|Voice of the Pats Phil Andrews|
- The NHL's Central Scouting Service released its midterm rankings for the 2016 Entry Draft on Tuesday morning. Three Regina Pats were among the North American list. Forward Sam Steel was ranked the highest at number 29. he has 43 points in 46 games this year. Up next was 19-year-old forward Adam Brooks at 107. Brooks currently leads the WHL in scoring with 71 points and this will be his third year of eligibility for the NHL draft. Finally forward Adam Berg was ranked 155th. The Calgary product has 20 points so far this year.
Couldn't be happier for Adam Brooks. The Winnipeg product has been through so much with this Pats team. From being a 4th line guy for two years and getting next to no playing time to where he is now is nothing short of incredible. He will get drafted, no doubt about it in my opinion. Then the question will be, will the Pats get him back as a 20-year-old? Either way, he deserves the recognition, the season he is having is beyond good.
I was a bit surprised that defenceman Liam Schioler was left off the rankings. He was ranked a 'C' skater in the November players to watch list by the CSS and I would have thought his stock would have only risen considering how well he has played since joining the Pats before Christmas. Lots of time left before the draft and he will eventually find himself on this list.
- The Pats enjoyed Monday and Tuesday off after their 6 game road trip. It was a looooong bus ride back from Kennewick Washington where the Pats finished the trip with a 5-4 shootout loss to the Tri-City Americans. The team finished with a 2-3-0-1 record in the six games, the loss that hurts the most was to the Kootenay Ice to start the trip 5-3. However to pick up 5 points is certainly respectable against a very strong U.S. Division.
Nothing against Canadian fans, however, those U.S. rinks are fun to be in. The people go bananas over everything. They are loud and right into the games. So much fun to be a part of. There are some really nice buildings down there as well. The Spokane Arena is my favourite, Everett and Seattle are a close second and third. It was a great trip.
Here is a look inside the five American rinks.
Inside the Spokane Arena.
Xfinity Arena in Everett is a great barn
Regina native and Seahawks punter Jon Ryan took in the Pats and Silvertips
The Pats got a visit in Everett from crew members of the HMCS Regina. Their ship is dry docked just outside Victoria and they were the loudest fans in the building when the Pats came back to win 4-3 in OT.
The Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Portland
The ShoWare Center in Kent, home of the Seattle Thunderbirds
Finally Toyota Center where the Pats and Americans went to a 10 round shootout
Now that it's over the Pats get a bit of a breather. They are off until Saturday when they host the Prince Albert Raiders at the Brandt Centre. In the next four weeks, the team will just play two weekend games. That's huge, especially since Connor Hobbs is out with injury, as is Colby Williams. Not to mention the team has just 10 road games left in their final 26.
We will recap the entire trip on Pats TV tonight starting at 6:30 PM only on Access 7.
That's all I have for today, have a great week, talk to you in the Sportscage on Thursday.