All posts by Randy Russon

Big d-man to the Crunch


By
June 18, 2021

Cochrane Crunch of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League has added a young defenseman from the reputable Brantford 99ers program.

…[read more]

Saginaw signs Soo skater


By
June 16, 2021

Wow. That didn’t take long.

A mere week after taking Calem Mangone with the second overall pick of the first round of the 2021 Ontario Hockey League under 18 draft, the Saginaw Spirit has signed the Sault Ste. Marie product to a standard player contract.

…[read more]

EL Red Wings go local


By
June 15, 2021

Alexandre Antoine is staying home to play junior hockey for the 2021-2022 season, Hockey News North has confirmed.

…[read more]

New to the Flint Firebirds


By
June 15, 2021

Flint Firebirds associate coach Kris Sparre

Another week, another coaching addition.

Flint Firebirds of the Ontario Hockey League have tapped Kris Sparre as their associate coach for the 2021-2022 season.

Sparre is the third new coach to be hired in Flint since owner Rolf Nilsen brought Terry Christensen on board as president of hockey operations on May 7.

…[read more]

Crunch time for Ingram


By
June 15, 2021

Junior C to Junior A.

Moving up from the Dundas Blues of the Provincial Jr. Hockey League to the Cochrane Crunch of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League for the 2021-2022 season is Ethan Ingram.

…[read more]

Kam River to Elliot Lake


By
June 14, 2021

The process of putting together a new team ahead of the 2021-2022 season has landed the Elliot Lake Red Wings of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League a player from the Superior International Jr. Hockey League.

…[read more]

Feel good Habs have Soo link


By
June 13, 2021

The father and grandfather of Montreal Canadiens forward Cole Caufield were both born in Sault Ste. Marie. (photo by Canadian Press)

Regardless of what happens through the rest of the Stanley Cup playoffs the Montreal Canadiens will have had a successful National Hockey League season.

And as a bonus to Canadiens fans in Sault Ste. Marie, there is a link to the Soo from this Montreal team.

…[read more]

Thunderbirds to Voodoos


By
June 10, 2021

Alex Bugeja

Proven puck-stopper Alex Bugeja is on the move.

The 2001 birth year goalie has been traded from the Soo Thunderbirds to the Powassan Voodoos in a Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League transaction, Hockey News North has confirmed.

…[read more]

High on Mangone, Barone


By
June 10, 2021

Calem Mangone of the under 18 Soo Jr. Greyhounds will get an opportunity to play for the OHL’s Saginaw Spirit. (photo by Bob Davies)

What a difference a year can make.

After being looked over and bypassed through the entire 15 round, 2020 Ontario Hockey League priority selections draft, two blossoming players from the Soo Jr. Greyhounds evolved to become top six picks at the three round, 2021 OHL under-18 draft.

And not only does their coach from the Jr. Greyhounds of the Great North Under 18 Hockey League have glowing words for Soo boys Calem Mangone and Adam Barone but so too do the general managers who made them OHL draft picks in 2021 after they were disregarded in 2020.

…[read more]

Jr. Hounds are U18 picks


By
June 9, 2021

Better late than never. After being bypassed at the 15 round, 2020 Ontario Hockey League priority selections draft, two players from the Soo Jr. Greyhounds were high picks at today’s 2021 OHL under-18 draft.

…[read more]

Saginaw to Flint


By
June 9, 2021

Jared Nightingale, now of the Flint Firebirds

This should add even more fuel to the Interstate 75 highway rivalry between the Flint Firebirds and Saginaw Spirit of the Ontario Hockey League.

That is, after one season as associate coach with Saginaw in 2019-2020, Jared Nightingale is taking a short trip a few exits down I-75 to become an assistant coach in Flint.

…[read more]

Ex-OHL star in Espanola


By
June 8, 2021

Joey Talbot, as a member of the Sheffield Steelers of the British Elite Ice Hockey League. (photo by Marco Bertolini)

Joey Talbot, a former high scoring right winger with the Ottawa 67’s of the Ontario Hockey League and part of their 1999 Memorial Cup championship team, has joined the Espanola Express of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League as an assistant coach/skills development coach.

The 41-year old Talbot later had a productive pro career, including four standout seasons with the legendary Sheffield Steelers of the British Elite Ice Hockey League.

…[read more]

Riley is back on the Rock


By
June 7, 2021

Riley Brousseau

Hustle bustle crowd favourite Riley Brousseau has signed up to return to the Timmins Rock of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League for the 2021-2022 season, Hockey News North has confirmed.

A local Timmins lad, the 2001 birth year forward opted to sit out the 2019-2020 NOJHL season.

…[read more]

New coach in Espanola


By
June 5, 2021

Espanola Express of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League is keeping it in house. That is, the Express has filled its vacant head coach position with a familiar name.

…[read more]

Fellinger falls to Hounds


By
June 5, 2021

Austin Fellinger

Wawa, Ontario native Austin Fellinger has become the Ontario Hockey League property of the Soo Greyhounds.

…[read more]

OHL still high on Soo boys


By
June 4, 2021

For the third year in succession a player from Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. has been picked within the first three rounds of the Ontario Hockey League priority selections draft.

…[read more]

Toms signs with Hounds


By
June 4, 2021

It is the next step in development.

Local lad Connor Toms is moving up from the Soo Thunderbirds of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League to the Soo Greyhounds of the Ontario Hockey League.

…[read more]

New coach for Flint


By
June 3, 2021

Ted Dent of the Flint Firebirds

A new bench boss is in place for the Flint Firebirds of the Ontario Hockey League.

Ted Dent has been named head coach of the Firebirds.

The 51-year old Dent replaces Eric Wellwood, who recently resigned his position with the Michigan-based OHL team.

…[read more]

Victoria to Elliot Lake


By
June 3, 2021

Dayton Clarke will head from west to east to continue his junior hockey journey.

The Victoria, British Columbia product has signed with the new Elliot Lake Red Wings of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League, Hockey News North has confirmed.

…[read more]

Espanola to Vermilion County


By
June 2, 2021

Brent Hughes

Vermilion County Bobcats of the Southern Professional Hockey League have officially confirmed the former bench boss of the Espanola Express of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League as the first head coach in franchise history.

Brent Hughes leaves Espanola and the NOJHL after coaching the Express to a 5-4-3 record in 12 games during the abbreviated 2020-2021 season.

…[read more]

Ritchie opts for Sault College


By
June 2, 2021

Jordan Ritchie, in action for the Espanola Express. (photo by Bob Davies)

Sault Ste. Marie product Jordan Ritchie is planning to forgo his final season of Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League eligibility. The 2001 birth year defenseman will stay in the game but also go to school.

…[read more]

Rock adds homegrown lad


By
June 2, 2021

Cameron Dutkiewicz

Brandon Perry has made a good first move as the new coach and general manager of the Timmins Rock. Perry has confirmed to Hockey News North that the Rock has obtained homegrown defenseman Cameron Dutkiewicz in a Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League trade with the Soo Thunderbirds.

…[read more]

Smyl is Alberta bound


By
June 1, 2021

Cooper Smyl, in action for Soo Thunderbirds. (photo by Bob Davies)

“It’s a pleasure just to be Alberta bound … I long to see my next of kin … Alberta bound … it’s good to be Alberta bound …” — from the song Alberta Bound by legendary Canadian singer Gordon Lightfoot.

High performance forward Cooper Smyl is moving on from the Soo Thunderbirds of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League to the Whitecourt Wolverines of the Alberta Jr. Hockey League, Hockey News North has confirmed.

…[read more]

Birds commit to rookie flock


By
June 1, 2021

Defenseman Michael Beltrano, in action for the under 18 Soo Jr. Greyhounds during the 2020-2021 season. (photo by Bob Davies)

Soo Thunderbirds general manager Jamie Henderson has confirmed the commitments of several rookie players ahead of the 2021-2022 Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League season.

Included in the flock are top performers from both the Soo Jr. Greyhounds and Kapuskasing Flyers of the Great North Under 18 Hockey League.

…[read more]

T-Birds bring Zeppa home


By
June 1, 2021

Noah Zeppa will play for Soo Thunderbirds.

Veteran goalie Noah Zeppa has been picked up by the Soo Thunderbirds of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League as a free agent, Hockey News North has confirmed.

…[read more]

RBC banks three locals


By
June 1, 2021

Rayside Balfour Canadians of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League have stayed local by committing to three forwards from the Sudbury Nickel Capital Wolves of the Great North Under 18 Hockey League ahead of the 2021-2022 season.

…[read more]

New recruit to Sault College


By
May 31, 2021

Keaston Blais

He played two full seasons as a steady defender with the Timmins Majors of the Great North Midget Hockey League. And he suited up for 16 games as a rookie for the Cochrane Crunch during the abbreviated 2020-2021 Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League season.

With that behind him, 2002 birth year defenseman Keaston (Sticks) Blais now has his sights set on attending Sault College in the fall and playing for the hockey Cougars.

…[read more]

Fuel for the NOJHL rivalries


By
May 30, 2021

Combat. Competition. Conflict. Confrontation. Contention.

Five words that are synonyms for rivalry.

And it is rivalry that fuels the healthy warfare between the nearby teams that comprise the 12-member Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League.

…[read more]

Standing tall in Cochrane


By
May 27, 2021

Cochrane goalie Michael Nickolau. (photo by Emily Martin)

He is a big one. And a good one.

Michael Nickolau was a huge presence in the net for the Cochrane Crunch during the abbreviated 2020-2021 Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League season.

…[read more]

Bosses on the job in Hearst


By
May 26, 2021

Hearst Lumberjacks are still the reigning NOJHL champions. (photo by Bob Davies)

Given that both the 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 seasons did not end in completion relative to COVID-19, the Hearst Lumberjacks remain as the reigning champions heading into the 2021-2022 Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League season.

Hearst won the 2018-2019 NOJHL title when the visiting Lumberjacks upset the heavily favoured Soo Thunderbirds in the seventh and deciding game of the league championship series.

…[read more]

Reopening in Elliot Lake


By
May 25, 2021

Junior hockey has had a presence in Elliot Lake since 1965, beginning with the old Jr. B Vikings.

And since 1997 there have been the Elliot Lake Ice, Elliot Lake Bobcats and Elliot Lake Wildcats of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League. (The Bobcats were also part of the Greater Metro Jr. Hockey League.)

Now, after the Wildcats took a leave of absence from the NOJHL in 2020-2021, the franchise was recently rebranded as the Elliot Lake Red Wings with new operator, new general manager and new coaching staff in place ahead of the 2021-2022 season.

…[read more]

Coaching vacancy in Espanola


By
May 22, 2021

Brent Hughes is moving on from the Espanola Express of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League as its head coach after one season on the job, Hockey News North has learned.

…[read more]

Chairman Mazzuca, take a bow


By
May 21, 2021

Rob Mazzuca

Score one for the north.

The Canadian Jr. Hockey League has confirmed its executive committee for the 2021-2022 season and Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League commissioner Rob Mazzuca will have a commanding role.

Mazzuca has been appointed the CJHL’s chairman of the board for the upcoming campaign.

…[read more]

Raffi Torres to Elliot Lake


By
May 20, 2021

Raffi Torres

A former star winger who was an impact player in the Ontario Hockey League before going on to play in more than 700 National Hockey League games will assist the new Elliot Lake Red Wings of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League as a mentor.

…[read more]