Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Schaber Talks / Johnston Comments Niederreiter Signing

Blazers F Chase Schaber practiced today after attending Edmonton Oilers training camp.

"It was probably the best hockey experience I've ever had," said Schaber before today's practice at ISC.

"It was high-tempo, a lot of energy with guys battling for spots it was a lot of fun."

Schaber also saw first hand the media circus surrounding Oiler top prospects Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle and Magnus Paajarvi.

"They are pro material, I was impressed. They are first round picks. They have amazing skill, they are fast. It was fun watching and playing with them."

Schaber and the Blazers captaincy for the upcoming season have been linked for a few months now. It's something he'd welcome.

"Absolutely. I can take any role I'm given. I can adapt to anything. We will see. Whatever happens, happens."

The Blazers held a players vote on the matter yesterday. The staff will also weigh in and an announcement is expected before the Blazers host Prince George Friday night.


The Portland Winterhawks will play the waiting game after learning that Nino Niederreiter has signed with the New York Islanders.

While getting the WHL this Week - Radio Edition together today I spoke with Winterhawks Head Coach/GM Mike Johnston on the matter. He's fully expecting to start the season without NHL first round picks Ryan Johansen and Niederreiter.

"The exhibition games process is now just starting. I expect both players to play regular season games as well to determine if they can play in the top part of (the Islanders or Blue Jackets) line-up. I don't think any team is going to keep a player at 18 years of age if they're not on their top two lines. They will want them to go back to junior in develop. We will get a real good feeling for where these guys are at probably in the next couple weeks to determine if they fit into their roster."


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