Archive for Garrett Clarke

Boston doesn’t sign Reul

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on June 1, 2009 by Nathan Fournier

The Boston Herald is reporting the Boston Bruins won’t be signing Denis Reul.  The Bruins had until today to sign the 2007 5th round selection.  He will be eligible to enter the 2009 NHL Draft which will be held on June 26th-27.

Eric Gelinas did very well at the combine from all reports.  He finished in the top ten in two categories.

Pull strength top 10

1. Kyle Palmieri, Notre Dame, 309
2. Kenny Ryan, Boston College, 296
3. John Moore, Colorado College, 286
4. Josh Birkholz, Minnesota, 281
5. William Wrenn, Denver, 280
6. Jordan Caron, QMJHL, 279
7. Victor Hedman, Sweden, 276
8. Eric Gelinas, QMJHL, 269
9. Corban Knight, North Dakota, 267
10. Nick Leddy, Minnesota, 263

Fatigue index

1. Brayden McNabb, WHL, 37.1
2. Burke Gallimore, WHL, 39.0
3. Kenny Ryan, Boston College, 39.9
4. Taylor Beck, OHL, 40.4
5. Nazem Kadri, OHL, 40.7
6. Drew Shore, Denver, 40.8
7. Cassidy Mappin, WHL, 40.8
8. Mike Lee, Roseau and SCSU, 41.0
9. Mac Bennett, Michigan, 41.1
10. Eric Gelinas, QMJHL, 42.3

In other news, Samuel Carrier, who’s apart of the proposed deal with Quebec, will tryout for Canada’s Under-18 team.   Garrett Clarke who appears to heading to Halifax isn’t invited. The team will play in the Ivan Hlinka Tournament in August.  It’s the same tournament Jonathan Bernier won his Under-18 Gold Medal in his draft year.

Hockey Canada also announced the summer World Junior Camp roster.  No Lewiston Maineiacs are invited eight QMJHL players have been invited including Luke Adam, a Buffalo Sabres prospect.

Paul Byron who played for the Gatineau Olympiques, has signed with Buffalo Sabres.  Chances are he could be in Portland next season.

The Rumor Mill

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on May 22, 2009 by Nathan Fournier

I would say it’s that time of the year but isn’t alway this time of the year with this team?  There are two prominent trade rumors involving the Lewiston Maineiacs.

The first one involves Garrett Clarke heading to the Halifax Mooseheads.  Now I first heard this rumor in late April.  I knew nothing but Clarke name heading to Halifax.  Talking with a few people, it seems Clarke was unhappy in Lewiston and the team was unhappy about his play.

Willy Pavalov of the Halifax Chronicle is reporting one aspect of the information I’ve been told.   

It seems Clarke, 17, wasn’t happy in Lewiston and asked for a trade at the end of the season. A former Windsor area resident, Clarke’s preferred destination was obviously Halifax.

Now a 19 year old forward and a seventh round pick doesn’t seem a whole lot in return for a former first rounder and a potential first rounder in the 2011 NHL draft?  The only problem is the Maineiacs have no leverage in the deal.  If all accounts are correct, Clarke asked to be traded and his value goes down.

The Maineiacs are taking the Bill Belichick school of thought and not commenting on the situation, unless a trade has been made. 

The second trade rumor involves Danick Paquette, Patrick Cusack, Dominic Savoie, and Peter Delmas heading to the Remparts.  RDS first reported it today.  I think everyone believes Paquette is a gone from the Lewiston Maineiacs.

I find this rumor very intriguing in the whole Patrick Roy taking a position with the Colorado Avalanche saga.  My thought is he might not be getting the job, yet.   With Delmas’ struggles last season wouldn’t the Avalanche want Roy to work with him one on one all year long?  I also think Roy can keep Paquette in line.  Maybe Ray Bourque takes an assistant coaches position to learn the ropes this season.  The Denver Post reported Bourque will take Roy’s coaching duties in Quebec.

Bourque has held an assistant coaching job when his sons, Chris and Ryan, were at Cushing Academy.  I believe he was also a consultant to the Bruins coaching staff a few years ago.

By the way, the Remparts would send defenseman Samuel Carrier and forward Sébastien Trudeau the Maineiacs way.  High draft picks would be also involved according to RDS.

Carrier had four goals and five assists in 56 games as a 16-year-old.  Trudeau, a 17-year-old, had 19 goals and 22 assists in 68 games.  This would be a good rebuilding move for the team.  Okay, the stats don’t jump out, but these were young kids on an experience Remparts squad.  They were at the bottom of the depth chart which means less ice time.  If they come to Lewiston, there will be more ice time and the stats should jump up.

15 days.  That’s when the draft takes place and deals can happen.

Update: As I just finished this post, I notice Justin Pelletier is reporting the deal is confirmed involving Paquette, Delmas, Cusack and Savoie.

That’s My Take

(Nathan also covers the Maineiacs for the Maine Hockey Journal. He also started the World of Junior Hockey. His email is fourniern@students.nescom.edu.)

MAINEiacs Change The Top

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 15, 2009 by Mike Haggett

It was 5:30 pm Monday afternoon. I was sitting down to dinner with my wife and daughters when my cell phone rings. “Ed Harding was just fired” was the words out of the caller. Needless to say I abruptly excused myself from the table to get more information. At the end of the call, I realized that life was not going to be normal for a few days as others have called to talk about the change starting almost immediately after I ended the call. News spreads fast around town, and this news was too hot not to talk about. The emotion displayed to me by some was pretty incredible.

I want to be right out front with my comments here and say that Ed Harding is a very good hockey man. He didn’t work his way into the situation he did for nothing. I praised the man for the trades he worked at the draft in Sydney last June. Any general  manager who walks out of the first round with two of the best players (Garrett Clarke, Michael Chaput) and the best 17 year old available (Etienne Brodeur) certainly deserves a solid pat on the back. The deal that sent Kevin Marshall to the Quebec Remparts will go down as the trade that started the run for the next championship, and Harding deserves full credit for that. His last significant deal that sent Michael Ward to Cape Breton for Samuel Finn puzzled me a little thinking Harding could have got a little more from Screaming Eagles GM Mario Durocher out of that, in the design of an additional top-5 round pick other than the 5th rounder in 2010. Outside of that, Harding the GM really did a solid job in doing what needed to be done. While some have voiced frustration that Danick Paquette and Peter Delmas weren’t dealt, I will politely remind those that 18 year olds are worth more as 19 year olds, especially good ones. Harding was right in holding onto both as year is everything in junior hockey.

As a coach, the record stands for itself. Despite having great young talent to work with, it appeared at the onset of the season that the talent was handcuffed from the start in a defensive system that was better used with the talent in 2004-05 than 2008-09. Perhaps even Harding underestimated just how good the young horses he had in the stable. The bottom line is that the players just weren’t buying into what he was selling them. The last 11 games have been very trying on everyone in the organization and the Nation as no one likes to see long losing streaks, unless you are the Rimouski Oceanic tanking out to select Sidney Crosby with the top pick in the draft. You can’t fire 22 players as easily as you can the man at the top.

Long before the dismissal of Harding word was around of how players were frustrated with the way they were being treated for various reasons. The telling quote of the situation by MAINEiacs President & Governor Matt McKnight that was printed in Lewiston Sun Journal in a column by Justin Pelletier was this: “It’s about looking into the players’ eyes. A change needed to happen. It appeared that the players didn’t seem to have any fun coming to the rink anymore.” At the junior level, this is more fun for the players than it is a business for 95% of them, and it has to be presented that way. Enough said.

In comes Don MacAdam of whom brings in a tidal wave of low expectations and a ‘show me what you can do’ attitude to loosen up not only the players but the entire organization. MacAdam has already brought smiles and humor back to the forefront, and ‘fun’ will certainly be an adjective that will get more use. For a team that is 14-32, ‘fun’ is all it is about at this stage, and try to assemble some wins down the stretch.

It was announced that MacAdam would coach the remainder of the year and then re-evaluate the future after the season was over, and that is the fair way to approach the situation. Coaching changes in mid-season aren’t the most graceful positions to be in. Regardless of the reasons that the previous coach that was fired, there is a learning curve in this case for MacAdam to get to know the players, the organization, as well as the fans to make that determination of a longer term deal. It’s important for the organization to see results from MacAdam and see that he would be a good fit for the future plans. In this case of the state of the club, taking time and evaluating itself without haste is the right way to proceed. Rest assured that come draft day in June, this club will have a GM and head coach in place at the draft table.

As for the team, all the players are now starting with a clean slate. With a different man at the helm who is a tried and true teaching coach, the way one player has been playing could be a totally different player come March. It’s time to wipe our own slates in ourminds of what players used to play like and give it a few games to watch the new systems emerge.

Sit back, fire up the webcast this weekend or get over to the Flagship Cinema in Auburn and watch the hometown boys turn it around. ‘Fun’ is back, and so am I.

offthepost@lewistonhockey.com

More Moves

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 5, 2009 by Nathan Fournier

Last Tuesday night after the Gatineau Olympiques game, Ed Harding wouldn’t tip Justin Pelletier and I off if a move was imminent.  News came out Friday that the Lewiston Maineiacs have signed Adrien Lemay a goaltender from the Nipawin Hawks of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League (SJHL).

His stats were 13-11 with a 3.44 goals against average and a .910 save percentage.  From my quick math, he appeared in 28 games (4 games he didn’t record a decision) and has seen an average of 33.9 shots a night.

He looked pretty decent on Saturday night.  He made key saves in the first period and kept the team in it.  The fourth goal was soft but that was the only mistake he made.

Before yesterday’s game, Saint John radio announcer mentioned a trade would come down today in Rimouski.  He was right as they traded defenseman Alexandre Néron to the Rimouski Oceanic for a 2009 1st round pick.  They also picked up blueliner Jason Demers from the Victoriaville Tigres.

The biggest move of the day has been the Shawinigan Cataractes picking up Saint John Sea Dogs defenseman Alex Grant.  In return the Sea Dogs picked up Danick Gauthier, a 2nd round pick in 2009, and a 1st round pick in 2010.

He was the first ever selection of the Sea Dogs in 2005.  It’s a great pick up for the Cataractes.  Now what dos Drummondville Voltigeurs do to respond?  Both teams are battling it out for the Telus  Central Divisional Crown.  Shawinigan has 66 points and Drummondville has 65 points.

As I just posted this the Sea Dogs traded defenseman Pascal Amyot and their 1st round Import Draft to the Halifax Mooseheads for Halifax’s 1st pick in the Import Draft in 2009 and a 4th round selection in 2010.

3:30pm: The Rouyn-Noranda Huskies trade to the Rimouski Océanic Marc-André Bourdon, Matthew Dopud and Justin MacNaughton.

In return, the Rimouski Océanic trades to the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies the 1st round pick (acquired from Québec) of 2009, their 2nd round pick of 2009, the 3rd round pick (acquired from Québec) of 2009, their 7th round pick of 2009, their 1st round pick of 2010 and their 4th round pick of the 2010 entry draft.

The Acadie-Bathurst Titan trades to the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles  Brad Tesink.

In return, the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles trade to the Acadie-Bathurst Titan Olivier Dame-Malka.

Two Additions

The Maineiacs will get two blueliners back as Denis Reul is returning from the World Junior Championships in Ottawa. Garrett Clarke is returning from the World Under-17 Challenge that was held in British Columbia. Both players will be flying in tomorrow (Monday). Ed Harding is unsure if they will be in the line up on Tuesday night. “Garrett has a little longer haul back then Denis but we will see what kind of shape they are in.”

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.)

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.)

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.)

Thoughts on the Split

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 13, 2008 by Nathan Fournier

Facing one of the early surprises this season and getting two points out of the possible four is somewhat satisfying.  I did like what Ed Harding said after the game.  “We aren’t going have a huge celebration.  We are going to face that team on Sunday,” said Harding.  At the same time it was rough to see the team have their early struggles on Sunday.  The team did fight back to get within one.  You have to give them credit to get back into the contest.

Friday night we saw some real nice goals.  The set up between Alex Beaton and Maxime Gratchev for Eric Gelinas’ goal was one of the nicest set-ups I’ve seen.  Credit has to go to Gelinas also for the shot that was also a beauty.  How about Max Gratchev’s shorthanded tally?  When that one found the back of the net, I couldn’t believe it.  That was a seeing eye shot.  The offense was clicking.

Last year I question why Lucas LaBelle was always in the shootout but the kid has some moves.  “People were shocked last year when I picked him but it’s watching them doing their shootouts after practice.  Lucas is pretty crafty, that’s why we send him first,” said Harding.   Lucas LaBelle knew Antoine Tardif from their days in Acadie-Bathurst.  “After every practice we do the same thing in the shootouts.  It’s one of those moves that I always did on the pond back at home,” said Lucas LaBelle.

LaBelle was all over the ice against his former team.  “Both teams were hitting hard, the crowd got into it, we like to feed off the crowd’s momentum,” said LaBelle

Everyone was getting on Peter Delmas for his play after returning from Denver.  Some of the criticism was deserved.  Friday night he was rock solid.  He stopped breakaways at key points of the game.  As the game went on, he was like Boston Red Sox’s pitcher Jon Lester, he just kept getting as the game went on.  The Voltigeurs scored twice on the powerplay but you can’t blame him for those goals.  Harding knew Garrett Clarke’s holding penalty was a penalty.  “Garrett Clarke was holding the kid’s stick.  We know it, we saw it. What I am going to say about it?”  I had a perfect view of the play and I said to myself: “What’s the referee waiting for?”  Clarke’s penalty caused them to go down five on three and Dany Masse scored moments after.

Sunday the only bright other bright spot was some of the young guys stepping up to get the team back into it.  Ed Harding had some interesting points in today’s Sun Journal.

“Steeven Jacques, Dom Savoie and Pier-Oliver Morin really got us going,” Harding said. “They had a few good shifts, and I just kept putting them back out there. The other guys don’t want to play? We’ll play these younger guys.”

It will be interesting to see how much more ice time these guys get the next few games.  Could these kids get more confidence playing in front of the home crowd?

After going to see the Portland Pirates game on Saturday night and seeing physical hockey again.  I was brought back down to earth Sunday when the referees stepped in before Dominic Savoie and Mike Hoffman could dance.  It was disappointing to see the referees step in.  I read our friend Gilles Courteau was in attendance yesterday.

It’s That Time of the Month

It seems we get one juicy rumor a month.  This summer was Garrett Clarke and the start of the season was it Brett Gallant.  Hockey message boards are great to gathering information.  Sometimes someone wants to stir the pot.  This rumor wasn’t necessarily started on a message board but John Moore who does the play by play for the Mooseheads said the Maineiacs were going to be sold on Friday night.  He didn’t say who he heard it from.  Since then Mark Just has comeout and said the team isn’t for sale.  Why would Moore say that a week before the Mooseheads come to town?  Remember last year, the Fog Devils owner said the team wasn’t for sale, within two weeks the team was sold.

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.)