|Swift Current Outlaws|
|Tier Level||[[Tier 1]]|
|Date Founded||August, 2006|
|Season Founded||Season 6|
|City||Swift Current, SK|
|Home Arena||Outlaw Garden|
|General Manager||Nikita Chrustjov|
|Head Coach||Mstislav Danilov|
|Play-off Wins||Seasons 7, 9, 13, 22|
|Play-off Finalists||Season 7, 9, 13, 22|
The early years (seasons 6-13)Edit
The Outlaws hockey club was founded in season 6 as part of a bring ex-cons back into society-program. Soon it became clear that the ex-cons were crappy hockey players and the team was sold to a new owner, the "Terrasskioskens Vänner" group of investors. Their first move was to hire Nikita Chrustjov as the new GM. Through a series of trades and FA signings Chrustjov acquired key players like forwards Dick Culkin, Ali Drehmer and Abraham Zoltek, defenseman Syvatoslav Fomin and goaltender Nicholas Brodtmann, and turned the Outlaws from a recreational beer league club to a professional hockey club.
The Outlaws steamrolled the opposition in their first full GHL season and promoted to tier 3 after registering a 35-2-1 regular season record and a stunning 6-1-0 playoff run.
In the off-season Chrustjov signed free agent forwards Ariel Laumeyer, Loyd Wattles and Joacim Burdge. The trio would carry the team to two consecutive 1st place finnishes in league 53, a league championship and promotion to tier 2, after a spirited playoff final series against arch enemies Koala Infestation. Game 1 of the series became historic as it was decided in quadruple OT. Ariel Laumeyer, who scored the game winner on a breakaway, was named Playoff MVP.
The team spent four seasons in league 16, tier 2. After a tough struggle to stay in the league in their first season, the Outlaws later became a top team with the addition of goal scoring wingers Rico Aharonof and Swift Current-native Shane Slyton, goalie Granville Shindle and stud defenceman Isidor Gromov. In season 13 Chrustjov traded for PP specialist Bradly Swindler (who scored the 1000th goal in franchise history), and signed famous defender Hung Maddaloni plus another PP specialist in Daren Duman. These moves put the team over the top, and they entered the season 13 playoffs as the #1 seed.
In a tight first round matchup against rivals The Great White North Hosers Isidor Gromov delivered a nasty hit on GWNH superstar and league 16 scoring leader Zakarias Deyarmin, who left the game and the series on a stretcher. The hit, which was condemned by the entire GHL community, only rendered a 2 minute minor and the Outlaws could go on to win the series. The Outlaws swept McLaren in the second round and defeated Team of Svipdag 2-1 in the finals, a series mostly remembered for sloppy defensive play and questionable goaltending.
GM Chrustjov and the Outlaws had finally reached their goal, promotion to tier 1.
Playing with the big boys (seasons 14-20)Edit
The Outlaws quickly established themselves as a solid tier 1 team, making it into the playoffs 3 times in their 4 first seasons. It was, however, obvious that the team lacked the depth to take on the very best GHL teams with payrolls in the 180-200 million dollar range, and they failed to win a single playoff game during this time.
The Outlaws had managed to keep most of their core intact since the promotion to tier 1, all while adding important pieces like defensive beasts Claud Ascol and Miika Hibley. Team management knew that this would not last forever though, due to aging key players and increasing salary demands taking its toll on team finances. Team captain Loyd Wattles decided to retire at the end of season 17, but GM Chrustjov could still ice a very competitive squad the next season.
When season 18 playoffs started, everyone knew this was probably the last chance for the team to reach success with their current group of players. In the first round the Outlaws managed to upset powerhouse The Slapping Studs 2-1, and they were ready for a second round battle against 5th seed Koren. Despite a heroic effort the team fell short and lost the series 2-1.
The club lost key defenceman Claud Ascol to free agency before the start of season 19, but the Outlaws played fairly well and were involved in a very tight three-team battle for the last two playoff spots. In game 38 the two other teams played each other. The Outlaws had won their last game and would make the playoffs if one of these two other teams would win their game in regulation. Of course, no one did. The game went to OT and the extra point awarded caused the Outlaws to miss the playoffs.
The economy of the club suffered as a result of not making the playoffs and GM Chrustjov had to let his best player, and franchise all-time point leader, Ariel Laumeyer go in the off-season, along with veteran winger Ali Drehmer. The Outlaws entered season 20 with a roster lacking quality scorers and the team would win only 12 games. The saga had come to an end. The Outlaws were facing demotion to tier 2.
A lot of players, including Daren Duman, Shane Slyton, shut-down center Mario Novitske and grinding veteran defenceman Erick Pospicil left the team as a result.
Back in tier 2 (seasons 21-22)Edit
After the demotion to tier 2 and the following exodus, GM Nikita Chrustjov had to ask team owners to take out a loan just so he could sign enough scrubs to ice a full roster. Luckily PP scorers Bradly Swindler, Bryon Silagy and playmaking center Quinn Zumot had stayed with the team, and together they formed a formidable line which made tier 2 defenses look stupid on a nightly basis. GM Chrustjov also picked up Slovakian PP ace Kusner Desbiens from Poron Ponkaus 2 to provide some secondary scoring. On the blueline, captain Gromov and Finnsh puck-mover Miika Hibley were still there. In net, Felipe Stellfox had taken the starter job from old man Shindle.
Despite a glaring lack of depth on both offense and defense the Outlaws were still a serious contender for the league 9 championship. The team finished season 21 in second place with a 31-6-1 record but suffered a disappointing loss to the Homerun Batters in the second round of the playoffs.
The following season, season 22, GM Nikita Chrustjov added some much needed depth to the roster and as the two top teams from the season before were no longer in the league, the Outlaws could cruise through the regular season with 35 wins and only one loss in regulation. In the playoffs the team did not lose a single game on their way to victory. The Swift Current Outlaws were back in the top league of the GHL once again.
However, Nikita Chrustjov has been heavily criticized for not taking the time in league 9 to do a proper rebuild. The key players are old, the defense is suspect and there is nothing to write home about in terms of prospects. The window of opportunity is smaller this time around. In fact, if the Outlaws can't make some noise this season, look for them to be headed back to tier 2 soon.
Season 6-7: Truman Brissette
Season 8: Jayson Orobona
Season 9-17: Loyd Wattles
Season 18-: Isidor Gromov
Season 6-14: Abram Skeen
Season 15-: Mstislav Danilov
Worn by legendary defenseman Syvatoslav Fomin. Syvatoslav was a veteran leader on the young Outlaws team that won the league 877 playoffs in season 7. Before the start of season 8 he was traded, and two seasons later he was kicked out of the GHL for having repeatedly abused officials. A few years later he died in a tractor accident on his parents' farm outside of Krasnoyarsk in Siberia.
Note: GP = Games played, W = Wins, L = Losses, OTL = Overtime Losses, Pts = Points, GF = Goals for, GA = Goals against
|Season 6||877:4||2||2||0||0||4||8||4||18th||Missed the playoffs|
|Season 7||877:4||38||35||2||1||71||187||45||1st||Champions (2-1 vs. SlapShock)|
|Season 8||53:3||38||27||9||2||56||118||80||1st||Lost in Semifinals, 1-2 (Suicides)|
|Season 9||53:3||38||33||5||0||66||145||55||1st||Champions (2-0 vs Koala Infestation)|
|Season 10||16:2||38||21||15||2||44||106||75||9th||Missed the playoffs|
|Season 11||16:2||38||24||9||5||53||137||78||7th||Lost in Quarterfinals, 0-2 (PSU Icers)|
|Season 12||16:2||38||29||8||1||59||184||67||2nd||Lost in Semifinals, 1-2 (I Am Jacks Hockey Team)|
|Season 13||16:2||38||34||4||0||68||186||47||1st||Champions (2-1 vs Team of Svipdag)|
|Season 14||1||38||24||10||4||52||121||70||6th||Lost in Quarterfinals, 0-2 (Kentucky Thoroughblades)|
|Season 15||1||38||20||16||2||42||118||94||9th||Missed the playoffs|
|Season 16||1||38||24||13||1||49||137||75||7th||Lost in Quarterfinals, 0-2 (Simon Gagne for Cy Young)|
|Season 17||1||38||23||12||3||49||102||75||7th||Lost in Quarterfinals, 0-2 (The Slapping Studs)|
|Season 18||1||38||25||9||4||54||126||66||6th||Lost in Semifinals, 1-2 (Koren)|
|Season 19||1||38||20||10||8||48||119||90||9th||Missed the playoffs|
|Season 20||1||38||12||19||7||31||84||116||16th||Demoted to Tier 2|
|Season 21||9:2||38||31||6||1||63||178||50||2nd||Lost in Semifinals, 0-2 (Homerun Batters)|
|Season 22||9:2||38||35||1||2||72||208||50||1st||Champions (2-0 vs Windsor Spitfires)|
Totals (including playoffs)
|Points||645||Ariel Laumeyer (457 gp)|
|Goals||248||Bradly Swindler (379 gp)|
|Assists||400||Ariel Laumeyer (457 gp)|
|Games played||638||Octavio Bliler|
|Penalty minutes||700||Isidor Gromov (462 gp)|
Playoffs not included.
|Points||81||Loyd Wattles||Season 13|
|81||Bryon Silagy||Season 21|
|Goals||47||Bradly Swindler||Season 21|
|Assists||52||Dick Culkin||Season 7|
|Plus/minus||+49||Octavio Bliler||Season 22|
|Penalty minutes||62||Isidor Gromov||Season 14, 15, 18|
|Points by defenseman||37||Miika Hibley||Season 21|
|SV% (starters only)||93.8%||Felipe Stellfox||Season 21|
|Tier 1 - Points||65||Ariel Laumeyer||Season 18|
|Tier 1 - Goals||30||Daren Duman||Season 14|
|Tier 1 - Assists||41||Ariel Laumeyer||Season 18|
|Tier 1 - Points by d-man||32||Claud Ascol||Season 15|
|Tier 1 - Plus/minus||+28||Ariel Laumeyer||Season 16|
|+28||Shane Slyton||Season 16|
|Tier 1 - SV% (starters)||92.0%||Granville Shindle||Season 14|
|#||Age||Catches||Acquired||Place of Birth||OA rating|
|0||Felipe Stellfox||31||R||Season 13||Fraser Lake, British Columbia||98|
|6||Joesph Carvill||24||R||Season 21||Wesleyville, Newfoundland||94|
|#||Position||Age||Hand||Acquired||Place of Birth||OA rating|
|Nikita Chrustjov||GM||115||Season 6||Kalinovka, Russia|
|Mstislav Danilov||Head Coach||56||Season 15||Samara, Russia||98|