The Kamloops Blazers kept it all in the family Tuesday as they announced the signing of forward Nick Chyzowski to a WHL contract.
Chyzowski, 15, was the 44th overall selection in the 2012 bantam draft. The Blazers dealt a second-round pick in the 2013 draft and a 2012 fourth-rounder to the Edmonton Oil Kings in order to grab Chyzowski at No. 44.
Chyzowski's father, Dave, is a former Blazers forward (1987-90) who now is the team's director of sales and marketing. The New York Islanders selected Dave with the second overall pick of the NHL's 1989 draft; the Quebec Nordiques took Mats Sundin with the first selection. Chyzowski played 126 NHL games before going on to a lengthy career in Europe.
Nick, who actually signed the contract a couple of weeks ago, said he feels "a little bit" of pressure playing for his father's former team, "but I think I'll be able to deal with it."
Last season, Chyzowski captained the bantam AAA Jardine's Blazers and led them in scoring, with 83 points, including 41 goals, in 49 games. He is expected to play next season with the major midget Thompson Blazers.
Chyzowski describes himself as "a good two-way forward. I've good defensive ability and I also have good offensive awareness."
While he recognizes that genetics may have something to do with the ability he has shown to this point, he added that "it's also a lot of because of who I am."
As one might expect, he said "it's really exciting" to sign with the Blazers.
He added that on draft day "I was really excited . . . I know it's a big accomplishment to get drafted but it's only the beginning."
Last week, the Blazers signed forward Jayden Halbgewachs, their first-round pick, 19th overall, in the 2012 draft. He is from Emerald Park, Sask.
Halbgewachs and Chyzowski are expected to attend the Blazers' rookie camp that is scheduled to open on Aug. 23.
Left-winger Tim Bozon of the Blazers is likely to be a second- or third-round selection in the NHL's seven-round draft this weekend in Pittsburgh.
The first round will be held Friday evening with the remainder to follow on Saturday.
Bozon, the Western Conference's rookie of the year, joined the Blazers from Switzerland and enjoyed a fine season, putting up 71 points, including 36 goals.
Bozon recently the NHL combine in Toronto where he was poked, prodded and interviewed by numerous teams. In its final rankings, NHL Central Scouting had him at No. 42 among draft-eligible North American skaters.
His father, Philippe, played 144 games with the NHL's St. Louis Blues (1991-95).
Defenceman Brady Gaudet was the only other Kamloops player to appear in Central Scouting's final rankings. He was at No. 205.
Left-winger Brendan Ranford is back in the draft after not signing with the Philadelphia Flyers, who picked him in the seventh round in 2010.
Former Blazers head coach Dean Evason has been named head coach of the Milwaukee Admirals, the AHL affiliate of the Nashville Predators.
Evason starred on the ice with the Blazers (1981-84) and later served as their head coach for three seasons (1999-2002).
He had been an assistant coach with the NHL's Washington Capitals for seven seasons. But with the Capitals looking for a head coach to replace Dale Hunter, there were no guarantees that Evason would be back in Washington.
In Milwaukee, he takes over from Ian Herbers, who now is head coach of the U of Alberta Golden Bears.
Hunter announced Tuesday that he is returning to the OHL's London Knights as head coach. His brother, Mark, will return to his general manager's duties. The Hunters own the Knights.