Archive for February, 2006

Check this out

February 28, 2006

Third one down:

Thanks, Mark

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On injured reserve

February 28, 2006

Komets General Manager David Franke just told me that forward Matt Hunter is out two-to-four weeks with a bruised chest suffered Friday in Flint.

There are a lot of banged up bodies on this team right now. They had an optional skate at McMillen today and only a few guys showed up. Everybody’s still tired from the weekend.

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Down the stretch

February 27, 2006

There are 23 games left in the regular season. The Komets need to win 21 of those games to reach 50 for the third year in a row. They need 38 of a possible 46 points to reach 100.

Anyone think they can reach one or both of those?

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The perfect example

February 26, 2006

This is what we’re talking about with the inconsistency in officiating. Saturday night 21 power plays. Sunday there were 10. Do you really think the Komets played that much differently? Granted, I didn’t see the game, but I’m betting if you asked fans who were at both games which one they enjoyed more, they’d mostly say Sunday.

How can any league allow there to be such a disparity in what gets called like this in back-to-back nights? No wonder the players and coaches are confused.

I’m not saying necessarily that one was bad and the other good because I didn’t see either game and that would be ludicrous, but I can sure point out the inconsistency of the style of calls and format of play.

I’ll even say this: I think the level of officiating in the UHL has improved dramatically over the past four or five years. There’s a marked difference in what it used to be. I think this year is a blip on that trend because of the new rules. Everybody is still trying to figure out how to interpret them, especially since the UHL wants the refs to not call it as tight as the NHL.

I’m just not sure some refs are getting and understanding that message.

Here’s how much the teams played five-on-five Saturday night: 24 minutes and 50 seconds, including 5:13 in the first period and 6:40 in the second.

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Impressive performance

February 26, 2006

Considering the Komets had to be whipped by playing 11 games in 18 days, and four in five days, Sunday’s game was very impressive. They beat the team directly ahead of them in the standings on their own home ice. Motor City had been 7-3-0 in its last 10 games coming in so the Komets beat a very good team. Quad City also lost to fall further behind in the Western Division. About the only bad news is that Adironcack won so the Komets are still eight points behind the Frostbite for fifth overall.

The Komets can sure use a few days off.

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Lousy game

February 25, 2006

Guess I didn’t realize fans are now paying to watch officials work. 21 power plays — in two periods! Who is Derek Berkibile kidding? That’s a disgrace. He must have developed a blister on his lip in the third period because he didn’t call any penalties then. How is that in any way consistent? It’s easy to understand why the players are so confused about what’s getting called night-to-night.

Fort Wayne is now 0-4 when he refs a game, but I’m sure he isn’t unprofessional enough to have any bias. I HATE jumping on the officials, but this is a bit ridiculous.

OK, following my own rule (name one bad official, name one good ref), I like the way Brett Klosowski calls a game. What do you think?

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Remember this story?

February 24, 2006

If you’ve already read it, skip to the end please.

About the only thing that moves faster than a puck on a hockey rink might be Ethan Shlater.

He’s a typical 6-year-old boy with incredible amounts of energy; a nice kid with a good disposition.

He’s also a diabetic and has to prick his finger six to eight times a day and get shots four times a day. He’s on a strict diet, and his mom and his first-grade teachers at Croninger Elementary make sure he sticks to it.

He has Type 1 juvenile diabetes and will be on insulin the rest of his life.


Komets goaltender Kevin St. Pierre always wants to stress "the maybe” because he thinks  anything is possible, including someday maybe curing juvenile diabetes. Plus he knows Ethan. Very little can slow the boy down.

"Maybe that’s why God sent him to me, because he knew I would help,” St. Pierre said. "Things happen for a reason, and you never know why.”

As he has bounced around minor-league hockey during his career, St. Pierre has picked up friends all over the country. It just happened that one of them in Shreveport, La., in 1998 was a diabetic. This friend asked St. Pierre if he would mind being the spokesperson for a barbecue to raise money to fight the
disease. Diabetes has been kind of St. Pierre’s pet cause ever since, though he’d gotten away from it for a couple of years recently.

Then he was coaching Zach Shlater, 13, one night at McMillen Ice Arena when Shlater told him his little brother had been diagnosed with diabetes. The family had been at a tournament in Kalamazoo when Ethan started acting lethargically and became deathly ill. After racing him to Parkview Hospital, his parents found out he was a diabetic.

“That hit me because I used to do three or four things a year for juvenile diabetes,” St. Pierre said. “When he told me the story, I thought that maybe I needed to get back into it.”

St. Pierre tried to get something organized at the end of last season, but ran out of schedule. This year he’s trying to organize an event where he can ask fans to donate money for every save he makes, possibly for a single game, sometime after Christmas. He’s working with the Komets’ front office to produce T-shirts to sell to get started.

"Ethan is a regular kid, but it’s something you always have to be aware of,” St. Pierre said. "I don’t think kids who are 6 or 7 years old should have to give themselves shots every day, check their blood sugar and be careful what they eat. It’s not fair for an adult, and especially not fair for kids. I can’t believe how long diabetes has been around and we still haven’t found a cure for it. It’s crazy.”

Everything for the Shlaters seems to work around Ethan for diet and mealtimes.

“You’d think he had it all his life the way he has adapted to this,” his mother, Claudia, said. “He just tells everybody, `If I start passing out or I start getting sick, you have to go get my mom because if I don’t get my sugar I could die.’ He always has a smile on his face, and is a happy-go-lucky kid.”

And St. Pierre would like to see him stay that way.

******Here’s why I put this up: During March the Komets are sponsoring "Help Kevin St. Pierre Make the Save for Juvenile Diabetes Research foundation.” Go to, click on the 31 Kevin St. Pierre button on the right side and you can see a flyer on how to help.

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Deal is complete

February 23, 2006

Komets general manager David Franke said the deal for forward Noah Whyte is complete and has approval from the UHL.

“He’s listed as a left wing on their roster but he’s been playing center,” Franke said.  “We wanted another legitimate centerman to come in. We’re hoping he can step in and help us out. We wanted a little more versatility at the position.”

Franke said that the Komets would prefer that Kelly Miller or David Carpentier did not have to play at center, and that Whyte will probably end up as the team’s 10th forward.

Franke also said the Komets will be releasing a player in the morning.

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Noah Whyte

February 23, 2006

Sorry this is a little late. Tried to take a day off today. Silly me.

Here’s what we know so far: The Komets are in the process of acquiring forward Noah Whyte from Port Huron for cash, pending league approval, which they have to have before making any announcement. Whyte, 24, is 6-foot, 185 pounds and has two goals and eight points in 11 games this season with Port Huron after being traded from Quad City earlier. He has six goals and 16 points and 68 PIMs in 41 games total this season. He is not a veteran or a rookie.

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Tonight’s game

February 22, 2006

What do you think it’s going to take for these guys to get the message about the penalties? Once again they are playing with five defensemen and once again Flint already has two more power-play chances than they do. What’s creeping me out is that it always seems to be the veterans who are getting caught in the third period.

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