Thursday, November 12, 2009

Surprises in the WHL

With the WHL season well underway, I asked Saskatoon Blades play-by-play man Les Lazaruk what was the biggest surprise so far. The answer....

There are plenty of surprises...most notably Moose Jaw in the Eastern Conference and Portland out West. I knew both would be better this season...but I didn't expect them to contend for top spot as they are. I haven't seen the Winterhawks, but I can say the progression of Quinton Howden in Moose Jaw is a huge reason why the Warriors are a lot better. I also think players like Dylan Hood, Brendan Rowinski and Jesse Paradis...who came over from last season's eventual league finalists, Calgary and Kelowna, have taken on the new season as a fresh start and are playing as many felt they were capable of when Moose Jaw first got them!Individually, some early-season offensive surprises would be Cody Eakin of Swift Current and Bretton Cameron of Medicine Hat while Willie Coetzee of Red Deer, Cameron and Brendan Shinnimin of Tri-Cities in the Top 5 in points scoring. Eakin has the ability to be a game-breaker like Jordan Eberle in Regina and is nearly unstoppable from inside 20-feet of the net! He should be a Team Canada member.

Thanks Les!!

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