Archive for November, 2008

Three Named to U-17 Teams

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on November 26, 2008 by Nathan Fournier

The Lewiston Maineiacs will have three players in the organization represent Canada at the World Under-17 Challenge.  Michael Chaput will be on Team Quebec’s roster.  Garrett Clarke was named to the Team Atlantic roster along with Maineiacs fourth round selection Travis Moore who’s playing with the Truro Bearcats of the MJAHL this season.

It’s good for these players to be playing at the highest level for their age group.  The tournament will take place in Port Alberni, British Columbia.  It runs from December 26th to January 4th.

This will cause a problem for Lewiston.  They might be down a defenseman for that stretch.  The World Junior Championships also take place in that same time frame.  Germany is back in the elite level and I wouldn’t be surprised if Denis Reul is selected.  That will leave the Maineiacs with Eric Gelinas, Michael Ward, Patrick Cusack, Sean Stagles, and Dany Coulombe as the defenseman that will return after Christmas.  It will be good experience for Coulombe who has looked good lately.  He has thrown them down twice already this year.
What will Ed Harding do to fill two defensive slots?  Lewiston plays five games between December 26th and January 4th.  I don’t know if they can bring Tom Michalik back?  He’s with the New England Huskies of the Eastern Junior Hockey League since being released.  Personally I think that’s highly unlikely because I believe Ed would want to give someone who’s playing Junior A or playing in Midget AAA a shot.  By this time of the season, it will be about giving players looks for next season.

Who knows, they might acquired a defense when the trade period opens up in the middle of December.  It’s not too early to look ahead because it will be December this time next week.

That’s My Take

(Nathan also started “The World of Junior Hockey Blog” and is a contributor to the Maine Hockey Journal His email is fourniern@students.nescom.edu.)

They are done with the Volts

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 17, 2008 by Nathan Fournier

I think everyone on the MAINEiacs organization is glad they don’t have to see the Drummondville Voltigeurs until the New Year.

For a team that I fully expected to be on the bottom of the Telus Central, they have proven me wrong.  Yannick Riendeau has been a great pick up for them along with Samson Mahbad.  Riendeau has won the QMJHL Player of the Week for the second straight week.

The biggest addition has been defenseman Dmitry Kulikov.  I spoke with Guy Boucher after the game on November 9th.

“He’s incredible, for me it’s been ten years in this league for me; I’ve coached (Mike) Ribeiro, (Derek) Brassard, and (Sidney) Crosby. He’s the second best total package behind Crosby,” said Boucher. “He’s a total player, he’s gritty, he hits, and he has incredible vision.” Boucher also mentioned he had a great shot.

You can read the rest of my thoughts on Kulikov here.

Getting Out to Fast Starts

If there was a sign that this team is turning around is the fact this past weekend they got out to a good lead.  It was tough to see they couldn’t hold onto the lead on Friday.  At the same time if teams are going to think it was a cake walk when they face Lewiston, the Maineiacs should use that use motivation.  At the start of each period, they should think the game

You have to give credit to Jonathan Connelly who was in net for the first time since the Home opener on September 19th.  On top of that, he was facing Rimouski, albeit an Oceanic club that was depleted with injuries.  The kid showed no signs of rust when he faced three breakaways.

More kudos goes to Dany Coulombe for the fight at the end of the contest.  The rookie stood up and sent a message to Guillaume Pelletier.  It’s nice to see a player that gets limited playing time making an impact like that.

When I looked at the four away games that Lewiston has before returning the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, it didn’t look to good that they would win two games.  They have Shawinigan Friday and Gatineau on Saturday.   They can win at Gatineau and they have defeated Shawinigan already this year.  Maybe this road trip will be better then expected.

The red hot Pirates made the Fire Alarm go off

The Portland Pirates invaded the Androscoggin Bank Colisee this past Friday, and the fire department had to be called in.  The way the Pirates are playing, I think the fire alarm in every building will be going off.  I wasn’t in attendance but from reading stories from different media outlets, it was a success for everyone.

The Pirates won, Stefan Chaput and Jonathan Paiement both got on the scoring sheet, and the Lewiston hockey fans got a taste of the AHL.  I did go see the Pirates when Manchester came to Portland earlier this year and they are an exciting team to watch.  Buffalo doesn’t always have the Crosby’s or Ovechkin’s in the system but have some great finds like a Nathan Gerbe.

In other AHL news, the Binghamton Senators resigned Pierre-Luc Faubert to a Professional Tryout Contract over the weekend and only to release him today.

Paquette and Chaput are Representing the MAINEiacs

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on November 10, 2008 by Nathan Fournier

Danick Paquette and Michael Chaput will be representing the Lewiston Maineiacs on the big stage.  Paquette will be replacing Logan MacMillan on the QMJHL roster for the ADT Canada-Russia ChallengeEd Harding made a call to the League, to get him on the roster.

“I made a couple of phone calls.  I was disappointed that he was not selected at first.  I voiced my opinion, very professionally, and said you have very good players here.  If it gets down and dirty with the Russian Team, you want someone like Danick Paquette out there helping you out,” said Harding.

Ed Harding stressed it’s an honor for everyone involved.

“The League called me up, and asked if was okay. I said is it okay? It’s an honor for Danick; it’s an honor for the Lewiston Maineiacs to have him represent us at that ADT Challenge.”

Michael Chaput will be joining the 29 players that are under 17 at Hockey Quebec’s evaluation camp in late November.  Out of the 30 players, only 22 will be selected to go to the World Under-17 Challenge in Port Alberni, British Columbia.  The tournament begins on December 29th to January 4th.

Ed doesn’t want to focus on Chaput statistics but see what he does against players his own age.

“He’s 16-years old; this is older men’s league, he’s done very well.  I don’t think you can look at the stats at this level (QMJHL).  Let’s see how he does against kids his own age.  The time we will be able to judge Chaput is after Christmas and as 17-year-old and as a 18-year-old,” said Harding.

His experience at the QMJHL level will do him wonders at the evaluation camp. “He’s going to be really good there. He has received a lot of ice time here and playing in all situations. He has gained a lot at the Major Junior level.”

Team Atlantic should announce their roster in a week or two where it’s expected Garrett Clarke will be named to the roster.   Maineiacs fourth round pick in 2008, Travis Moore, could also be named as he has 6 goals and 12 assists in 21 games with the Truro Bearcats of the MJAHL.

Stephan Hoyl Helps Canada East to Win Bronze

In Camrose, Alberta, Maineiacs 8th round pick in 2007, had goal and three assists in four games at the World Junior A Challenge.  He had three assists in the Bronze Medal game.  Team USA won Gold as they defeated Canada West 7-1.

Back on the Bus

Alexandre Picard was put on waivers late last weekend by the Columbus Blue Jackets and has cleared waivers.  He joins the Syracuse Crunch of the American Hockey League.  In other AHL news, Eric Castonguay was recalled to the Lowell Devils.  He was leading the Trenton Devils with five goals and nine assists in 10 contests.  The Binghamton Senators have released Pierre-Luc Faubert from his Professional Tryout Contract.  Faubert didn’t suit up for the Baby Sens.  He rejoins the Elmira Jackals of the ECHL where he has two goals and five helpers in ten games.

(Nathan also started “The World of Junior Hockey Blog” and is a contributor to the Maine Hockey Journal His email is fourniern@students.nescom.edu.)

Paquette Heating Up

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on November 4, 2008 by Nathan Fournier

It was a strong weekend for Danick Paquette as he had five goals in the split.  Is this a start of something for Paquette?  For the first month of the season, you didn’t know how long he will be in the game.  Over the weekend his intensity didn’t go down because he took a penalty or two that he shouldn’t have taken.

It’s not what you want from your Captain but that’s his style of play.  He will never change the way he plays because that what got him drafted.  That’s what the Atlanta Thrashers want to see him to annoy the other teammate.

Hopefully Paquette continues too have his strong play.

It’s November

In retail, once Halloween passes, stores start getting ready for Christmas.  In the QMJHL, trade rumors start popping up.  One hit the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles message board today

“I heard a rumor at Sunday’s game of an xmas deal that has all been confirmed and just waiting for the trade window to open the supposed deal would see Lewiston sending Dannik Paquette, Michael Ward and a draft pick(no word on what round) to Cape Breton in return for Mathieu Brodeur and Phillipe Fontaine.

Im guessing there is some fine print in there somewhere that Lewiston will send CB something on daft day or close to it in return for their 1st round pick.

If the deal does happen it’ll be much like last year with when Clendenning came here, Dannik will have to bury the hatchet with a lot of boys in that room as well as fans in the stands.

Like I pointed out this is still just a RUMOR but what are peoples views on it “

This rumor is very unlikely from the MAINEiacs point of view because it’s not what Lewiston is looking for in return.  Brodeur is a good player but our defense looks solid for the next few years.  If I was the General Manager of the team, I would look to add forwards and a high draft pick.

From a public relations stand point, it would be a nightmare trading a fan favorite and the captain.  Ed Harding won’t factor public relations into a trade offer.

On the other hand fore the Screaming Eagles, they are going for it this season.  Adding another all around forward and a two way defenseman will make them that much better.  Will they be willing to give up part of the farm system to get these two players is the question?

Other Tidbits

It’s nice to read that Mark Just is willing to buy Wendell Young’s share of the team.  In the Sun Journal Sunday it was reported that Young wants to sell his share of the club.

Pierre-Luc Faubert has signed a Professional Tryout Contract with the Binghamton Senators today.  He has 2 goals and 5 assists in 8 games with the Elmira Jackals of the ECHL.

The Neponset Valley River Rats which have Zach Phillips and Zach Shannon on the roster are ranked 10th in the latest Under 18 Major Midget National Rankings.  Phillips was second round selection and Shannon was a third round selection.  Later this month, there prep season will begin.  They are attending Lawrence Academy in Massachusetts.