Trevor Adams of the Chilliwack Chiefs celebrates a goal by teammate Hudson Thornton during a game against the Powell River Kings at the Chilliwack Coliseum on Thursday, Nov. 28, 2019. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)

Chilliwack Chiefs coach believes his team can be a BCHL contender

Brian Maloney’s recent roster moves indicate confidence that his young crew can be among league’s best

Though his young team has yet to light the BCHL on fire this season, Chilliwack Chiefs head coach/general manager Brian Maloney clearly believes in his crew.

The hockey boss has made several roster moves over the last month and a half, and all of them point to belief that his Chiefs can make serious noise in next spring’s playoffs.

Maloney’s added two 19 year olds (Tommy Lyons and Nicholas Cherkowski) and two 20 year olds (Davis Murray and Trevor Adams).

“Every coach and GM puts a team together at the start of the year and hopes for that team to be good, and we believe that we are,” Maloney said. “We believe that we have the skill and goaltending and defence to be a darn good hockey team.”

That said, Maloney’s team has been inconsistent in the first half of the season.

“And we’ve probably been too easy to play against many nights, so we’ve added some size and some kids who can hang on to pucks and make plays,” Maloney said. “We started the season as a run-and-gone one-and-done type of team that scores off the rush, and we wanted to get a bit heavier because we know what playoffs will be like.

“We want to lug the puck a bit and make plays down low rather than try to wow everyone in the stands, and a guy like Davis (Murray) is a guy who will do that.”

Same with Trevor Adams, a versatile vet who came to the Chiefs from West Kelowna in a trade for Carter Wilkie.

The Michigan product isn’t the biggest player, but he plays the type of gritty game that Maloney is looking for.

After spending the first 122 games of his BCHL career with the Salmon Arm Silverbacks, Adams is playing for his third team this season, looking for stability.

“It’s been kind of a whirlwind year for me, but I’m happy that I ended up in Chilliwack and so far so good,” Adams said. “It’s been a little nerve-wracking not knowing what the next day holds, but things happen for a reason and hopefully I can find some stability here, because I’d love to call this place home.”

A hungry player looking for one last playoff run is a valuable addition.

“Anywhere I go, I try to assert my leadership because I feel that’s one of the things I bring to the table,” Adams said. “I’d describe myself as a lead-by-example sort of guy, but I can also be a voice in the locker room.

“The biggest thing I bring is just an even-keel factor. When things are going good, we never want to be too high on the bench, and when things are going poorly we don’t want to be too low, and one of things I bring is just that steady even-keel presence.”

Their most recent game against the league-leading Coquitlam Express showed what the Chiefs can be when they’re on.

They overcame a 2-0 deficit on the road Nov. 29 before falling 3-2 in a shootout.

They’ve won three straight since then­ — 3-2 and 5-2 victories at Prince George last Thursday and Friday and a 4-1 home ice triumph over Trail Sunday — and the sense is the team may be ready to go on a tear.

“We have just as much skill, if not more, than Coquitlam and I think we’re right there with them,” Adams said. “If we battle every night, we’re going to have a lot of success.

“Playing on a few teams in my career, this is the most special atmosphere I’ve felt. It’s exciting to be around this group of guys and see what the future holds for us.”

Chilliwack has three more games before the Christmas break.

The Chiefs are home Friday, hosting the Langley Rivermen. They finish on the road with games Saturday against Alberni Valley (16-13-0-2), Sunday against Victoria (11-23-0-0) and Tuesday against West Kelowna (5-21-4-2).

The first two games after the Christmas break are huge, a home-and-home against the Express (28-5-0-0), starting with a Dec. 28 date at the Chilliwack Coliseum.

See bchl.ca

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Seven Days in Chilliwack

A list of community events happening in Chilliwack from Jan. 20 to 26

Minus two-degree weather a warm welcome following cold snap in Chilliwack

People flocked to the hills Saturday, sleds in hand, to take in some snowy fun in Chilliwack

VIDEO: Highway 1 to look like winter war zone until owners retrieve wrecked vehicles

Tow-truck driver says 30 vehicles still dot snowy landscape, including one rolled-over dairy truck

Charity Clothes2U ready to hand out free items to people in need in Chilliwack

The Clothes2U Winter Giveaway event will be in Chilliwack at Cooke’s Presbyterian Church

Pickup truck motorist drives up vehicle ramp and onto parked trailer on Chilliwack road

The incident happened on Young Road after Chilliwack was handed another dump of snow Friday night

VIDEO: SPCA and RCMP remove several animals, including pig, at private animal rescue in Langley

Home at 5500 block of 216th Street has undergone multiple seizures over the past five years

B.C. VIEWS: Few clouds on Horgan’s horizon

Horgan’s biggest challenge in the remainder of his term will be to keep the economy humming along

Victoria family focuses on ‘letting go, enjoying time together’ after dad gets dementia

Walter Strauss has developed an interest in music and now takes line dancing classes

B.C. forest industry grasps for hope amid seven-month strike, shutdowns, changes

Some experts say this could be worse for forestry than the 2008 financial crisis

Northern B.C. RCMP investigating alleged sexual assault in downtown Smithers

One person was transported by ambulance to hospital following RCMP investigation at Sedaz

Vancouver police probe second homicide in less than 24 hours

Woman was found dead in her Gastown home

UBC, Iranian-Canadian community create memorial scholarship in honour of victims

The Jan. 8 crash killed 176 people, including 57 Canadians

Disrespectful that Horgan won’t meet during northern B.C. tour: hereditary chief

Na’moks said he was frustrated Horgan didn’t meet with the chiefs

Most Read