Team USA Announces Roster for the World Junior Championships

As is always the case with tournaments such as this, sometimes who is left off the roster draws more attention than who makes the roster. It is no different this year with the Americans as multiple 50 goal scorer Alex DeBrincat (Erie Otters) did not make the final cut. The questions, and controversy, began almost immediately.

American General Manager Jim Johannson had this to say”

“We’re excited about this group of players and the way in which they will maximize the style of hockey that head coach Bob Motzko wants the team to play. The talent level in the United States is among the best in the world and the difficulty we had identifying this year’s roster speaks to that. These players earned their way on to this roster and we’re looking forward to the tournament getting underway.”

Alex DeBrincat of the Erie Otters. Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images.
Alex DeBrincat of the Erie Otters. Photo by Terry Wilson / OHL Images.

With that said, the focus then should be on who is on the roster. Two OHL’ers made the American roster: Goaltender Tyler Parsons (London Knights) and forward Jeremy Bracco (Kitchener Rangers)

The Americans also named their leadership group. Luke Kunin (University of Wisconsin) will serve as Captain while Colin White (Boston College) and Charlie McAvoy (Boston University) will serve as Alternates.

Goaltenders

Tyler Parsons (London Knights, OHL)

Jake Oettinger (Boston University, HEA)

Joseph Woll (Boston College, HEA)

Defence

Ryan Lindgren (University of Minnesota, Big 10)

Jack Ahcan (St Cloud State, NCHC)

Caleb Jones (Portland Winterhawks, WHL)

Casey Fitzgerald (Boston College, HEA)

Adam Fox (Harvard University, ECAC)

Charlie McAvoy (Boston University, HEA)

Joe Cecconi (University of Michigan, Big 10)

Forwards

Luke Kunin (University of Wisconsin, Big 10)

Tanner Laczynski (Ohio State, Big 10)

Patrick Harper (Boston University, HEA)

Jordan Greenway (Boston University (HEA)

Joey Anderson (University of Minnesota Duluth, NCHC)

Erik Foley (Providence College, HEA)

Jeremy Bracco (Kitchener Rangers, OHL)

Colin White (Boston College, HEA)

Clayton Keller (Boston University, HEA)

Troy Terry (University of Denver, NCHC)

Kieffer Bellows (Boston University, HEA)

Jack Roslovic (Manitoba Moose, AHL)

Tage Thompson (University of Connecticut, HEA)

OHL Announces Top Performers of the Month for November

Toronto, ON – The Ontario Hockey League today announced the Top OHL Performers of the Month for regular season games played in November 2016, including Erie Otters forwards Alex DeBrincat and Taylor Raddysh, Otters blueliner Darren Raddysh, Kingston Frontenacs rookie Linus Nyman and London Knights goaltender Tyler Parsons.

OHL Co-Players of the Month – Alex DeBrincat, Taylor Raddysh (Erie Otters):
Erie Otters forwards in Chicago Blackhawks prospect Alex DeBrincat and Tampa Bay Lightning prospect Taylor Raddysh have been named OHL Co-Players of the Month for November. Both with 27 points over 12 games, DeBrincat and Raddysh steered the Otters to a 9-2-1-0 mark in the month of November.

DeBrincat recorded 14 goals, 13 assists and 27 points over 12 contests, producing points in 10 of those games. His month was headlined by a pair of five point efforts with the first coming in a 7-3 win over the Kitchener Rangers on November 5th that included three goals and two assists. DeBrincat capped off the month on Tuesday, producing three goals and two assists in a 9-2 win over the Mississauga Steelheads. The Farmington Hills, Mich. native was named first star of the game on three different occasions in November and currently leads the league in goals with 26 along with 25 assists for 51 points in 23 games this season. He was Chicago’s second round (39th overall) pick in the 2016 NHL Draft.

Raddysh, who was also the OHL Player of the Month in October, registered 12 goals, 15 assists and 27 points over 12 games to go with a plus/minus rating of plus-13. The Caledon, Ont. native produced points in 11 of his 12 outings, highlighted by back-to-back four-point performances on November 4th and 5th in wins over Mississauga and Kitchener. He finished the month of November with five points (3-2–5) in a 9-2 win over Mississauga on Tuesday. The 18-year-old currently leads the OHL in scoring with 23 goals, 32 assists and 55 points over 24 games along with a plus/minus rating of plus-34. He was Tampa Bay’s second round (58th overall) pick in the 2016 NHL Draft.

OHL Defenceman of the Month – Darren Raddysh (Erie Otters):
Veteran Erie Otters rearguard Darren Raddysh is the OHL Defenceman of the Month for November after leading OHL blueliners with four goals, 16 assists and 20 points over 12 contests. Raddysh’s outstanding month continued a 16-game point streak, tying his own Otters franchise record for defencemen while surpassing Adam Pelech (129, 2010-14) for fourth in Otters all-time points by a defenceman in the process. The older of the Raddysh brothers on the Otters, Darren’s month was headlined by a career-high four point (1-3–4) effort in a 7-4 win over Mississauga on November 4th. Five of his 12 November contests were multi-point efforts, capped by a three-point (1-2–3) outing in Tuesday’s 9-2 win over the Mississauga Steelheads.

A 20-year-old native of Caledon, Ont., Raddysh is currently in his fifth season with the Otters after being a fifth round (84th overall) pick by the club in 2012. He attended training camp with the San Jose Sharks this past September. Raddysh is currently tied for the OHL lead in scoring among defencemen with six goals, 22 assists and 28 points over 20 games.

 OHL Rookie of the Month – Linus Nyman (Kingston Frontenacs):
Draft eligible Kingston Frontenacs forward Linus Nyman is the OHL Rookie of the Month for November after recording eight goals, two assists and 10 points over 11 contests. The 17-year-old Finnish winger had points in seven of his 11 November contests including three different two-goal efforts. Nyman scored twice in a 4-1 win over the Guelph Storm on November 6th before doing so against the Sarnia Sting in a 5-4 road win on November 12th. Nyman earned second star honours, scoring twice in a 5-3 loss in Sudbury on November 20th.

A native of Helsinki, Finland, Nyman was Kingston’s first round (53rd overall) selection in the 2016 CHL Import Draft. He is third in Frontenacs team scoring and is currently second among OHL rookies with 14 goals, five assists and 19 points in 25 games.

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Vaughn OHL Goaltender of the Month – Tyler Parsons (London Knights):
Calgary Flames prospect Tyler Parsons of the London Knights is the Vaughn OHL Goaltender of the Month for November after going 6-0-0-1 with a 1.83 goals-against-average and a .939 save percentage over seven games. Parsons’ standout November was headlined by a 30-save shutout performance in a 7-0 win over Kingston on November 11th. He was solid once again on November 23rd, earning second star honours with 34 saves in a 2-1 shootout loss in Owen Sound.

A native of Chesterfield, Mich., Parsons is currently 8-1-1-1 on the season, sitting second in the OHL with a 2.39 goals-against-average to go with a .917 save percentage and two shutouts over 11 games. The 19-year-old was a second round (54th overall) pick by the Calgary Flames this past summer.

2016-17 OHL Performers of the Month:

Player of the Month:
November – Alex DeBrincat/Taylor Raddysh (Erie Otters)
October – Taylor Raddysh (Erie Otters)

Defenceman of the Month:
November – Darren Raddysh (Erie Otters)
October – Mathieu Henderson (Flint Firebirds)

Rookie of the Month:
November – Linus Nyman (Kingston Frontenacs)
October – Ryan Merkley (Guelph Storm)

Vaughn Goaltender of the Month:
November – Tyler Parsons (London Knights)
October – Troy Timpano (Erie Otters)

Knights’ Tyler Parsons named Vaughn CHL Goaltender of the Week

Toronto, ON – The Canadian Hockey League today announced that 2016 NHL Draft prospect Tyler Parsons of the London Knights is the Vaughn CHL Goaltender of the Week for the playoff week ending May 15 after posting a 2-0-0-0 record including one shutout victory with a goals-against-average of 2.44 and save percentage of .896.

Parsons made 43 saves in two games of the OHL Championship Series last week backstopping the Knights to their fourth Robertson Cup in franchise history following a 4-0 series win over the Niagara IceDogs.  He stopped 25 shots in Game 3 last Monday helping the Knights earn a 6-5 overtime victory, then stopped all 18 shots he faced in Wednesday’s Game 4 earning second star honours in the 1-0 shutout win.  Parsons and the Knights will now compete in the 2016 MasterCard Memorial Cup in Red Deer opening competition on Friday May 20 against the host Rebels.

Tyler Parsons of the London Knights. Photo by Terry Wilson/OHL Images.
Tyler Parsons of the London Knights. Photo by Terry Wilson/OHL Images.

An 18-year-old from Chesterfield, Michigan, Parsons is playing in his second career OHL season with the Knights and is ranked third among North American goaltenders by NHL Central Scouting for the 2016 NHL Draft.  During the 2016 OHL Playoffs, Parsons led all netminders with a 16-1-1-0 record along with a goals-against-average of 2.15 and save percentage of .925.

Also considered for the award this week was Landon Bow of the Seattle Thunderbirds who posted a 1-1-1-0 record in the final week of the WHL Championship Series against the Brandon Wheat Kings with a goals-against-average of 3.33 and save percentage of .903, and Chase Marchand of the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies who won once in two starts with a goals-against-average of 3.37 and save percentage of .828.

2015-16 Vaughn CHL Post-Season Goaltenders of the Week:

May 9 – May 15: Tyler Parsons (London Knights)
May 2 – May 8: Jordan Papirny (Brandon Wheat Kings)
Apr. 25 – May 1: Tyler Parsons (London Knights)
Apr. 18 – Apr. 24: Landon Bow (Seattle Thunderbirds)
Apr. 11 – Apr. 17: Chase Marchand (Rouyn-Noranda Huskies)
Apr. 4 – Apr. 10: Alex Nedeljkovic (Niagara IceDogs)
Mar. 28 – Apr. 3: Samuel Montembeault (Blainville-Boisbriand Armada)
Mar. 21 – Mar. 27: Chase Marchand (Rouyn-Noranda Huskies)

2015-16 Vaughn CHL Regular Season Goaltenders of the Week:

Mar. 14 – Mar. 20: Reilly Pickard (Acadie-Bathurst Titan)
Mar. 7 – Mar. 13: Landon Bow (Seattle Thunderbirds)
Feb. 29 – Mar. 6: Connor Ingram (Kamloops Blazers)
Feb. 22 – Feb. 28: Devin Williams (Erie Otters)
Feb. 15 – Feb. 21: Zach Sawchenko (Moose Jaw Warriors)
Feb. 8 – Feb. 14: Leo Lazarev (Ottawa 67’s)
Feb. 1 – Feb. 7: Taz Burman (Swift Current Broncos)
Jan. 25 – Jan. 31: Luke Opilka (Kitchener Rangers)
Jan. 18 – Jan. 24: Jordan Papirny (Brandon Wheat Kings)
Jan. 11 – Jan. 17: Zach Sawchenko (Moose Jaw Warriors)
Jan. 4 – Jan. 10: Michael DiPietro (Windsor Spitfires)
Dec. 28 – Jan. 3: Étienne Montpetit (Val-d’Or Foreurs)
Dec. 14 – Dec. 20: Callum Booth (Quebec Remparts)
Dec. 7 – Dec. 13: Jack Flinn (Mississauga Steelheads)
Nov. 30 – Dec. 6: Ty Edmonds (Prince George Cougars)
Nov. 23 – Nov. 29: Carter Hart (Everett Silvertips)
Nov. 16 – Nov. 22: Keven Bouchard (Baie-Comeau Drakkar)
Nov. 9 – Nov. 15: Devin Williams (Erie Otters)
Nov. 2 – Nov. 8: Etienne Montpetit (Val-d’Or Foreurs)
Oct. 26 – Nov. 1: Tyler Parsons (London Knights)
Oct. 19 – Oct. 25: Adin Hill (Portland Winterhawks)
Oct. 12 – Oct. 18: Julio Billia (Chicoutimi Sagueneens)
Oct. 5 – Oct. 11: Coleman Vollrath (Victoria Royals)
Sept. 28 – Oct. 4: Louis-Philip Guindon (Rimouski Oceanic)
Sept. 21 – Sept. 27: Zack Bowman (Flint Firebirds)

CHL Leagues

OHL Announces 2015-16 Awards Finalists

Toronto, ON – The Ontario Hockey League today announced the finalists for seven of the league’s major awards for the 2015-16 regular season.

OHL

Six of the seven awards are voted on by OHL Member Teams including Rookie of the Year, Overage Player of the Year, Most Sportsmanlike Player of the Year, Coach of the Year, Goaltender of the Year, and Defenceman of the Year.  Teams were asked to submit one nominee from their club for consideration on the ballot and were not permitted to vote for the player from their own hockey club.  The first stage of voting was by conference only with the top three players from each conference making the final ballot which is voted on by all 20 OHL General Managers.

All finalists for the Red Tilson Trophy were also nominated by the Member Teams of the Ontario Hockey League as their Most Outstanding Player for the 2015-16 regular season.  The Red Tilson Trophy is voted on by the sports writers and broadcasters in the OHL.

2015-16 OHL Awards Finalists:

Rookie of the Year / Emms Family Award Finalists:

Cam Dineen (North Bay Battalion)
Michael DiPietro (Windsor Spitfires)
Max Jones (London Knights)
Boris Katchouk (Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds)
Alex Nylander (Mississauga Steelheads)
Matthew Strome (Hamilton Bulldogs)

Overage Player of the Year / Leo Lalonde Memorial Trophy Finalists:

Aaron Berisha (London Knights)
Jack Flinn (Mississauga Steelheads)
Hunter Garlent (Peterborough Petes)
Gabe Guertler (Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds)
Kevin Labanc (Barrie Colts)
Devin Williams (Erie Otters)

Most Sportsmanlike Player of the Year / William Hanley Trophy Finalists:

Mike Amadio (North Bay Battalion)
Eric Cornel (Peterborough Petes)
Christian Dvorak (London Knights)
Taylor Raddysh (Erie Otters)
Blake Speers (Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds)
Spencer Watson (Kingston Frontenacs)

Coach of the Year / Matt Leyden Trophy Finalists:

Stan Butler (North Nay Battalion)
Dale Hawerchuk (Barrie Colts)
Kris Knoblauch (Erie Otters)
Paul McFarland (Kingston Frontenacs)
Rocky Thompson (Windsor Spitfires)
Mike Van Ryn (Kitchener Rangers)

Goaltender of the Year Award Finalists:

Mackenzie Blackwood (Barrie Colts)
Michael McNiven (Owen Sound Attack)
Alex Nedeljkovic (Niagara IceDogs)
Tyler Parsons (London Knights)
Jake Smith (North Bay Battalion)
Devin Williams (Erie Otters)

Defenceman of the Year / Max Kaminsky Trophy Finalists:

Jakob Chychrun (Sarnia Sting)
Travis Dermott (Erie Otters)
Cam Dineen (North Bay Battalion)
Roland McKeown (Kingston Frontenacs)
Mikhail Sergachev (Windsor Spitfires)
Mitchell Vande Sompel (Oshawa Generals)

Most Outstanding Player of the Year / Red Tilson Trophy Finalists:

Barrie – Kevin Labanc
Erie – Devin Williams
Flint – Will Bitten
Guelph – James McEwan
Hamilton – Niki Petti
Kingston – Roland McKeown
Kitchener – Ryan MacInnis
London – Mitch Marner
Mississauga – Alex Nylander
Niagara – Jordan Maletta
North Bay – Mike Amadio
Oshawa – Anthony Cirelli
Ottawa – Leo Lazarev
Owen Sound – Santino Centorame
Peterborough – Hunter Garlent
Saginaw – Mitchell Stephens
Sarnia – Pavel Zacha
Sault Ste. Marie – Zach Senyshyn
Sudbury – Dmitry Sokolov
Windsor – Christian Fischer

The 2016 OHL Awards Ceremony takes place on Tuesday June 7 at the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto, however award recipients will be announced periodically throughout the remainder of the 2016 OHL Playoffs.  Additional player awards to be announced include Humanitarian of the Year, Academic Players of the Year, and the 2015-16 Mickey Renaud Captain’s Trophy recipient.

OHL Announces Top Performers of the Month for March

OHL

Toronto, ON – The Ontario Hockey League today announced the Top OHL Performers of the Month for regular season games played in March 2016, including Barrie Colts forward Andrew Mangiapane, Windsor Spitfires defenceman Mikhail Sergachev, Hamilton Bulldogs rookie Matthew Strome, and London Knights goaltender Tyler Parsons.

OHL Player of the Month – Andrew Mangiapane (Barrie Colts):

Calgary Flames prospect Andrew Mangiapane has been named the OHL Player of the Month for March, leading all players with 22 points, including seven goals and 15 assists in nine contests. Signed to an NHL contract by the Flames on Wednesday, Mangiapane’s magnificent March was headlined by a run of seven straight multi-point performances, including back-to-back four point nights. The speedy winger had a goal and three assists in an 8-1 win over the Owen Sound Attack on March 9th before duplicating that stat line two nights later in a 7-3 win over the Sudbury Wolves on March 11th. Mangiapane closed out the season with a goal and three assists in an 11-4 triumph over Sudbury on March 19th. In total, Mangiapane received star of the game recognition four times, being honoured as first star on three occasions for the Central Division champs.

A native of Bolton, ON, Mangiapane became the fourth player in Colts history to record back-to-back 100 point seasons this past month, also scoring his 50th of the campaign in a win over the Peterborough Petes on March 12th. Formerly signed by the Colts as a free agent at the start of the 2013 season, Mangiapane has points in 30 of his 33 games since January 1st. He was Calgary’s sixth round (166th overall) pick in the 2015 NHL Draft.

OHL Defenceman of the Month – Mikhail Sergachev (Windsor Spitfires):

Draft eligible Windsor Spitfires blueliner Mikhail Sergachev is the OHL’s Defenceman of the Month for March after recording three goals, seven assists and 10 points in eight contests along with a plus/minus rating of plus-6. The 17-year-old finished the regular season on a seven game point streak, one that includes a pair of multi-point efforts in wins on March 17th and 18th. Sergachev recorded a goal and two assists in a 6-4 win over the Kitchener Rangers on the 17th before following that up with a pair of helpers in a 6-1 win over the Saginaw Spirit on the 18th. Two of the 6’3″, 206Ib. blueliner’s three goals on the month came on the powerplay as the Spitfires wrapped up the season with a record of 40-21-6-1, collecting points in their final four contests.

A native of Nizhnekamsk, Russia, Sergachev led OHL defencemen with 17 goals on the season, adding 40 assists for 57 points, good for third amongst OHL rearguards. Sergachev scored eight powerplay goals, helping Windsor finish the season with the league’s third-best man advantage at 23.6%. He was the 10th ranked skater in NHL Central Scouting’s Midterm Draft Rankings released in mid-January before competing in the 2016 BMO CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game in Vancouver.

OHL Rookie of the Month – Matthew Strome (Hamilton Bulldogs):

Rookie Hamilton Bulldogs winger Matthew Strome is the OHL’s Rookie of the Month for March after he recorded four goals, four assists and eight points in seven games. Strome’s month was headlined by a two goal, one assist performance in a 5-3 win over the Guelph Storm on March 5th. The 6’3″, 187Ib. left-winger had points in six of his seven March contests, including goals on March 3rd against Peterborough and March 19th against Kingston.

A native of Mississauga, ON, Strome led Bulldogs rookies in scoring with 16 goals, 22 assists and 38 points in 61 games. His 38 points are the most by a 16-year-old rookie in Bulldogs all-time franchise history since Mike Roelefsen’s 40 in 2003-04. Strome will be eligible for the 2017 NHL Draft and was Hamilton’s first round (8th overall) pick in the 2015 OHL Priority Selection.

Vaughn OHL Goaltender of the Month – Tyler Parsons (London Knights):

Draft eligible London Knights goaltender Tyler Parsons has been named the OHL’s Goaltender of the Month for March, going 6-1-0-0 with a 1.69 goals-against average and a .941 save percentage over seven appearances. The 18-year-old strung together six straight wins to start the month as part of an 11-game trend dating back to February 15th. Parsons scored three straight wins over Midwest Division opponents in Erie and Kitchener (twice) from March 3-8, turning aside 77 of the 81 shots he faced over those contests. He has played to a record of 13-3-0-0 since February 1st, helping the Knights finish the season with a record of 51-14-2-1 for second in the division.

A native of Chesterfield, MI, Parsons led all OHL goaltenders with a 2.33 goals-against average and helped earn the club the Dave Pinkney Trophy as the Knights allowed the league’s fewest goals against with 182.  Parsons played to a 37-9-2-1 record with four shutouts and finished tied for first with a .921 save percentage to help the Knights record at least 50 wins for the third time in the last 10 years. Eligible for the 2016 NHL Draft, Parsons was signed by the Knights as a free agent at the beginning of the 2014 season.

2015-16 OHL Top Performers of the Month:

 Player of the Month:
March – Andrew Mangiapane (Barrie Colts)
February – Mitchell Marner (London Knights)
January – Kevin Labanc (Barrie Colts)
December – Brendan Lemieux (Windsor Spitfires)
November – Dylan Strome (Erie Otters)
October – Alex DeBrincat (Erie Otters)

 Defenceman of the Month:

March – Mikhail Sergachev (Windsor Spitfires)
February – Jakob Chychrun (Sarnia Sting)
January – Rasmus Andersson (Barrie Colts)
December – Cam Dineen (North Bay Battalion)
November – Travis Dermott (Erie Otters)
October – Vili Saarijarvi (Flint Firebirds)

Rookie of the Month:

March – Matthew Strome (Hamilton Bulldogs)
February – Alexander Nylander (Mississauga Steelheads)
January – Cam Dineen (North Bay Battalion)
December – Cam Dineen (North Bay Battalion)
November – Alexander Nylander (Mississauga Steelheads)
October – Alexander Nylander (Mississauga Steelheads)

Vaughn

Vaughn Goaltender of the Month:
March – Tyler Parsons (London Knights)
February – Jeremy Helvig (Kingston Frontenacs)
January – Michael Giugovaz (Guelph Storm)
December – Devin Williams (Erie Otters)
November – Mackenzie Blackwood (Barrie Colts)
October – Lucas Peressini (Kingston Frontenacs)

OHL Announces 2015-16 Regular Season Award Winners

Toronto, ON – The Ontario Hockey League today announced the recipients of four of the league’s annual awards following the conclusion of the 2015-16 regular season.

OHL

Offensively, San Jose Sharks prospect Kevin Labanc of the Barrie Colts captured the league’s scoring title earning the Eddie Powers Memorial Trophy and Jim Mahon Memorial Trophy presented to the Top Scoring Right Winger.  The other two awards recognize defensive efforts including the Dave Pinkney Trophy for the goaltending tandem of the team with the fewest goals against won by Tyler Parsons and Brendan Burke of the London Knights, and the F.W “Dinty” Moore Trophy awarded to Michael DiPietro of the Windsor Spitfires as the rookie with the best goals-against-average.

 Eddie Powers Memorial Trophy (Scoring Champion) and Jim Mahon Memorial Trophy (Top Scoring Right Winger): Kevin Labanc, Barrie Colts:

Kevin Labanc scored 39 goals and 88 assists for 127 points in 65 games to lead all OHL players while setting a franchise single season points record.

 The 20-year-old from Staten Island, NY, recorded 42 multi-point games during the 2015-16 campaign and surpassed his own Colts record for assists in a season helping Barrie capture their second straight Central Division title.

 He becomes just the second member of the Colts to win both awards following Sheldon Keefe in 1999-2000 who previously held the club’s single season scoring mark with 121 points in 66 games.

 Labanc was originally chosen by the Colts in the sixth round of the 2011 OHL Priority Selection before joining the club in 2013.  The three-year veteran played in 198 career games accumulating 269 points which ranks fourth among Barrie’s all-time greats.  Labanc recently signed his entry-level contract with the Sharks who chose him in the sixth round of the 2014 NHL Draft.

 The Eddie Powers Memorial Trophy was donated by the Toronto Marlboro Athletic Club in memory of Eddie Powers and was first awarded in 1945-46 to Tod Sloan of St. Michael’s who scored 79 points in 25 games.  Dylan Strome of the Erie Otters was last year’s recipient with 129 points in 68 games scoring 45 goals and 84 assists.  Other notable winners include Taylor Hall and Tyler Seguin who tied for the league’s scoring title before being chosen first and second overall respectively in 2010, while fellow first overall NHL picks John Tavares (2009), and Patrick Kane (2007) are also recent winners.

 The Jim Mahon Trophy was first presented following the 1971-72 season by the players and management of the Peterborough Petes in memory of their right winger Jim Mahon who was accidentally killed that summer.  Mitch Marner of the London Knights was last year’s recipient with 126 points in 63 games scoring 44 goals and 82 assists.

 Dave Pinkney Trophy (Lowest Team Goals Against): Tyler Parsons and Brendan Burke, London Knights

 The London Knights allowed the fewest goals in the OHL this season with just 182 against, backstopped by the tandem of Tyler Parsons and Brendan Burke.

 Parsons, an 18-year-old from Chesterfield, Michigan, led the league with a 2.33 goals-against-average and also posted a league-high save percentage of .921.  The sophomore is eligible for the 2016 NHL Draft and carried a record of 37-9-2-1 with four shutout victories for the Knights who finished one point shy of a Midwest Division and regular season crown.  Sharing the duties in goal was Burke, a 21-year-old from Paradise Valley, Arizona, who carried a record of 10-4-0-0 with one shutout along with a goals-against-average of 2.95 and save percentage of .896.  The Arizona Coyotes prospect joined the OHL midway through the season after playing over four seasons in the Western Hockey League.

 The Dave Pinkney Trophy is awarded annually to the goaltending tandem from the team that allows the fewest goals against during the regular season.  Last season, the Oshawa Generals allowed just 157 goals against with Ken Appleby and Jeremy Brodeur between the pipes.

 This marks the fourth time the Knights have captured the award and first since the 2004-05 champion club backstopped by Gerald Coleman and Adam Dennis allowed a record-low 125 goals against.

 F.W. “Dinty” Moore Trophy (Best Rookie GAA): Michael DiPietro, Windsor Spitfires

 Michael DiPietro had the best goals-against-average among OHL rookie goaltenders with a mark of 2.45 this season becoming the first Windsor Spitfires netminder to earn the award.

 A 16-year-old from Amherstburg, ON, DiPietro was chosen in the second round by the Spitfires in the 2015 OHL Priority Selection.  The rookie played to a 16-8-1-1 record with two shutout victories while posting a save percentage of .912.  His goals-against-average not only led all rookies, but was third best in the entire league while his save percentage was the fourth best overall mark.

 The trophy is named after F.W. “Dinty” Moore of Port Colborne, ON, who served as OHA President from 1942-45.  In order to qualify for this rookie award, a goaltender must play a minimum of 900 minutes.  Michael McNiven of the Owen Sound Attack won the award last season with a 2.79 goals-against-average, while Alex Nedeljkovic was the last 16-year-old rookie to earn the award after posting an impressive mark of 2.28 with the Plymouth Whalers in 2012-13.

 The 2016 OHL Playoffs begin on Thursday March 24, visit www.ontariohockeyleague.com for all first round matchups and schedules.

OHL Draft Eligible Player of the Month for February: Tyler Parsons

London Knights’ goaltender Tyler Parsons has turned it up as we get closer to the playoffs and a battle for top spot in the Eastern Conference.

Tyler Parsons of the London Knights. Photo by Aaron Bell/OHL Images
Tyler Parsons of the London Knights. Photo by Aaron Bell/OHL Images

Parsons posted a 7-2-0 record with 1.90 goals against average and an even more sparkling .934 save percentage with one shutout in February. Sure he plays for the high flying Knights, but consider this: his two losses (3-2 to Niagara and 2-1 to Sarnia) he posted save percentages of .912 and .941. A little more goal support and he could have run the table in February. He was named the game’s first star in two of his starts in February.

On the season, Parsons now has a 31-8-2-1 record with 2.43 goals against average and .918 save percentage with 4 shutouts.

Also getting consideration was Parsons’ teammate Matthew Tkachuk who put up a whopping 7 goals and 16 assists in just 10 games. Alex DeBrincat of the Erie Otters also received some consideration with 7 goals and 10 assists in 12 games for the Otters.

Previous winners

January – Cam Dineen

December – Cam Dineen

November – Matthew Tkachuk

October – Alex DeBrincat

September – Matthew Tkachuk

Tyler Parsons – Player Profile – London Knights

Height:  6’1”

Weight:  185 Pounds

Date of birth: September 18, 1997, Chesterfield, MI

Position: Goalie

Catches:  Left

OHL Draft: Signed as a free agent, 2014

With the likes of highly touted draft prospects and fellow teammates Matthew Tkachuk, Olli Juolevi and Max Jones, There are bound to be plenty of eyes on Parsons this season. Add in Mitch Marner and Christian Dvorak and Parsons’ Knights could be in for a long playoff run and a Memorial Cup appearance, which could also help the cause for NHL Central Scouting’s 3rd ranked OHL goaltender and 6th on the North American list.

Parsons played for Little Caesars Under-18 squad and signed on with the Knights as a free agent. However, he was drafted by the Cedar Rapids Rough Riders if the USHL in the second round, 30th overall in 2014.

Tyler Parsons of the London Knights. Photo by Terry Wilson/OHL Images.
Tyler Parsons of the London Knights. Photo by Terry Wilson/OHL Images.

As a rookie, Parsons gained valuable experience during his rookie season appearing in half the Knights games before being named the starter in the playoffs over the experienced Michael Giugovaz. He posted a 15-10-0-2 record with a goals against average of 3.53 and a save percentage of .905. In 8 playoff games, he had a 4-3-0 record with a 3.30 goals against average and .917 save percentage.

Knowing what is expected to be a number one goaltender in this league, and after suffering injuries last season due to what he called “muscle fatigue”,  Parsons did all the necessary work in the offseason. He worked on his lower body strength and became much stronger while growing an inch and gaining 20 pounds.

He came into the season as the de facto number one goaltender which allowed the Knights to trade Giugovaz. But with rookie Emanuel Vella as the backup, the Knights felt they needed to bring in an insurance policy and acquired Brendan Burke to be a capable and experienced backup.

Parsons appeared in the All-American Prospects Game (the American rendition of the NHL/CHL Top Prospects Game) but was injured less than 5 minutes into the game. He was also invited to Team USA’s camp for the World Junior Championships and was the team’s third goaltender.

Parsons doesn’t have the huge size but he isn’t small either. What he lacks in size to cover the net he makes up for with lightning quick reflexes. He will do what he has to do to stop pucks. What he doesn’t have to do with London’s high powered offense is steal games, but when they need a save, his excellent positioning and ability to track pucks ensures that he’ll give you that save.

Last season he struggled a little with his rebound control, but that lack of control has all but disappeared this season. He already possessed excellent lower body movement but is now controlling where rebounds go at a very high level. Combined with a quick glove hand, second opportunities are becoming a rarity.

I have to admit; early on in the season I didn’t think Parsons could lead the Knights to the Promised Land. Things change and that’s why we play the games. And If the Hunters and McRae believe in Parsons, that has to be good enough for me.

Parsons should and could be the top OHL goaltender selected in the June draft.

Tyler Parsons becomes the 8th goalie in OHL history to get credited with a goal

OHL’s Draft Eligible Statistical Leaders: December

Happy New Year!

The second half of the Ontario Hockey League season is upon us and teams will be looking for help in the upcoming trade deadline. But for a lot of teams, they’ll be looking for their draft eligible players to continue where they left off and for others to pick up the pace.

Matthew Tkachuk of the London Knights. Photo by Aaron Bell/OHL Images
Matthew Tkachuk of the London Knights. Photo by Aaron Bell/OHL Images

We look at the top draft eligible players in a variety of statistical categories. As always, we look only at players eligible for the draft for the first time – except for goaltenders – where those previously past over are included.

Matthew Tkachuk, Alex DeBrincat and Alexander Nylander are away at the World Junior Championships, and although the order has changed are one, two and three in points.

DeBrincat continues to lead the entire league in goals with 33, while Tkachuk leads the entire league in assists. Cam Dineen, my draft eligible player of the month for December, leads all OHL defencemen in points with 31. He’s followed by Windsor’s Mikhail Sergachev with 25.

Tyler Parsons leads the goaltenders in goals against average (2.48) and save percentage (.917). There are three other goaltenders with a sub 3.00 goals against average and over .900 save percentage.

Stats 1

2016 U.S. National Junior Team Preliminary Roster Set

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – USA Hockey unveiled today the 29 players selected to the preliminary roster for the 2016 U.S. National Junior Team. The players will attend training camp Dec. 14-18 at Boston University in Boston followed by an additional camp in Vierumaki, Finland, from Dec. 19-24. The final 23-man roster is expected to be named by Dec. 24. Team USA will compete in the 2016 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship, Dec.26-Jan.5, in Helsinki, Finland.

Camp roster here