Brandon Wheat Kings’ executive Kelly McCrimmon will remain with the Western Hockey League club. The 54-year-old had been in talks to join the Toronto Maple Leafs front office.
“I have made the decision to remain with the Wheat Kings,” McCrimmon said in a statement. “I was honored to have been considered for a position with the Maple Leafs. It would have been a tremendous opportunity.”
McCrimmon is the Wheat Kings’ owner, GM and head coach.
He had discussions with Toronto about joining its management team, which includes Kyle Dubas, Mark Hunter and Brandon Pridham.
“With our team expected to contend this season, I felt I owed it to the group to stay here and try to help us take the next step,” McCrimmon added.
Toronto filled out its coaching staff last week adding Jim Hiller, Andrew Brewer and D.J. Smith.
The Columbus Blue Jackets have already lost prospect goaltender Oscar Dansk who decided to sign in the Swedish Hockey League earlier this week.
According to Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch, the Jackets are now in danger of losing Peter Quenneville.
GM Jarmo Kekalainen tells Portzline the Jackets are still uncertain about signing the forward.
If Quenneville isn’t signed by June 1, he is eligible to go back into this year’s draft.
The 21-year-old has spent parts of two seasons with the Brandon Wheat Kings of the Western Hockey League after leaving Quinnipiac University during the 2013-14 season. He had 27 goals and 75 points in 72 games this season.
Quenneville, who is the second cousin of Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville and nephew of Islanders’ defenseman Johnny Boychuk by marriage, was the seventh round selection of the Jackets (195th overall) in 2013.
After all the speculation and wondering what exactly the Kings would do with 2009 top pick Brayden Schenn this season as he approached his games deadline between staying in Los Angeles or heading back to junior hockey with the Brandon Wheat Kings, the Kings finally made a tough choice. Team general manager Dean Lombardi announced today that Schenn will head back to junior hockey after getting an extended look after eight games with the Kings this year. Schenn also spent two weeks in the AHL on a conditioning assignment after being a healthy scratch for so long, but it wasn’t meant to be this year for the 19 year-old.
Schenn hasn’t played in a game since October 30th for the Kings and getting a young kid like him consistent playing time is the right move to make. Keeping him with the big league team as a consistent healthy scratch would only harm his development. Now, he heads back to the CHL where he’ll play a ton of minutes and likely also get a chance to play once again for Team Canada in the World Junior Championships at the end of this month. In eight games Schenn had no goals and two assists with a -2 rating.
We’ll likely see Schenn get a better look next year in Los Angeles to be the teams number two or three centerman. He’ll be back, but in the long run this is better for his development. Only curious part of all this is why it took the Kings so long to decide what they would do with him. The team has plenty of players at center, Schenn’s position, but not much at wing (a big reason why Marco Sturm is looking to be acquired). Had Schenn been a natural left or right wing, it’s possible he would’ve stayed up. Instead, the potential addition of Sturm to go along with the return of Alexei Ponikarovsky, keeping Kyle Clifford in the fold, and the stalwart play of Ryan Smyth strengthens up the Kings left wing considerably.