Junior A hockey is returning to Smithers Sept. 2 with a head-to -head rivalry between the Prince George Spruce Kings and the Quesnel Millionaires, before kicking off the 2009/2010 season.
“I think it will be a really good game,” said Ed Dempsey, Spruce Kings Head Coach. “We have a good rivalry with Quesnel so I think there will be some good action to watch.”
This will be the first time the Spruce Kings and the Millionaires have played each other in Smithers and also the first time they will play against each other since last winter.
“I think it’s an opportunity to have some kids play a game for a home town crowd and bring Junior A hockey back to Smithers and market some kids from both teams,” said Glen Watson, Millionaires Head Coach.
However both teams are looking to make this a first showing game, seeing what each team is bringing to the new season, both strengths and weaknesses. Last year the Millionaires finished the regular season with 36 points against the Spruce Kings 61 points, so both teams are looking to improve their 08/09 records.
“This year we’re okay, we’ve got a good solid nucleus, and we have made some decent trades, but we’re still looking to cement seven or eight players to the roster,” said Dempsey.
This year the Millionaires have also acquired a new head coach so this will also be the first chance Watson has to see how his boys play together against a big league rival.
“I just took over and we’ll be making some changes, I think we got a good core of guys returning which this game will give us an opportunity to see how these guys play,” said Watson.
The puck drops at 7 p.m. at the Civic Centre and tickets are just $10 and are available at The Town of Smithers, Oscars, OK Tire, and Tim-Br Mart.