After a return to the Winterhawks from an Amateur Tryout Contract with the Syracuse Crunch, Jaydon Dureau picked up 66 points, including 24 goals with the Hawks in his final season with the team. That, along with solid records over the past five seasons, was enough for the Tampa Bay Lightning to sign him to a three-year Entry Level Contract. The 5th round selection in 2020, Dureau had proven himself to be a solid leader off and on the ice, and for many, it wasn’t surprising to see the White City, Saskatchewan native get a deal from the NHL team.
The WHL continues its semifinal matchups with both visiting teams getting a split in the first two games of the series as the teams now shift to Edmonton and Seattle for games three and four.
In Winnipeg, Edmonton scored three first period goals and then saw Winnipeg score three in the third, which sent the game to overtime. Edmonton scored just over a minute in to take a 5-4 overtime goal.
The next night it was Winnipeg’s turn as the two teams tied in the first, but Winnipeg blew open the game in the third with four goals. Two happened on the powerplay at 3:15 and 6:20. Winnipeg’s Mikey Milne went all alone in the Edmonton zone to score an empty-net goal, followed by Maximillian Streule scoring less than a minute later to end the game for the ICE on top.
In the West, Kamloops Blazers Matthew Seminoff scored twice in the first period, including a powerplay marker sandwiched between Kevin Korchinski’s lone Seattle goal, followed by Logan Stankoff’s late first period goal to give the Blazers a 3-1 lead. Logan would wait until the third period to score his second of the night at 57 seconds. Jared Davidson scored for Seattle late in the period on the powerplay, followed by Stankoff’s third of the night into the empty net.
Despite the 41 – 27 shot total favoring the Blazers, the next night, Seattle took the game 4-1. It was Kamloops who scored first as Logan Stankoven scored just 1:39 into the game as the only powerplay goal of the game. Seattle saw four different scorers, including an empty-net goal at 17:55 of the third period by Reid Schafer to split the series with the Blazers as the series heads south of the border.
In the Ontario Hockey League, the Flint Firebirds hold a 1-0 series lead over Windsor Spitfires, and the Hamilton Bulldogs have a 1-0 series lead over the North Bay Battalion. The series are running seven games, with the seventh game scheduled for June 1st as the teams are playing every second day.
Quebec Major Junior Hockey League will begin its third round starting on May 25, with Quebec Ramparts facing the Shawinigan Cataractes and Charlottetown Islanders facing the Sherbrooke Phoenix. The winners of those two series will meet and represent the QMJHL at the Memorial Cup. The Saint John Sea Dogs, who were eliminated in five games by the Rimouski Oceanic, will be the hosts of this year’s Memorial Cup. The QMJHL is running a five-game series for all but the finals for the President’s Cup, which will be a seven-game tilt.