The 2008 Vancouver Canucks are hosting two days of training camps in Whistler this weekend, putting prospects to the test and giving veterans a chance to shake off the cobwebs.
The Canucks have booked Meadow Park arena on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 20-21, from 8:15 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The team will be training in two groups, with the first group taking to the ice from 8:15 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., and the second group from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
This is the fifth time that the Canucks have held their pre-season training camps in Whistler in the past 12 years. As in the past, both practices are open to the public.
Because this camp falls on a weekend, Meadow Park manager Keith Tindle is expecting a huge crowd and is asking hockey fans not to drive to the arena but to take the bus or bike if possible.
There is no parking on the highway. Sunday is also Family Fun Day at Meadow Park.
The Vancouver Canucks will be showing off a very different team this weekend after losing Markus Naslund to the New York Rangers, Brendan Morrison to the Anaheim Ducks and Trevor Linden to retirement. The team also suffered a blow in May when top defensive prospect Luc Bourdon was killed in a motorcycle accident in New Brunswick.
New faces in the forwards include Pavol Demitra from the Minnesota Wild, Steve Bernier from the Buffalo Sabres, Kyle Wellwood from the Toronto Maple Leafs and Darcy Hordichuk from the Nashville Predators. New to the defence is Rob Davison, who finished last season with the New York Islanders and was later picked up by Vancouver.
The Canucks also re-signed Curtis Sanford as their backup to goalie Roberto Luongo.
The Whistler camps take place a week after the first prospect camp, and games against prospects for the Edmonton Oilers and Calgary Flames. On Monday, Sept. 22, the team will play its first preseason game against Edmonton, followed by a home game against Edmonton on Tuesday, and an away game against the San Jose Sharks on Saturday.
Last day for Rubble Creek Classic registration
Registration for the 24 th annual Rubble Creek Classic trail run has been extended to the end of today, Thursday, Sept. 18. As in the past the number of entries is limited to 80 runners because most of the course is through Garibaldi Provincial Park.
The trail branches off from the Cheakamus Lake trail, and up a rugged climb of 1,000 metres to the Helm Creek flats behind Black Tusk. From there the trail joins the Rubble Creek Trail, and a descent of more than 1,300 metres to the parking lot. The total distance is roughly 25 km from start to finish, and the views are nothing short of incredible.
Registration for the race, which takes place on Sunday, Sept. 28, is $39, plus a $3 service charge, and registration is available at www.rubblecreekclassic.com. Each participant will get a technical running shirt from the main sponsor at Escape Route, and any proceeds go to Big Brothers and Big Sisters.
Wolf Pack on the road after big loss
If Squamish Wolf Pack coach Matt Samson was unhappy after his team’s 5-2 loss to Delta in their home opener, the 7-0 loss to the Grandview Steelers this past Saturday was far worse.
Once again the expansion Wolf Pack kept things tied until the second period, when they allowed five unanswered goals. They managed to stem the bleeding in the third period, but still gave up two more goals, including the one that gave Grandview’s Jonathan Ceci a hat trick.
The Steelers outshot the Wolf Pack 52 to 2, and went three for nine on the power play. The Wolf Pack have yet to score on the power play in two games, and went 0-10 against the Steelers.
Goalie Graham Hallenbeck was pulled after the fifth goal, 13:40 into the second period and after facing 33 shots. He was replaced by Brett Miller, who saved 17 of 19 shots.
The Wolf Pack’s next game is tonight, Sept. 18 again the Richmond Sockeyes at Richmond Arena. On Saturday, Sept. 20, the Wolf Pack is at home against the Abbotsford Pilots, starting at 7:15 p.m. The following morning the Wolf Pack will head to Grandview to take on the Steelers in their home arena at 3:45 p.m.
For a complete schedule visit www.squamishwolfpack.com.