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Monday, October 04, 2010

Dogs get Honorable Mention in Canada-wide Rankings, "Around the Pound" live tonight on THE PEAK, from 6pm to 7pm, Frank Riddle match penalty, and suspension tough to take...

The Canadian Junior Hockey League (CJHL) announced today its Weekly Top 20 rankings in conjunction with NHL Central Scouting. Last week’s rankings and the leagues in which the teams belong to are in parenthesis.
The CJHL Weekly Top 20 as of Monday, October 4th, 2010:

1. (1) Markham Waxers (OJHL)
2. (8) Humboldt Broncos (SJHL)
3. (3) Lloydminster Bobcats (AJHL)
4. (13) Wellington Dukes (OJHL)
5. (5) Pembroke Lumber Kings (CJHL)
6. (5) Fort McMurray Oil Barons (AJHL)
7. (4) Brockville Braves (CJHL)
8. (14) Soo Thunderbirds (NOJHL)
9. (6) Salmon Arm Silverbacks (BCHL)
10. (7) Metro Marauders (MHL)
11. (10) Langley Chiefs (BCHL)
12. (19) Vaughan Vipers (OJHL)
13. (HM) OCN Blizzard (MJHL)
14. (15) Georgetown Raiders (OJHL)
15. (NR) Bonnyville Pontiacs (AJHL)
16. (NR) Swan Valley Stampeders (MJHL)
17. (NR) Woodstock Slammers (MHL)
18. (16) Fort William North Stars (SIJHL)
19. (NR) Yorkton Terriers (SJHL)
20. (20) Le College Francais de Longueuil (LHJAAAQ)

Honorable mention goes to the Alberni Valley Bulldogs (BCHL), Fort Frances Lakers (SIJHL), Blind River Beavers (NOJHL), Carleton Place Canadians (CJHL) and the Miramichi Timberwolves (MHL).
The rankings are based upon a variety of factors which includes the league in which the teams belong to, their winning percentage, their win-loss record, total points accumulated, their goals-for versus goals-against ratio, amongst other factors.

The CJHL is an amalgamation of eleven Junior A hockey leagues from across Canada. More information on the CJHL can be found by clicking on the league website.

"Around the Pound" the Bulldog Hockey Show on 93.3 The Peak FM goes tonight from 6pm to 7pm.

Tonight's guest list, in order of appearance (as always, subject to change)

Bulldogs Head Coach and GM Paul Esdale

Bulldogs Players Casey Bailey and Brandon Adams

Prince George Spruce Kings Play-by-Play voice Ron Gallo

And last but not least the ever-popular broadcast highlights from the weekend.

Send your questions in for me or my guests by clicking here

Moving on....

I have been "fired up" about this since Saturday night. I tried to give myself the 24 cooling off period to see if I still felt as strongly about it all afterwards....If anything I have just heated up more.

It's really hard to call this whole situation or sequence of events anything but hard to take. I have thought of other ways to describe it, but I keep downgrading it and that is the most flattering thing I can come up with. The other descriptions are a little more scathing, and I don't want to go too far in that direction.

Editorials/Opinions such as this never go over well, that's why I don't do them very often. The opposition gets upset with me, the league office probably gets upset with me, some of my colleagues get fired up with me, I'm branded a whiner, a crybaby, etc.

That's ok though.

I'm sure there is right now - or there most certainly will be - another situation or situations like this throughout the season for another team and another player somewhere else in the league. And when that happens any good family member/team mate/coach/fan/broadcaster etc of the next player will then know exactly where I'm coming from with THIS one.

I'm more "fired up" for Frank Riddle, than I am for any other reason. This is a 20 year old player trying desperately to get a scholarship in his final year of eligibility. And he's very close to realizing that goal. He won't realize it not playing though.

He had the first FIVE games of the season taken away from him by a blindside blow to the head by Scott Renner in the season opener in Powell River.

15 minutes after laying motionless on the ice, he's stretchered out and gone in an ambulance to the hospital.

This was all fresh off of the announcement regarding the Junior A supplement, which includes this:

"The Junior A Supplement has been created to protect junior-aged hockey players by addressing actions such as Blows to the Head, Dangerous Hits .... The supplement increases team, coach and player accountability through the tracking of repeat offenders, increased suspensions and significant financial penalties. It builds on the progressive regulations undertaken over the past decade by the participating Leagues and Branches to reduce bullying and violence from Junior A Hockey in Canada. "

While the Powell River Kings have made it clear that they thought the hit was clean - through a phone call to me the following day, and through comments made by Kent Lewis in his pre-game interview Thursday night in Alberni - found here  at least the BCHL found it dirty enough that they called it a "Blow to the Head" see HERE 

I'm not roasting Kent either as of course he's entitled to his opinion just as much as I am.

Doesn't seem clean to me in the least, and the league didn't apparently didn't think so either . BUT, does two games sound like an" increased suspension, and addressing of an action" as the supplement states?

My two cents? Not really. Again, the league disciplinarians have their own opinions

I already put in my two cents about considering a high hit in the SJHL just bought a player a 16, yes SIXTEEN GAME suspension.

This all seems especially tough to take and all very unfair when Saturday night comes around. The game referee Jarrett Taylor saw fit to penalize Frank Riddle with a five minute major and MATCH PENALTY for checking from behind on a hit on Nanaimo's Brayden Jaw.

I don't argue the hit from behind the call. I don't argue 5 minute major call as their was an injury on the play.

However - one must know that said injury was so severe that Jaw was back on the ice, two minutes into the power play.

A far cry from 15 minutes motionless on the ice, a stretcher and an ambulance.

So in summary - Riddles loses 5 games and 3 weeks. Scott Renner loses 2 games. Brayden Jaw loses two minutes, Frank Riddle loses 3 more games.

Does that sound fair, right, just, etc to you?

Spare me the life ain't fair comments. We have league executive to hold up the law and make things fair. We have game referees to uphold the law, and make things fair.

I think Frank Riddle is paying a pretty unfair price right now.

I've been told the league can't review match penalties. I hope that is incorrect but I don't understand how the Match Penalties work through the BCHL, BC Hockey, Hockey Canada, etc.

The final point could be that the league nor the officials are to blame. The system is to blame.

If match penalties aren't reviewable, holy smokes does that ever put a huge amount of power, and a huge amount of responsibility, into the hands of the game officials. And no, I'm not going to rake the refs over the coals. It's a thankless job. You can't play the game without them. Some of them are no where near ready to be calling Games at the Junior A level. Remember it's not THEIR fault that they are in there before they are ready. There is a shortage of officials from the top to the bottom. Who would ever want to be a referee? The pay isn't great, the travel is long, the physical toll is tough, and you can NEVER win when you make or don't make a call one way or another.

Here's hoping there can be some middle ground between what the league deems suspension worthy after carefully reviewing video, and what a referee can call in the spur of the moment during the game with zero review at all.

And here's hoping a game official doesn't make a poor call and give one of the premier players in the league a match penalty like the one Frank Riddle was given. The league can't review it, and that marquee player is gonzo for three games. Even if the player fouled on the other end of that hit is on his feet two minutes later. Maybe the argument is based on intent, not on result. A whole different ball of wax. In the end I feel for the officials.


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