Bryon Fobair is in his first season with the Dauphin Kings and it's been a pretty good one so far.
Not only are the Kings (9-5) having success, but so is Bryon. In his 10 games with the club, he's chipped in eight points (3 goals).
"Things have been going great so far for sure," said Fobair. "I'm loving the town and just everything about it. I'm excited for the rest of the year."
Fobair is one of a few Americans on this year's team. Playing in Dauphin is the second team he's played in Canada with. Last year, he suited up for the OCN Blizzard.
Two seasons ago he played with the West Coast Renegades U18 team. Last year he joined the Colorado Rampage.
So, how did Bryon get to playing junior hockey in Canada?
"I met the scout for OCN and that's where it kind of took off," said Fobair. "Then I talked to Doug, and I guess you could say the rest was history."
Fobair and the Kings return to the ice this evening when they welcome the Winkler Flyers to town. The club heads into the game just three points back of the Steinbach Pistons who are idle tonight. Going forward, Bryon's confident this team has what it takes to make a splash in the MJHL this year.
"Oh yeah, I definitely think we have the tools to make something special happen here this year," added Fobair. "We have a great group of guys here and everyone enjoys each other and that's important. I also think we have some future stars on this team that have the abilities to break out this year. It's all going to add up soon here."
Get To Know Bryon:
Hometown? Salt Lake City, Utah.
Was the MJHL below or better than his expectations coming in? I mean I knew a couple guys from where I lived that played in Saskatchewan, so from what they told me, I expected it to be pretty rough and tough. When I got here it was definitely a bit different than American hockey because we use more systems here. I eventually got used to it.
Was it hard to adapt? I think I fit in great here. I get along with Doug well and I think that's huge. If you get along with your coach, you can do well anywhere.
Best friend on Kings? For sure Riley Buller is my best friend. We knew each other before we even played here, so that's a big reason why and we're both from the US.
Favourite memory with Kings? Probably the first goal I scored with the team in Neepawa. I'm sure there will be a ton more going forward.
Pregame meal? Last year Wyatt Riendeau and I would eat french toast and have a smoothie before every game. It's definitely one of my favourites.
Favourite sport and team outside of hockey? I really like football and lacrosse. Favourite team would be the Green Bay Packers because my dad is from Wisconsin and I grew up watching them.
How does it feel to be a junior hockey player? It's pretty great spending time with the guys on the bus and at the hotel. Our travel schedule isn't bad either playing in Dauphin. All in all, it's great.
Bryon's also on pace for a career year. Last year in OCN, he had 18 points in 56 games. With his eight points already this season, Fobair is on pace for 48 points.
Make sure you tune into the Dauphin Kings Powerplay Show this afternoon after the 4:00 p.m. news, weather, and sports to learn more about Bryon.
Then later tonight, you can see Bryon and the Kings at Credit Union Place. The puck drops at 7:30.
Photo Credit - Dauphin Kings - Pederson Photographic.
- Contributed by Darnell Duff
Ryder Thompson had a ton of success with the Parkland Bantam Rangers last season as he joined the team en route to winning a bronze medal at the Provincial Championships.
This year, the 14-year-old from Russell decided to switch things up. He's now playing with the Rink Hockey Academy Nationals Bantam Prep team.
"Things have been going really well," said Thompson. "I'm really lucky that I get to be on the ice every day. I've been learning a lot and having a ton of fun."
The season is just over a month old, and Ryder is already seeing progression in his own personal play.
"I think I've definitely gotten better," he added. "My coaches have helped me on every skill I need to improve on."
Ryder also has some proof to back up the fact that he thinks he's gotten better. The team named their leadership group for the season, and the 14-year-old was named one of the team's Assistant Captains.
"That means a lot to me and makes me feel proud of myself," added Thompson. "I think it backs up the fact that I've improved and I can be a leader. Now, I have to help guide the guys throughout the season."
"It definitely puts more pressure on me, but I honestly like that," he added. "It's going to make me work harder which will allow me to improve my game, even more, going forward."
So it's easy to say things have been going well. But, it's also been a challenging jump up for Ryder. That comes with playing against some of the best players from all across the country.
"I mean it hasn't been easy. I'd say the toughest thing about it has been the speed," said Thompson. "It's so quick out here and it's hard to adjust to it. I think I have a fairly good grip on it now, but it was definitely tough to start for sure."
Playing in the Canadian Sport School Hockey League (CSSHL) means Ryder and the rest of the team get to travel across the country several times and even into the US. That's something that Ryder is enjoying very much.
"Definitely getting to bond with the new team on the road is super exciting," said Thompson. "We have a great group of guys. And of course, starting the season and just playing. I can't get enough of everything that goes on here."
Ryder now gets the chance to play in somewhat of a homecoming this weekend. Not in Manitoba, but near. The team is playing Notre Dame in Wilcox, Saskatchewan. That means the family is packing up their bags and heading down to watch Ryder play.
"It's pretty exciting that I'll get the chance to play in front of my family again," added Thompson. "I know I'll have to give it my all or else I'll get a talking to from the parents." he said with a chuckle.
Through four games of the season, Ryder has two points.
Ryder is the far left in the photo.
- Contributed by Darnell Duff
The Dauphin Kings are playing some of their best hockey of the season and they will look to keep it rolling tonight.
They welcome the Winkler Flyers to Credit Union Place tonight.
The Kings (9-5) are riding a three-game winning streak into the contest. The Flyers (7-5-1) are just as hot as they‘ve won four straight after a slow start to the season.
It’s been the Kings defence that has been winning them hockey games as of late.
They gave up just 46 shots this past weekend as they went on to sweep the Wayway Wolverines in a home and home.
Carter Sawchuk continues to lead the Kings with 12 points.
Wayde Johannesson and Riley Shamray both have 10 apiece.
The Kings will also look to play a more discipline game tonight. They went 16-16 on the penalty kill last weekend, but that is far too many penalties to pick up in a two-game span. The team enters the night as the most penalized hockey club league wide.
Don‘t forget that the Dauphin Kings Powerplay Show goes this afternoon just after 4:00 p.m.
- Contributed by Darnell Duff
Back in the mid-2000's, Ste. Rose's Shane Luke and the Dauphin Kings were a force to be reckoned with.
From the 2007-08 season to the 2010-11 season, the Kings made the playoffs each season. They also made it to the league semifinal in each of the years.
In the 07-08 season, Luke had only 54 points in 58 games. I say only because what he did the rest of his time with the Kings is nothing short of incredible.
Luke had 86 points for the Kings the next year, in which the club advanced to the league semifinal.
The next season was a historic one for Luke and the rest of the Kings. Luke had 101 regular season points and 15 playoff points as the Kings won the Manitoba Junior Hockey League.
Luke then went on to record five more points in five games in the Anavet Cup as the Kings triumphed over the La Ronge Ice Wolves in five games to win that series and advance to the RBC Cup.
Luke and the Kings came up just short in that RBC Cup, as they lost in the final.
"That was a pretty special year for sure," said Luke. "It was a lot of fun, we won a lot and winning is always a ton of fun. I'll always look back at that year and think very fondly of it."
That campaign was also the one that the Kings won 50 games in the regular season and lost just 12. Luke's 101 points were the highest in the league. He beat out fellow teammate Ryan Dreger who recorded 99.
"It was quite a ride that's for sure," added Luke. "Obviously it was pretty disappointing losing that final game. But, I think if we look back at it, we were pretty proud of how we did that year and it was a great feeling beating Saskatchewan."
"Playing the RBC Cup at home was quite an experience," said Luke. "The fans were amazing, and yeah it was just quite a year."
The next year was Shane's final as a junior hockey player. He had 100 points combined between the regular season and playoffs, but the team came up just short in the MJHL final.
Now going to school in The Pas, Luke takes a look back at his favourite memories with the Kings organization.
"It's pretty hard to pinpoint one, but I think I'm going to have to say winning the league and the Anavet Cup," said Luke. "That's something that no one can ever take away from us. Also, all of my teammates that I keep in touch with. I made so many great friendships so those are a couple of my favourite memories."
Just because Shane was done playing junior hockey, that doesn't mean he was done playing at a super high level. The Ste. Rose native went on to play four seasons of NCAA hockey with the Providence College Friars.
"My goal heading into junior was to play college hockey after it, so I achieved that goal," said Luke. "It was a great experience playing at Providence."
After four solid years with the Friars, Luke took the next step. He signed his first professional contract in France with Amiens. He went on to play one season there and had 15 regular season points in 24 games and two playoff points in five games.
"Signing my first contract was pretty surreal," said Luke. "I had a couple of options on where to go, but I decided to go overseas and I don't regret it one bit. It was a heck of a time, I did a lot of travelling, played good hockey and of course met some great guys."
Shane has now played the last two seasons in the NCHL with the Russell Rams where he's once again dominated. In just 17 games, Luke put up 54 points.
Now that he's going to school, Luke isn't sure what team he'll play on, but he does plan on lacing up the skates this season. When he does, you can expect some more sparks and sick snipes.
Want to hear the full interview with Shane? You can do so by listening to the Dauphin Kings Powerplay Show tomorrow afternoon after the 4:00 p.m. news, weather, and sports.
- Contributed by Darnell Duff
The 2018-19 MJHL season is well underway, and it's been a great season to date.
But, with all fast-paced, high contact sports, concussions always seem to be a big problem. The MJHL in the past has made steps towards helping teams detect players they think may have concussions, and they've continued that with another step forward.
"At the start of the season we implemented a mobile app called "Head Check Health"," said Kim Davis, Commissioner. "The app allows the team training staff to assess players easily, and if they suspect them to have a concussion, they can refer those players to a doctor for a follow-up and more in-depth look."
The Virden Oil Capitals were the first team to jump on board. The league did a demonstration with them last year using Head Check Health. The Dauphin Kings also did a demo with a competing company, and then the league compared the two at the end of the season.
"We as a league we're definitely comfortable going with Head Check Health after the demonstrations last year," added Davis. "Collectively across the country, every CJHL league has now implemented Head Check Health."
Overall, Head Check Health will make things a lot easier on trainers across the league and country.
"It's going to help make their job a lot easier and save a lot of time," said Davis. "There's no paper involved, stopwatches or any other tools. It's just a great way of providing better health care in the area of concussion issues to players around our league."
The Dauphin Kings have been hurt at times by upper body injuries earlier season. Landon Russell who missed several games after suffering a UBI earlier this season has since returned. Jacob Evans also missed a contest because of a UBI injury of this nature.
Overall, Kim says any number of concussions is far too much.
"I wouldn't say there has been a spike, but we have had a number of them over the few years since we started tracking it," said Davis. "There are some years where it's up and some years it's down. I wouldn't say there is a major spike, but having said that, there is too many. In our view, one is too many."
Developing players and advancing players to the next level is a high priority for the MJHL, but, the health of the players in the league is perhaps the biggest priority the MJHL has.
"If you don't have health, you don't have a whole lot and that's my personal view," said Davis. "Hockey isn't a safe game by the nature of it because you have big guys skating fast, and there's high contact. We want to provide an environment that is as safe as possible for the players."
A Look Around The League:
To date, this could be called the most competitive season the MJHL has had in years. Like if you look at last year, the Steinbach Pistons won the regular season standings by 17 points.
Yes, it's still early but the parody within the league is incredible. The Pistons are on top right now with 21 points. The Dauphin Kings are in fourth but find themselves just three points behind the Pistons for the top spot.
Besides Dauphin and Steinbach, there are five other teams that are within six points of the top spot. And then you look at the Selkirk Steelers, they were widely regarded heading into the season as one of the best teams.
They're in eighth place and are just eight points back.
"For me as a commissioner, I love what's been going on this season so far," said Davis. "It means that the players on a nightly basis are getting a test and each team has to have their best effort each game out."
"It's also great for fans because they're getting to see some great hockey every time they head down to the rink," he added. "It also means that whatever team comes out of the league this year will be playing their best hockey, and they'll have a great chance in the Anavet Cup and even further than that at the National Championship."
Davis is loving the early parody in the league. But, he knows things could always be better as far as a league standpoint comes.
"I don't know if I can say I'm fully happy because there are always things that can be improved," said Davis. "We need to get better as a league and improve in lots of areas. We'll keep working on things here."
The MJHL is taking a day off today before returning to action tomorrow with a full slate of games.
- Contributed by Darnell Duff
Russell's Aiden Ziprick's goal is to follow in his older brother's footsteps.
Keaton Ziprick plays for the Midget Parkland Rangers. While Aidan is still a few years away from being eligible to play in that league, he's doing a great job at the Bantam level.
Playing in his first season with the AAA Bantam Rangers, the 12-year-old is doing his best to make his mark on the squad.
"I feel like I've been playing pretty good this season," added Ziprick. "I mean I have to continue working hard and developing. I'm at my best when I'm in the corners and playing a physical game and getting some shots on net. It's important for me to start doing those things."
The Rangers are off to a 2-4 start to the season. One of those losses came this past Sunday when the team had a tough task. After playing at 7:15 p.m. in Winnipeg on Saturday, the team had to travel home after the game and play at 10:00 a.m. on Sunday morning.
"I mean it was a pretty early morning for sure," added Ziprick. "Some guys were pretty tired, but we can't use that as an excuse."
Despite that loss, when Aiden and the rest of the Rangers are at their best, this is a team to be reckoned with. They showed that this past Saturday when they beat the Winnipeg Hawks 4-1.
It would be easy to say Aiden is a top-tier athlete. When he's not playing hockey, Ziprick is shining on the baseball field. So with all this success and only being 12-years-old, it's safe to say that Aiden has a very bright future. But, the only thing he's thinking about right now is winning with the Rangers and enjoying the ride the team is on.
"It's been a really good experience getting the chance to play with new kids and make some new friends," added Ziprick. "It's a higher level of hockey and it's always a great challenge."
"It was tough to get used to playing at this level earlier in the season," he added. "But, I'm getting more comfortable every time I hit the ice."
Aiden and the rest of the Rangers are now Regina bound for a tournament this weekend. They'll play North Battleford, Melville, and North Vancouver in the round-robin before the playoffs take over.
"I think we have a pretty good chance this weekend, but also at going deep this season here in Manitoba," added Ziprick. "We have the skill. We just have to stick to our systems and we'll find success."
It's Aiden at the Bantam level, Keaton has already been drafted by the Dauphin Kings and he's at the Midget level. Big things are coming for the Ziprick family.
- Contributed by Darnell Duff
In 10 days, the Grandview Comets will officially begin their title defence.
The team's full 16-game schedule was released earlier today.
Here is the Comets home schedule. All the games will be at the GACC.
Friday, November 9 - Russell Rams at 8:30 p.m. - Game sponsor will be McMunn and Yates Grandview.
Friday, November 16 - Swan Valley Axemen at 9:00 p.m. - Game sponsor will be Loberts Electric.
Saturday, November 17 - Moosomin Rangers at 8:00 p.m. - Game sponsor will be Rube's Auto.
Saturday, December 1 - Virden Oil Kings at 8:00 p.m. - Game sponsor will be Prairie Plumbing & Heating.
Friday, December 7 - Foxwarren Falcons at 8:30 p.m. - Game sponsor 360 Ag Consulting.
Friday, December 14 - Rivers Jets at 8:30 p.m. - Game sponsor will be C&B Stirling Enterprises Inc.
Saturday, January 19 - Shoal Lake Eagles at 8:00 p.m. - Game sponsor Gilbert Plains Co-op.
Friday, January 25 - Miniota-Elkhorn Canadians at 8:30 p.m. - Game sponsor Sunrise Credit Union.
The Comets will also play eight road games this season.
Here's that schedule:
Friday, November 2 - Shoal Lake at 8:30 p.m.
Saturday, November 24 - Miniota-Elkhorn at 8:00 p.m.
Saturday, December 22 - Virden at 8:00 p.m.
Friday, January 4 - Russell at 8:30 p.m.
Saturday, January 5 - Moosomin at 8:00 p.m.
Friday, January 11 - Swan Valley at 8:30 p.m.
Friday, January 18 - Foxwarren at 8:30 p.m.
Saturday, February 9 - Rivers at 8:30 p.m.
730CKDM is the place to be for everything Grandview Comets this season.
- Contributed by Darnell Duff
The Dauphin Kings have been a team of ups and downs this season, but for the most part, it's been on the positive side.
The Kings (9-5) have three different two-game winning streaks or more. That includes the team's current three-game winning streak.
After a couple of days off, the Kings were back on the ice yesterday to prepare for the weekend.
"Yesterday was definitely a good day for us," said Mitch Topinka, Assistant Coach. "It was a pretty high tempo practice, and we did a good job of sticking to the things we've been working on all season."
The Kings dazzled on the penalty kill against the Waywayseecappo Wolverines. They went a combined 16-16 in the two-game set this past weekend.
"I mean obviously we don't want to take as many penalties as we have been lately," said Topinka. "Special teams has been great as of late, so we're not that upset about it."
"We just want to stick to what we do well, and stick to our systems," he added.
There's no doubt that the Kings are hot. But, the Flyers are even hotter. They've won four straight games and five of their last seven. So it's safe to say that Friday's tilt will be a battle.
"We're expecting a lot of energy from them," said Topinka. "They're finding a way to win hockey games and so are we."
The recent Kings success comes after a difficult outcome 11 days ago. Against a team they've beaten before, the Kings lost 4-2 to the Winnipeg Blues. After that game, Dauphin went to OCN to challenge the Blizzard. In that hockey game, the Kings went behind 3-2 early in the second before erupting and scoring four straight goals in a 6-3 win.
After going down 3-2 in that game against the worst team in the league, did it prove to be a wake-up call for the Kings who are considered as one of the leagues best?
"I mean yes and no, like every time you go up there, you know they're going to come hard at you," added Topinka. "I think once they took that 3-2 lead, it sorta clicked to us that we had to get going and that we weren't losing that game. Since then, we've been firing on all cylinders."
When the season was just beginning, Mitch said "We have something special here", now that it's October 24, he still has the same thing to say.
"There is definitely something special here," added Topinka. "Everyone has bought in and all the guys are coming together. It's an exciting time here for sure."
Gametime on Friday is set for 7:30 at Credit Union Place.
- Contributed by Darnell Duff
Heading into this season, McCreary's Hunter Glover didn't really know what playing AAA hockey felt like.
That sure hasn't stopped the former Dauphin Clipper from lighting it up for the Midget Rangers.
In nine games with the team this season, Glover already has nine points (six goals).
"I think I've been playing pretty well and I've been helping out the team that led us to a couple wins so far," said Glover.
The 17-year-old played the role of "Ranger Hero" once over the weekend. In a 3-2 overtime win against Interlake, it was Glover who scored the winner.
One day later, Glover recorded a hat-trick in an 8-2 thrashing of the Norman Northstars.
"Putting up points like that has definitely given me quite a bit of confidence, and I'm just hoping I can keep it going," said Glover. "I've been working really hard and pushing my limits. But, of course, it's not just me though. My linemates have been doing a great job setting me up and giving me those chances."
With those two wins over the weekend, the Rangers got back some of their mojo after a slide. The club now sits at 3-6 and are only a couple points out of a playoff spot very early in the season.
"I think overall our team has been playing a lot better for the last little while," said Glover. "I mean even in that loss against Central Plains, we just about came all the way back. Then, of course, the two wins this past weekend. I think we're trending in the right direction here."
Just because Hunter is a rookie to the league this season, he's always been a guy who had success. Last year with the Dauphin Clippers, Glover had 32 points in 23 games. He then went on to add six more points in six playoff games.
This season, he's hoping to continue translating that success from last year to this year in order for the team to succeed.
"All that success last year came from hard work in practice and we as a team just all worked together really well," said Glover. "We came together at the right time and made stuff happen. I think if we do that with the Rangers, we can make a playoff push."
So Glover and the Rangers have picked up four of their last possible six points. Now it's time to play the leagues best. The Rangers head to Killarney on Saturday to challenge the Southwest Cougars (5-1-1-2).
On Sunday, the Rangers are back on home ice and they face the ultimate test in the Winnipeg Wild. The Wild are the defending league champions and they're off to a perfect 7-0 start to the season.
"It's definitely going to be a very different game than this past weekend," said Glover. "The Wild and Cougars are a lot stronger and more skilled. We have to play a disciplined game, work really hard and hopefully, we can have success. It should be a solid challenge."
There's no doubt that Glover's main goal this season is to help this Rangers team succeed and make the playoffs. And, he's also got another goal that he wants to achieve.
"I would love to keep this point-per-game pace up going forward," said Glover.
Hunter hopes to play junior hockey in the next couple of years. For now, it's all Rangers, all the time for the McCreary product.
Photo Credit - Pederson Photographic.
- Contributed by Darnell Duff
Fork River's Michael Allen Richard Clark's goal is to make it to the WWE. First, he has to grind his way through the so called "Minor Leagues".
And, that includes getting the chance to fight in his home region as he'll fight tomorrow night as Canadian Wrestling Elite rolls through Dauphin.
Clark currently resides in Regina, but he knows his roots and always loves coming back home, especially to do the thing he loves to do.
"It's always fun to come back here and wrestle," said Clark. "It's always fun to wrestle in front of my friends that I grew up with. My parents come to see me in Regina, but my friends don't get the chance often. It's always a treat to fight in front of them."
Tomorrow's match for the Fork River native won't be an easy one. He'll challenge Japenese star, Naomi Yoshimura. Yoshimura fights in the DDT back in Japan.
"I've never wrestled anyone from Japan, so it should be interesting, to say the least," added Clark.
"I've been watching a lot of tape on him to see what he does, and how I can counteract that and have success," said Clark. "It's all about staying prepared and going to the gym, and that sort of thing. It should be a really fun match."
This won't be Clark's first time wrestling in the Parkland. But, with all his family and friends in attendance, he knows it'll be a little extra special.
"There will definitely be some butterflies when I come out of the dressing room for sure," said Clark. "But, when that bell rings, it's down to business and I'm not really worried about what's going on around me other than the fight."
Michael is very confident he'll be winning tomorrow's fight, and he hopes to one day win fights at the WWE level.
"I mean every wrestler would like to feel that they're close to making the next step," said Clark. "It's been a pretty good little spell in the last year here. I recently wrestled Cody Rhodes who's a former WWE guy and he had good things to say about me."
"I also got the chance to wrestle WWE Legend Mick Foley, and he had some good things to say about me as well," he added. "I'm just enjoying the ride I'm on right now, and I don't really think about that stuff much yet."
Tomorrow's event at the Watson Art Centre named the Struttin' & Cuttin' Tour will feature WWE Legend Brutus "The Barber Beefcake", and of course all of Canadian Wrestling Elite's finest.
"CWE is full of some of the hardest working guys I've ever seen in wrestling," said Clark. "They're going on a 32-day tour across five provinces. These guys bust their butts to make it in this business. It's honestly always delightful to get asked if I want to wrestle here. It's a really high level of wrestling, and everyone should come to check it out."
The VIP Meet & Greet goes down tomorrow at 6:00 p.m. The doors for the General Public open up at 6:30 p.m. and bell time is set for 7:00 p.m.
You can purchase your tickets in advance for $18 from Parkland Title Loans or the WAC. At the door, the tickets will be $20.
You can also buy them at Canadian Wrestling Elite Tickets.
- Contributed by Darnell Duff
The Dauphin Kings AG Project is one step closer to being completed this go around.
Rae Csversko, External Relations for the Kings provides an update.
"We have some good news, the crop is off and is in the bin," said Csversko. "We started last Friday and got about half done until we were rained out. Then yesterday, we finished the other half of the crop."
A couple of weeks ago, Mother Nature showed up and blanketed the Dauphin area with lots of snow. But, that snow wasn't keeping the AG Project from going on.
"I don't think it affected our canola at all," said Csversko. "If it was wheat, it may have affected the grade of it. But, our canola came off pretty good."
Once again, the money raised from the crop will go towards eliminating the Dauphin Kings debt.
"Having the ability to have a crop with basically no input cost is absolutely huge for the club," added Csversko. "It'll go a long way in helping to pay the clubs expenses."
"The best thing about it is, the Dauphin Kings have a five-year lease on Industrial Park land," he added. "That gives the Kings some financial security for the next four years."
How much money will the club be getting this year from it? Stay tuned in the coming weeks to find out.
Photo Credit - Dauphin Kings.
- Contributed by Darnell Duff