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From the Dub: Play On!
At first glance, Aussie Rules Football looks like really well-organized chaos. Stay past the first quarter and you'll begin to wonder "who invented this sport and how high were they when they did so?" If you're new to the sport, your perception of Australia's beloved national pastime probably goes something…
Posted by Samantha on 08/25/16 | Comments 5

Location, Location, Location
When I declared several months ago that I was traveling 8,107 miles one way to watch hockey in Australia, I wasn’t kidding. I did it. And I’m here to tell you that if you get the chance, you should go. In fact, June would be an excellent time to trek…
Posted by Samantha on 05/15/16 | Comments 1

Everyone has a blindspot
You never realize the true meaning of "there's no place like home" until you've either traveled to or lived in places far away from your home. I've done both, and there truly is no place quite like Oregon. I spent last weekend in Santa Monica, where the Independent Spirit Awards…
Posted by Samantha on 03/05/16 | Comments 0

From the Dub: Do the math
There's nothing like an invitation to your 30th high school reunion to make you realize that your day, if ever there was one, is over.  Even worse is the realization that in the minds of the teenage hockey players you interview on a weekly basis, you're old. In fact, I'm…
Posted by Samantha on 02/23/16 | Comments 1

Home Is Where the Hockey Is
My birthday wasn't supposed to be January 26 (Australia Day and Wayne Gretzky's birthday); it was supposed to be Valentine's Day. But I decided it was go time a few weeks early et voila! My fate was sealed. It only seemed right to plot a vacation to Australia on my…
Posted by Samantha on 01/31/16 | Comments 0

From the Dub: The Son Also Rises
When Dominic Turgeon was signed by the Portland Winterhawks in early 2012, local fans' thoughts didn't automatically turn to the team's new recruit: everyone who's being honest automatically thought "I can't wait to meet his father." On the off-chance you don't know who I'm referring to, Dominic's father is five-time…
Posted by Samantha on 01/17/16 | Comments 1

From the Dub: Careful What You Wish For
When I declared “Bring it, 2015” I thought I was ready for it.  It all started out so well: the Portland Winterhawks were making the push for the “drive for five,” I was training for the Shamrock Run and spring came early to Portland. Then came April; after finishing my…
Posted by Samantha on 01/02/16 | Comments 0

Hockey first. Period. No exceptions.
It was only a few short months ago I was on injured reserve, with way too much free time on my hands. Flash forward to September, at which point the last 90 days of my life disappeared into thin air. And I'm not even talking about how busy the hockey…
Posted by Samantha on 12/06/15 | Comments 3

From the Dub: Their Whole Season is a Blindspot
Now that Strike Back is over and NBC has cut short Philip Winchester’s new gig on The Player, I’m paying closer attention to his former co-star’s new series, Blindspot. If you’re tuning into this intriguing new show, you know the premise: a woman with no memory is left in Times…
Posted by Samantha on 11/02/15 | Comments 0

From the Dub: #safetyfirst
I've spent the past five months on injured reserve, waiting for the day when I could be cleared for contact with the real world again. That day came this past week, but I realized that maybe I didn't really want to get back out there after all. Life outside the…
Posted by Samantha on 10/17/15 | Comments 0

We’re passing through turbulence, please fasten your seat belt
When four days of business travel got put on my work calendar during the heart of hurricane season, I knew I was in for it. Last week, the pre-cursor to Hurricane Joaquin passed right up the East Coast, where some blissfully unaware colleauges decided it would be a good time…
Posted by Samantha on 10/04/15 | Comments 1

From the Dub: And They’re Back
The new season is officially underway here in the WHL, where top Western Conference held training camps over the past week. In Portland, top NHL prospects Paul Bittner, Dominic Turgeon and Jack Dougherty were on display. North of us, Mathew Barzal, name-to-watch Nolan Volcan and Nick Merkley were getting it done…
Posted by Samantha on 09/03/15 | Comments 2

Strike Back Against the Off-Season
After five seasons of covering NHL and WHL hockey, there’s one thing I know for sure: I should never be left unsupervised in the off-season. Exhibit A: On the first official weekend of the WHL off-season, I promptly face-planted off a stair and spent the next 12 weeks on injured…
Posted by Samantha on 07/31/15 | Comments 0

Hello NHL, Portland Calling
It’s been a busy week here in the Rose City: the Winterhawks released their pre and regular season schedules just days before several players were drafted into the NHL. And of course, there’s the buzz that the proposed NHL expansion has already generated. I would argue the NHL is already here,…
Posted by Samantha on 06/27/15 | Comments 0

Things that go bump
Mother’s Day weekend should have exactly what my mom and I planned: a weekend in the country, enjoying Oregon’s natural beauty and perhaps a spa treatment or dip in the pool. But if there’s one thing I’ve learned about best laid plans, it’s that they always go awry. And so…
Posted by Samantha on 05/25/15 | Comments 2

From the Dub: Tickets, Please
After a blockbuster finish to Round 2 of the WHL Playoffs, the final four teams have punched their tickets to the Eastern and Western Conference finals. In Brandon, the Calgary Hitmen will face the Brandon Wheat Kings. Here in the Western Conference, we are gearing up for a second consecutive showdown between…
Posted by Samantha on 04/23/15 | Comments 1

From the Dub: Round and Round They Go
We’re only in the second round of playoffs out here in the WHL, but it already feels like we’re much deeper into it. Maybe it’s the double OT it took the Portland Winterhawks to tie up the series with Everett  1-1. It could be that the Silvertips had to go…
Posted by Samantha on 04/16/15 | Comments 0

In Oliver we trust
From the first day he set foot on Portland ice, Columbus Blue Jackets prospect Oliver Bjorkstrand has delivered on his promise. He was drafted 26th overall in the 2012 CHL Import Draft and signed that year on July 26. Oliver promptly bolted out of the starting gate with his first…
Posted by Samantha on 03/08/15 | Comments 0

Miracles happen for a reason
As of Sunday, February 22, 1980, I had never even seen a hockey game. I didn’t know a thing about the sport. All I knew was that the United States Olympic hockey team was about to play the Russians in a game they might lose. I was 12 and otherwise…
Posted by Samantha on 02/24/15 | Comments 0

Hockey conquers all
I've spent the better part of the past two months battling lower body injuries and flu-like illnesses, which can make one feel very old and very sorry for oneself very easily. Through it all, one thing made living on my couch tolerable: hockey, but of course. It saves the day when nothing else…
Posted by Samantha on 01/24/15 | Comments 3

From the Dub: Bring it, 2015
I’ve heard from a lot of friends, colleagues and fellow fans who were thrilled to bid 2014 farewell. I’m one of them, but here in Portland, things are looking up. Over the weekend, Portland Winterhawks Captain Nic Petan stole the World Junior show with a hat trick, paving the way…
Posted by Samantha on 01/07/15 | Comments 0

From the Dub: Pooh for Short
Twitter is exploding today with news that Derrick Pouliot has been called up by the Penguins for tonight’s game against the Florida Panthers. His path to the NHL has come full circle: chosen first overall in the 2009 WHL Bantam Draft, Derrick was the first player Mike Johnston drafted as General…
Posted by Samantha on 12/20/14 | Comments 1

From the Dub: No Sleep Till Spring
The Portland Winterhawks went down in yet another heartbreaker Friday night, this time in a shootout to the number one team in the U.S. Division: the Everett Silvertips. It was a good game right up until the shootout, where the Winterhawks appear to have lost their shooting accuracy.  It’s the…
Posted by Samantha on 11/17/14 | Comments 0

From the Dub: The Choice Is Ours
For the past four seasons, Portland Winterhawks fans have been immune to the cyclical nature of junior hockey, in which teams rebuild every few years. On Mike Johnston’s watch, the Winterhawks didn’t rebuild each season; they simply reloaded. We all knew the day would come when Mike would leave and things…
Posted by Samantha on 10/18/14 | Comments 3

Pittsburgh is the new Portland
I'm really glad I decided to save this season as draft, because the Portland Winterhawks are off to a start that no one saw coming: 1-7-0-2.  It has more than a few fans wishing Mike Johnston was still here, but we are happy to see him achieve his life's dream of…
Posted by Samantha on 10/15/14 | Comments 0

From the Dub: Welcome to the new world
Here in the WHL, the long wait for the new season is over. The regular season is underway across the league. With nine players away at NHL Camps or injured, the Winterhawks found themselves in unfamiliar territory with two consecutive losses to the Seattle Thunderbirds and the Prince George Cougars last weekend. But…
Posted by Samantha on 09/26/14 | Comments 0

From the Dub: Save as draft
One of the many adventures of working for a tech company is that nobody communicates via old school methods of communication like snail mail, phone calls or personal meetings. Everything is conducted via the latest and greatest automated technologies. One of those technologies is a safeguard in our email tool called "save as draft."…
Posted by Samantha on 09/07/14 | Comments 1

From the Dub: Are we there yet?
It's hard to believe that it’s almost time for the start of the WHL pre-season. 2014 began on a high note on the ice, as the Portland Winterhawks went on a ridiculous 21-game winning streak that lasted into March. Off the ice, however, it was filled with unexpected changes, fender benders and…
Posted by Samantha on 08/05/14 | Comments 0

From the Dub: Onward!
2014 is turning out to be the year of new beginnings, on and off the ice. In the past three weeks, the Portland Winterhawks have seen four players get drafted, bid farewell and best wishes to Head Coach and GM Mike Johnston and Assistant Coach Karl Taylor, and welcomed Jamie…
Posted by Samantha on 07/13/14 | Comments 2

From Portland, with love
Here in the Rose City, news of Mike Johnston’s new role as head coach of the Pittsburgh Penguins is bittersweet. Since Coach Johnston arrived in Portland in 2008, Portland Winterhawks fans have grown accustomed to winning streaks, championship seasons and shiny objects. We are sad to see him go, but…
Posted by Samantha on 06/27/14 | Comments 0

Diving class now in session
The primary reason I’ve never been a huge soccer fan is that I cannot stand diving, otherwise known as “flopping.” Reviled in hockey, it’s an art form in soccer. But with the World Cup dominating the media, I have given in and actually watched the sport I love to hate.…
Posted by Samantha on 06/25/14 | Comments 8

On the Stanley Cup Final: ‘Round Midnight
I should be sitting here sending out resumes and hitting the gym, but I have bigger priorities today; like watching the Stanley Cup victory parade and learning about soccer, my new off-season sport of choice. It’s all part of a three-day weekend that started on Friday night, when Game 5…
Posted by Samantha on 06/16/14 | Comments 0

On the Stanley Cup Final: think, think, think
When I first moved to New York City in 1994, the first thing I did was spend all my extra income on a ticket to see the Rangers raise the Stanley Cup banner. After growing up in cities without NHL hockey, it was the first time I attended a real live…
Posted by Samantha on 06/11/14 | Comments 0

Gone prospecting…be back soon
The Portland Winterhawks recently dispatched four players to the NHL Combine, including the son of Pierre Turgeon, the hero of Game 6 in the WHL FInal and the Rose City’s resident ladies man.  Dominic Turgeon, Keegan Iverson, Alex Schoenborn and center Chase De Leo were among 23 WHL players invited to the…
Posted by Samantha on 06/05/14 | Comments 0

From the Dub: Shootout, what shootout?
2014 is turning out to be a “do-over in summer” year, in which I’ve experienced the following: gotten into a car accident; seen my car insurance increase from a two-year old speeding ticket; watched the Portland Winterhawks lose the WHL title to the Edmonton Oil Kings in Game 7 and now,…
Posted by Samantha on 05/31/14 | Comments 2

From the Dub: Return of the Kings
Greetings from Portland, where an epic battle between the Portland Winterhawks and the Edmonton Oil Kings will begin this evening. This marks the third consecutive year the two teams will play for the Ed Chynoweth Cup. While the rest of the hockey world was gearing up for opening faceoff, I…
Posted by Samantha on 05/03/14 | Comments 0

From the Dub:  Postcard from the brink
The Kelowna Rockets and the Portland Winterhawks will face off tonight at Prospera Place on two very different sides of the Western Conference finals. The Winterhawks lead the series 3-1, and we all know what that means. The Rockets have been one of the few teams to truly challenge the…
Posted by Samantha on 04/25/14 | Comments 0

From the Dub: the road less traveled
In about three hours, the Portland Winterhawks will begin their fourth straight bid for the WHL Western Conference in Kelowna, BC. There is no easy way to get from Portland to Kelowna, but the journey is worth it. When I departed Portland late Wednesday to stay overnight in Kennewick, I figured Thursday would…
Posted by Samantha on 04/18/14 | Comments 1

From the Dub: Accidentally on purpose
Both my blogs have been woefully neglected because the past two weeks went like so: 1) Celebrate the Portland Winterhawks’ victory in Game 1 of the WHL Playoffs by getting rear-ended at a stoplight by a sketch driver with sketch insurance. 2) Get a medical procedure bright and early at…
Posted by Samantha on 04/04/14 | Comments 2

From the Dub: We’re all on the same team
Terry Trafford’s untimely and tragic death is gut-wrenching news no matter who you are, where you live or which team you root for. At the same time, here in the Dub fans are praying for and thinking of Tim Bozon, who according to the latest reports is stable and improving…
Posted by Samantha on 03/14/14 | Comments 0

From the Dub: Must be 21 and over to play
Saturday night in Seattle reached playoff-like levels, as the Portland Winterhawks had the chance to extend their already ridiculous winning streak to 22, tying the record for most consecutive wins in a single season (previously set by the Estevan Bruins in 1967-1968) and clinching the U.S. Division title. For fans…
Posted by Samantha on 03/03/14 | Comments 1

From the Dub: Welcome to the future
We are heading down the stretch toward playoffs in the WHL, with an average of 18 games to go in the regular season. The talent fueling the push to the playoffs was recently on display at the CHL Top Prospects Game and World Junior Tournament and they are showing no signs of relenting…
Posted by Samantha on 02/08/14 | Comments 0

Thank you, Minnesota Wild
Minnesota Wild prospect Mathew Dumba has been returned to the WHL, where he will join the Portland Winterhawks for the remainder of the season as the result of a trade with the Red Deer Rebels. The general consensus among industry experts is that this is the best place for him…
Posted by Samantha on 01/09/14 | Comments 0

One Ring to Rule Them All
I had noble ambitions for this holiday season, like exercise, sleep, eating from the four food groups and finally starting the first draft of my self-published novel. All of which would have happened, until I tuned into the annual holiday showing of all three Lord of the Rings movies on TNT (Fellowship…
Posted by Samantha on 01/05/14 | Comments 0

A Christmas Hockey Story
One of my holiday traditions is watching the 24-hour marathon of "A Christmas Story," a timeless classic that has stood the test of time since it was originally released in theaters 30 years ago. After 24 hours of eating, drinking and watching this nostalgic film based on author Jean Shepherd’s…
Posted by Samantha on 12/26/13 | Comments 0

From the Dub: Rock On
You’d think buying tickets to a Pearl Jam show would be a no-brainer for fans like me. That is, if you don’t also have a hockey game competing for your precious free time.  In this case, the band rolls through town the same night the Portland Winterhawks are playing the…
Posted by Samantha on 11/22/13 | Comments 0

The Hockey to Corporate America Dictionary: The new normal
One week after it took place, I’m still recovering from a corporate retreat at a local hotel, where you’re supposed to team build, bond and set goals for the coming year. What you also end up doing is sitting on your ass for eight hours in a row, eating really…
Posted by Samantha on 11/20/13 | Comments 0

From the Dub: Cut to the Chase
2014 draft prospect Chase De Leo is one of Portland’s rising superstars and the Winterhawks' resident ladies’ man. More impressive than his particular brand of charm is his particular brand of racking up points. The Portland Winterhawks just returned from a perfect five game road trip that propelled them into first…
Posted by Samantha on 10/29/13 | Comments 0

From the Dub: Vengeance is Ours!
In late September, the Tri-City Americans humiliated the Portland Winterhawks with a 6-2 defeat in Portland. Caused by an epic lapse in the Winterhawks' defense and their general lack of interest in showing up for the game, it was painful to watch right from the start.  After the game, Columbus Blue Jackets' prospect Oliver Bjorkstrand…
Posted by Samantha on 10/20/13 | Comments 0

On the start of the NHL season: #hockeyfirst
I felt guilty this week when I turned on the TV to watch the regular season hype on the NHL Network instead of the gory details of the government shutdown on CNN. How dare I get excited about hockey’s return when Americans have been so totally screwed by our own government? Couple…
Posted by Samantha on 10/03/13 | Comments 1

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