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Friday, December 30, 2011



Guy Ritchie scores another smash with the sequel to the blockbuster Sherlock Holmes.

In A Game of Shadows, the ever witty and eccentric Holmes (played brilliantly by Robert Downey Jr) is seeking out his worst nemissary none other than Professor James Moriarty (played by Jared Harris of 'Mad Men' fame).

Along with 'Oscar' worthy performances by both Jude Law and Stephen Fry, the movie is engaging and action packed.  The beautiful Noomi Rapace is exquisite portraying the gypsy Madam Simza Heron.

Holmes and Watson feverishly work to thwart off a World War carefully being orchestrated by Moriarty (Harris). Epic gun fights and explosions ripple through the movie in perfect fluid motion.

The plot paralleled part of the story line in 'League of Extraordinary Gentlemen' (2003) where the 'League' led by Allan Quatermain was trying to stop a world war also orchestrated by the maniacal Professor.

A Game of Shadows has everything that a fan of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's hero will love: Plenty of action, mystery, humor and captivating scenes to keep the movie watcher on the edge of their seats.

A definite must see on your holiday movie list!

RAVEN RATING 4.5 out of 5 claws



The Team Canada World Junior Team won their game 5-0 against the Team from the Czech Republic.

Mark Stone continues to rack up points by scoring another goal to make it 4 goals in 2 games. Mark Scheifele gets on the board with two stellar goals in the 3rd period. Rounding out the scoring for Canada was Ryan Strome and Brett Connolly. Tanner Pearson adds to his tournament total with a couple assists.

Czech goalie Petr Mrazek faced 38 shots by Canada allowing only 5 goals. Team Canada saw Scott Wedgewood in net for his first game of the tournament and made his mark with the outstanding shutout. Scott managed to keep all 26 Czech shots out of the pipes.

Once again, the crowds in Alberta (16,417) were treated to the Canadian Anthem and saw Freddie Hamilton (Niagara IceDogs) and Petr Mrazek (Czech) get 'Player of the game' nods.

Team Canada will face Denmark in their next match up.   



In a shocking upset, Team USA loses to the very enthusiastic team from the Czech Republic.

Petr Mrazek in net for the Czechs displayed energy and a light-hearted side with his celebrating of goals by his teammates.

Bill Arnold for Team USA gets Player of the game nod as well as Petr Holik for the Czechs despite the 'jeers' from the crowd after the games' 5-2 victory.

Mrazek faced 54 shots allowing only 2 goals. Team USA dominated the shots but they were unable to produce more goals.

Team USA had a crowd awakening penalty shot after Jiri Riha of the Czech team took a tripping call on the breakaway by Josh Archibald. Mrazek stood tall between the pipes and denied Josh's scoring attempt. The exuberant Mrazek double fist pumped the crowd ecstatic at the 2-2 tie remaining.

In spite of their efforts, Team USA just couldn't fight the force that was Petr Mrazek. With the Czech win, Team Canada automatically gets a bye into semi-finals. While the Czechs will face off against Finland in their final game of the Preliminary round.

Team USA will play Team Canada Saturday in the last of the Prelims.



The 2012 IIHF World Junior Championships saw Team Canada trounce the Team from Denmark in a painful 10-2 on Thursday in front of a crowd of over 16,000 in Alberta.

Team Canada was playing with passion and determination despite the large goal differential. The scoring for Canada kicked off with Quinton Howden early in the first period. Team Canada posted 4 goals in the 1st period with the lone penalty going to Ryan Strome (Hooking).

The second period, saw Canada's sheer domination and hard hitting squad completely man-handle the boys from Denmark. Goals by Scott Harrington, Freddie Hamilton and Mark Stone extended Canada's lead to 7-0. Canada took the only 3 penalties for the period.

In the third period, Denmark appeared to show some life and scored 2 outstanding goals against Mark Visentin who was net minding for Team Canada. Canada saw the penalty box 4 times in the 3rd while Denmark had 1 penalty for the entire game.

Sebastian Feuk for Denmark was in net for the entire game and had a total of 41 shots, while Mark Visentin faced 24 shots for Canada. Player of the game for Canada was Brandon Gormley and Nicklas Jensen for Denmark.

Canada's great passing, excellent puck handling and amazing scoring opportunities has aided in their continued success thus far in the tournament. The real test to the boys of Team Canada will come on Saturday when they face their rivals from Team USA.

The game will be shown at 6pm MT/5pm PT from Rexall Place in Edmonton Alberta and will end Canada's Preliminary round in this year's tournament. 

Wednesday, December 28, 2011




Yesterday marked the opening of the annual Ridge Meadows Juvenile Christmas Tournament. Hosted between Planet Ice in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows Arena in Pitt Meadows BC. 

A two tiered tournament that shows off the senior players involved in minor hockey. The 'Juvy' division is for the 18-20yr old to finish out their minor hockey careers. It has grown considerably in recent years with more and more boys wanting to continue on with the game they love so much. 

The tournament was the love child of Brek Stewart (who at the time was Managing the Ridge Meadows Juvy A1 team affectionately known as the 'MOOSE'). His love for the game and his commitment to volunteering brought this tournament to life. 

After six years of being the tournament's Director, Brek stepped away to open the door for others to take the reigns. This year the Director for the tournament is Bill Allen. A long time volunteer with Ridge Meadows Minor Hockey. His son, is currently playing on the A1 team. 

This year sees the addition of two teams from the Interior Region. It's the first time  that the tournament is hosting teams from the area. Previous years, there has been teams from Vancouver Island but never from the Interior.  

The tournament runs from Dec 27-Dec 30th. 

more to come

Monday, December 26, 2011



Team Canada kicked off the IIHF World Junior Championships taking place in Alberta, with a decisive 8-1 win over the team from Finland.

Early goals and great goaltending by Mark Visentin (who faced only 25 shots compared to Christopher Gibson who faced 42) led the Canadian boys to their domination over the Fins.

Mark Stone, scores his first hat trick of the tournament. Jonathon Huberdeau makes his mark with a 5 point game. Points were also racked up by Brendan Gallagher, Ryan Strome, the Hamilton brothers (Dougie and Freddie), Jaden Schwartz, Tanner Pearson, Nathan Beaulieu and Brandon Gromley.

The lone goal for Team Finland was scored by Alexander Ruutu who was also the MVP for the game along with Mark Stone for Canada.

Canada's power play unit went 2 for 2 in the 2nd period. Team Finland, has a good power play and great rush but it was unproductive today. Team Canada played cohesively and confidently compared to their exhibition games prior to today's tournament start.

The only downside to this win was the crucial loss of defenseman Devante Smith-Pelly, who was seen leaving the rink on crutches with an air boot. No word at this time as to what the issue is but x-rays have been performed.

Team Canada will face the team from the Czech Republic on Wednesday @ 6pm MT 7pm PT at Rexhall Place in Edmonton

Sunday, December 25, 2011


My Christmas Wish

This year has been one of so much sorrow, pain and chaos for the entire World.  The needless loss of life through gang violence. Thousands displaced by tragic floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes and fires. Too many lives lost through war, strife, greed, torture, hunger and disease. Tears continue to flow for lives tragically taken in accidents of all forms. The anguish from losing precious young lives because of bullying, hatred, ignorance and intolerance. 

My world is changing daily. It is no longer the world I knew as a child. As a child, Russia was one massive entity called the Soviet Union. A wall stood between families in Germany and the worse thing to happen at school was detention for passing notes. 

I stare out at the mountains and wonder when they will come crashing down. The stability of the earth is decaying faster than we can repair it. How many 'hint's does humanity need before it realizes the path to self-annihilation is within reach? When, will we stop causing so much pain and anguish to each other and to the earth? 

My Christmas wish this year seems so simplistic in theory. 'Peace on earth and good will towards all men'. Freedom from persecution for being a different race, creed, religion, sexual orientation. Freedom from bullying in any form. Freedom from famine, war and disease. 

In reality, these wishes are much harder to attain than it should be. Perhaps, one day before we blow ourselves to kingdom come. We can find the common ground that is the earth and start to enjoy it for what it truly is: A miracle.

Merry Christmas and a very Happy Safe and Prosperous New Year!