Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Wednesday News and Links

So it is nearly time to end this awful layoff from playoff hockey. No WHL games have been played since Calgary finished off Red Deer last Thursday April 11th. Portland and Kamloops both last played on April 10th. This means that when Friday's Game 1 rolls around, they will both had 8 days off.
Colin Smith

This 8 day rest period could not have been better timing for the Blazers. They were missing their top two regular season scorers: Colin Smith and Tim Bozon for most of the Division Semi-Final sweep over Kelowna. Word is, that Colin Smith is skating in practice and is free of concussion symptoms. Bozon has also practiced, but did not participate in full drills as he is still nursing his hand injury. Smith should be good to go in Game 1 and Bozon will look to make it back for Games 3 and 4 in Kamloops next week.

Tim Bozon
The two of them coming back is huge for Kamloops, who got past Kelowna last round in a 4 game sweep, but two of those games went to overtime. Even though the Cole Ully-Brendan Ranford-J.C. Lipon top unit has combined for 48 points this playoff, they could use the scoring support against the Hawks and their scoring depth.

Portland added defensive depth to their roster with second round 2012 Bantam pick Defenseman Keoni Texeira. Texeira, in his 15 year old season, probably won't see any action unless pressed into it by injuries on the defensive side.

Former Winterhawk Andrew Ference was in the news yesterday after word got out that his wife and daughters were near the site of the bombing at the Boston Marathon. Luckily they were far enough away from the blasts to escape harm. Ference has become one of the most visible athletes in Boston over his 5+ seasons in Bean-town.
Andrew Ference Hawk from 1995-99

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