Monday, March 24, 2014

Dumba Back to Minnesota? and Other Winterhawks News

News shook the Twittersphere earlier today, when the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported that they were looking into the feasibility of calling up 19 year old Defenseman Mathew Dumba. After playing 13 games with the Wild earlier in the season and having his WHL rights traded to the Winterhawks, Dumba was sent down by the Wild.

Minnesota recently lost, former Tri City Americans Defenseman Clayton Stoner (2002-05)  for possibly the entirety of the season (10 games). This, to go along with Keith Ballard's (groin injury) absence, meant the Wild were down to 5 Defensemen. They called up Jonathon Blum (former Vancouver Giant 2005-09) from the AHL and started making phone calls to the NHL offices, to see if it would be possible to call up Dumba on an "emergency basis." Since he is under contract, but in the WHL, the Wild must be in a situation where they have under the requisite 6 D-men to qualify.

Blum was the first option over Dumba, because he has NHL experience and has played this season. No their D-men on their AHL affiliate have.

As long as Blum, Ryan Suter, Jared Spurgeon (former Spokane Chief 2005-10), Jonas Brodin, Marco Scandella and Nate Prosser stay healthy in these last 10 games or long enough for Ballard to return, Dumba appears to be staying put with the Winterhawks for what will be assuredly be a long playoff run.

In other Minnesota Wild news, they inked Swedish D-man Gustav Oloffson to a 3 year entry level contract. This is news for Hawks fans because Oloffson's WHL rights are owned by Portland and reportedly Minnesota had been pressuring him to move to the WHL from Colorado College, where he spent this past season (Colorado's season is over). Oloffson will move on to play in the AHL. He will be a hockey 20 year old next season, otherwise there would surely be rumors that he would come to play in Portland.

Moving on to news regarding the 7 game series with Vancouver: 16 year old Giant's Forward Ty Ronning is reportedly skating after suffering from flu like symptoms and hopes to be back in the lineup for Game 3 Tuesday. Missing from practice was veteran Goalie Jared Rathjen, who took a puck to the face while seated on the bench during Saturday's Game 2. 15 year old Ryan Kubic will probably take his place backing up the red hot Payton Lee Tuesday.

Not much news out there concerning Paul Bittner's absence from the last 2 periods of Game 2 for the Hawks. Alex Schoenborn took Bittner's place on the top line, while Alex was replaced by Adam De Champlain on the "checking line." One would think, Layne Viveiros may continue to be scratched, as he had an awful Game 1 and Josh Hanson, replaced him and played much better.

Elsewhere in the WHL's Western Conference, Victoria, Seattle and Kelowna also carry 2-0 series leads. Victoria got another OT winner, this time from Logan Nelson on the backhand.

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