I can now confirm a few deals made by West Kelowna in advance of the January 10th deadline.
First is a straight pick-up, and one that should really help the club. Ryan Fraser-Lee won a championship with Surrey last year, but is a 20 year-old capable of playing some big minutes on the back end. The Michigan product will turn 21 next month.
The Warriors have added more beef to the back end with the acquisition of Braden Pears. Another 20 year-old, Pears can rock a ton of minutes in all situations, and has been a heart-and-soul guy for the Smoke Eaters this year. In return for Pears, West Kelowna sends Zane Schartz and future considerations to Trail. A very quiet but terrific 18 year-old, we wish Zane all the best with the Orange and Black.
West Kelowna has also added some depth up front, with the acquisition of Nathan Craft from Langley (for futures). Another former Caribou Cougar, Craft is a big body that will add some serious grit to the lineup. But he’s also got 19 points this year, and seems capable of playing on a scoring line should his number be called. Rivermen broadcast Jeff Sargeant has more on his departure from Langley.
By the way – the deadline is Friday. 6pm PST for interleague deals and 8pm for trades within the BCHL. Of course, teams can still pick players (free-agents) up after that point. And yes, the Warriors play at 7pm that night, which could add an interesting little wrinkle to proceedings!
***I can also now confirm the deal sending Taylor Graham to Spruce Grove, in exchange for the CJHL playing rights to Devon McAndrews. For those wondering, McAndrews is not expected to play in the BCHL this year.
***I understand that this now completes the roster moves. The coaching staff says no more moves are coming, so the team is now set.
INCOMING – Ryan Fraser-Lee, Braden Pears, Nathan Craft (+ the rights to Devon McAndrews)
OUTGOING – Zane Schartz, Taylor Graham. Brennan Clark will also remain on injury reserve, for those of you counting 23 guys on the roster.