Saturday Thoughts…

You never know what you’re going to find when walking around the concourse (I guess it’s a concourse) at the Moose Jaw Civic Centre…here are a couple photos hanging on the walls of some Portland hockey icons:

Yep, thats a very young Ken Hodge, Portland Winter Hawk GM, from I believe the 1966-67 season in Moose Jaw.  There is another action photo of Mr. Hodge that I’ll try to get a picture of tonight. 

The other guy is Norm Johnson, who had a very good career with the Portland Buckaroos and was recognized by the Hawks last season during the Buckaroo night at the MC. 

There are some great pictures on the wall of greats in Moose Jaw hockey history.

I was very impressed with the speed and skill of the Brandon Wheat Kings last night, they might be the fastest team I’ve seen so far.  Braydon Schenn didn’t really stand out last night, but he still picked up three points.  Scott Glennie, Jay Fehr and Matt Calvert stood out more to me, but they are a good team that should contend in the Eastern Division.

Tonight, the Hawks take on the Moose Jaw Warriors and former Hawk 1st Rounder Thomas Frazee.  In fact, I ran into Frazee’s mother in the lobby of the hotel here in Moose Jaw yesterday before loading the bus and heading to Brandon.

Frazee’s off to a good start in his 18 year old season, posting 5-4-9 in 10 games.

I haven’t heard anything new on the Chris Francis situation, but if there are any updates, I will have them on the pre-game show at 5:40 Portland time on 1550 AM KKAD.

Best line of the trip so far…as we stopped for our pre-game meal in the small town of Broadview, Saskatchewan, after surveying nothing but flat prairie for the first two hours of the trip, rookie forward Taylor Peters said to me, “I think I can see my house from here.”

Peters hails from Delta, BC.

Brian in Sherwood asked if I ever envisioned that the WHL would go back to having each team play each other twice in a season (home-and-home) instead of just once, and I have to say that I doubt it.

It comes down to cost and education for the players.  It isn’t cheap to go on a 12 day road trip and the high school age players miss that much of school while they’re gone.  The team does hold study sessions for the players on the trip, but it doesn’t make up for missing school.

On a personal note, good luck to my daughter Aiden, as she swims in her first swim meet of the Short Course season today and tomorrow at the Tualatin Hills Rec Center.  Swim hard, kiddo…Daddy’s cheering you on from Moose Jaw!!!

Also, on that note, Aiden’s swim team (Hillsboro Heat) is hosting a swim-a-thon on November 1st.  This is their largest fund raiser to help pay for the team’s coaches and also for travel meets.  The kids will have two hours in the pool to swim as many 50 meter laps as they can.  Last year, Aiden at age 7, swam 50 laps, equalling 2500 meters.

This year, she plans on going for a lot more.

If you want to sponsor her for the swim-a-thon, drop me an e-mail at hawksblog@comcast.net.  The team is a non-profit organization and all donations are tax deductible.  You can sponsor by the lap, but I would suggest doing a flat dollar amount donation.

Thanks for your consideration.

Thats it for now…I’ll post some more trip thoughts on the off-days coming up tomorrow and Monday.

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