The Manitoba Junior Hockey League Bantam Draft took place on Sunday morning in Winnipeg and the Oil Caps were busy, making seven selections in total.
“Our scouting staff has done a tremendous job in assessing this year’s 2003 group locally and throughout the whole province of Manitoba,” said Jamie Hodson, director of business and hockey operations for the Oil Capitals. “They deserve a lot of credit for helping us get to where we are in assessing this year’s draft class and helping assess our auto-protects. It was an important draft with two fourths and two fifths. We’re excited with the way things ended up. Generally, every team is happy and we can certainly say the same.”
“I’m very happy with the draft,” said Oil Caps head coach and GM Troy Leslie. “I think we were able to cover just a wide range of things that we needed – all positions except goaltender – but overall, it was a good draft.”
Here’s a run down of all the Oil Caps draft picks, starting with the club’s first round pick.
Round 1/10th overall – Roux Bazin
Team: Pembina Valley Hawks Bantam AAA
From: Treherne, Man.
46 PTS last season
Oil Caps management take: “Our focus was on guys, from our forwards to our back-end, who could move the puck and can skate and Roux falls right in line there. He’s a really complete forward. He can play the wing and through the middle. He has tremendous vision. Obviously he’s got potential to be a Western Hockey League player and we know that. But if he ends up playing junior A, we think he’ll be a top tier forward in this league. We were happy that we were able to get him where we did.”
Round 2/21st overall – Trevor Hunt
Team: Southwest Cougars Bantam AAA
From: Hartney, Man.
29 PTS last season
Oil Caps management take: “A really good puck moving defenceman with good speed. A smart player on the back end and just has a lot of tools. Right shot D-men are hard to come by and I think he fits that picture quite well. He’s a guy that we think can be a part of our offence as well jumping up into the play. We’re really excited to get him.”
Round 3/32nd overall – Tyler Teasdale
Team: Winnipeg Monarchs Bantam AAA
19 PTS last season
Oil Caps management take: “He’s highly regarded in the Western (Hockey) League, so we may or may not end up seeing him but with any player, we don’t know. He’s a highly skilled D-man who can move the puck well and will fit into what we’re looking for. We’re excited about what he can bring to us in the future.”
Round 4/34th overall – David Bielik
Team: Winnipeg Monarchs Bantam AAA
14 PTS last season
Oil Caps management take: “A left shot D, he’s a player who came to our spring camp who splashed similar to Teasdale and Hunt. Bielik is a smaller D-man but a guy who we picture could quarterback the power play in the future. Really gifted offensively as a D-man and skates really well.”
Round 4/43rd overall – Ryland Kuczek
Team: Winnipeg Hawks Bantam AAA
From: St. Andrews, Man.
43 PTS last season
Oil Caps management take: “A guy at forward who worked hard to get to where he is and he ended up on a line that was really complete this year. It was a high scoring line and he was a big part of it. He’s certainly a guy that really made that line go – and we’re excited to have his offensive upside in our program moving forward. Ryland is a guy who we think has a tremendous work ethic as well. He’s going to be an energy guy and will also be able to chip in offensively.”
Round 5/46th overall – Nolan Wallace
Team: Brandon Wheat Kings Bantam AAA
From: Brandon, Man.
26 PTS last season
Oil Caps management take: “Nolan is another right shot D, a Brandon kid who is another local connection. A bigger guy who is more of a stay-at-home type. We think he’s a guy who can be a very solid player in this league. He’s just a good, solid defenceman who works hard and competes well. We’re excited to have him on board.”
Round 5/54th overall – Slade Stanick
Team: Yellowhead Chiefs Bantam AAA
From: Rapid City, Man.
21 PTS last season
Oil Caps management take: “Slade is a hard-working, extremely tough guy to play against. This is a guy we see who has a lot of offensive upside. I think it can be said with all of our picks, we’ve got guys who can get around the ice well, which excites us and he’s one of those guys.”