One of the more outspoken players released yesterday was Brandon Wheat Kings forward Ryan Stone, a 19-year-old from Calgary. Stone said he was looking forward to playing Sutter's Red Deer Rebels in his first game back with Brandon so he could "kick their ass."
Sutter says it wasn't easy taking a pass on Stone.
"Ryan Stone is a very strong, character person ... we just felt these other individuals are perhaps better skaters," Sutter said. "And that's no discredit to Stoner at all. I think the world of the kid."
STILL A TIGER: Released winger Stefan Meyer of Fox Valley, Sask., a member of the Medicine Hat Tigers, didn't think he'd have trouble getting right back into the swing of things in the WHL.
"I'm fortunate enough to have a hockey team to come back to," Meyer said. "And I'm going to play my rear end off for them."
THE LAST WORD: Sutter thought his decision to make the cuts after breakfast, instead of the previous practice of 6 a.m. phone calls, worked well.
"They come in and they're alert," Sutter said. "It helps, because they might hear everything you're saying. And they're thinking clearer, too."
Winkler's Eric Fehr, cut two years in a row, gets the last word on the change.
"It was pretty much the same effect."