For the first time since 1999, the Moose Jaw Warriors and Swift Current Broncos will meet in the WHL Playoffs.

The two East Division rivals finished second and third in the division standings this year with just five points separating the Warriors from the Broncos.

Moose Jaw held a 4-2-0-0 advantage in their season series and will be looking to carry that success over into the post-season, but both teams are aware that the playoffs are a different animal than the regular season.

“We both know what we’re about and neither team is going to back down, it’s going to be a pretty gritty and exciting series,” said Warriors Captain Brett Howden after Thursday’s practice at Mosaic Place.

“We’ve been waiting a long time for this, the end of the season always feels like a drag when the playoffs are right around the corner, but we’ve had a good week of practice and can’t wait to get started.”

The two teams meet for Game 1 of the best-of-seven series on Friday night at Mosaic Place. Game 2 is set for Saturday before the series shifts over to the Credit Union Iplex in Swift Current.

The Warriors have won all three meetings between the two teams at Mosaic Place, outscoring the Broncos 19-8 in those games, while Moose Jaw went 1-2 in Swift Current, winning the first meeting back on Nov. 18, 3-2, but then dropping the next two, including last Friday’s 2-1 loss.

Moose Jaw holds a big edge in playoff experience with 137 total games played compared to Swift Current’s 69 – 49 of which belong to goalie Jordan Papirny.

Warriors head coach Tim Hunter feels that their experienced gained during last year’s run to the second round will serve the Warriors well this time around.

“Our core of our team is still very young and for those guys to play meaningful games last year going to the stretch to get a playoff spot and then to beat P.A. in the first round in five games was huge; and then to play against a great team like Brandon, win a game and have a good series against them is experience that you can’t buy,” said Hunter.

Both teams feature deadly groups of forwards in their top-six, the Broncos are older on the back-end, and both sides have stellar goaltenders between the pipes in Zach Sawchenko and Papirny.

The Warriors are looking to get an edge with some physical play throughout the series.

“Playoffs are a different style of game, everything is a lot harder, everything means a lot more,” said Howden. “You have to start to wear teams down right at the start and we have the type of team where we have that speed and skill, but yet we have a ton of guys that can play that gritty, playoff-type game.”

After having a week to prepare for the games, the Warriors are looking forward to getting on the ice for the first game Friday night.

“Our players are really excited, they know this is the second season, they’ve played hard all year to have home-ice advantage, they’re excited for our crowd here Friday and we feel confident in our team and the way we play and the way we’re going to play against Swift Current, they’re a good team, they’re well coached and it will be a great series,” said Hunter.

Puck drops on Games 1 and 2 at 7 p.m. on Friday and Saturday night. You can hear all the action throughout the playoffs on Country 100, the Pre-Game Show will be on the air at 6:40 p.m.

Both Teams at Full Strength

It looks as though both teams will have their full stock of players available for Game 1 on Friday night and for the Warriors that means the return of forward Spencer Bast to the lineup.

Bast has missed the last month of the regular season after suffering a lower body injury against the Broncos on Feb. 25.

“It feels really good to be back,” said Bast after practice on Thursday. “It took a lot longer than I thought it would, but it’s nice to be fully healed and come back for playoffs.”

The Macklin, Saskatchewan product came to the Warriors from the Kamloops Blazers in exchange for an eighth round pick at the WHL Trade Deadline and provided some good grit to the team’s lineup instantly.

He said he’s ready to play whatever role the coaches need in the post-season.

“I’m looking to bring some energy, a little bit of chippy play, put pucks in deep and get to the front of the net,” said Bast.

Hunter added he’s really looking forward to having Bast back to round out the team’s forward group.

“We really missed him down the stretch,” said Hunter. “He’s really gritty, knows how to play the game, he’s been well coached throughout his career and he was part of a real good shutdown line that we put together late in the year.”

The Broncos sat a number of players over the final two games of the regular season, including goalie Jordan Papirny and defencemen Colby Sissons and Max Lajoie, but they’re all expected to be ready to go for Game 1.

As will forward Lane Pederson, who left last Friday’s game after a hit that led to a one-game suspension for Warriors 20-year-old Thomas Foster.

More Local Sports

Millers Top 57s on Retro Night

On a night when they were honouring Moose Jaw's baseball past, the Miller Express showed that the future is looking bright as well. The Millers improved to 12-8 on the year with a 4-3 win over the…

Warriors' Brook Selected by Montreal

It didn’t take long for Moose Jaw Warriors defenceman Josh Brook to hear his name on Day 2 of the 2017 NHL Entry Draft. Brook was selected in the second round, 56th overall, by the Montreal…

Millers Bounce Back; Beat Dawgs Friday

It was a shootout early, but the Moose Jaw Miller Express kept rolling on Friday night in Okotoks. The Millers returned the favour on the Dawgs for Thursday's 11-4 defeat by knocking off Okotoks 14-7…

MJ’s Moore Heading to Archery Worlds

Moose Jaw's Tyler Moore will get to see where he stands with the best archers in the world as he's been named to Team Canada for the 2017 World Archery 3D Championships in France. “It’s been a lot of…

Riders Fall to Durant & Als in Opener

Darian Durant got the best of his former team to kick-off the 2017 CFL season on Thursday night. The Saskatchewan Roughriders lost 17-16 to the Alouettes in Montreal after kicker Tyler Crapigna…

Miller Express Going Retro Saturday

The Moose Jaw Miller Express will be honouring Moose Jaw’s baseball past this weekend. It will be “Retro Game” Night at Ross Wells Park when the Millers host the Swift Current 57s on Saturday night…

Millers Knocked Off in Okotoks

It wasn't a good end to the night for the Moose Jaw Miller Express on Thursday, as they dropped an 11-4 game to the Dawgs to open their two-game set in Okotoks. Moose Jaw held a 4-2 lead heading into…

Canucks Rained Out Thursday

The Moose Jaw Canucks weren’t able to get on the field on Thursday night as the rain throughout the day caused their game against the Regina White Sox to be postponed. The weather has been causing…

Millers’ Robinson Wins Weekly Award

Moose Jaw Miller Express starting pitcher Mitchell Robinson is off to a strong start to the season and he honoured on Thursday with the WMBL Pitcher of the Week award. Robinson had an outstanding…

Warriors’ Brook Excited for Draft Day

A lifelong dream should come true for Josh Brook this weekend. The Moose Jaw Warriors defenceman is expected to be selected in one of the first four rounds during the 2017 NHL Draft, which goes on…

Peewee Mustangs Advance to Final; White Mustangs Win

On Wednesday night, the Moose Jaw Peewee Mustangs moved one step closer to finishing off a perfect season in the Queen City Box Lacrosse League. The Mustangs went into Regina and beat the Estevan…

Millers Comeback to Beat Millionaires

It was really the tale of two games for the Moose Jaw Miller Express on Wednesday night. Through the first four innings, the Millers were held to just three hits, but a grand slam by Melville’s Vinny…

Former Warrior Heads to Vegas

It was a big night for the National Hockey League in Las Vegas on Wednesday night. After years of planning, the Vegas Golden Knights finally have players after the 2017 Expansion Draft was held on…

PREVIEW: Riders Open Season in Montreal

After two straight seasons out of the playoffs, the Saskatchewan Roughriders are hoping that Thursday is the start of a march back to the post-season. The Riders open the 2017 Canadian Football…

Four Warriors Receive Hockey Canada Invites

Four Moose Jaw Warriors’ players were among the 197 players that received invites on Tuesday to the Hockey Canada Summer Showcase camps later this summer. Warriors’ Captain Brett Howden and Head…

Millers Down Beavers to Open Week

Following Sunday’s loss in Weyburn, the Moose Jaw Miller Express were confident that they would respond in the rematch on their home turf on Tuesday. The Millers did just that as they rolled to a…

More Playoff Wins for MJ Lacrosse Teams

Two local lacrosse teams opened up their playoffs on Tuesday night on a winning note. Novice: Mustangs 4 Standing Buffalo 3 The Novice Mustangs, who were undefeated in the regular season, knocked off…

Mallards Fall to Buffaloes Tuesday

The Moose Jaw Mallards dropped a tight game on Tuesday night. The Regina Buffaloes came into Moose Jaw and downed the Mallards, 9-7, in Baseball Regina Bantam AA League action. Moose Jaw battled…

Jumpstart Donates to 15 Wing Moose Jaw

Hearing about getting active and being a good teammate can get old from your teacher or coach, but when a two-time Olympic gold medallist and an NHL player tell you, you listen. That was the case on…

Chiefs Advance to PGLL Final

The Moose Jaw Chiefs are heading to their fourth straight Prairie Gold Lacrosse League final after securing a big road win in the Queen City on Saturday night. The Chiefs went into Regina and knocked…

DiscoverMooseJaw.com is Moose Jaw's only source for community news and information such as weather and classifieds.

Search the Biz Guide

Spring Cheerleading!!

06 June 2017 5:00 pm - 29 June 2017 6:30 pm

Moose Jaw Alliance Church, Moose Jaw





Needs Assessment Survey for Moose Jaw Metis

15 June 2017 12:00 am - 15 August 2017 11:00 pm

TBA





Grandmothers 4 Grandmothers Meeting Moose Jaw

26 June 2017 1:30 pm

St. Aidan's Anglican Church





TOPS Meeting St Andrews Church

27 June 2017 5:30 pm

St Andrews United Church, Moose Jaw





Geocaching

27 June 2017 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm

Wakamow Valley - Kinsmen-Wellesley Pavilion





AA Midget Canucks vs. Regina White Sox

27 June 2017 7:00 pm

Ross Wells Park, Moose Jaw





TOPS SK 2149 Wednesday Weekly Meetings

28 June 2017 6:30 pm

Alliance Church, Moose Jaw





Login