Saskatoon is hosting the Canadian Hockey League championship and Hockeyrecruits4u. We are staying at, the as grand as ever, Delta Bessborough for all ten days the Championship. It’s one of the hardest to win because you’ve got to win your own league and then you have to do well in the round-robin and then in the semifinal and then again in the final.
The tournament includes the host team, Saskatoon Blades, plus the league champions from the Western (Portland Winter-hawks) Ontario (London Knights) and Quebec, (Halifax Mooseheads). The teams are loaded with stars such as Halifax’s Nate MacKinnon, Jonathan Drouin and Martin Frk; Portland’s Ty Rattie, Brendan Leipsic, Nic Petan and Seth Jones. London’s Seth Griffith and Max Domi are here in Saskatoon too.
The Drouin-MacKinnon-Frk combination racked up 36 goals and 101 points in 17 QMJHL post-season games. Rattie, Petan and Leipsic were three of the top four scorers in the WHL playoffs after finishing 1-2-3 in the regular season. Domi, Griffith, Alex Broadhurst and Bo Horvat were all top 10 point-getters for London in the OHL’s playoffs.
Portland Winterhawks defenseman Jones and QMJHL’s Halifax Mooseheads linemates MacKinnon and Drouin are the top three-ranked North American skaters listed by NHL Central Scouting for the draft. It’s the first time in the history of the Memorial Cup that the best three undrafted players will compete for the Canadian major junior championship.
The competition is being held at the 15,000-seat Credit Union Centre. Saskatoon and Regina hosted the 2010 world junior championships.
Gordie Howe is a guest of honor in Saskatoon. The Saskatchewan-native won six Hart Trophies as the NHL’s most valuable player and proudly held the Stanley Cup four times.
Saskatoon officials are predicting an economic impact of $19 million from the tournament.
MEMORIAL CUP SCHEDULE
May 17: London Knights vs. Saskatoon Blades; 7 p.m.
May 18: Portland Winterhawks vs. Halifax Mooseheads; 6 p.m.
May 19: Saskatoon vs. Halifax Mooseheads; 6 p.m.
May 20: Portland Winterhawks vs. London Knights; 7 p.m.
May 21: Halifax Mooseheads vs. London Knights; 7 p.m.
May 22: Saskatoon vs. Portland WinterhawksMay 23: Semi-final #1; 7 p.m.
May 24: Semi-final #2, 7 p.m.
May 26: Championship final; 6 p.m.
•All times CST; at Credit Union Centre
The Memorial Cup, both on and off the ice, will be historic, elegant, and well worth watching! Follow it live here.