Get caught up on Spring Camp with all the interviews from the weekend.
Tuesday, 27 May 2014
Thursday, 22 May 2014
The morning of Thursday, May 1st had young hockey players huddled at their computers, checking their phones and waiting for their name to be called at the WHL Bantam Draft. When Regina Pats Director of Scouting, Dale McMullin ascended to the podium to make the team’s first selection (13th Overall) of the Draft, the name called was out of character for the Blue and White. For the first time since the inception of the Bantam Draft in 1990, the Pats selected a goaltender in the first round. Langley, B.C.’s Jordan Hollett was the second goaltender picked in the opening round.
“When Ian Scott went (9th Overall to Prince Albert), another goalie I knew, that some goalies would be going pretty quick there,” said Hollett of being picked in the 13th slot. “I didn’t really know for sure that I was going (early), so it was a little bit of a change with Ian Scott going and I knew it was a matter of time.”
The Pats scouting staff is charged with building the team through the draft every year and for the young players selected it can be a life-changing event.
“It was a special moment, there was a whole bunch of excitement and a little bit of shock,” recounted Hollett. “You expect, almost, before the draft… I thought I was going to get drafted, but once it happens it’s not really something you can prepare yourself for.”
|Photo: Freeze Frame Photography|
Wednesday, 14 May 2014
In June of 2013, Morgan Klimchuk heard his name called by the Calgary Flames at 28th Overall in the NHL Entry Draft. It was a great moment for Klimchuk having grown up watching the Flames in the Stampede City. When fall came around and Flames Training Camp on the horizon is first on-ice professional experience would hit a delay as the Pats’ sniper suffered an injury at Pats Training Camp just days before he left for Calgary. Klimchuk returned to the Pats for the beginning of the WHL Regular Season and went on to post 74 points (30G, 44A), just two points off his career high despite only playing 57 games in the 2013-14 campaign. He also added five points in four playoff games against the Brandon Wheat Kings.
With the Pats season at an end, Klimchuk journeyed West to join the Flames’ AHL affiliate Abbotsford Heat for what would be the teams’ final games before departing for Glens Falls, New York this off-season. Before he could get into action with the Heat, Klimchuk was sidelined with a minor injury to once again delay his debut. The Pats’ leading scorer set aside frustration to take advantage of the extra time to observe how the game works at the pro level.
“It was good to watch a couple games when I was out. Obviously you never want to be hurt, I wanted to get into action as soon as possible. There were just some nagging things from the year that I wanted to make sure I was one hundred percent before making that jump (from pro to junior).”
|Photo: Keith Hershmiller/Regina Pats|
The Regina Pats season came to a disappointing end when they were swept from the WHL Playoffs by the Brandon Wheat Kings. With that end came new beginnings for several Pats players as they joined their NHL affiliate AHL teams on Amateur Tryout Contracts. Pats Captain Kyle Burroughs, a 7th Round selection of the New York Islanders, was the first Pat to get into professional action this spring. He suited up with the Islanders’ affiliate Bridgeport Sound Tigers.
“I got down there after a game one day, the next day I was practicing and the next day we had an eleven o’clock game so it happened really quickly,” explained Burroughs. “It was a good experience for me playing with guys like that. They’re always giving you tips to help you work on your game and develop you to the next level.”
|Photo: Puck Stopper Photography|