The Broncos arrived in Calgary about 20 minutes before the Hitmen did last night. Calgary was making their way in from Cranbrook following a rare loss. The Broncos came rolling in from the 'Hat following a 5-1 defeat.
I can tell you the trade deadline was on a lot of the players minds entering last night's game. One of the key players admitted to me before the game that he got an hour's sleep the night before because he was worried about what the next day would bring.
Medicine Hat can play with any team in this league with their full line-up. They are fast enough and have a decent group of veteran defense that can get them through. Oh, and they are very well coached too.
New Broncos John Negrin #7 and Michael Stickland #26 will join the team today and make their Bronco debuts tonight. I would also expect G Morgan Clark to at least get some consideration to start this game in goal after two games in two nights for Yonkman.
We're on the air with the pre-game show at 5:30pm, play-by-play at 6pm.
In what was an immensely busy day for the Broncos including Head Coach / GM Dean Chynoweth who in the end stole the show at the deadline with five deals. Four players out, four players in and five draft picks changing hands.
I gave my thoughts on the first three deals so I'll weigh in on the two made on deadline day.
Mark Guggenberger to Kelowna for a Conditional 5th round bantam pick:
There is more to this trade than any fan will know. For what 'Berger provided on the ice in his one full year of service, a conditional 5th rounder doesn't seem like all that much.
The Broncos return in this trade is also poised to increase the longer Guggenberger is a Rocket as per the "conditional status"of the pick.
The Broncos acquired him from Portland for a 3rd round pick in an almost "last chance" scenario. They got some great performances from him over the year, he stole some games and played extremely well. They turn around and move him for a 5th one year later.
It's sort of ironic that 'Berger's debut with the Broncos was against the Rockets - a 4-0 shutout performance to boot.
'Berger is a good one and has the potential to be a good pro. But he will have to stay focused.
This also gives him a chance to be a #1 guy. It's a great opportunity with a great looking team.
Good luck Mark, I'll be watching and wishing you the best.
Martin, Magnus, 2nd round 2010, 4th 2010 bantam picks to Kootenay for D John Negrin and F Michael Stickland:
I arrived at the rink yesterday just as this was being made official. I watched as both Christan and James went back on the bus to grab their belongings and say good-bye to their teammates. It was the harsh reality of the deadline. This isn't hockey cards we're talking about it's people and individuals.
James was ok with everything. He's a mature 17 year-old and nothing seems to rattle him. Christian on the other hand looked like a deer in the headlights. Shock was written all over his face.
I had a chance to talk to them both. I told them they are going to a good organization with great, supportive fans and a beautiful facility. I told them Cranbrook reminds me of Swift Current in many ways and that they will fit in fine.
They laughed they were going from one Chynoweth club to another.
This trade is generating a lot of talk it seems from Bronco fans/bashers. All the haters sure come out of the woodwork. Then there are others who in one day go from "sell the farm" to "we can win the conference". It really is enough to make your head spin.
Let's break down this trade. The Broncos give up the 16 year-old Magnus who was having a hard time getting into the line-up. He wasn't a top six forward and he wasn't a bang and crash player either. For the Broncos, they must have struggled to see where he was going to fit in. The Broncos will only lose one forward next season (Dansereau) and have some forwards in the system they want to take a good look at. Magnus was deemed expendable.
James Martin was a 17 year-old defenseman that showed promise but was seemingly falling a little bit on the depth chart. With the emergence of 16 year-old Jordan Evans, the much improved play of 17 year-old Joel Rogers, just one 18 year-old in Andrew Hewett and now four 19 year-old d-men plus an over-age in McAvoy, the Broncos blueline was set.
James should get a good look and opportunity in Cranbrook.
From a personality standpoint, James and Christian were two of my favorites. They will be solid citizens for the Kootenay Ice. The Ice showed interest in the two players and now get a chance to work with them.
It's funny to read some stuff out there. It seems the value of these two players has sky-rocketed ever since they were traded. Funny how that works.
Two good kids. Good luck.
The Broncos and the Ice meet in six days in Cranbrook as well. That will also add something extra to this deal.
The Broncos get another 19 year-old PP defenseman who is big and skates well. He's already signed by the Calgary Flames which means his chances of being back with the Broncos next season would be slim.
He represented Team WHL in Swift Current for the ADT Canada / Russia Challenge and the Broncos are really excited about his ability. He plays in all situations and instantly becomes a go-to guy.
In Michael Stickland, they get a hard-working, gritty forward who can score. The 19 year-old is a leader and the Broncos have had their eye on him for some time. His chances of returning for a 20 year-old season is also very high.
This team has made themselves better today without taking a major hit to their future plans. I thought Guggenberger would be the guy in goal next season. But with NHL teams knocking on his door and an ability to lose sight of the big picture, the Broncos weren't going to gamble.
Next year's team looks really solid too. The core of this team is still at the 17 year-old age group and the Broncos will return several key elements including a veteran, battle-hardened defense.
Dean broke down all the trades in our pre-game show last night. I will transcribe his thoughts tomorrow on the blog.
Onward and upward.
We are presently having some online streaming problems of our broadcast and we are looking into at the station. I can assure you we are working on it but a solution won't likely be reached until the games next weekend.
We apologize to Bronco fans everywhere and to the players friends and family.
Internet streaming isn't the business we're into at the Eagle 94.1 FM but we understand we have an obligation to provide this.
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