Lee-Gaye cooks up a Royal feast

Hey, Mom, guess who's coming to dinner?




F Tomáš Kopecký (Lethbridge, 2000-02) has signed multi-year contract with Třinec (Czech Republic, Extraliga). Last season, with the Florida Panthers (NHL), he had two goals and six assists in 64 games. Třinec’s assistant coach is Václav Varaďa (Tacoma/Kelowna, 1994-96). . . .

F Radim Valchar (Portland, Lethbridge, 2007-10) has been released by mutual agreement by Hokki Kajaani (Finland, Mestis). He had two goals and six assists in 11 games. . . .

D Petr Šenkeřík (Kootenay, Prince George, 2009-10) has been recalled from loan to Prostějov (Czech Republic, 1. Liga) by Vítkovice Ostrava (Czech Republic, Extraliga) and assigned on loan to Znojmo (Czech Republic, Erste Bank Liga) for a one-month tryout. This season, with Prostějov, he had a goal and three assists in 11 games.


When D Joe Hicketts of the Victoria Royals mentioned that he had invited the whole crew to his parents’ Kamloops home for dinner on Sunday, I wondered: What and how much do you cook for a hungry hockey team?

The Royals played Saturday in Kent, Wash., and were in Kamloops by Sunday. Later in the day, they headed to the Hicketts home for dinner.

Here’s what they found on the table, courtesy of the head chef, Lee-Gaye Hicketts:

“You start off with a nice hot BIG crockpot full of borscht soup with all the veggies from the Kamloops Farmers Market.

“Then you bring out three large pans of homemade lasagnas, along with skinless/boneless chicken thighs prepared in a special sauce, 10 bbq‘d chicken breasts and a pot of rice (five cups of rice).

“You put out five heads of lettuce turned into a Caesar salad, one bowl of potato salad, and a large Greek salad.

“Three loaves of garlic bread, and two dozen buns freshly baked from Safeway.

“For dessert, I made a trifle, and had one Costco-size container of cream puffs (slightly frozen) and drizzled with chocolate, and one pumpkin pie (with whipped cream, of course).

“There was one flat of iced tea for their enjoyment while watching TV, playing ping pong or a game of crib, and two large punch bowls filled. “That’s it!!”

Now . . . if you’re going to prepare that much food, you’re going to want to have at least some leftovers. Right? But, sheesh, we’re talking about feeding an entire major junior hockey team here.

So I asked Lee-Gaye about leftovers.

And it turns out she wasn’t completely truthful about the lasagna.

Uhh, she actually “made four pans of lasagna, so I had one full one left.”

Smart woman!

One more thought: Are hockey moms the best, or what?


The Regina Pats are hoping to have F Taylor Cooper back in their lineup on Sunday when they play host to the Prince Albert Raiders. Cooper had shoulder surgery over the summer and has yet to play this season. He had 32 points, including 13 goals, in 27 games after being acquired from the Lethbridge Hurricanes last season. All told, he finished the season with 60 points, 25 of them goals, in 62 games. . . . Cooper’s return means the Pats will dress three 20-year-olds. They also have G Daniel Wapple and F Aaron Macklin. . . . D Colby Williams, 20, is on the injured list. Once he returns, the Pats will have two weeks to get down to three 20s.


A couple of Thursday moves left the Medicine Hat Tigers without any import players. . .
. According to Bob Ridley, the radio voice of the Tigers, D Alexei Polotonov, a 6-foot-4, 210-pounder, has chosen to leave the Tigers and return to his home in Russia. In his first season here, he was pointless in two games. . . . At the same time, the Tigers placed D Tomasz Laday on waivers. Laday, 19, had one assist in nine games. The 6-foot-7, 215-pound Hungarian had six assists in 60 games with the Spokane Chiefs last season. . . . The moves leave the Tigers with six defenceman on their roster. . . . The Tigers (4-4-1) have won their last two games. They are scheduled to meet the Rebels in Red Deer tonight.


Dan Barry, one of the terrific writers of our time, was at Game 4 of the NLCS between the New York Mets and the host Chicago Cubs on Wednesday night.

Here’s his first paragraph:

“The New York Metropolitans claimed decisive possession of the National League base-ball pennant on enemy turf here at Wrigley Field on Wednesday night, sweeping the Sisyphean Chicago Cubs in four games to earn their ducats to next week’s World Series championship.

“The Metropolitans — also known as the “Mets” — sent six safely across the plate before the third inning, mostly as a result of the derring-do of their Bunyanesque first-sacker, Lucas Duda. The mighty Californian smote a home run and a double to tally five of those six runs before the Cubs seemed to comprehend that a game concerning their possible erasure from the 2015 field was well underway.”

This really is an entertaining read and it’s right here, from The New York Times.


Don’t forget to get a copy of the free eBook that is available on this page. It was fun to write and I’m hoping it’s a fund read. . . . Rumour has it that there may be a second one in the works, too.


Feel free to check out Drinnan on Hockey at NewsKamloops.com.


Got a tip or some information you feel could be useful to me, feel free to email me at greggdrinnan@gmail.com.


Department of Discipline

F Connor Gay of the Saskatoon Blades and D Haydn Fleury of the Red Deer Rebels drew two-game suspensions for an incident that occurred on Wednesday night in Red Deer. . . . Gay took a cross-checking major and game misconduct, with Fleury getting a headshot major and game misconduct. . . .

D Kade Jensen of the Swift Current Broncos will sit out two games after taking a cross-checking major and game misconduct during a game in Moose Jaw on Wednesday night.




The Kamloops Blazers have released F Chasetan Braid, 18, from their roster. He is headed to the AJHL’s Bonnyville Pontiacs. . . . Braid was pointless in three games with the Blazers, who acquired him from the Saskatoon Blades on Oct. 8 for a fifth-round bantam draft pick in 2017. . . .

The Kootenay Ice released Nathyn Mortlock, a 19-year-old who had been used up front and on the back end. He is scheduled to join the SJHL’s Melville Millionaires. Mortlock, who is from Medicine Hat, had one goal. . . . The Ice now is carrying 24 players, including two goaltenders and nine defencemen. . . .

F Radel Fazleev of the Calgary Hitmen will play for Russia against the WHL in the series that opens with games Nov. 9 in Kelowna and Nov. 10 in Kamloops. Fazleev has 14 points, including five goals, in 12 games this season. . . .

Tri-City Americans D Riley Hillis came off the injury list but wasn’t able to get through two games before being hurt again. He took a hit from F Keegan Kolesar of the host Seattle Thunderbirds on Wednesday. “Riley will be out for a while,” Tri-City head coach Mike Williamson told Annie Fowler of the Tri-City Herald.“It’s not as bad as we first thought. When we first saw it, we thought it was long term again. We are going to miss him. I really feel bad for him, he worked so hard to get back and was playing well. In my mind, it was a hit that was outside the lines.” . . .

Jesse Geleynse of the Everett Herald reports that Austrian F Dario Winkler, who was claimed by the Everett Silvertips off waivers from the Brandon Wheat Kings, should report sometime this weekend. Winkler apparently has been in Vancouver waiting for visa-related issued to be cleared up.



No Games Scheduled.


FRIDAY’S GAMES (all times local):

Moose Jaw at Prince Albert, 7 p.m.

Saskatoon vs. Kootenay, at Cranbrook, B.C., 7 p.m.

Medicine Hat at Red Deer, 7 p.m.

Swift Current at Lethbridge, 7 p.m.

Calgary at Kamloops, 7 p.m.

Brandon vs. Tri-City, at Kennewick, Wash., 7:05 p.m.

Prince George at Kelowna, 7:05 p.m.

Victoria at Spokane, 7:05 p.m.

Seattle at Vancouver, 7:30 p.m.

Portland at Everett, 7:35 p.m.