GRANDE PRAIRIE, AB – Grande Prairie is in the final preparations to host the 2004 RBC Royal Bank Cup, Canada's National Junior "A" Hockey Championship, from May 8-16. All championship games will be played at the Crystal Centre.
Five teams are taking part in this year’s championship: the Nanaimo (BC) Clippers from the Pacific region, the Kindersley (SK) Klippers from the Western region, the Aurora (ON) Tigers from the Central region, the Nepean (ON) Raiders from the Eastern region and the host team, the Grande Prairie (AB) Storm.
The teams will play round-robin games from May 8-13 with the top four teams qualifying for the playoff round. The semi-final games (first against fourth, second against third) will be held on May 15th, with the Gold medal game scheduled for May 16th.
The Gold medal game will be played at 1:00 p.m. (MT) 3:00 p.m. (ET) on Sunday, May 16 and will be broadcast live across Canada on the official broadcaster of Hockey Canada, TSN and RDS.
For the first time ever at the RBC Royal Bank Cup, Live Global Sports will provide a video webcast available at www.hockeycanada.ca. The two games to be featured will be on Monday, May 10th starting with the 2 p.m. (MT) game between East (Nepean) and the West (Kindersley). The second game will be at 7:30 p.m. (MT) as Central (Aurora) takes on Pacific (Nanaimo). In addition to the video webcast, all games leading up to the gold medal final will be audio webcast by the Grande Prairie Daily Herald Tribune and available at www.hockeycanada.ca
This year the RBC Royal Bank Cup will have a complete on-line statistical program called Real-Time Stats. This program will be available at www.hockeycanada.ca and displays an on-line version of the games score sheet, displayed as it happens, including all tournament leaders and statistics.
Based on their individual performances during the six-day round-robin section of the 2004 RBC Royal Bank Cup, six individual player awards will be presented. The player judged by an independent panel as the outstanding performer will receive the RBC Royal Bank Cup Most Valuable Player award.
The other individual awards include the RBC Royal Bank Cup Top Scorer, Top Goaltender, Top Forward, Top Defenceman and Most Sportsmanlike Player. Each player will receive a 2004 RBC Royal Bank Cup award, a Timex watch and a sports package courtesy of ITECH Sports Products Inc. for their accomplishments.
Notable alumnus who have played in previous Royal Bank Cups include Rod Brind’Amour (Carolina Hurricanes), Scott Gomez (New Jersey Devils), Greg Johnson (Nashville Predators), Curtis Joseph (Detroit Red Wings), and Scottie Upshall (Nashville Predators)