As February inches towards the middle of the month let us visit and revisit a few rumours as they pertain to the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League.
NO TO BRICKNELL
Corey Bricknell is staying put as the coach and general manager of the Elliot Lake Wildcats, at least for now.
Bricknell, who is in his third season in the NOJHL — it is his second year in Elliot Lake after spending one term with the erstwhile Iroquois Falls Eskimos — recently applied for what was a vacant position as director of operations for the Ontario Jr. Hockey League.
And while Bricknell apparently made the short list, he did not get the job.
However, should Robert Mazzuca — for whatever reason — not return to the NOJHL as commissioner for the 2018-2019 season, Bricknell is said to be very interested in the position.
VITALI TO VOODOOS?
As Powassan Voodoos search for a new full-time coach, there is talk that former Ontario Hockey League, National Hockey League and Russian pro forward Vitali Yachmenev is a candidate to replace the reputable Beau Moyer in Voodoo-ville.
The 43-year old Yachmenev is one of the most popular players in North Bay’s OHL history, having scored a remarkable 114 goals in just two seasons with the erstwhile Centennials. He then went on to play in close to 500 NHL games before skating for several seasons in Russia.
FRENCH RIVER SHIFTING?
Paul Frustaglio, who operates the French River Rapids, is said to be exploring relocation for his small — very small — market team.
One possible option is Sturgeon Falls, though Powassan holds territorial rights and would have to permit such a move.
And a relocation to Sudbury is reportedly not out of the question.
Meanwhile, talk continues that Mark Burgess, former long-time owner of the OHL’s Sudbury Wolves, is interested in a return to junior hockey and is eyeing the NOJHL as a target. Burgess operated NOJHL teams in Sudbury in the past while also owning the OHL Wolves.
It will be between either Cochrane or Timmins as to which NOJHL centre plays host to — and gets automatic entry in to — the 2019 Dudley-Hewitt Cup, Central Canada championships.
The NOJHL is expected to announce its decision shortly.