Aside from “Laurel or Yanny”, the biggest question in Regina in advance of Friday night’s start of the C-H-L Championship tournament was who was going to start in goal for the Pats against the Ontario Hockey League-champion Hamilton Bulldogs.
After host team G-M and head coach John Paddock revealed that it would be rookie 17-year-old Max Paddock over veteran Ryan Kubic, Regina assistant coach Dave Struch went back to his playing days in 1992 with the Saskatoon Blades as to why the decision was made.
“We had a goalie named Norm Maracle (who) was inserted into a situation and took us through the (WHL) playoffs and into the final against Kamloops,” explained Struch with regards to Lorne Molleken’s decision to go with a 17-year-old in goal.
“That was actually one of the things that we leaned on,” continued Struch. “When we watched Max (in) the second half of the year, and how well we played , it is to take nothing away from Kubic. It was a very difficult decision. We made it and we feel very comfortable with it.”
Friday’s game will be the first one for the Pats since April 2…46 days ago…when they lost Game 7 of an opening round playoff series to Swift Current. The WHL-champion Broncos meet the Acadie-Bathurst Titan from the Quebec Major Junior League Saturday.