by Jeff Hubert
March 10, 2014, Calgary, AB (ISN) – The Western Hockey League announced today that Prince Albert Raiders’ forward Leon Draisaitl is the Denny’s WHL Player of the Week for the week ending March 9, 2014. It’s the second Denny’s WHL Player of the Week award of the season for Draisaitl.
Draisaitl netted five goals and four assists for nine points along with a +5 rating over three games in the past week, leading the Raiders to three consecutive wins in that span as they continue their push for a playoff berth.
On Tuesday, March 4th, Draisaitl scored twice and set up two more for a four-point outing while being named the game’s 1st Star in a 9-2 win over the visiting Moose Jaw Warriors. On Friday, March 7th, he scored twice and added two assists for his second straight four-point outing and was named the game’s 1st Star in a 5-2 win over the visiting Calgary Hitmen. Draisaitl closed out the week by netting the game-winning goal – his 35th marker of the season – and claiming 2nd Star honors in a 3-2 triumph over the visiting Brandon Wheat Kings on Saturday night.
Draisaitl, an 18-year-old from Cologne, Germany, is in his second season in the WHL with the Prince Albert Raiders. He has amassed 35 goals and 97 points in 60 games for the Raiders this season, and currently sits among the top five scorers in the WHL. A top-ranked prospect for the 2014 NHL Draft, Draisaitl has amassed 56 goals and 155 points in 124 career regular-season contests. Draisaitl was selected by the Raiders with the second overall pick in the 2012 CHL Import Draft.
The WHL has also nominated Jordon Cooke of the Kelowna Rockets for the Vaughn CHL Goaltender of the Week award. A 20-year-old from Leduc, AB, Cooke posted a 2-0-0-0 record with a shutout in three appearances over the past week for the WHL-leading Rockets. On Wednesday, March 5th, Cooke stopped 29 of 30 shots he faced and earned 2nd Star honors in a 3-1 victory over the visiting Spokane Chiefs. On Saturday, March 8th, Cooke stopped all 20 shots he faced for his fourth shutout of the season while being named the game’s 3rd Star in a 7-0 win over the visiting Tri-City Americans. Cooke also stopped all 11 shots he faced in 20 minutes of relief work in a 5-1 loss to the Silvertips in Everett, WA, on Tuesday, March 4th. Cooke is in his fourth and final WHL campaign with the Rockets, and currently ranks among the top five WHL netminders in goals-against average, save percentage and wins. A fourth-round pick, 79th overall of the Rockets in the 2008 WHL Bantam Draft, Cooke has appeared in 147 career regular-season games for Kelowna, posting a 91-33-4-8 record with nine shutouts. He is a free agent.
Denny’s WHL Player of the Week
Mar. 3 – Mar. 9: Leon Draisaitl, Prince Albert Raiders
Feb. 24 – Mar. 2: Jayce Hawryluk, Brandon Wheat Kings
Feb. 17 – Feb. 23: Morgan Klimchuk, Regina Pats
Feb. 10 – Feb. 16: Taylor Leier, Portland Winterhawks
Feb. 3 – Feb. 9: Sam Reinhart, Kootenay Ice
Jan. 27 – Feb. 2: Myles Bell, Kelowna Rockets
Jan. 20 – Jan. 26: Brendan Leipsic, Portland Winterhawks
Jan. 13 – Jan. 19: Derrick Pouliot, Portland Winterhawks
Jan. 6 – Jan. 12: Todd Fiddler, Prince George Cougars
Dec. 30 – Jan. 5: Myles Bell, Kelowna Rockets
Dec. 9 – Dec. 15: Mike Aviani, Spokane Chiefs
Dec. 2 – Dec. 8: Chandler Stephenson, Regina Pats
Nov. 25 – Dec. 1: Leon Draisaitl, Prince Albert Raiders
Nov. 18 – Nov. 24: Josh Winquist, Everett Silvertips
Nov. 11 – Nov. 17: Ryan Pulock, Brandon Wheat Kings
Nov. 4 – Nov. 10: Mitch Holmberg, Spokane Chiefs
Oct. 28 – Nov. 3: Jayce Hawryluk, Brandon Wheat Kings
Oct. 21 – Oct. 27: Josh Winquist, Everett Silvertips
Oct. 14 – Oct. 20: Nicolas Petan, Portland Winterhawks
Oct. 7 – Oct. 13: Matt Pufahl, Everett Silvertips
Sept. 30 – Oct. 6: Nick Merkley, Kelowna Rockets
Sept. 23 – Sept. 29: Mitch Holmberg, Spokane Chiefs
Sept. 19 – Sept. 22: Julius Honka, Swift Current Broncos