CHL- Road to the Memorial Cup

The drive towards the Memorial Cup has begun. The CHL 2005-06 regular season was capped off by an amazing 11-point performance by Quebec Rempart’s forward Alexander Radulov (NAS). Can the league’s top scorer lead the Remparts to a Memorial Cup birth? Calgary Hitmen goalie Justin Pogge (TOR) is the leading candidate for the CHL MVP honours and the Hitmen will need him to elevate his game beyond World Junior Championship levels if they want to become WHL champions. The Peterborough Petes and the London Knights look to be on a collision course for OHL supremacy but the Brampton Battalion and Kitchener Rangers may throw a wrench into those plans. I will also add my two cents by predicting the individual league champions and who will take home the Memorial cup.QMJHL

The likely QMJHL player of the year Alexander Radulov (NAS) finished first overall with 152 points. He capped of the year with a Sitler like performance of 11pts against the lowly Oceanic. Quebec has a potent offense that includes the likes of Brent Aubin and rookie of the year candidate Angelo Esposito. The Remparts may receive some opposition in the Eastern Conference from the fast skating Haitian Maxime Boisclair and the Slovakian Stanislav Lascek (TB) of the Chicoutimi Saugeneens. If Chicoutimi has any hope of beating St. Pat’s Remparts, they will need player of the month Patrick Coulombe and Julien Brouillette to shut down the Rempart attack and quarterback the power play on the blue line.

In the West, the Moncton Wildcats are assured a spot in the Memorial Cup because they are the host-city. They are well prepared for the tournament as they are the top ranked team in the West. Led by centre Phillipe Dupuis (CLB) and top scoring defenseman Keith Yandle (PHX), it may be a cake walk through the West. The Acadie-Bathurst Titans led by iron man winger Mathieu Roy may beat the Wildcats but don’t count on it.

QMJHL prediction: Quebec Remparts

Barring a major collapse, no one is going to touch the Remparts. Patrick Roy has this team firing on all cylinders and if you watch Radulov play, no CHL skater takes control of the game like he does. If he plays to expectation, everything else falls into place for Quebec.


Without question, Justin Pogge has had a stellar season and is the number one reason why the Hitmen are a top ten team in the entire CHL. The problem is, without Justin Pogge, the Hitmen would have struggled to make the playoffs. But as hockey fans know, a hot goalie can take you far but they need help in front. Look for the Hitmen to go deep but divisional rival, and regular season champions, The Medicine Hat Tigers will be the Hitmen’s greatest hurdle. Led by centre Darren Helm (DET), the Tiger’s offence has scored the second most goals in the league while goalie Matt Keetley (CAL) has had a lot of help from a solid defense lead by Kris Russell (CLB) with allowing the 4th fewest goals in the WHL. Do not count out The Moose Jaw Warriors who led the WHL in scoring with the formidable attack led by Troy Brouwer (CHI), Dustin Boyd (CAL) and Blair Jones (TB) all being top ten scorers. They will need help in the goaltending department as Joey Perricone has been mediocre this season. On thing is for sure, the Eastern Conference is very tight.

In the wild wild Western Conference, Gilbert Brule (CLB) after missing a large chunk of the season to the NHL and a sternum injury, will need to bring his A game if he wants the Giants to slip past the Kelowna Rockets and Kootenay Ice. Look for the undrafted Vancouver goalie Dustin Slade to shine for his team. Kootenay is led by star power forward Adam Cracknell (CAL) and the Rockets have sniper Justin Keller (TB). These elite Western Conference players will have their work cut out for them against the Eastern powerhouse teams.

WHL prediction: Medicine Hat Tigers

Having the second best offence and the 4th best defence in the WHL makes you the team to beat and I don’t believe anyone can take them down other then star goalie Justin Pogge and the Hitmen. The majority of great teams fall due to a great goalie but I don’t believe Pogge himself can hold off the barrage he will face from the best team in the WHL.


Junior fans, this is the league to watch. Living in the Kitchener area, I have been blessed to see numerous divisional battles between the Kitchener Rangers and London Knights. I look forward to seeing this rivalry continue for the Western Conference crown. The Knights have the best offence in the OHL led by David Bolland (CHI) and Rob Schremp (EDM). These two explosive forwards round out a very solid Knights team that also include rookie of the year candidate Sergei Kostitsyn (MON). The Rangers have the best goalie in the OHL Dan Turple (ATL) who compliments the towering 6 ft + defensemen Jakub Kindl (Det) and Mat Lashoff (BOS).

The Eastern conference has it shares of rivalries but look for the inevitable conference clash between the Brampton Battalion’s surprise World junior omission Wojtek Wolski (COL) against a well rounded Peterborough Petes team. Looking down the top scorers list, you will not see a Pete until you hit #20 Daniel Ryder (CAL). The Petes are well balanced and every line can light up the lamp and shut the down the opposition. The Battalion will look upon Wolski to carry the offensive load and rely on San Jose defensive prospect Michael Vernace to log a tonne of minutes in an attempt to contain the Petes’ attack.

OHL prediction: Peterborough Petes

As competitive as the OHL is with the four horses I mentioned, only the Petes are solid in every position on every line. This is the best team hands down and if they play the way they did during the regular season, they can contain the top players and win a lot of one goal games which are generally numerous in the play-offs.

Memorial Cup Final Prediction:

Quebec Remparts vs. Peterborough Petes.

Winner: Peterborough

If this is the final, I can’t wait. These are the two best teams in the CHL in my opinion. The Remparts have the typical flash you are accustomed to see in the French league while the Petes are a balanced grinding team typical of the English leagues. The two styles compliment each other like an old Montreal-Toronto rivalry. Look for hard hitting and fast paced hockey. The Petes however have more depth and a defensive minded concept will allow them to shut down the Remparts. If you can contain Radulov, you have a great chance of winning. Look for Columbus defensive prospect Trevor Hendrix force Radulov into taking many penalties which is one of Radulov’s few weaknesses. Watch for the aggressive Hendrix to log in the most ice time out of any player due to his special team attributes.

24 Responses to CHL- Road to the Memorial Cup

  1. Tweek says:

    I hope the Petes win but I dont even think they will get out of the OHL. I think either Brampton or London will beat them.

  2. Gretzkin says:

    Stellar Article, my good man.

    One of the best that’s been posted in a long time.

    Though my following of the “juniors” this year has been lackluster, you’re detailed accounts of the teams to contend are fantastic.

    I will indeed watch, as the Memorial Cup unfolds, and this isn’t a Bandwagoner talking, I love the Juniour game, but haven’t been able to watch or follow this year, due to “Stuff”.

    I used to play defense for a certain WHL team that I won’t mention, but living in Toronto now, and having to pick and choose what I watch and follow, due to Professional, and especially Domestic duties, it’s been hard to balance all the sporting I would like. Comprimise… is boring.

    Is this true, Maxime Boisclaire, Haitian???

    Do tell, please!

    That is the most interesting part of the article.

    I was about to say that he sounds French, but then I thought about Haiti, lots of french.

    Doesn’t even French sound derogatory?

    Better go now, last time I was this drunk on HTR I had my account suspended for 2 weeks…

  3. JannettyTheRocker says:

    I really don’t follow minor-league hockey all that much, but I must say that I am really excited that The City Of Champions is getting a WHL expansion team in the near future, thanks to the Edmonton Oilers. I was really sad to see the Edmonton Ice leave town, but hopefully this new WHL team will stay around for a long time. It would be nice to see young stars develop before they hit the NHL.

  4. GoreDough says:


  5. simplyhabby says:

    Thats providing London can even get out of the west against the Kitchener Rangers. Turple has done an amazing job along with the Ranger defense in shutting down the Knights. I can’t wait to see these to teams go at it.

  6. simplyhabby says:

    Thanks for the drunken kudos. It could be a beer goggle compliment but I will take it.

    The bio for Maxime is:


    Position: LW

    DOB: 1985-02-14

    Place of Birth: Port-au-prince, Haiti

    Height: 6’1″, Weight: 198lbs Shoots: Left


    2005-2006 season stats:

    70 GP/70G/61A/131 pts/97 PIM/+39

    Defensive liability but a great PP specialist. 43 goals on the PP. 12 game winning goals (QMJHL leader in both stats)

  7. simplyhabby says:

    Do you think they will call them the Oil-Kings again or has a name already been decided?

    The greatest aspect of the junior leagues is watching great hockey that is generally pure from egotistical contract issues. Not forgetting the great prices and small town enthusiasm.

  8. simplyhabby says:

    They are going to have their hands full against the giants. Bowles will have to have the series of his life to hold of the Giants but Eric Hunter should be an offesnive force for Prince George.

    The franchise is heading in the right direction.

    What this I hear they don’t allow beer in the stands in Prince George? I also hear there are major issues with the CN centre.

  9. jody200411 says:

    Great article and I too, pick the Petes to take it all this year.

    I also find it worth mentioning the our very own St. John’s Fog Devils have made the QMJHL playoffs in their expansion year. I can’t wait to down to Mile One Stadium and watch them play those Screaming Eagles, then walk down the next street for a big whole drunk! (George Street)

    66pts in their first season aint too shabby and if you look at their roster, a lot of players are from Newfoundland!! Riding a 9 game home winning streak, if they can pull of a victory in Cape Breton, they may pull off a first round upset

  10. barahir says:

    It’s Major Junior man, not minor league.

  11. barahir says:

    The French league and the English leagues? What the ***** kind of shit is that man?

  12. simplyhabby says:

    Its a conspiracy didn’t you know? Its all part of my plan to start a conflict with English and French Canada.


    it could be the QMJHL is prominantly in heavy French influenced areas where the OHL and WHL is in prominately English influenced areas. The hockey styles fit accordingly to the league and influence.

    Pick what ever supports your thought.

  13. simplyhabby says:

    Pinapple crush for some, Screech for all!

    Quite the accomplisment to make the playoffs in your first year. The Ryder brothers are really helping the hockey machine grow on the rock and develop some great talent that will fuel the Fog Devils.

    I wonder if Gushue took any of those promising hockey players and turned them into curlers bye?

  14. JannettyTheRocker says:


    I will pick option number 2.

  15. JannettyTheRocker says:

    Call it what you want……To me, the NHL is the “major league” in hockey, the WHL is minor league.

  16. 19AVSFANFoLIFE19 says:

    just out of question who is the host of the tourney?

  17. simplyhabby says:

    Moncton Wildcats coached by the ever popular Ted Nolan.

  18. 19AVSFANFoLIFE19 says:

    oh yes thats right. havent followed them only really followed the remparts. Wildcats doing any good this year?

  19. paul_dc10 says:

    vancouvers the host of the memorial cup

  20. simplyhabby says:

    Barring any major upset, they wil likely battle it out with the Remparts for the QMJHL title.

  21. skandelousHABSfan says:

    I like the Petes a lot, as i lived for a year in Peterborough and frequented games. But I gotta cheer for the Ramparts as they are so exiting to watch.

    Look for Esposito to come up big. this kid is amazing. i watched him during his miget years, wow is he good. and you gotta love any team coached by Roy, he is such a good soundbite…

  22. 19AVSFANFoLIFE19 says:

    funny guy. little late on the comment.

  23. dave1979 says:

    Vancouver is hosting the 2007 Memorial Cup not this years.

  24. habs_punk says:

    Knights are going back to back!!!

    Adam Dennis in net, with the experience he has, he’ll be the top goalie easy. This will be his third straight Mem Cup appearance.

    And how is ANYONE going to shut down Schremp, Bolland, Hunter, Kostitsyn, and Corey Perry’s kid brother Adam? TWO rookies breaking 70 points, not bad at all! THREE players with more than 100 points. TWO with 57 goals!!! This team is absolutely loaded on offence.

    Back at ranked #1 in Canada, we’re going all the way again!

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