Cass Mappin was itching for the opportunity to go up against his former team tonight.
He’ll be scratching until Jan. 6, when his Vancouver Giants are in Red Deer to face the Rebels.
The former Rebels forward, dealt to Vancouver on Sept. 29 in exchange for Slovak winger Andrej Kudrna, will miss the next week to 10 days with a separated shoulder, which means he’ll sit out tonight’s Red Deer-Vancouver contest at the Pacific Coliseum.
“How badly did I want to play Red Deer? I don’t think I’ve ever wanted to play in a game more in my career, to tell you the truth,” Mappin, who suffered the injury in a 5-1 road win over the Chilliwack Bruins on Sunday, told Steve Ewen of the Vancouver Province.
“Right now, all I’m thinking about is the next time we meet them. I’ll have to make up for it then, I guess.”
The Rebels’ first-round pick — 12th overall — in the 2005 WHL bantam draft hasn’t exactly been lighting it up since joining the Giants after requesting a trade. Mappin, a Big Valley native who turns 19 next month, has two goals and seven points in 16 games as a Giant after notching 17 goals and recording 39 points in 56 games with Red Deer last season.
Meanwhile, Kudrna, 18, has potted 11 goals and collected 23 points in 17 games with the Rebels.
However, Mappin is confident that he was just starting to turn the corner when he endured the shoulder injury.
“I hadn’t been able to control the corners for awhile,” said the six-foot-one, 185-pound Mappin.
“It’s finally good to get back to playing the way I should. It’s about damn time, I figure, too. I want be one of the top players on this team.”
• The Everett Silvertips showed a measure of class recently by granting the WHL scholarship money accrued by one of their former players, the late Jordan Mistelbacher, to the players’ brother.
Jordan Mistelbacher passed away last January and the Silvertips, after getting the go-ahead via a unanimous vote from the WHL board of governors, have given his education money to Tyler Mistelbacher, who is attending Utah State University.
Speaking of WHL education funds, the league granted 253 scholarships to graduate players for the 2009-10 season. Among the recipients are 12 former Rebels, including Jesse Zetariuk (U of Brandon), Eric Frere (U of Calgary), Jared Walker (U of Manitoba), Dustin Moore (U of Lethbridge), Dan Mercer (Capilano University), Paul Kurceba (U of Calgary), Cody McMullin (U of Western Ontario), Matt Cline (NAIT), Andre Herman (Concordia University College), Luke Betts (Douglas College), Mike Scarborough (Camosun College) and Pierre-Paul Lamoureux (U of North Dakota).
Other former Rebels playing college or university hockey but who are getting their funds from other WHL teams, are Brennen Wray (St. Francis Xavier), Carter Smith (Acadia), Joel Eisenkirch (U of Calgary), Luke Egener (U of Calgary), Jason Lynch (UBC), John Flatters (UBC) and Kyle Ross (U of Saskatchewan).
Meanwhile, Drew Todd of Red Deer and Scott Maetche of Lacombe are attending RDC on WHL scholarships, while Graham Potuer of Red Deer and Brett O’Malley of Stettler are at the U of Calgary, Brandon Heatherington of Red Deer is at the U of Lethbridge and Daine Todd of Red Deer and Kyle Bailey of Ponoka are at the U of New Brunswick.
On the move: The Prince Albert Raiders have permanently distanced themselves from 2006 first-round bantam draft pick Cole Penner, dealing the rights to the 18-year-old forward to the Chilliwack Bruins on Tuesday in exchange for a 12th-round selection in the 2010 draft. Since many teams pass by the time the 12th round rolls around, the Raiders basically gave Penner away. “He was a first-round bust,” Raiders coach and GM Bruno Campese told the Prince Albert Herald. “There was very little interest in him. It’s time to move on and free up a spot on our (50-man protected) list.” Penner played just 17 games with the Raiders through last season and didn’t attend training camp this year. He played with the Brooks Bandits of the AJHL last winter and was dealt to the Melfort Mustangs of the SJHL earlier this season. But he was with the Mustangs only briefly before returning home. His junior A rights are currently held by Merritt of the BCHL. When reached by the Herald at his home in Medicine Hat, Penner didn’t promise that he’d be reporting to Chilliwack. “Right now, I have no idea what’s going on, I haven’t spoken with (the Bruins) yet. I’ve just got to wait. I’m working right now.”
Just notes: Tri-City Americans forward Brendan Shinnimin is the Boston Pizza WHL player of the week after recording six points, including three goals, and a plus-3 rating in two wins . . . James Reid of the Spokane Chiefs is the CHL goaltender of the week for the period ending Nov. 8. Reid posted a 3-0-0-0 record with a goals-against average of 1.00 and a save percentage of .962 over the seven-day span . . . Calgary Hitmen ace and WHL scoring leader Brandon Kozun extended his points streak to 16 games with a four-point outing in a 7-2 thumping of the Kootenay Ice on Wednesday. Pavel Brendl holds the Hitmen franchise record for the longest scoring streak with 49 points over a 20-game run in 1998-99. “He comes ready to go every game,” Kozun’s linemate and Red Deer native Chase Schaber told the Calgary Sun. “He puts his nose to the twine and gets it done.”