Posted by simon c on 2009 September 30日 Wednesday
Thanks to the outstanding performance by the hometown goalie Michio Hashimoto, the Tohoku Free Blades notched their first victory in only their 4th regular season game in their young Asia League history with a 5-3 win over the upgraded Nikko Ice Bucks team in the second game of the two game series in Nikko. Hashimoto turned away 39 of 42 shots for a well deserved hero of the game, while his counterpart Naoya Kikuchi had a terrible game letting in 5 goals on only 26 shots. Looks like the league might be even more competitive than my initial prediction for the 2009-10 season.
Congrats Blades, and we look forward to more fierce battles in a league with that may have the most parity ever in the short history of AL. Korea-Japan games start this upcoming weekend in October, and this should be very interesting in terms of giving us a clearer outlook on the season.
Posted in 02_English, Asia League Ice Hockey, hockey, information, opinion | Tagged: free blades, Ice Bucks, nikko, tochigi, tohoku | 3 Comments »
Posted by simon c on 2009 September 11日 Friday
Bud Smith who was a wrecking force with High1 a couple of seasons ago (30GP 35P) is officially joining the Nikko Ice Bucks who have already been bolstered significantly by the 6 former elite Seibu players, he should add a nice extra punch to the offence. The Bucks are a team to watch for this season for a nice change!
Posted in 02_English, Asia League Ice Hockey, hockey, information, opinion | Tagged: bud, buddy, High1, Ice Bucks, nikko, smith, tochigi | 2 Comments »
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 »