Buzzing The Net - Junior Hockey

Combing all corners of the country and the blogosphere for your junior hockey headlines ...

WHL

Washington Capitals-drafted defenceman Blake Heinrich has signed with the Portland Winterhawks, passing on plans to play for Minnesota-Duluth. Meantime, speaking of defenceman who were in Minnesota recently, Matt Dumba's first practice with the 'Hawks will be today. (Northland Newscenter, Portland Tribune)

Centra Scouting's Dan Marr says Kootenay Ice centre Sam Reinhart and Barrie defenceman Aaron Ekblad are suffering the curse of the third-year junior: "They were put on that pedestal two years ago. “Over the course of the year, it has evolved that there are four or five front-runners now." (Calgary Sun)

The East Division is so watered down that the Regina Pats could win it, which has only happened twice during Russ Parker's ownership. (Regina Leader-Post)

Kelowna's Tyson Baillie is not in the Top Prospects Game, so he will have to be satisfied with helping the Rockets stay in first place overall. (The Pipeline Show)

OHL

Sam Bennett came out on top in Central Scouting's final ranking, but it is at least a four-way virtual dead heat between the Kingston Frontenacs playmaker and Ekblad, Reinhart and Leon Draisaitl. (Sportsnet)

Kingston does not have a timetable for Bennett to return from the lower-body injury that's keeping him out of the Prospects game. (Kingston Whig-Standard)

Would Bennett's "off the charts intangibles" make him an ideal Edmonton Oilers pick? And why would one wish that fate on any player? (Edmonton Journal, SI.com)

Hall of Famer Al MacInnis is touched by having his son, Kitchener Rangers centre Ryan MacInnis, play a game in his father's former home rink: "The only thing I’ve told him is, if you’re a centre, pick out one or two you like in the NHL now and watch them. Watch what makes them so good." (Calgary Herald)

Brock Otten looks at the league's NHL draft prospects with the most to gain (or lose) over the next five months. (Ultimate Hockey Network)

Woe, thy name is the London Knights, who got one point out of the first post-trade deadline weekend. (London Free Press)

Dale Hunter did not speak to the media after a loss? That's a hundredth and first. (Sault Star)

Ottawa Senators fourth-rounder Ben Harpur is thriving with the high-flying Guelph Storm. (St. Catharines Standard)

Rensselaer commit Bradley Bell says it's "interesting" his hometown Sudbury Wolves have traded for his rights. Meantime, the loaded-up Wolves took 5-of-6 possible points from Radek Faksa's first weekend with the club. (Sudbury Star)

QMJHL

Mikhail Grigorenko is said to be a little more "enthusiastic" about rejoining the Quebec Remparts since it's a last resort for he and the Buffalo Sabres. (Le Soleil, NHL.com)

The rule allowing the Remparts to ice three imports since Grigorenko is a NHL first-rounder exists to keep major junior teams from losing out on compensation from NHL teams. But what happens if a player taken after the first round is good enough to play in the NHL at age 19? (Le Soleil)

One of these days Maritime Division-leading Halifax might actually ice its best lineup. Veteran forward Andrew Ryan's ankle is at the game-time decision stage. (Halifax Chronicle-Herald)

Meantime, Baie-Comeau just keeps reeling off road wins without any external drama. Boring. (Le Soleil)

Power rankings time! Watch out for Rimouski. (Parlons Junior)

It's a down draft year for the Q, but there is every expectation it will rebound in 2015 with the likes of Charlottetown's Daniel Sprong, among others. (RDS)

Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Canada Sports. Follow him on Twitter @neatebuzzthenet. Please address any questions, comments or concerns to btnblog@yahoo.ca.

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