Knights' polish helped by Shine

RYAN PYETTE -- London Free Press

, Last Updated: 9:38 AM ET

Tough guy Jordan Shine accomplished something Monday in Windsor his London Knights teammates will be hard-pressed to match this season.

The 17-year-old from Wallacetown drew three Spitfires penalties on one rush to the net in the second period of London's come-from-behind 5-4 win.

It's the kind of hustling hat trick the high-scoring Knights know will translate into quality scoring chances, offensive momentum and ultimately more victories.

"I actually find it easier for a guy like me to get to the net now than it was in the past," Shine said. "You're not held up as much. It's important to go to the net and I'm looking for the puck. I always want to play (tough), but I want to chip in a few points if I can."

With the return of Sergei Kostitsyn and the offseason moves to bring in Pat Kane and Sam Gagner, London has plenty of shifty, skilled players who can tie knots in defenders.

There is still a need for straight-line guys like Shine, who has two goals in slightly more than two seasons.

"Jordan's a strong skater, so he can go to the net hard and there Windsor had to pull him down and then they tried to keep him down," London head coach Dale Hunter said.

Shine, who began his OHL career with Barrie, landed in Belleville last year and was hoping to be part of a resurgent Bulls team with designs on competing for an Eastern Conference title. Instead, he was sent packing to the defending Western Conference champion Knights, a destination that helped eased the pain of switching uniforms again.

"It was a shock to me. Belleville was a good city and I enjoyed my time there," he said. "But to end up with a classy organization like London is special. My home(town) is 40 minutes away, so you're closer to friends and family. Ever since I've been in this league, London has been known as a team that never quits. When I was in Barrie, London had won something like 30 games in a row and they came back on us when we were up a couple goals.

"So it was nice to be a part of it (when the Knights dug out of an early 3-0 hole to beat Windsor)."

Shine looks to be London's most active participant in fisticuffs this season, but he doesn't see himself as alone in that department. He wore the remnants of a shiner from a scrap with Windsor's Ryan Baldwin, while defenceman Corey Syvret required seven stitches under his eye from his bout with Spits forward Jordan Nolan.

"I think we have one of the toughest teams in the league," Shine said. "I think fighting will always be part of the game and we have a lot of guys who aren't afraid of it. (Josh) Beaulieu. (David) Jarram. (Ryan) Martinelli. It's not just one person the other team targets."

While Shine establishes himself in London's lineup, another Jordan -- Foreman -- returns to the lineup tomorrow to face the Spitfires after serving a two-game suspension for going into the visiting bench to get at Sudbury's Nick Foligno last week. The feisty Foreman was playing in his first game of the season after being sidelined for seven weeks with a broken foot.

"My foot felt pretty good, the doctor had cleared me to play so I wanted to be in there," he said. "Hopefully, I'll be in the lineup for good now, but I'm not going to change the way I play."

Foreman watched the Windsor game on TV with teammate Andrew Wilkins and wasn't surprised by the team's comeback.

"I sat there and it was 3-0 for them and I never thought it was over. We've been doing that for the past three, four years here."

KNIGHTWATCH

Tomorrow: London vs. Windsor, 7:30 p.m., John Labatt Centre

Saturday: London at Plymouth, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday: London vs. Kitchener, 6 p.m., JLC


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