MANITOBA BISONS 2011-12
There are, as yet, no official announcements of recruits for the Bisons, nor a schedule. However, there are some solid rumours, along with some announcements from other teams and some off-ice news. So I figure time to start my annual thread. The 2010-11 Thread can also be re-lived for posterity!
The rumoured recruits (linked to their Elite Prospects career stats) are:
Mark Friesen - goal - Swift Current Broncos
- He has 4 years in the WHL. He played two years in Chilliwack and two more in Swift Current. He was the #1 goaltender in Swift last year. With former all-star goaltender Steve Christie gone first to the Texas Brahmas and then Manitoba Moose (as a backup) for their playoff run, the Herd need somebody to fill some big shoes.
Matt Lowry - centre - Elmira Jackals/Binghampton Senators
- He is the only recruit not born in 1990. After two years each with the Medicine Hat Tigers and Brandon Wheat Kings he turned pro for a year and then red-shirted for the Bisons last year to regain his status. He is a highly-touted 2-way player. He peaked at 24 goals in 2008.
Neal Prokop - centre - Tri-City Americans
- He played one game with the Moose Jaw Warriors as a 16 year old in 2005-06 and had five years in the WHL with Moose Jaw, Regina, and Tri-Cities. He only played 27 games last year (10 of those in the playoffs). His peak was 22 goals in 2009-10.
Jordan Davis - forward - Topeka Roadrunners
- He is an Ontario boy and the only non-Manitoban in the recruiting class. He was with the Owen Sound Attack in the OHL in 2007-08 and then went to the Fort William North Stars of the SIJHL for two years before turning to the Topeka Roadrunners of the NAHL last year. He did have 33 goals in 52 games in 2009-10. As usual, it is hard to compare junior "A" stats to major junior stats.
Tyler Schmidt - defence - Tri-Cities Americans
- He has played five seasons for the Tri-Cities Americans and seems to be yet another solid d-man. He managed 11 goals and 42 assists last year.
Travis Bobbee - defence - Seattle Thunderbirds
- Like Prokop, he got a game in 2005-06 and then played five more years in the WHL. He went from the Lethbridge Hurricanes, to the Portland Winterhawks, then Swift Current Bronocs before closing his WHL career in Seattle.
Darren Bestland - defence - Vancouver Giants/Brandon Wheat Kings
- Last year was his 3rd with the Wheaties and he was dealt to Vancouver for the playoff drive. He has the highest PIM totals amongst the new blue-liners.
Steven Stanford - goaltender - Saskatoon Blades (WHL)
Jason Yee - defenceman - Powell River Kings (BCHL)
Kyle Johnson - forward - Dauphin Kings (MJHL)
Cole Wilson - forward - Camrose Kodiaks (AJHL)
They will need a lot more bodies to re-stock their roster this year. The fact they will be staying in the CIS should make that job easier because most of their line-up from 2010-11 was ineligible for the NCAA.
Liam Brennan - Forward - Augustana College (ACAC)
Tyler Henry - Forward - Bonnyville (AJHL)
Troy Hunter - Forward - Estevan (SJHL)
Dayton Fossum – Defence - La Ronge (SJHL)
Mark Schneider - Defence- Regina (WHL)
John Sonntag – Defence - Kindersley (SJHL)
Andrew Hayes - Goalie - Cape Breton (QMJHL)
Both "name" recruits have a Brandon connection. Schneider and Hayes were both once Wheat Kings. Schneider was traded to Regina for the playoff drive and Hayes was not kept on for his overage year.
BTW, since the MRU Cougars will be joining the league, maybe all Regina teams should now be called the "Rams".