North Stars news and notes

Today is my first day back at work after a two week holiday and there was plenty of news while I was away.

The North Stars hosted their Annual General Meeting a couple weeks ago. I was just looking over the financial details of the club and they look strong. The Stars did end up with a loss this season in part because of slightly decreased ticket sales and corporate advertising. Last year’s early playoff exit likely had an impact on those numbers as well as this season’s slow start potentially as well.

The North Stars playoff run helped offset some of those costs but all told the team did lose a little money. During the AGM head coach Kevin Hasselberg gave his report. He welcomed the new assistant coach and GM Taurean Whitewhile noting that Blair Atcheynum will continue to be part of the North Stars staff.

The home opener for the North Stars will be September 19th against Kindersley. That will kick off a season opening home and home with the Stars biggest rivals. I haven’t had a chance to look at the schedule yet so I will get a separate post up later this week and analyze the schedule.

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I also haven’t had a chance to congratulate Cam Blair on his commitment to the U of S. It was a pleasure getting to know Cam and his family after his trade to the Stars. And it was nice not having to face the former Flin Flon Bomber star on the ice. Having a player like Cam Blair on your team is so much nicer than having to try and stop him.

Now he will suit up for the U of S Huskies who are one of the CIS’s top teams. Blair is an all around player with great hands and the ability to grind and play a physical style as well.

The Huskies are getting a top player who will cause head aches for opposing coaches. Congrats to Cam and good luck next year.

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The Stars also announced a couple of moves while I was away. They traded Darren Martin to the BCHL and picked up Adam Smith from the SIJHL. Martin had a fantastic rookie season with the Stars and will now get a chance to battle with former Kindersley Klipper Tyrell King for the #1 role in Langley. The Stars picked up future considerations in that deal.

In Smith, the North Stars pick up a 6’2″ forward who has mostly split time during his career between the BCHL and the WHL. The 20 year old has not put up a lot of offense so far. But the right handed shooter can play some center. He’s physical and did put up 14 assists in 16 games with the VIJHL’s Nanaimo Bucaneers. Smith is a veteran, team first player who should be a leader for the Stars as well.

It has been a busy offseason for the North Stars with Smith added to a series of moves that have been made so far.

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And the final note is a congratulations to Blake Tatchell who is currently in Winnipeg taking part in Jets development camp. After a dominating season as a 20 year old with his home town team, Tatchell went off to the University of Alaska Anchorage where he has been a one of the Seawolves top forwards for 2 seasons.  The Jets camp runs all this week and Tatchell will be on the ice with players like Jets 2014 first round pick Nikolaj Ehlers.