Player to Watch – Logan Stankoven – Kamloops Blazers
For the second time in franchise history, the Kamloops Blazers are set to host the Memorial Cup presented by Kia. Kamloops will be joined by the OHL champions, the Peterborough Petes, the QMJHL champions, the Quebec Remparts, and the WHL champions, the Seattle Thunderbirds. The Blazers will kickstart their Memorial Cup campaign on May 26, when they face-off against the Remparts (6 p.m. PT / 7 p.m. MT).
The 2023 Memorial Cup begins on May 26 at the Sandman Centre in Kamloops, B.C., and will culminate on June 4 when the a champion is crowned.
Visit CHL.ca/MemorialCup for tickets or catch the action from home on TSN 1 & 4, on the NHL Network in the United States, or on WHL Live for those living internationally.
Dallas Stars, 2-47 (2021)
5-foot-8, 170 pounds
2023 WHL Playoffs
14GP – 10G-20A–30 points
Logan Stankoven and the Kamloops Blazers were last seen in action on May 8, when they fell out of WHL Playoffs following a Game 6 setback in the Western Conference Championship against the Seattle Thunderbirds.
Yet, Stankoven, a Dallas Stars prospect, finished atop all skaters in post-season points at the conclusion of the WHL Championship Series. His 30 points (10G-20A) in 14 games could not be bested despite him only making it to the Third Round of the WHL Playoffs.
This isn’t the first time Stankoven has pulled off this feat either. During the 2022 WHL Playoffs, he once again finished first in post-season points despite not playing in the WHL Championship Series.
Admittedly, his more than impressive playoff performance may have stemmed from the pressure the veteran has put on himself during this post-season.
As he closes out his fifth season with Kamloops, Stankoven feels the end of his junior career may be insight and wants to finish it with a Memorial Cup in hand.
“This could be my last few games in a Blazers jersey, so I want to win the championship and end it on a happy note and do it for the city, my teammates, and a lot of these guys I’ve played with for four to five years now,” Stankoven admitted.
Plus, his one opportunity to capture the illustrious Memorial Cup can be done in the city he grew up in.
“Especially for me, it’s a been a little more special just with me being from Kamloops. The fans were great all through playoffs and hopefully we can reciprocate that and win a championship for them.”
Stankoven, who finished fourth in regular season scoring (45G-59A), got off to a roaring start in the First Round of the post-season. In the series-opening game against the Vancouver Giants, Stankoven recorded a hat-trick and two assists in an 8-0 triumph.
— The WHL (@TheWHL) April 1, 2023
The blistering hot start from the home-grown product never faltered throughout the Blazers’ post-season campaign, blazing its trail all the way to the Western Conference Championship.
In fact, Stankoven failed to record a point in just two of his 14 playoff appearances and was kept to a single point in just three other outings.
The 19-year-old also finished second, behind Regina’s Connor Bedard, in points per game.
The total, you ask. An astounding 2.14 points per game.
The Blazers, who want nothing more than to win their fourth Memorial Cup in front of their home crowd, will have to rely on their captain to lead their forward core through the uber-elite, year-end tournament.
And, in similar fashion to his WHL Playoffs performance, another offensive outburst from the top-line centre is exactly what his club will need come Friday night, when Kamloops opens their tournament against the Quebec Remparts (6 p.m. PT, TSN 1/4, NHL Network, WHL Live).