- Portland Tribune - Sports
General Manager Ken Hodge has a long-term contract, and coach Mike Williamson's current deal ends June 30. Owner Jim Goldsmith, busy with off-ice business, says he hasn't addressed their jobs yet.
'Every aspect of our organization is being reviewed. Everybody was accountable for what happened this season,' Goldsmith says of the 17-52-1-2 record, which was due in part to the youth movement. 'I'm not pointing fingers. It was a difficult season. We need to regroup.'
Hodge will recommend re-signing Williamson for his eighth full season. 'He's not part of the problem. He's part of the solution,' Hodge says.
'I want whatever's best for the Winter Hawks,' says Williamson, who joined the Portland organization as a player in 1991. If there are any doubts about ownership wanting him, no, he doesn't want to be the coach. 'It's a two-way street. I feel very responsible for this season. It was a tough year, and I didn't do enough,' the coach says. 'It's out of my hands. I think I can do a good job; I have confidence in my abilities.'
Playoffs?: Reflecting on before the trades of Kyle Bailey, Michael Sauer and Robert Klinkhammer, Hodge says the Hawks needed to sweep the five-game string with Tri-City around Christmas to stay in playoff contention in the competitive WHL U.S. Division. It didn't happen, Bailey asked to be traded, Colton Sceviour went down with a broken foot and ownership agreed to the youth movement.
Had the roster stayed intact, would the Hawks have made the playoffs? 'It would have been very difficult,' Hodge says.
This and that: Defenseman Stefan Langwieder will play in Europe next year. … Portland will have three high picks, including the No. 1 overall, in the WHL bantam draft. It has the No. 4 CHL import draft selection.
- Jason Vondersmith