Wednesday, November 11, 2009


BOUCHERVILLE – The Commissioner of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, Gilles Courteau, today announced that three additional games have been postponed due to the H1N1 virus.

The following games have been postponed: Shawinigan at Acadie-Bathurst (Friday), Baie-Comeau at P.E.I. (Friday) and Shawinigan at P.E.I. (Saturday). An announcement will be forthcoming as to when the games will be replayed.

"Since a few players from both the Shawinigan Cataractes and P.E.I. Rocket organizations have contracted the virus, we have decided to postpone three games as per outlined in our prevention protocol. These steps have been taken after consulting with our chief physician, Dr. Sylvain Boutet, and both team doctors. Thankfully, none of the players need to be hospitalized. Our goal is to remain proactive in regards to the health and security of our players. We will not take any unnecessary risks. I would like to thank both organizations for their cooperation in this matter," said the Commissioner.

Kitchener Rangers defenceman Ben Fanelli is continuing his recovery from a frightening bodycheck at home following his release from Hamilton General Hospital over the weekend.

The 16-year-old suffered skull and facial fractures when his helmet flew off and he fell unconscious to the ice after a heavy hit into the boards from Erie Otters forward Michael Liambas during an Oct. 30 contest.

Fanelli had been in hospital since, starting off in critical condition in intensive care before steadily improving. He was released late Friday night.

“This is obviously an emotional day for the Fanelli family, our organization and community and really for the entire Ontario Hockey League’s players and fans,” Steve Bienkowski, COO of the Rangers, said in a statement on the team’s website. “It is still very early in Ben’s recovery that will include out-patient treatments at the hospital along with additional supporting treatments at home.”

Fanelli’s mother, Susan, added in the statement: “The support from the Kitchener Rangers organization has been wonderful. We are so appreciative it is hard to express.”

The Ontario Hockey League came down hard on Liambas, suspending him for the entire season and effectively ending the 20-year-old’s junior hockey career.

Liambas was assessed a match penalty for boarding after the hit.

Guy Carbonneau and Guy Lafleur are stepping back behind the bench as honorary Quebec Major Junior Hockey League captains for the 2009 Super Series.

Carbonneau, a retired NHL star and former coach of the Montreal Canadiens, will take part in the opening game of the series in Drummondville, Que., on Nov. 16. Lafleur, a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame, will be in attendance for Game 2 in Shawinigan on Nov. 18. The Super Series pits regional teams of CHL all-stars against a team of Russians and is part of the identification process for Canada's national junior team final selection camp. Three Sea Dogs - Michael Kirkpatrick, Yann Sauve and Simon Despres - will suit up for Team QMJHL.

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