WHL lowers boom on Portland Winterhawks

League removes future draft picks from Winterhawks, suspends GM and coach Mike Johnston for team's violation of player benefit regulations

A violation of Western Hockey League regulations has cost the Portland Winterhawks their first-round bantam draft choices for each of the next five years.

The WHL announced Wednesday disciplinary action against the Winterhawks as the result of a series of player-benefit violations which have occurred over the past four seasons.

The league has prohibited the Winterhawks from participating in the first five rounds of the 2013 WHL Bantam Draft. The club will also forfeit its first-round selections in the 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017 WHL Bantam Drafts.

The WHL also announced the Winterhawks have been fined $200,000, while team general manager and head coach Mike Johnston has been suspended for the balance of the 2012-13 season, including the 2013 WHL playoffs.

“All WHL clubs understand they are required to fully comply and respect our League Regulations or they will face significant consequences,” WHL commissioner Ron Robison said in a statement. “WHL clubs are required to fully disclose all commitments they make to a player in the WHL Standard Player Agreement. Our independent investigation in this case revealed there were multiple violations over an extended period for player benefits that are not permitted under WHL Regulations and were not disclosed to the WHL.

“It should also be noted through the course of the investigation there was no evidence of any payments or enhanced education benefits provided to players that would be contrary to WHL regulations as previous media reports indicated.”

The Winterhawks eliminated the Kelowna Rockets from the WHL playoffs in each of the last two seasons.


Just Posted

Need to catch up on news? You’re covered

Every Saturday the Capital News will highlight stories from the week

Big White board school among best

Director of snow sports, Josh Foster, is one of the top instructors in Canada

Seniors prefer funeral to lifestyle planning

Survey finds 73% of seniors have a will, only 13% have long-term care plan

Okanagan College business students soar

Medal winners at Western Canadian Business Competition

UBCO civil engineer touts cohousing option

Gord Lovegrove says cohousing is sustainable social and economic lifestyle

VIDEO: B.C. Mounties reunite veteran with lost military medals

RCMP say Zora Singh Tatla, who served in the army in India for 28 years, is the righful owner

Experts urging caution as rabbits die by the hundreds in B.C. city

Province of B.C. confirms more positive tests for rabbit haemorrhagic disease

Federal government seeks public feedback on pedestrian safety

What safety measures do you think need to improved for pedestrians and cyclists?

Search continues for 10-year-old Montreal boy missing since Monday

Montreal police said they are exploring every possibility in search for Ariel Jeffrey Kouakou

Airline passenger-rights bill claws back protections for travellers: Advocate

Bill C-49 would double tarmac delays, scrap compensation for flights affected by mechanical failures

Canadian research vessel to explore 19th Century shipwrecks

Commissioned this week in Victoria, the RV David Thompson is Parks Canada’s newest vessel

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

VIDEO: ‘New wave’ of anti-pipeline protests return to Trans Mountain facility

About 100 demonstrators with Protect the Inlet marched to the Burnaby terminal Saturday

B.C. man to plead guilty in connection with hit-and-run that killed teen

Jason Gourlay charged with failure to stop at the scene of accident, attempting to obstruct justice

Most Read