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Knights Recall Ben Weir

London, ON: The London Knights have called up 18 year old Goaltender Ben Weir from the London Nationals Jr. B Hockey Club. Weir, 18 will serve as the backup goaltender to Steve Mason as the Knights host the Saginaw Spirit to open the 2006-2007 OHL Season. 17 year old Knights goaltender German Tsatsura will be playing for the Petrolia Jets of the Western Ontario Hockey League tonight.

The Knights and Spirit face off at 7:30 PM tonight at the John Labatt Centre. Doors open at 5:00 PM and fans are invited to join in the activities at the John Labatt Centre.
 

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Majors Fall to Colts in Power-Play Affair

Toronto, Ont. (September 21, 2006) - The Majors kicked off their regular season in Barrie this evening. After spotting the home squad a 4-0 lead, they battled back to tie up the game in the middle frame. However, the Colts combined a strong 3rd period and an impressive power-play to drop the Majors 8-4.

The Majors goals were provided by Kaspars Daugavins, Steve Spade and Micheal Haley (2) while the assists were credited to Spade, Justin Donati (2), Dustin Ekelman (2), Rob Kwiet, Dylan O'Neil and Cassidy Preston. Both teams had 36 shots on goal with Wayne Savage going the distance between the pipes.

Barrie's Vladimir Nikiforov was deserving of the 1st star nod as he generated 5 assists. The Majors were 4 for 15 on the power-play while the Colts were 4 for 11. For more detailed information, the official gamesheet is provided at http://www.ontariohockeyleague.com/stats/game-summary.php?game_id=12313.

The Majors return home to host John Tavares, Cal Clutterbuck and the Oshawa Generals tomorrow evening, then welcome the Mississauga IceDogs on Sunday afternoon (September 24) at 2 pm. The game versus the IceDogs will feature another free fan barbecue beginning at 12 pm and running until 1:30 pm. Both games will be audiocast at www.stmichaelsmajors.com.

Majors individual game tickets can be purchased through the team's office, by calling Ticketmaster at (416) 872-5000, online at www.ticketmaster.ca or by stopping by the St. Michael's College School Arena box office within two hours of the puck drop.
 

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Battalion edge Petes in opener

Rookie Cody Hodgson had a goal and assist in his OHL debut to lead the Brampton Battalion past the Peterborough Petes 3-2 in opening-night action Thursday.

Brampton scored three unanswered goals to rally from a 2-0 deficit, the Peterborough Examiner reported.

Hodgson's linemates Aaron Snow and Matt Smyth also had a goal and assist each.

"It's great to get off to a good start," Hodgson said. "The team won, which is important also. It felt great. Our line just started clicking at the beginning of the second period. We started getting lots of chances and knew we'd get some (goals) eventually."

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OHL Announces Rule Adjustments for 2006-07 Playing Season

The Ontario Hockey League in concert with the Canadian Hockey League today announced that the new National Hockey League rule on stick curvature which was recently adopted by the National Hockey League will not be implemented until next season.

In addition, the Ontario Hockey League has adopted a new rule entitled Checking to the Head effective for the commencement of the 2006-07 playing season.

In making the announcement, Commissioner David Branch stated “prior to the 2002-03 playing season, the Ontario Hockey League introduced a Concussion Management Program for all players in the League and in so doing the League has continued to work towards ensuring the continued safety and welfare of all players including injuries to the head area”.

Rule 48 – Checking to the Head

A minor or a major and game misconduct penalty, at the discretion of the referee based on the degree of impact, shall be assessed to any player who checks an opponent to the head area in any manner.

A match penalty shall be assessed to any player who deliberately attempts to injure an opponent by Checking to the Head.

Note: A hit to the head with a shoulder shall be considered an illegal check and shall be penalized as checking to the head.
 

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Bryan Little has two goals and three assists as Colts beat Majors 8-4

Bryan Little had two goals and three assists to lead the Barrie Colts to an 8-4 win over the Toronto St. Michael's Majors on Thursday on the opening day of the 2006-07 Ontario Hockey League season.

Richard Clune also scored twice for the Majors while Hunter Tremblay, Matthew Bragg, Andrew Marshall and Matthieu Methot also scored for the Colts (1-0-0-0). Vladimir Nikiforov had five assists.

Michael Haley led St. Mike's (0-1-0-0) with two goals, with Steve Spade and Kaspars Daugavins also scoring.

Andrew Perugini stopped 32 shots for Barrie, while Wayne Savage made 28 saves for Toronto.
 

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It's Knight time!

Two years ago, everyone in London expected the Knights to win the Memorial Cup -- they did.

Last year, no one expected the Knights to stay at the top of the OHL standings or return to the league final -- they did.

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Youthful 67's still aiming high

It appears the OHL schedule maker did the 67's a favour by having them stutter-start the 2006-07 campaign.

The break between tonight's opener in Kingston and their second game of the season -- next Friday at home against the Peterborough Petes -- should give Brian Kilrea's team the chance to become more like the contender it expects to be in what figures to be a hotly contested East Division.

"We could have three pretty good defencemen away, and three pretty good forwards out of the lineup," Kilrea said earlier this week of his first chess match with former 67's star defenceman Bruce Cassidy, now the Frontenacs' coach. "Yeah, that's a pretty big hole to start in."

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Whalers begin season in Saginaw's shadow

The Plymouth Whalers won the Ontario Hockey League's West Division last season, but the other OHL team from Michigan, the Saginaw Spirit, is considered this year's favorite.

The Hockey News picked the Spirit, which finished behind the Whalers by one point in the division last season, to win the OHL title. The magazine also selected Saginaw as the fourth-best team in the Canadian Hockey League, which includes the OHL, Western Hockey League and Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. The Whalers were picked to finish 11th in the OHL.

"That's great that everybody's picking them -- it doesn't put any pressure on us," Whalers coach Mike Vellucci said. "They need to win this year. It's their year."

The Whalers begin the regular season at 7:35 tonight in Sarnia, and host Erie at 7:05 p.m. Saturday in the opener at Compuware Sports Arena.

Only five players are gone from last year's 35-28-1 team, which advanced to the second round of the OHL playoffs. The Whalers also return six of their top seven scorers from last season, including Dan Collins, who led the team with 26 goals.

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Hockey begins with a bang

The fireworks will start early and finish late.

In between, the Saginaw Spirit hope to provide a few pyrotechnics of their own on the ice at TheDow Event Center's Wendler Arena.

Mid-Michigan's Ontario Hockey League team begins the home portion of its 2006-07 schedule at 7:11 p.m. Saturday, hosting the Guelph Storm.

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OHL teams begin quest to be the best

Teams in the OHL are gearing up for another wild season of hockey. The Sudbury Wolves will face some stiff competition in 2006-07 as they vie to be the best in the league. It won’t be easy as every other club has the same feeling burning in their minds – winning the Memorial Cup.


The road to the national championship begins this weekend as all 20 teams are kicking off their regular seasons. The Wolves host Mississauga tonight at Sudbury Arena. Game time is 7:30 pm. The Wolves host Brampton Sunday at 2 pm.

The Wolves compete in the Eastern Conference in the Central Division. Their main rivals – Brampton, Barrie, Mississauga and Toronto – have all reloaded and are ready to battle to the bitter end.

The Western Conference teams are also ready to wage war for the next seven months for the top prize in Canadian major Junior hockey.

Here’s an in-depth look at the Wolves four Central Division foes and mini profiles on the other 15 teams in the OHL. (Stats are from last season)

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Colts trot past Majors

Bryan Little had two goals and three assists to lead the Barrie Colts to an 8-4 win over the Toronto St. Michael's Majors on Thursday on the opening day of the 2006-07 Ontario Hockey League season.

Richard Clune also scored twice for the Majors while Hunter Tremblay, Matthew Bragg, Andrew Marshall and Matthieu Methot also scored for the Colts (1-0-0-0). Vladimir Nikiforov had five assists.

complete article
 

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Colts flex offensive muscle

If the Barrie Colts were questioning the skill set up front prior to the start of the 2006-07 campaign, they can relax a little.

There’s all kinds of firepower to draw from.

Not that there was much doubt regarding the OHL team’s offensive capabilities in the first place. However, a slew of Colts made sure to put an exclamation point on their goal-scoring abilities in last night’s home opener.

With all cylinders firing, the Colts skated to an early lead and hung on just long enough to pick up an 8-4 win in front of 3,569 fans at the Barrie Molson Centre.

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Bulls poised to break out

The waiting is over.

An eagerly anticipated season begins tonight for the Belleville Bulls.

The 2006-2007 edition of the Bulls are definitely bigger and appear to be considerably more talented than last year. The buzz around town, within the organization and the Ontario Hockey League indicates expectations are high.

Bulls open their regular season schedule tonight in Brampton against the Battalion (7:30 p.m.), then host the defending OHL champion Peterborough Petes Saturday at 7:15 p.m.

Third-year general manager and head coach George Burnett is fully aware the Bulls — on paper, at least — have all the ingredients required to take a serious run at the Eastern Conference championship. Still, the veteran bench boss is equally aware results on the ice are the only ones that count.

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The teams

Local Sports - Friday, September 22, 2006 @ 07:00

Kingston Frontenacs

Last Year: 37-24-4-3, 81 pts., second in East Division, eliminated in first round of playoffs.

The Frontenacs are loaded up front with a skill package that tops them all - Cory Emmerton, Chris Stewart, Bobby Hughes and Peder Skinner. Look for Ben Shutron to explode offensively.

Outlook: Eastern Conference favourite.

Belleville Bulls

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Who has potential to be league MVP?

The Red Tilson Trophy is the most prestigious OHL award, going annually to the league's most outstanding player during the regular season. The award is named after Albert (Red) Tilson, who was killed in Holland during the Second World War a year after he was the OHA's scoring champion in 1942-43 for the Oshawa Generals.

Bryan Little C Barrie

Fourth season in the league for the 18-year-old from Cambridge.


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Battalion spoil Petes opener

Opening night featured the good and bad of what Peterborough Petes will show this year including the impact of a new video goal judge.

The Petes showed promise in building an early 2-0 lead, were exposed by youthful mistakes in giving up three unanswered goals and had a potential tying goal disallowed in a 3-2 loss against Brampton Battalion kicking off the 2006-07 OHL season before 3,189 Memorial Centre patrons.

The club paid tribute to last year's league championship by raising a banner prior to the game with former coach Dick Todd and ex-captain Jamie Tardif participating.

New coach Vince Malette, who replaces the retired Todd, took over with his charges building a 2-0 lead by the 1:20 mark of the second period. Before period's end the Petes gave up three straight goals including Matt Smyth's marker with 7.9 seconds left.

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Whalers open Friday after big preseason

A.J. Jenks' goal at 2:35 of the third period snapped a 1-1 tie and the Plymouth Whalers went on to defeat the Erie Otters, 3-1, in an Ontario Hockey League pre-season game played Saturday afternoon at the Dow Event Center in Saginaw.

Plymouth finished the pre-season with a 5-1-0 mark. The Otters concluded their pre-season at 0-2-2.

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Plans to bring OHL back to Niagara on hold

The group trying to bring the Ontario Hockey League back to Niagara Falls has scheduled a press conference Friday to announce the deal "can't move forward."

JDS Delcor, the company hoping to revive the Niagara Falls Thunder OHL franchise, is "unable to continue their negotiations with the City of Niagara Falls due to the obvious lack of support and direction from Niagara Falls mayor Ted Salci and senior city staff," company president Ernie Coetzee said in a press release issued Thursday.


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Wolves ready to rumble

They're sick of practice, of beating on each other and playing pretend.

After a month-long training camp, the longest in team history, the Sudbury Wolves are ready to do it for real tonight when the Mississauga IceDogs invade Sudbury Community Arena for the long-awaited season opener.

"We've been together for quite a while now and have got down to the nitty gritty," said Wolves head coach/GM Mike Foligno, who is entering his fourth season guiding the club.

This year's squad is an interesting mix of grizzled veterans on the back end and fuzzy-faced, wide-eyed youngsters up front, a unit OHL prognosticators have slotted anywhere from first to last in their pre-season prediction columns.

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Hounds ready to bark;

Hartsburg won't go public with expectations other than to say he demands his team works hard

Like a puck-carrying defenceman picking his way through opposition forwards, Craig Hartsburg maneuvered carefully Thursday.

While saying he was "optimistic" his Soo Greyhounds "will be better than last year," the club's head coach offered little else in the way of specific goals or predictions, heading into tonight's Ontario Hockey League regular season opener in Kitchener.

"We have to play our best every time we step on the ice," said Hartsburg, repeating a point he first made early in training camp. "If we do that, we'll have some success. If we play as a team, I'll be happy."


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