Diamond loses his lustre
The man who backstopped the Conception Bay North CeeBee Stars to threestraight Herder Memorial trophies, six straight appearances in the senior final and is, arguably, the winningest goaltender in the storied history of the Harbour Grace franchise has requested a trade.
Freddie Diamond has decided not to travel with the team after formally requesting a move from the only organization the Bonavista native has played for in the last nine years.
The 29-year-old made the decision after the CeeBees’ two-game set with the Gander Flyers, Oct. 20-21.
“I went to Gander the first weekend and never got to play,” Diamond told The Compass. “There was no communication between me and the coaches on what their plans are for me, and stuff like that.”
The goaltender said he was left “wondering what was going on” but “couldn’t get any answer” from CeeBees’ brass.
“I told them that I was looking for a trade,” said Diamond.
CeeBees’ assistant coach Peter George said Diamond is signed to a card with the club, and his rights belong to them.
However, he did say Diamond’s request for a trade was a personal choice.
“He doesn’t want to fill a backup role,” said George.
George said the club has been actively pursuing a deal that would appease Diamond’s request, but nothing has come to fruition.
Diamond said he has “sacrificed” a lot of time and effort over the last nine years with the club.
The thing that hurts the most for Diamond is the lack of communication over the summer.
“A phone call throughout the summer or something like that saying, ‘hey Freddie, we’re going to use an import goalie and he’s going to play most of the games and if you want to go somewhere else, thanks for the nine years here and it’s time to move on’ you know, something like that would’ve been alright,” he said. “There was none of that.
“It was the same with last year.”
“I think that our special teams definitely have to be better,” said Delaney. “Games can be won and lost with special teams, and that’s obviously two areas we have to address.
“We’re giving up too many shorthanded goals and we’re not producing on the power play. We have to fix that right away.”
Turnovers have also been a thorn in the CeeBees’ side.
“If we want to win, we’re all well aware that we have to eliminate all turnovers,” he said.
There is an ebb and flow to any game, explained Delaney.
“In the game of hockey, you can never get too high or too low,” he said. “You have keep things in neutral because your emotions, good or bad, can get the best of you.”
He said a key to the CeeBees turnaround is to remain positive.
“We have to try to stay positive and focus on the things we are doing right,” stated Delaney. “We got to stay upbeat at the rink. Negativity breeds more negativity and we’re trying to be as positive as we can.”
CeeBees’ assistant coach Peter George said to right the ship his team has to “get back to our game plan.”
“We have to put on our boots and go to work,” he said. “Get pucks deep, work their defencemen and out-work other teams.”
The NLSHL held its latest playerentry draft Nov. 14, and the CeeBees used the second overall pick to bring back former-CeeBee and forward Mitchell Oake.
And in a unique twist that surprised even the most ardent CeeBees’ fan, the club also selected assistant coach Peter George to help shore up the team’s defensive corps.
His selection is an insurance policy for weekends when the team is short on rearguards, which has been a factor in recent games because several players have work commitments.
• Gander Flyers vs. CeeBees Stars, Dec. 1-2 at S. W. Moores Memorial Stadium.