Posted by simon c on 2009 August 2日 Sunday
Still no word on additional players on the meagre 14 man roster that’s supposed to be expanded to 23 players by 19 September when the 2009-10 Asia League season opens. (28 July, Hokkaido Shimbun newspaper)
The Blades have also acquired Chris Wakabayashi the former manager of Seibu Prince Rabbits as its Head Coach to assist Manager Keisuke Araki.
There are rumours that the Blades will be able to sign more than 2 imports that other Japanese clubs are limited to. Also, rumour has it that now free agent former Ice Bucks starting goalie Michio Hashimoto is going to join the Blades, as he got pushed out of the Bucks by national team goalie Kikuchi, and Hashimoto is from the Tohoku area where the Blades call home.
And finally, there are supposed to be 2 preseason matches against the HC Tochigi Ice Bucks (team renamed from the city of Nikko to the prefecture of Tochigi) on 29 (Sat) and 30 (Sun) of August at 14:00 (location unknown).
Posted in 02_English, Asia League Ice Hockey, hockey, information, Japan, opinion | Tagged: free blades, hachinohe, hashimoto, Ice Bucks, kikuchi, koriyama, nikko, offseason, tochigi, tohoku, wakabayashi | Leave a Comment »
Posted by simon c on 2009 June 7日 Sunday
A few of the former Seibu Prince Rabbits players have found new homes this offseason after the team was shut down by its parent company Seibu Holdings. All these players so far are national team players.
Yosuke Kon, Sho Sato (both forwards) to Oji Eagles, joining former Seibu/Kokudo player Kei Tonosaki on the team.
Daisuke Obara (forward) to Nippon Paper Cranes, he’ll wear #76 with the Cranes, joining former Seibu/Kokudo forward Chris Yule on the team.
In addition, productive Nikko Ice Bucks defenceman Takyuki Ono (one of the three on the team to notch over 1o points last season) has signed with Korean powerhouse Anyang Halla (Japanese, Korean, and Chinese players do not count as imports in the Asia League).
The word is still out on the rest of the Rabbits squad (about half are expected to take up regular jobs within the Seibu Group), and of a possible new club team being founded at Higashifushimi, the former home of the Seibu/Kokudo teams, the chances are slim to nil as there is clear lack of a big time financial backer. And there’s still no word yet on how the new entrant in the league, Tohoku Free Blades, are doing to bolster their currently barebones lineup in preparation for their inaugural Asia League season in 2009-10.
Posted in 02_English, Asia League Ice Hockey, hockey, information, opinion | Tagged: anyang, cranes, eagles, free blades, halla, Ice Bucks, nikko, nippon paper, offseason, Oji, prince rabbits, seibu, tohoku | 2 Comments »