Thursday, 31 October 2013

Walters Has Point to Prove

Nick Walters faces his former team for the first time
on Friday night
  Nick Walters will play his former team for the first time on Friday night when the Brandon Wheat Kings visit the Everett Silvertips (9:05 p.m., 880 CKLQ).

  Walters was acquired by Brandon from Everett last January only with the rights to prospect Taylor Sanheim, who spent the pre-season with the Wheat Kings and is now playing with the MJHL’s Dauphin Kings.

  In return, Brandon sent Ayrton Nikkel (now with the Saskatoon Blades) and a conditional sixth round pick in the 2015 Bantam Draft to the Silvertips.

  “I don’t want to say that I have a point to prove, but I do, and make the fans know that they miss me,” said Walters on Thursday, “It’s a very weird feeling, it’s almost like I never left.  I think when I’m on the ice and I don’t have the green, silver and white gear on, it’s going to be weird.  It’s going to be a pretty memorable moment in my career.”

  Walters has one assist in 14 games with the Wheat Kings this season while largely being paired with New York Islanders’ first round Ryan Pulock on Brandon’s back-end.

  Friday’s game is the fifth of a season-long six-game road trip for Brandon, a road trip that has proved to be fruitless so far.

  Brandon has lost four straight to U.S. Division opponents so far on this trip, being outscored 20-6 in the process.

  “We’re getting away from the simple things and the systems. Especially on the road, you have to keep the game so simple to have success and I think we’re getting away from that,” said Walters, “I think we just need to stick to the game plan.”

  Part of Brandon’s game plan Friday will be to get a lead, something they haven’t had yet on this road trip.

  In fact, the Wheat Kings have yet to score a goal in the first period on this trip and have surrendered the opening game of the game in eight consecutive contests.

  “In every game we’ve started here, we’ve let the first goal in,” said Walters, “If we can get the first one, that would be huge, and maybe playing with the lead will help us win (Friday).”

  Brandon has scored just six first period goals in 16 games this season, and have led after 20 minutes three times.

  They are a perfect 3-and-0 when that does happen.

Chaff...Wheat Kings’ prospect Dylan Thiessen had a goal for Manitoba in their 3-2 loss to Alberta to open the Western Canada Under-16 Challenge Cup in Calgary on Thursday.  Tanner Kaspick had an assist for Manitoba while Kale Clague assisted on a goal for Alberta.  Clague and fellow 2013 first round pick Nolan Patrick are captains of Alberta and Manitoba respectively...F Tim McGauley (upper body) and D Rene Hunter (upper body) are both day-to-day for the Wheat Kings...Brandon is 3-0-1-1 against Everett over the past five seasons...Silvertips’ netminder Austin Lotz, a St. Adolphe, Manitoba product, is expected to miss a month after suffering an ankle injury in Everett’s last game Saturday in Kamloops.

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