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Canadians Sink US Navy

2001-11-16

The Tokyo Canadians got back on the winning track on Thursday night with an 8-2 thrashing of the US Navy team from Atsugi Naval Base. The scrimmage marked the first game for the rag-tag military group from western Tokyo and the Canadians took full advantage to make up for their disastrous performance in Thailand.

The game at Jingu Ice Centre featured a number of new faces scoring for Tokyo. Justin Ault, playing in his penultimate game, started things off with a nice goal which gave the Canadians a 1-0 lead. Moments later, Bobby Chung scored the first of his two goals on the night. Before the evening was over, Etienne Menard, Bruce Hill, Satoshi Kobayashi, and possibly Eddie Takaya (details are sketchy) figured in the scoring.

Afterwards the generous Navy boys treated the Canucks to plenty of complimentary Budweiser Beer which the boys greatly appreciated, especially goaltender Lyle Warbinek whose feet had grown quite cold throughout the game.

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Line Changes

As mentioned before, the November 15th game against Navy marked the last game for forward/defenseman/rover Justin Ault who will return to Vancouver to open a Japanese style restaurant. Better visit soon because if he keeps his restaurant as clean as his hockey bag, the public health department will undoubtedly close him down soon.

The Canadians have added wingers Bruce Hill and Bobby Chung to the roster.

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Seoul Glaciers 4, Tokyo Canadians 3

The first game of the tournament for the Canadians was the long awaited match-up against the Seoul Gecko's Glaciers. This self-described "Drinking Team with a Hockey Problem" lulled the Canadians into a feeling of over-confidence as they watched the Glaciers skate around the extremely hot rink in what appeared to be heavy black, wool sweaters reminiscent of something the Bruins might have worn in an outdoor game in 1925.

The Glaciers struck in the first minute of play with a dandy wrap around past goalie Hiroki Narushima. Unfazed, the Canadians came back with a nice goal by a healthy Scott McCaskie. Jason Young set up the second Tokyo goal with a centering pass to Dave Lindsay who fired home a one-timer. McCaskie scored again moments later to give Tokyo a commanding 3-1 lead.

But that would be all for the Canadians. The heat in the building became simply too much in the second half as Tokyo's defensive play broke down allowing numerous scoring opportunities. Temperatures inside the rink seemed to hover around 100 degrees Fahrenheit (or about 40 degrees Canadian). With exhausted legs, Tokyo gave up three goals in the final ten minutes of play and lost the game 4-3.

"I thought I was gonna puke out there, eh?" said an exhausted Gavin Burns.

Post Game Entertainment

One tremendous highlight of this years tournament was the chance to experience the huge Chiang Mai's Yee Peng Loy Krathong Festival held every year on the banks of the Ping River. The festival features parades, musical entertainment, fireworks shows and the release of Krathongs which are decorative floral candle arrangements that are lighted and sent floating down the river to, as far as we could tell, show gratitude to the Buddha.

But most impressive was the fireworks show which consisted of several hundred kids throwing firecrackers, bottle rockets and blackcats at one another as well as passing motorists.

In an effort to boost team morale, Captain John Richmond marched his Canadian troops across the Nawarat Bridge despite a constant bombardment from all sides. In a scene straight out of "Apocalypse Now," the Canadians made it across the bridge and back again with only minor injuries and hangovers. Joji Hiratsuka had an ordinance explode in his hand, Denton Venable was run over by a motorcycle and Dave Lindsay broke out into a bad case of the giggles but the effort worked in building a sense of unity and confidence for day two of the tournament.

"I didn't think we were gonna make it across that bridge, eh?" said a shell-shocked Gavin Burns.
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Bangkok Flying Farangs 3, Tokyo Canadians 3

The second game for the Canadians featured their old rivals from Bangkok, the Flying Farangs. Kevin Hall and company brought a very good team to the tournament, a team that would eventually make it to the semi-finals before dropping to the unbeatable Team USA. With a few minor adjustments to the line-up and a new face in the net, the Canadians were looking to get back on the winning track.

The game was a back and forth affair featuring nice goaltending on both sides. Dave Lindsay really stuck out as the player of the game for Tokyo scoring two goals including one on a breakaway that was set up on a beautiful pass from Koichi Ogiso deep in his own zone. McCaskie scored his third goal of the tournament off a deflection from a Jason Young shot.

But Bangkok equaled every time including two goals on tough circumstances leaving goaltender Troy MacPhee, possibly the only man in Japan with a map of PEI tattooed on his chest, shaking his head. One such goal deflected off of a Farangs chest and into the net while another was a miscommunication with Hiratsuka leaving the puck rolling into the net.
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Team USA 5, Team Japanada 2

The final game for the Canadians might go down as one of the most eventful in team history. Tokyo was a tremendous underdog going into the game against the powerful Americans featuring non-other than former Lake Placid Gold Medal Olympian Neal Broten. But the former NHLer, who didn't seem very "up" for the games, was not the only impressive player on the ice for the extremely talented squad. One dangerous player for the US was Lake Superior State product Mitch Lane who scored several goals in each game. USA, loaded with solid talent, crushed Taiwan and Kuala Lumpur in the preliminary rounds by lopsided scores.

Troy MacPhee was awesome in goal making some big saves and getting lots of attention from the capacity crowd which actually broke into the wave at one point and shouted "To-key-yo, To-key-yo" on several occasions.

USA scored first but Satoshi Chawanya was able to get the Canadians on the board in the first period. The Canadians played back-n-forth hockey against the Amerks but still allowed three straight goals including one head-scratcher by Broten.

Jason Young scored the goal of the tournament late in the game on a nice Bobby Orr style shot making it 4-2. The Americans would later score an empty-netter to win 5-2.

In the finals, Team USA defeated the Seoul Gecko's Glaciers 7-0.
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Canuck pastime takes root in Japan
By HARVEY SAHKER Special to The Mirror

North York native Jason Young has found a little piece of home in the Land of the Rising Sun.

After moving to Tokyo in January, the 26-year-old financial planner is playing hockey for the Tokyo Canadians.

Not long after his arrival in the Japanese capital, he decided to play with a local Tier II club which ultimately led him to the Canadians.

"The hockey scene in Tokyo is pretty small, so once you play on one team you soon find out about the Canadians," Young said in a telephone interview.

The Canadians are a team made up of ex-patriot Canucks, based in Tokyo, who originally hail from B.C. to Quebec and points in between.

"A lot of Japanese teams like to play exhibition games against us. We're looked at as a select team, one of the higher-calibre teams in Tokyo."

The Canadians play a couple of games per month from October to April. They also participate in the annual Thai tournament.

"It's a competition to raise money for orphans (Human Development Center) in Bangkok," Young said.

Young says playing with his countrymen is much different than playing with his Japanese teammates in the Tier II league.

"A lot of the Canadians play for a Japanese team in a league as well," he said, adding he is the only foreigner on the team. "Communication is tough because my Japanese isn't great. There's a lot of broken Japanese from me and broken English from my team mates."

Amateur hockey in Japan has impressed Young.

"It's quite competitive, probably as good as a high calibre industrial league back home."

The game is played at other levels, too. "University hockey here isn't bad, and there's a six-team professional league."

Though hockey facilities in Tokyo are few and far between, Young said they compensate for this in quality.

"The arenas are quite good, probably the best in Asia. Teams take whatever ice time they can get. The rinks accommodate university teams, women's teams, men's teams, even some high school teams. We might play any time from 6 a.m. to midnight. It really varies."

Irregular face-off times notwithstanding, Young is happy as a member of the Tokyo Canadians.

"They're a great bunch of guys. It's good times, on and off the ice."
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Canadians Victorious In Season Debut
By Denton Venable, l'officier de communication

The Tokyo Canadians started off the 2001-02 season with an impressive 6-2 victory over the Pirates from Takadanobaba at the Citizens Plaza Rink Saturday morning. Despite having only a handful of sober players available for the unusually early morning matchup, the Canadians were able to win rather easily over the outmatched Pirates squad.

Starting goaltender Hiroki Narushima played a solid game while backup Lyle Warbinek looked on patiently from the bench through fog covered glasses. Pirates' forwards had a difficult time throughout the game penetrating the Canadians defense led by veteran D-man Rob "it ain't that" Smaal.

While such notable players as Brent "Killer" Carlson, Dennis Waechter, Scott "Loose Bowels" McCaskie, and Graham Stuart were obvious no-shows, Canadians' old-timers and founders John Richmond, Joji Hiratsuka and Mike "Rosey" LaRose were there plugging away leading the team to the first 'W' of the season.
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Direct From The Desert

Saturday morning also marked the successful debut of newly acquired forward David Lindsay. The Toronto native and international journeyman has logged so much time in beer leagues across the world, he could practically open his own brewery.

Dave spent the past several seasons toiling for the Bahrain Buds and various other teams in the Middle East s UAE League, and also played collegiantly at Western Michigan University. The Canadians are happy to have him join the club not only for his playmaking skills but also for the simple fact he is one of only two players that excepted invitations to join the team after a particularly high exodus of players over the summer.
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Tango in Thailand

The time is almost here, sports fans, for the Canadians annual trip to Thailand. By requests from Bangkok city officials, public health authorities, and food stall vendors, tournament officials have elected to move the 2001 Chevron Cup to the northern city of Chiang Mai. The tournament will be held October 31st to November 3rd.

While the 2001 Tokyo squad might not be as "potent" as last years team, the Canadians hope the present group is formidable enough to make another run at the Cup.

Thailand veterans Satoshi Chawayna, Koichi Ogiso, John Richmond, Gavin Burns, Scott "Squirts" McCaskie, Jason Young, Denton Venable and, of course, Joji Hiratsuka will again make the trip to the Kingdom. Trilingual defenseman Rob Voisine is expected to join the team along with Canadian alum Dave Murphy from LA. Splitting time in the crease with Narushima will be Osaka Kansai Kanucks keeper Troy MacPhee.

As the tournament approaches, many questions remain about this years squad.

For starters, can 'Squirts' McCaskie spend more time this year on the ICE rather than on the can?

Will we see another clean and spirited match between Hiratsuka and his old buddy Greg Smyth from Hong Kong?

Could this be, as some have speculated, the last "tango in Thailand" for fiery legend John Richmond?

Will Gavin Burns once again pay for a queen size bed only to later opt to sleep in the tub?

And finally, should the Canadians just plan on putting four skaters on the ice rather than the customary five in the event they make it the finals? (Officials, are you listening??)

Canadians Gain Two Monstrous Wins

2001-07-10


The Tokyo Canadians closed out the 2000-01 season with a pair of victories over local men's league team, the Tokyo Monsters, snapping a 5-game losing streak. The June 29th battle at Jingu Ice Centre featured some of the hardest hitting action the team has seen all season.

The Canadians, having recently lost goal-scoring sniper, and OK Cup MVP, Graeme Kishiuchi are very excited about the recent acquisition of local sharp-shooter Mamuro Konno, otherwise known as "Jimmy the Jet." The 5'7" speedster tore apart the Monsters' defense with a 3-goal performance while leading the Canadians to a 10-5 victory. The Jet, playing on the right side of the experimental "International Date Line," featuring Konno (Japan), Scott McCaskie (Canada) and Denton Venable (USA). With an additional goal by McCaskie, the "IDL" registered four goals and created havoc around the net - both nets - throughout the night. Despite the success, the line will most likely be disassembled when more players start showing up for games.

The game also featured a shocking 2-goal night from stalwart, stay-at-home defenseman Rob Smaal. The 39-year old veteran had to overcome blistering, third-degree sunburns and ferocious forecheckers all evening, but still managed to match his season goal average. Canadian enforcers Joji Hiratsuka and Stu "The Reaper" Kimoto each added a pair of goals to round out the scoring.

Goaltender Hiroki Narushima had a good evening as well turning aside some big shots including a penalty shot in the second period, which was the result of an unfortunate "spear-chucking" incident as described by Hiratsuka. Newly acquired defenseman Justin Ault , having played a solid game all night, let a Monster slip by him - resulting in a breakaway. Looking like a modern-day Jim Thorpe, Ault resorted to the old-time hockey technique of throwing his stick - javelin style - at the Monsters' forward closing in on the Canadians' net. The referee, sidelined with a broken toe, immediately called a penalty shot from the scorer's table. Narushima turned aside the attempt but, unfortunately, allowed a rather harmless looking shot by him just seconds after play resumed.

The "spear-chucking" incident only added to the list of cheap shots and glove pointing that occurred throughout the contest, perhaps a carryover from the earlier game on May 20th at Higashi-Fushimi Arena. In that game, the Canadians won by a lop-sided score, which featured a hat-trick by Dave Lotocki.

Line Changes
More changes are in store for next years Tokyo Canadians squad as more players have decided to call it quits in Japan in the summer of 2001. The June 29th game marked the last skate for Montreal native Dean Turner as he packs up his sticks and hand-cuffs for a new, assignment as a Canadian Forces MP trainer in Ontario. Wayne Daly is returning to Ottawa with his wife and daughter at the end of July and defenseman JIm Engleson (and family) will transfer to Santa Clara, CA to work at Palm Computing's head office. He will join former Tokyo Canadian David Lotoki on a team of ex-pat Canucks living in the Bay Area.

The Tokyo Canadians have a New Website Location

2001-06-09

The Tokyo Canadians would like to announce that they have a new home for their web site. The address is here at www.tokyocanadians.com and it's being hosted by Infoasis. Please update your bookmarks/favourites and links to this site.

Click here if you are using AvantGo software on your mobile/PDA device to automatically setup/subscribe-to a custom channel for The Tokyo Canadians' mobile edition. If you don't have AvantGo's reader software yet, go to AvantGo and install it on your Mac or PC.

T-Birds Beat Canandians 4-1

2001-04-21

An unannounced crowd of three braved the beautiful weather Friday evening for Dan Moscoe Night at Takadanobaba Citizen Plaza. In true storybook fashion, Moscoe scored a natural hat-trick - one for each fan in attendance - including the game-winner, to lead the Tokyo Men's Division 1 League Champion Thunderbirds over the Tokyo Canadians 4-1.

The Thunderbirds - having gutted most of the Canadians roster with the likes of Joji Hiratsuka, Koichi Ogiso, James Heather, Stu Kimoto, Brent Carlson and Graham Stuart to name a few - were a true force to be reckoned with against the undermanned Canadians squad.

Play was fairly even in the first period with both squads getting ample opportunities. Lyle Warbinek was stellar in goal for the Canadians making several big saves including an acrobatic, glove save on a Carlson blast from 30 feet out. Carlson finally got one by Warbinek late in the first period with a wrister to the top shelf giving the T-Birds a 1-0 lead.

Scott McCaskie, having finally fully recovered from the Tony Romas rib sandwich in Bangkok, answered for the Canadians with a diving goal past the downed 'Birds goaltender Lance Leeder.

From there, it was all Moscoe. His first two goals were nice one-timers in front, one of which was set up beautifully by Carlson. No one remembers his third goal however it was probably a nice one as well.

Miraculously, the Canadians went the entire game without a single power-play in large part to the questionable officiating by "Canadian" John Richmond. Let's hope his wrist heals up soon.

The Canadians would like to add another player to the list of recently departed. Chris Parsons - believed to be the only player to actually have his parents attend a Canadians game overseas - has left the team and is now working in London, England. Good Luck, Chris.

Chatting with former NHLer Doug Bodger

2001-04-16

Today's sports pages read more like the crime page - drug and alcohol abuse, spousal abuse and divorce, car crashes, sexually assaults on babysitters, and even murder! Considering that the Dennis Rodmans, Deion Sanders' and Ryan Leafs of the sporting world get an unfair share of the press coverage I suppose it's no surprise that athletes seem to be in the news more for off-court/field/ice incidents than for what they're paid to do.

It's great to know, however, that there are still athletes who go full circle without getting screwed up. For example, the small town boy who makes it to the "big time," but doesn't get caught up in the racket, has a successful career and eventually goes home after retiring to a comfortable life with his family in his home town. The media, in my opinion, should focus more on these people and their stories.

click here to continue reading...Doug Bodger


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