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Former WHL scoring champ on move

Tri-City captain gets pro contract
By Gregg Drinnan
August 6, 2015 10:37 A.M.





D Brett Carson (Moose Jaw, Calgary, 2001-06) signed a one-year contract with SaiPa Lappeenranta (Finland, Liiga). Last season, with the Vienna Capitals (Austria, Erste Bank Liga), he had nine goals and 15 assists in 54 games.

CHLF Casey Pierro-Zabotel, who won the 2008-09 WHL scoring title, has signed with the Allen Americans, the ECHL’s defending champions. Pierro-Zabotel, who is from Ashcroft, B.C., played last season with the Gwinnett Gladiators, leading that ECHL club with 60 points in 54 games. . . . Pierro-Zabotel was with the Vanciouver Giants when he won the WHL scoring title. That season, he had 115 points, including a league-high 79 assists.
If you were wondering, there isn’t anything new on the Auston Matthews front. He is in Lake Placid, N.Y., this week, taking part in USA Hockey’s national junior team evaluation camp. . . . Matthews, who is projected as the No. 1 pick in the NHL’s 2016 draft, is going to play in Europe or with the WHL’s Everett Silvertips, who selected him in the third round of the 2012 bantam draft. . . . He has signed a contract with the Zurich Lions, who play in Switzerland’s top professional league, but he hasn’t been able to get a work visa. . . . On Thursday, he told Mike G. Morreale of “There's no (updated) news and I'm really just focused on this camp and wanting to continue to make an impression on the USA coaching staff. A decision should be made shortly after this camp.” . . . The camp runs through Saturday.
AHLD Justin Hamonic has signed a one-year deal with the AHL’s San Antonio Rampage. Hamonic played out his junior eligibility with the Tri-City Americans last season. He was the team’s captain. In 255 career games, Hamonic had three goals and 43 assists. Hamonic was selected by the Americans in the fifth round of the 2009 bantam draft.
QMJHLAs the first week of August draws to a close, it’s time to get ready for another hockey season. The QMJHL has teams going to camp this weekend; its first exhibition game is scheduled for Thursday.
Willy Palov of the Halifax Herald reports that the QMJHL will use 3-on-3 overtime during its exhibition schedule, but won’t go to a shootout if the game remains tied after the five-minute OT period. However, that will change in the regular season. . . . Palov’s piece, which includes lots of notes, is right here.
Thanks to all who already have sponsored my wife, Dorothy, for the 2015 Kamloops Kidney Walk. She is in training for the walk, which is scheduled for Sept. 27. . . . Should you want to help out, you may do so right here.
Got a tip or some information you feel could be useful to me, feel free to email me at
Coaching Game
Jason Williamson is back in the game, having taken over as head coach of the Kelowna-based Okanagan Rockets, who play in the B.C. Major Midget Hockey League. . . . He replaces Simon Ferguson, who leaves after one season due to what he says are personal reasons and family commitments. . . . The Rockets were 23-12-5 last season, good for fourth place. . . . Williamson was the general manager and head coach of the BCHL’s Vernon Vipers for three years when he stepped down, citing personal reasons, just as the 2014-15 season was starting. Prior to taking over as the Vipers’ head coach, he was on their staff for three seasons as an assistant coach. With Vernon, he made four trips to the RBC Cup, winning it all in 2009 and 2010.

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