Portland, OR – The Portland Winterhawks, proud members of the Western Hockey League, announced today that the club has added forwards Cross Hanas, Jack O’Brien, and James Stefan and defenseman Clay Hanus to the team’s active roster for the remainder of the 2020-21 WHL Regular Season. The four completed their season with the Lincoln Stars of the United States Hockey League (USHL) and are expected to make their season debuts with Portland in the coming days.
Hanas, a 2020 second round selection of the Detroit Red Wings (55th overall), registered three goals and 13 assists (3-13–16) in 27 games for the Stars. Last season the Texas native finished third among all Winterhawks with 22 goals.
O’Brien (1-6–7 in 23 games) and Stefan (10-17–27 in 40 games) are first-year eligible players for this summer’s NHL Entry Draft and have three years of remaining eligibility with Portland. O’Brien was recently ranked the 94th best prospect on TSN’s midseason draft list.
Hanus paced all Lincoln defensemen with 27 points (7-20–27) through 36 games. The 20-year-old will conclude his junior hockey career where it began after etching 27 points in his two previous seasons with the team.
The four are eligible to play up to six games with the Winterhawks prior to the conclusion of the team’s season on May 11 and they are expected to play a key role in Portland for the 2021-22 season.
Calgary, Alta. – The Western Hockey League announced today the Tri-City Americans have been cleared to resume team activities as of Monday, April 26, after all individuals within the team cohort tested negative for COVID-19 this week.
The Americans practiced Monday evening for the first time since entering a league-mandated isolation period following the discovery of a positive test for COVID-19 on Friday, April 16. Though one additional positive test for COVID-19 was discovered within the Americans team cohort, this occurred while the individuals were in isolation and does not impact upon the initial start of the 10-day isolation period required by the Washington State Department of Health.
The Americans are scheduled to return to game play on Wednesday, April 28 at 6:10 p.m. PT when they visit the Spokane Chiefs.
The five postponed games on the U.S. Division schedule will not be rescheduled. As a result, the teams in the U.S. Division will complete their regular season schedules having played the following number of games:
- Portland Winterhawks – 24
- Everett Silvertips – 23
- Seattle Thunderbirds – 23
- Spokane Chiefs – 21
- Tri-City Americans – 19
In the U.S. Division, a total of 453 tests were administered for the Everett Silvertips, Portland Winterhawks, Seattle Thunderbirds, Spokane Chiefs, and Tri-City Americans from April 18 through April 24. Using private antigen testing, members of the team delegations for Everett, Portland, Seattle and Spokane were tested three times. Tri-City was tested twice using private antigen testing and once using private PCR testing. One positive test result for the Tri-City Americans was returned, including one player in the team cohort. This player was deemed to have been a close contact resulting from the previous one case of COVID-19, as announced on Saturday, April 17. The player remains in isolation at this time.
All other Tri-City Americans players and staff within the team cohort tested negative for COVID-19 this week. Because all individuals within the team cohort have been in isolation the latest positive test result does not impact the target date for a return to team activities.
In the B.C. Division, a total of 144 tests were administered for the Kamloops Blazers, Kelowna Rockets, Prince George Cougars, Vancouver Giants and Victoria Royals from April 18 through April 24. Using private PCR testing provided by DynaLIFE, testing was administered once to all members of the team delegations of players and staff.
To date, the WHL has administered a total of 8,220 tests for COVID-19 from February 12 through April 24, 2021, with 14 positive test results.
The WHL will continue to provide regular updates on COVID-19 testing results. The WHL will not be providing information on the identity of any individuals.
The Eastern Division portion of the schedule will end this week, and the whole schedule will end May 12, with some lopsided teams playing the full 24 games. Other teams will be greatly reduced in the non-makeup games.
Here are the up to date results:
Winnipeg Ice got by Prince Albert Raiders 4-3, though the Raiders could capitalize on 3-4 on the powerplay with Winnipeg 1-4 on theirs. The Ice edged the Raiders 29-27 on shots.
Saskatoon Blades and Moose Jaw Warriors needed overtime to settle things. The Blades won 5-4. Though outshot 26-24, they went 2-4 on the powerplay, holding the Warriors 1-6 on theirs.
Prince George Cougars took a 4-1 win over the Victoria Royals. The Cougars went 1-5 on the powerplay, holding the Royals off the scoresheet on their one chance. 33-26 were the shots in the Cougars’ favor.
The next night saw the following scores:
Despite an 0-3 on the powerplay, the Everett Silvertips bested Portland Winterhawks 3-2. Portland went 1-5 and outshot the Tips 39-29.
Winnipeg Ice was only able to get 1-6 on the powerplay and drop the shot total as well 28-27 in Regina’s favor which the Pats went 2-5, but the Ice won the game 6-4.
Kamloops Blazers scraped by Vancouver Giants 2-1. The Blazers went 1-4 to Vancouver’s 0-6 and were outshot 39-24 in the contest.
Kelowna Rockets powered by the Victoria Royals 5-1 as they went 2-5 on the powerplay to Victoria’s 1-9 and took the shots too at 35-32.
With Tri-City Americans back able to play, they traveled to Spokane Chiefs, where the game was tight until the third period. With both teams tied, the Chiefs scored a pair of goals by Adam Beckman late in the third, including a powerplay and an empty-net goal with 2 seconds remaining to win the game 5-3. Tri-City took the shots 36-28. Spokane led on the powerplay at 2-5, with the Americans blanked on their single chance.
Everett Silvertips versus Seattle Thunderbirds saw Everett continue their winning ways with a 5-2 win. The Thunderbirds picked up goals in the first and third, but Everett picked up their first two in the first and didn’t look back in the win. Everett was outshot 31-25 but went 1-2 on the powerplay. Seattle went 1-4 on theirs, giving Everett 6 straight wins on their record, with Portland now eleven points back in the standings in second.
Prince Albert Raiders versus Swift Current Broncos was an old-fashioned East Division shootout going to overtime where the Raiders finally broke through at 6-5. The Raiders went 2-5 while the Broncos 2-3 on a wild powerplay night. Final shots saw the Raiders 38-32 over the Broncos.
Saskatoon Blades got past the Brandon Wheat Kings 5-2. The Wheat Kings went 2-5 on the powerplay. The Blades, despite the win, were only to go 1-5 on theirs. The Blades were outshot 37-28 in the game. Despite the loss, Brandon emerges as the best team in the East at 18-4-2 and is awarded the Subway Cup in their bubble.
Prince George Cougars ended the night with a 5-1 shellacking of the Kamloops Blazers. The Cougars were outshot 38-34 on the night but went 1-2 on the powerplay to Kamloops’ 1-4, but scored once in the first and piled on two more in the second before allowing Kamloops a goal in the third. Prince George then added a pair in the frame to seal the win. Despite the loss, Prince George can do no better than top the wildcard rankings in the abbreviated schedule.
With that, the Eastern Division ends, with the Central Division ending this coming week with a couple of teams ending without playing a full 24 games. The following week, both the BC and US Divisions will end, and barring any last-minute complications, only a handful of teams, only Portland in the US, will play all 24 games in their Division with Everett at 23.
The 2021-22 season schedule looks to be starting in October, so the teams will have a little time to focus on the upcoming summer and figure out when the border will allow them to travel again.