 40 or so… but get rejuvenated when the playoffs start. I'm bettin on 52 games in 2018-19 though.

The KIJHL and the other two junior B leagues in BC have opted out of the Keystone Cup for various reasons but travel costs are number 1. Personally after the Cyclone Taylor Cup I could care less about the Keystone and their two games a day tournament. Anyway if you want to know more Read Beaver Valley’s $50,000 something account of their trip to the  Keystone by clicking here... it's not pretty 

The KIJHL’s Bill Ohlhausen is back for his 16th year as President… a sometimes thankless job that occasionally sees him take a beating from some of the GM’s and Governors whenever team discipline is handed out. They actually should thank him...

The KIJHL will also go back to a 7 game vs 5 game semi and final series’. Seems more traditional to me but the 5 games was not the end of the world IMO.

The league will shutdown in mid January for the Prospects Game. Last year was a trial for the PG so the schedulers fit it in but several teams had to play games with out their top prospects creating howls of protest in the background. But it all worked out for the better and it’s a go for this season. 

Going full face protection was talked about but rejected. See the previous post...someday it will get mandated. 

There is still interest from Quesnell and Williams Lake to join the KIJHL. It will happen sooner than later if you ask me and two powerful franchises will be created. Too bad with no crossovers we will never see them. I only hope teams move there vs expansion.

And finally, some Governors have been saying that it's looking like all the teams in the league are starting to get on the same page... this can only mean good things  for the fans.

Thursday, 8 June 2017

Full Face Shields

According to this story 112 junior teams in Ontario will be wearing full cages this year.

The subject was been brought up here in the KIJHL before but the teams were not interested in going full face protection. Most of the hockey guys I know agree that with full cages the elbows, sticks, and hands go up and maybe player respect takes a hit as well.

There is evidence out there showing that  face injuries and dental claims go way down with full face masks. Also,  player insurance costs also go down as well, and as one coach told me, way down.

So far the junior leagues out west have not had to wear full cages, and if you polled the different league's governors and coaches they would vote no by a large margin ... but I'm betting that in the next couple of years there will be no voting, it will be mandated by either BC Hockey or Hockey Canada who, if you didn't know, provide the insurance for all carded players . So bank on it, cause for insurance reasons HC & BCAHA's gonna be banking on it as well and like it or not, no fighting and full cages is the way it's headed .

And finally, if a team wanted to they could tell their players, if you want to play here, you have to wear a full face shield.  And that would be interesting, like a science experiment. 

Some coaches think they would have a  hard time getting players, and that's likely... but maybe not, the team may actually get a recruiting advantage. Some (lots of ?) parents might want to send little Johnny to cageville, after all, average Johnny ain't goin to the NHL anyway, so why get hurt. And some players may actually want to keep the cage on.

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

To all first time KIJHL Players

Stuff first time players should know

To any new players coming up to the KIJHL. Hockey Canada has a big hole in their carding system now, and behind the scenes there is a motion in to fix it. But it may not be in time.

The problem is Hockey Canada  has an electronic carding system and that means a player can be carded without his actual signature. This is a major flaw in the system for first time players and until they make is so a player and parent has to physically sign... things could go sideways. And here's how...

Some teams have been asking first time players to sign some sort of a commitment letter. Be aware that this could make it so a GM thinks he has the right to  automatically sign you when he gets his cards June 1st.  You may be happy with that... but if your not.

All players should know that they are total FREE AGENTS until they are on a HC Player Card card. No matter what you sign before hand , you are free to go and get what is best for you. If you want out of any commitment letter it is your right and BC Hockey will back you. The water could get murky after June 1st...  All honest GM's will call you and tell you they're going to put you on a card and if you don't want to be on their card it is your right.

And why sign a commitment letter anyway... what are you thinking, the team is trying to keep you away from all the other teams,  it is your right to talk to anyone you want to until your on a proper card. If your good enough, they will call after June 1st and right up to September.

# Things you should know 
 Have a great summer.

Some Rider Player news

The Ghostriders moved F  Nolan Lagace's playing rights to 100 Mile for the rights to D man  Brent Headon    who was in Nelson last season but was moved to 100 as part of the Alex Meeker  trade made last year.

Anyway, Lagace who will play as a 20 may not end up in 100 and may end up in Alberta before next season, and if he does he can play as a 21 year old next year in that league. Yes they can have a couple of 21's.

 And Headon who will turn 19 shortly may or may not end up in Fernie because of work but Coach Craig Mohr is sure hoping he comes here as large D men are always a welcome sight here in Fernie.

The Riders have also acquired F  Jace Woodley  a 20 year old from Sicamous for a player development fee   

I'm told goalie Brandon Butler had successful knee surgery and is now planning to attend SAIT next season. It's hard to tell if he will try out for the Trojans right after surgery, but it's possible. SAIT coach Dan Olsen  who was a Pass Timberwolf HC and GM  a few years ago was an excellent judge of goalies when he was in the Pass bringing in a few guys who went on to play a much higher levels.

Evan Traverse and Ryan Kennedy are going to UBC Okanagan, but I think they are just going to school.

Alex Cheveldave may end up in New York at a Div 111 school, he will definitely be playing hockey there.

Ben Shushkovski is also going to school and that makes two large D men the Riders will be without next season.

Coach Mohr has been actively recruiting and has a few players who may come here if they don't make junior A. As we find out more we'll post the info.

Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Rider Award Winners

Thanks from the guys here at Rider News to all the Coaches, Trainers, Players, Board Members, President Barb Anderson (has the most time consuming job of all )  all other media including Howie Ashmore, Josh Hoffman and the FFP for helping me keep one of my hobbies (no team no blog) alive... oh and to the fans who pay the freight and make the Riders a viable entity... how about them volunteers as well, and the VOY's Budgie and Scottie in the booth helping out Dan McSkimming the on line voice of the FGR. And a special thanks to Coach Mohr for his honesty about the team throughout the year. 

Fernie Ghostrider Award Winners

Most Improved went to Fernie local Evan Traverse who was in his second year with the Riders and could play two more years if he wanted but plans on going to school next year. All the best Evan.

Honourable mention's to the smoothest skating D-man Tristan Downe who was out till November with a shoulder injury and was pretty raw at first but but improved a mile as the season wore on.
And Brandon Youngson who played very well when Brandon Butler went down for the count and even ended up as a starter in the post season  

Rookie of the Year  was Keelan Saworski, Keelan was not at the banquet because he was in Saskatchewan  practicing with the North Stars where they want him playing next season. Saworski was maybe  the best all around player as he was big, could play defence or forward, could skate and had a good shot as well.

Top Playoff Player and without a doubt the fan's favourite was Brendan Nemes. Brendan changed the face of the team when he arrived 21 games ago. His big hits and work effort every game were just what the Riders needed and had he been here all season along with ROY Saworski we may have had home ice.

MVP was Alex Cheveldave, was there any doubt... Team Captain Cheveldave is the first player I've seen who took a two game suspension just before the playoffs and his coaches were actually happy about it... probably thanked the ref... it was the only way they could make him rest, and the only games he missed all year despite the injuries that guys who play the way he does in the trenches always get. He was tough and had a grade A shot too.
Honorable mention to Mitch Titus who is a tough competitor and played all 47 games and all 52 last year.. but Mitch was not forgotten ... 

Best Defensemen Alex Cheveldave.. see what the guy above wrote about the MVP 

Most Inspirational was Ryan Kennedy a super fit relentless worker who finished with 35 points and a pair of shorthanded goals. Watching him made the other players try harder, another reason coaches like guys like him.
Honorable mention to Tayler Sincennes who had 34 PT and a pair of SH G and was part of the PK  as well.   

Most Exciting was Mitch Titus as said above, his toughness for a smaller player who was keyed in on all season was incredible and he was also the...

Top Scorer Mitch Titus the only other thing I can say is I hope he comes back for his last junior season and brings his brother Owen.

And finally all the best to our graduating twenty year old's, we were proud to have you.
Alex Cheveldave
Tayler Sincennes
Devin Nemes
Justin Peers and
Brandon Butler

Friday, 3 March 2017

Friday Night in the KIJHL

Kimberley 3 @ Fernie 2  OT
Tyler Van Steinburg scored the series winning goal in game 6 for the Dynamiters in the second OT and Cody Campbell had the win in net.  980 fans at the game.
Kimberley will now play Creston.

Castlegar 0 @ Nelson 1 
 Devin Allen had the shutout and Kyle Rosolowski from Dale Howell and Nicholas Wihak scored the only goal and the Leafs defeat the Rebels in game 6 and move on to play Beaver Valley.
1024 Leaf fans at the game.

Summerland 0 @ Kelowna 6
Brandon Gaucher had the shutout, Jason Village scored 2 goals and had 2 A and Josh Kobelka had 4 assists as Kelowna wins game 6 in front of 401 of their fans. Game 7 is in Pentiction because of ice problems in Summerland, the Steam have home ice though.

100 Mile 2 @ Kamloops 5
Evan Walls had 2 goals 2 assists Devin Leduc had the GW and Jason Sandhu stopped 24 of 26 as the Kamloops Storm defeat the Wranglers in game six. Kamloops will play Chase next.