GAME DAY: ‘Canes at Wheat Kings

2016-2017-game-day-preview-graphic-wheat-kingsgame13-brandonThe Match Up

WhoLethbridge Hurricanes at Brandon Wheat Kings
Where: Westman Communications Group Place
When: 6:30pm puck drop
Listen: 106.7 ROCK
Watch: WHL Live


‘Canes vs. Wheat Kings in 2015/16: 2-2-0-0
Last Regular Season Meeting: February 26th/2016 (‘Canes 5-2 in Lethbridge)

‘Canes Record: 5-5-1-1
‘Canes Home Record: 4-2-1-0
‘Canes Road Record: 1-3-0-1

Wheat Kings Record: 3-3-2-0
Wheat Kings Home Record: 
Wheat Kings Road Record: 1-1-1-0

‘Canes Leading Scorer: Ryley Lindgren (7G, 8A, 15P) & Brayden Burke (2G, 13A, 15P)
Warriors Leading Scorer: Three guys with 9 points

The Break Down

The Lethbridge Hurricanes wrap up a three-game East Division road trip tonight at 6:30pm Alberta time when they visit the Brandon Wheat Kings for the first time at Westman Communications Group Place.

The Hurricanes (5-5-1-1) are coming off a 3-1 defeat on Wednesday night in Moose Jaw against the Warriors. Tyler Wong scored the lone goal in the contest for the Hurricanes while Stuart Skinner bounced back making 29 saves earning third star honours. The loss for the Hurricanes was their fourth consecutive defeat – ‘Canes only lost four straight games once last year during the regular season.

The Wheat Kings (3-3-2-0) are the defending Western Hockey League Champions and the two-time defending Eastern Conference Champs. Brandon is off to a mediocre start having inserted a bunch of new faces having lost 11 players from their Championship roster from a year ago. The Wheaties are coming off a 4-3 overtime victory last Saturday over the Prince Albert Raiders.

Tonight is the first of four meetings between the Hurricanes and the Wheat Kings. The two teams split the four contests last year with each team winning once at home and once on the road. Tune in to 106.7 ROCK starting at 6:15pm for the pre-game show with Dustin Forbes.

What To Watch

Lethbridge Point of View

Better, Not Good, But Better: In the movie Miracle, Herb Brooks had a line that said, “Better…. not good…. but better.” That could basically sum up Wednesday nights game. It wasn’t good, but it was better that what we saw the night before. Hurricanes played a stingier game in a 3-1 loss to Moose Jaw, so that’s a good sign.

Sputtering Offence: The Hurricanes bread-and-butter last year was the power play and simply the dynamite offense that pumped home 304 goals, second in the WHL only to the Wheat Kings 316. Many anticipated that the offence was better this year, but through 12 games it’s been struggling. Still averaging 3.42 goals per game, but the ‘Canes have found twine just four times in the last three games while allowing 16.

Brandon Point of View

Gone, Gone, Gone: The Wheat Kings have lost 11 players from the WHL Championship team from a year ago – not just role players either. Four of Brandon’s top five scorers from last year have graduated. Jayce Hawryluk, Ivan Provorov, John Quenneville and Macoy Erkamps are all gone. The only remaining player from their top five scorers from last year is Nolan Patrick.

Allz New: It’s a new look Wheat Kings team. Not only do they have a new play-by-play broadcaster in Branden Crowe, they’ve got a new Head Coach (David Anning), new Assistant Coaches (Aaron Rome & Don MacGillivray) and a new General Manager (Grant Armstrong). All of this because Owner and Governor and former GM and Head Coach Kelly McCrimmon accepted the Assistant General Manager position with the NHL expansion Las Vegas _______ – who knows what they’ll be called!


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