Feeling Envious…and some stats…

After nearly two weeks since the Winter Hawks final game of the 2008-09 season, I am reaching the point where I’m envious of my WHL broadcasting brethren that are still working, calling playoff games for their respective teams.

It’s been three years since the Hawks took part in a postseason contest, ending on an Easter Sunday in Vancouver in April of 2006.  Dean Vrooman, John Kirby and I made that trek together in Scooter’s small SUV in what would turn out to be Scooter’s last postseason appearance behind the mic.

We all know that the Hawks, if they continue on their growth pattern, will return to the postseason eventually, hopefully as soon as the 2009-10 season and I am looking forward to calling playoff games for the Hawks.  I did work a couple playoff games for Shaw TV a couple years ago and then did one broadcast with Regan Bartel and the Kelowna Rockets last year, but it isn’t the same as when your team is involved.

I may make some games in Round 2 of this years playoffs, depending on work and family schedules.  So far, Round 1 has shown that the gap between the “haves” and “have nots” is greater this year than in years past with four series being four game sweeps in the opening round.

There are two series that are even after four games (with Everett and Tri City playing game four tonight). I believe that Saskatoon will prevail over Lethbridge in the first one and the other is a tougher call.  The Medicine Hat/Swift Current series was the biggest coin flip of the first round.  Personally, I select Medicine Hat as I will always pull for a team with Shaun Clouston on the bench rather than one with Dean Chynoweth…old rivalries die hard, ya’ know?  He’s still a Thunderbird in my eyes…while Clouston will always be a Winter Hawk.

I see Spokane and Tri City advancing to face Vancouver and Kelowna respectively in the second round in the West…those should be some good battles.   If the East prevails like I predict, it will be Calgary taking on Medicine Hat with Saskatoon facing Brandon…more good battles…I’ll be watching as much as possible on WHL TV.

Some stats to chew on…

In the WHL in 2009-10, there were a total of 653 players who played at least one game in the league…71 players born in 1988, 141 born in 1989, 156 born in 1990, 149 born in 1991, 107 born in 1992, 29 born in 1993.

For the 653 players, they combined for:

30,036 Games Played

5,082 Goals

8,532 Assists

13,605 Points

27,108 Penalty Minutes

1,533 (30.2%) of the goals were scored on the power play.

221 (4.4%) of the goals were scored while short-handed.

For the Winter Hawks, there were these numbers of note:

– Chris Francis’ 67 points tied him for 12th amongst all 1989 born players (141 players in total) in points.  His 46 assists were 9th overall amongst 1989 born players.

– Luke Walker’s 52 points placed him 16th amongst all 1990 born players (156 players in total) in points.  His 29 goals was 7th amongst 1989 born players.

– Killian Hutt’s 35 points placed him 23rd amongst all 1991 born players (149 players in total) in points.

– Brad Ross’ 26 points placed him 11th amongst all 1992 born players (107 players in total) in points.  His 119 penalty minutes were the most by any 1992 born player.

– Troy Rutkowski’s 15 points were 2nd overall amongst all 1992 born defensemen.  His 6 goals were the most by any 1992 born defensemen in the WHL.

– Radim Valchar’s 41 points were tied for the 4th best for all European imports of any age in the WHL.  (Milan Kytnar, SAS, 64 pts; Bostjan Golicic, CAL, 56 pts; Zdenek Okal, MH, 47 pts; Stepan Novotny, KEL, 41 pts).

That’s it for now…



  1. I’m with you on the Shaun Clouston bandwagon. It’s very rare that I root for another WHL team but right now it’s Medicine Hat all the way!!

  2. I agree, I wish the hawks had a place in the current postseason. This past week I was up in Edmonton for the red wings game(saw Bret Ponich at the mall). While I was there though I figured I should go see the very young oil kings in action against the powerhouse Calgary Hitman as they swept the battle of Alberta series. It sealed the deal on my need for a playoff atmosphere in the coliseum. The blow up bang bang sticks, the very large attendance, the oos and ahhhs of the almost goals and the big hits, it really shoved what I am missing in my face.

    I have yet to be present for a postseason run with the hawks in my life time and I have discovered that it is something I’ve missed out on. Crossing my fingers for next season.


  3. Hi Andy I would just like to say that I enjoy reading your blog but I have started my own blog. I was hoping that you would let this post go through so that maybe some of readers would like to check out my blog . I also would like you to if you would like to.

  4. I enjoy reading your blog. Thanks.

  5. p.s. are there any sort of internships in the winterhawks franchise that you know of or can maybe give me an email address of someone that would know? I’m really trying to get some experience and I think that sort of thing could be perfect and right up my alley. If not thanks anyways.

  6. Adam,
    the best bet would be to contact the Winter Hawks office by calling 503-238-6366, or by emailing them at hockey@winterhawks.com. You could also send them a regular mail with a resume’ and your intentions on being an intern.

    Hope that helps…


  7. Thanks that really does help, I’ve been on the hunt for an email address. Appreciate the help!


  8. Hello Andy,
    Thought I would let you know that Scott left today for the IHL to play the remaining season for the Muskegon Lumberjacks I know he still has fans in portland and thought you might be interested.
    Thanks Heather

  9. Thank you Heather for giving us a Scott update. He was a favorite of my young niece and I; when he left we missed seeing him on the ice in Portland. Best wishes to him as he continues his career.

    Thank you Andy for your hockey blog. My post regular season hockey withdrawals aren’t as severe when there’s hockey stuff to read.

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