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Another Season, Another Chance


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Seattle (AP) -- In the end, Season 58 didn't end the way Gabriel McAllister and his Seattle Bears team wanted. Sure, they got close, and going from out of the playoffs one season earlier to two games away from the title was a feat in itself. That doesn't mean, though, that the then-third year winger didn't feel some disappointment when it was all over.


"Especially coming off the thrilling way we beat Toronto, I thought we had a good shot," McAllister said during the offseason. "I guess it wasn't meant to be."


But here's the thing about McAllister: He's not even halfway through his career, and he and the Bears have a lot more work to do. Following an offseason where McAllister won his second major VHL award, as the league's Top Two-Way Forward, the team's out to prove it wasn't just a fluke, despite what some power rankers who place the Bears fourth might say.


The Bears return the majority of their core, with two notable exceptions: center Fook Yu and defenseman Fabio Jokinen. In their place are a trio of younger players, with defensemen Dexter Lane and Adam Warlock coming from Toronto, and winger Otto Axelsson coming from Calgary. Those three, along with the growth of Seattle's returning players, has McAllister thinking another championship run is in the offing.


"We proved we can get there. Now it's time to go one more step forward," McAllister said. "This was the season we were building for. Now it's time to do the damn thing."

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