The Prince George Spruce Kings are a proven winning organization over the last two seasons.

When a team earns respect, not just in its league but around the country, top-notch players are eager to come and help keep the franchise successful.

The Spruce Kings had a terrific goalie in Evan DeBrouwer in the 2017-18 season.

He played a large part in helping the team win the BCHL Coastal Conference championship, before losing the league final in five games to the Wenatchee Wild.

Prince George arguably upgraded in net during the 2018-19 season as Logan Neaton led the team to the BCHL Fred Page title and Doyle Cup (BC-Alberta series) championship.

In addition, Neaton was named top goalie at the national junior A championship in Brooks, Alberta, where the Spruce Kings came a close second, dropping the final 4-3 to the host Bandits.

Both DeBrouwer (Nanaimo Clippers) and Neaton (Fairbanks Ice Dogs) were acquired in a trade and as older netminders were one and done.

Spruce Kings GM Mike Hawes has done it again, pulling the trigger on a deal that should keep his team competitive.

Prince George acquired 1999 born Jett Alexander from the North York Rangers of the OJHL in return for future considerations.

Alexander isn’t just another goalie trying to earn a spot.

The 6-foot-five, 215-pound product of Bloomfield, Ontario, comes with impressive credentials after spending three years in the OJHL.

In fact, this past season, Alexander was the OJHL Goaltender of the Year as voted on by the league’s General Managers.

In addition, he was also be named the OJHL’s Most Valuable Player after posting an eye-popping 1.67 GAA, a .947 save percentage to go along with a 30-11-1 record and 10 shutouts.

Realizing that North York would be in a rebuilding year and that he only had one season of junior eligibility remaining, Alexander was fully on board to be traded.

He liked the idea of a fresh start in the BCHL, arguably the best Jr. A league in the country and PG would be the perfect fit because they needed a stopper AND they are a winning team.

Alexander is aware of DeBrouwer and Neaton but obviously wants to be judged on his own merit.

“I know Prince George has had success in the past with goaltending but I don’t know exactly if I’m planning on filling those shoes. I think I’ll take my own path and be the best I can be for the team every night. I don’t want to think too far ahead with that, I just want to get there and start winning hockey games,” Alexander told MyPGNow.

Neaton was a fifth-round draft pick of the Winnipeg Jets in June, and while Alexander would love to get attention from an NHL team, his goal is to secure a scholarship.

On the Spruce Kings Fred Page Cup championship team, 13 of their players are NCAA committed.

Alexander turned down a chance to play Major Junior in the Ontario Hockey League in order to pursue college.

“I never really wanted to go that route (OHL). I had the option to but I decided to kind of bet on myself and try to go NCAA. I’ve talked to quite a few of schools over the past two-three years, and it’s just never been the right opportunity, right fit with any team so hopefully, this year, playing in Prince George, I get the right school looking at me.”

Regardless of how well Alexander plays, it will be a tall order for the Spruce Kings to duplicate their success of the past two years, however, one might suggest that with Jett on board, they are again flying in the right direction.

 

FROM THE QUOTE RACK:

Ex-Major League pitcher Dwight Gooden was arrested for the second time in two months for DUI in New Jersey. Only in this case, he will be hoping it will be the judge who lets him walk.

*Comedy writer Jim Barach http://jokesbyjim.blogspot.ca/

Tim Duncan has joined the San Antonio Spurs coaching staff.  So someone has told him this will require actual occasional talking?

*Comedy writer Janice Hough of Palo Alto, California www.leftcoastsportsbabe.com

The two main bets attracting attention involving the Cleveland Browns are A) whether or not they’ll win the Super Bowl B) what game QB Baker Mayfield will go down with a season-ending injury.

*Contributor Bill Littlejohn of South Lake Tahoe, California

The Roskilde Music Festival in Denmark kicked off with its 21st annual Naked Run, in which competitors wear nothing but sneakers, socks and maybe some strategically placed body paint. So who needs the Running of the Bulls when you can have the Running of the Bares?

*Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times http://www.seattletimes.com/author/dwight-perry/


IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:

Dave Smith, 69, the ‘human home run,’ was shot out of a cannon and over the fence at a Lowell Spinners game. In this economy, he’s one of the few guys happy about being fired.

*Canadian comedy writer RJ Currie www.Sportsdeke.com

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Hartley Miller is the news and sports supervisor and morning news anchor for 94.3 the GOAT and Country 97.
He also is the 94.3 radio colour commentator for P.G. Cougars home games.
His column appears Fridays on myprincegeorgenow.com.
Send along a quote, note, or anecdote to hmiller@thegoatrocks.ca