by Jeff Hubert
March 24, 2014, Calgary, AB (ISN) – The Western Hockey League announced today that Brandon Wheat Kings’ defenceman Ryan Pulock is the Denny’s WHL Player of the Week for the week ending March 23, 2014. It’s the second Denny’s WHL Player of the Week award of the season for Pulock.
Pulock scored two goals and four points to go with a +5 rating in two road games on the weekend, helping the Wheat Kings take a 2-0 lead over the Regina Pats in their Eastern Conference first-round playoff series.
On Saturday, March 22, Pulock tallied a goal and an assist while being named the game’s 1st Star in a 6-3 victory over the Pats in Game 1 of their series in Regina, SK. On Sunday, March 23, Pulock scored again and set up another for his second straight two-point outing, and was named the game’s 3rd Star in an 8-4 triumph in Regina, giving the Wheat Kings a 2-0 series lead.
Pulock, a 19-year-old from Grandview, MB, is in his fourth season in the WHL with the Wheat Kings, and finished second on the team in regular-season scoring with 63 points in 66 games. The Wheat Kings’ seventh-round pick, 136th overall, in the 2009 WHL Bantam Draft, Pulock has played 261 career regular-season contests while amassing 210 points, including a franchise-record 64 goals. Pulock was drafted in the first round, 15th overall, by the New York Islanders in the 2013 NHL Draft.
The WHL has also nominated Taran Kozun of the Seattle Thunderbirds for the Vaughn CHL Goaltender of the Week award. A 19-year-old from Nipawin, SK, Kozun posted a pair of victories in two playoff games on the weekend, allowing just two goals on 66 shots for a 1.00 goals-against average and a .970 save percentage in that span as the Thunderbirds opened up a 2-0 lead in their best-of-seven first-round series versus the Everett Silvertips.
On Saturday, March 22, Kozun stopped 38 of 39 shots he faced and was named the game’s 1st Star in a 2-1 win over the visiting Silvertips. On Sunday, March 23, Kozun turned aside 26 of 27 shots while again being named the game’s 1st Star in a 3-1 triumph over the Silvertips in Everett, WA. Kozun is in his second full season in the WHL, and first with the Seattle Thunderbirds. He posted a 14-9-0-1 record with four shutouts in 24 games with the Thunderbirds after being acquired from Kamloops in a trade deadline transaction. Kozun is eligible for the 2014 NHL Draft.
Denny’s WHL Player of the Week
Mar. 17 – Mar. 23: Ryan Pulock, Brandon Wheat Kings
Mar. 10 – Mar. 16: Collin Valcourt, Prince Albert Raiders
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