Hitmen and Rockets square off in final

The Calgary Hitmen can set a Western Hockey League record tonight with their 13th straight playoff victory.

CALGARY — The Calgary Hitmen can set a Western Hockey League record tonight with their 13th straight playoff victory.

To do that, they’ll have to beat a confident group of Kelowna Rockets in the opening game of the best-of-seven WHL championship series.

“I know we’re eagerly anticipating the drop of the puck on Friday night,” said Hitmen head coach Dave Lowry, whose squad swept the Edmonton Oil Kings, Lethbridge Hurricanes and Brandon Wheat Kings to win the Eastern Conference championship.

Meanwhile, the Rockets swept the Kamloops Blazers in the first round before ousting both the Tri-City Americans and Vancouver Giants in six games to qualify for the finals.

“This is a very good hockey team that we’re playing,” Lowry said. “They’re coming off of a huge series with Vancouver. We know that they’re going to be ready to go. For us, it’s a great challenge.”

After notching a hat trick, including the game winner in overtime, against the Giants on Monday night, Swedish forward Mikael Backlund has high hopes of helping the Rockets continue their post-season success against the Hitmen.

“It’s not only me,” said Backlund, a first round pick of the Calgary Flames in the 2007 NHL Draft. “It’s going to be our whole team that’s going to be dangerous for them. They’re going to have to look after everybody.”

The Rockets boast the top two scorers in the WHL playoffs in Jamie Benn and Cody Almond, who have put up 28 and 22 points respectively.

Just Posted

WATCH: Central Albertans learn about farm life at Sunnybrook Farm Museum

Pioneer Days Festival in Red Deer Saturday-Sunday

Number of seniors who play bridge in Red Deer growing

Red Deer Bridge Club has been around for close to 60 years

PHOTOS: Buccaneers battle Wolfpack in AFL semifinal

The Central Alberta Buccaneers battled the Calgary Wolfpack in the Alberta Football… Continue reading

Raising awareness for Bikers Against Child Abuse

Second annual Raise A Ruckus Against Child Abuse was held at the Red Deer Radisson Hotel Saturday

Central Alberta Yogathon cancelled Saturday

Due to air quality concerns the fourth annual event will take place Sept. 15

VIDEO: Central Albertans learn about Icelandic poet at Stephansson House

Harvest Fair and Quilt Show hosted at Stephansson House in Spruce View Sunday

Trump says his White House counsel not a ‘RAT’ like Nixon’s

BRIDGEWATER, N.J. — President Donald Trump insisted Sunday that his White House… Continue reading

Wildfire moves closer to Glacier National Park’s scenic road

MISSOULA, Mont. — A wildfire in Montana’s Glacier National Park is forcing… Continue reading

Prime Minister Trudeau, Premier Couillard march in Montreal’s Pride parade

MONTREAL — Thousands of cheering spectators lined the streets of Montreal on… Continue reading

All eyes on Andrew Scheer as Conservative convention set for Halifax

OTTAWA — After a week of internal caucus squabbles, Conservative Leader Andrew… Continue reading

Canadians fear for relatives trapped amid flooding in Indian state of Kerala

In the wake of deadly flooding in the Indian state of Kerala,… Continue reading

Indonesia’s Lombok island jolted by multiple quakes

SEMBALUN, Indonesia — Strong earthquakes jolted the Indonesian tourist island of Lombok… Continue reading

Afghan president calls for Eid cease-fire, Taliban to reply

KABUL — Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has called for a conditional cease-fire… Continue reading

Montreal may have less influence after October provincial election

MONTREAL — When Coalition Avenir Quebec Leader Francois Legault recently dismissed the… Continue reading

Most Read

Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month