November 19, 2017

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Young Jet loses an inspirational friend

WAYNE GLOWACKI / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS</p><p>Left-winger Brandon Tanev is mourning college pal Drew Brown.</p>

WAYNE GLOWACKI / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Left-winger Brandon Tanev is mourning college pal Drew Brown.

Winnipeg Jets forward Brandon Tanev lost a good friend and true inspiration Saturday.

His former Providence College teammate, Drew Brown, died after a long fight against cancer. Brown was just 25.

“We knew he wasn’t in great shape, and the day of our game in Arizona I found out he passed away. It’s really sad. He was such a great person,” Tanev said Monday. “He was going through his second battle with cancer and was able to fight through the first one and we hoped for the best. It’s so unfortunate for his family. He was a good friend of mine at school, just an amazing person.”

Tanev and Brown, a native of Grass Lake, Mich., played together with the Friars for two seasons (2012-14). Brown, a right-winger, was injured in an NCAA Hockey East semi-final in ’14,and an MRI revealed a tumour and a rare form of bone cancer, Ewing’s sarcoma.

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Winnipeg Jets forward Brandon Tanev lost a good friend and true inspiration Saturday.

His former Providence College teammate, Drew Brown, died after a long fight against cancer. Brown was just 25.

"We knew he wasn’t in great shape, and the day of our game in Arizona I found out he passed away. It’s really sad. He was such a great person," Tanev said Monday. "He was going through his second battle with cancer and was able to fight through the first one and we hoped for the best. It’s so unfortunate for his family. He was a good friend of mine at school, just an amazing person."

Tanev and Brown, a native of Grass Lake, Mich., played together with the Friars for two seasons (2012-14). Brown, a right-winger, was injured in an NCAA Hockey East semi-final in ’14,and an MRI revealed a tumour and a rare form of bone cancer, Ewing’s sarcoma.

Brown was sidelined the entire 2014-15 season as he underwent treatment but was an inspiration for the team as it captured the U.S. college championship. Tanev scored the game-winner on a wicked wrist shot in the third period, breaking a 3-3 tie against Jack Eichel and the Boston University Terriers.

But the 25-year-old Toronto native, who has a pair of goals for Winnipeg this season, said Brown was the real hero.

"In the back of our minds, we wanted to win that championship for him. He was a huge part of our team for four years, and seeing him not being able to play was tough," Tanev said.

"When he was feeling better, he had the opportunity to be around us during the Frozen Four, and it was very uplifting for us.

"He wasn’t able to suit up for that national championship with us, but it was something special to see him walk on the ice and lift that trophy with all the guys. Getting that chance to share that moment with the guys was huge. It was very special."


The Jets reassigned 21-year-old left-winger Brendan Lemieux to the AHL’s Manitoba Moose on Monday.

Lemieux made his big-league debut earlier this season and appeared in a fourth-line role for his first seven NHL games after being recalled on Oct. 17.

He scored his first NHL goal on Oct. 29 against the Pittsburgh Penguins, but had been a healthy scratch since appearing in a game against the Montreal Canadiens on Nov. 4. He had one point and 19 penalty minutes while averaging 7:44 in ice time.

WAYNE GLOWACKI / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS</p><p>Centre Mathieu Perreault (left) goes against defenceman Dmitry Kulikov at practice Monday.</p></p>

WAYNE GLOWACKI / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Centre Mathieu Perreault (left) goes against defenceman Dmitry Kulikov at practice Monday.

Jets head coach Paul Maurice said the young pro did a good job in his first stint with the big club.

"Real good the first time through. He’s worked hard in the summer and that was probably the most important thing to happen to him is he got faster. So, lots of good things there," Maurice said.

"Energy, he’s good. He gets in and gets on it. Physical, not afraid of working in the dark areas, but also a set of hands that I think you’ll see more and more as he develops, as he gets more time on the ice."

Jets forward Mathieu Perreault has yet to be activated from the injured-reserve list but practised Monday without a ‘no-contact jersey’ and is close to returning to the lineup. He took a shot to the leg during the Jets’ 2-1 win over the Carolina Hurricanes on Oct. 14 and has been sidelined since.

Maurice said the feisty playmaker won’t dress tonight when the Arizona Coyotes (2-14-3) visit Bell MTS Place.

"It’s nice to finally get back out there and get put into harder, more game-like situations. It’s encouraging," said Perreault, after practising Monday. "Pretty close... I probably won’t be 100 per cent for a little bit, but I’m getting ready to play, so hopefully some time this week."


Dale Hawerchuk enters Jets Hall of Fame

It’s Ducky’s night at Bell MTS Place.

Dale Hawerchuk is being inducted into the Winnipeg Jets Hall of Fame prior to the Jets-Coyotes contest.

Hawerchuk played 16 NHL seasons, including the first nine with the Jets. Drafted first overall in 1981, he won the Calder Cup as the league’s top rookie in 1982 after scoring 45 goals and supplying 58 assists. In fact, he led the team in scoring each of his nine seasons.

Hawerchuk was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2001.

"He’s be a guy that, playing now, would be an absolute star," said Maurice, who made his head coaching debut during the 1995-96 season with the Hartford Whalers, while Hawerchuk was in the twilight of his career in St. Louis and Philadelphia. "A great career. I would say he was underappreciated.

"When I talk to him, he loved his experience in Winnipeg. I’m glad that he’s going to get appreciated for the work he did here. In general, the league probably didn’t get to see as much of a great player as they would have today."

Hawerchuk coached with the Barrie Colts and had a young forward named Mark Scheifele there with him.

"It’s definitely a huge honour for him. He did so much for this city and this city did so much for him," said Scheifele, now a star centre for the Jets 2.0. "It’s a pretty cool thing to be here and to be a part of it. I’m excited for that moment for him."

Scheifele said the two still talk, but not that often.

"I’ll see him once or twice in the summer at a charity game. I think he’s sick of me. I talked his ear off too much when I played for him. I think he needs a little break from me," Scheifele said. "I was always in his office: it was either him yelling at me or teaching me something. He was a great mentor of mine."

Hawerchuk becomes the fourth member of the Winnipeg Jets Hall of Fame, joining The HOT Line of Anders Hedberg, Bobby Hull and Ulf Nilsson, who were inducted last season.

jason.bell@freepress.mb.ca

Twitter: @WFPJasonBell

Read more by Jason Bell.

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History

Updated on Tuesday, November 14, 2017 at 7:22 AM CST: Photos placed.

1:33 PM: Slideshow added.

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