By Fred Wallace
Hi, this is Fred Wallace with " Off the Wire ".
The climax of the Junior Hockey season commences tonight in Halifax as the Kia Memorial Cup begins.
The 3 Canadian Hockey League Champions; the Guelph Storm, the Rouyn Noranda Huskies & the Prince Albert Raiders will compete in the 4 team tournament along with the host Halifax Mooseheads.
The Mooseheads open the tournament tonight against the Western Hockey League Champion Raiders who advanced to the tournament with a dramatic Game 7 overtime victory over the Vancouver Giants.
Prince Albert was ranked # 1 in the CHL Poll for most of the year, so it was somewhat of a surprise that they were pushed to that extent in the WHL Final.
Of course, our attention is primarily focused on Guelph; 1) because they're representing the Ontario Hockey League & 2) as every Attack fan can tell you, there's a high level of Owen Sound content on the Storm roster.
Alphabetically; Sean Durzi, Markus Phillips, Zachary Roberts & Nick Suzuki were all Owen Sound draft picks who made their way to Guelph in two separate transactions.
And make no mistake, the Owen Sound contingent is highly responsible for Guelph's championship run to the OHL title.
Durzi plays in the top defence pairing and plays in every situation.
Phillips is in the 3-4 pairing and gets 2nd unit power pay time.
Roberts is a depth forward who plays hard when inserted.
And Suzuki, well, he was named as the Wayne Gretzky Trophy winner as the OHL Playoff MVP in a media vote that was essentially " no contest ".
Yes, Guelph played with fire throughout the post season, falling behind by at least two games in 3 different series.
They can't afford that in a short-tournament format, but based on the momentum they bring to Halifax, they might not lose 2 games over the next 10 days.
I'm Fred Wallace