Everyone knew it was coming, it really was just a matter of when the trigger was pulled, and we all knew it was going to be sooner rather than later, but it doesn’t help the situation.

 

Today, Nick Baptiste, leaves behind the only club he has played in his four years in the OHL, and makes the move to the West, to the power house, Erie Otters. What do you even call the team? 2015 Memorial Cup Champs might be fitting. They have the key pieces. Connor McDavid is the run away, at least that’s the consensus, for the 1st overall pick in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft, add in Dylan Strome, who is tied for first in league scoring, with none other than McDavid. Then you have the top rookie in Alex Debrincat, who as of today sits 5th in scoring having already notched 40 points in 23 games. For fun, we throw in Williams, who although does not have the best save percentage, has won 12 of 16 games he has started in. Now you add in Baptiste, game over. This leaves every other coaching staff in the OHL waiving the white towel in defeat. How do you even begin to develop a game plan to stop that? Erie Otters will not only be making a run for the Memorial Cup, they will be hoisting it come May. That’s a bold statement to make, but if everything goes the way it should, Erie will be having one hell of a party.

As for Nick, his season did not begin the way he wanted it to, after suffering a shoulder injury during pre season action, that kept him out for 6 weeks. He was being treated by Buffalo Sabres medical staff, as they were keeping a close eye on their 69th overall pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft. Since his return though, the 6’1, 190 lbs, power forward has registered 11 points in 12 games. Put that in perspective as he played those 12 games on a losing team. A team who has struggled not only on the ice but off this season. So being almost a point a game player and going to Erie will make for a very interesting scenario.

The Otters are happy to have Nick and why wouldn’t they be after compiling two players and four top draft picks in order to land him. “Nick’s a high end player that you know wasn’t finishing the year in Sudbury. (It was) Kind of a no brainer targeting him.” said Otters assistant coach Jay McKee. The Otters knew obtaining Nick’s services would not be cheap and they did not expect to land a player such as Baptiste for anything less than they did. Erie

Otters GM Sherry Bassin stated that Connor McDavid’s injury did not force their hand and quicken trade discussions. The talks with Sudbury regarding Baptiste have now been going on steadily now for weeks. Bassin went on to say “I can’t wait to see them (McDavid, Debrincat, Baptiste) play together.” If you can I recommend taking a little road trip and watching this team play, because it will be worth every dollar.

There were a lot of teams interested in Baptiste’s services, Oshawa was in it to the last few seconds, Mississauga held talks with Blaine Smith, to name a few, but in the end, the opportunity to play in Erie was just too good to pass up. Nick waived his no trade, and now becomes the newest member of the Otters.

Nick has been a leader both on the ice and off, and has been actively involved in the community since he joined the Wolves. I don’t doubt he’ll continue to be heavily involved off the ice during his time as an Otter.

Baptiste and the McDavidless Otters are home to Mississauga on Thursday night then travel to London Friday night before returning home on Saturday in time to face the Belleville Bulls.

 

 

The Erie Otters announced they’ve acquired Buffalo Sabres prospect Nick Baptiste from the Sudbury Wolves. In exchange the Wolves receive two players as well as four draft picks.

To Sudbury:

- Cole Mayo (1997 born defender)
– Travis Wood (1995 born LW)
– Sault Ste. Marie 2nd Round Pick (2015)
– Belleville’s 3rd Round Pick (2015)
– Erie’s 3rd Round Pick (2018)
– Erie’s 2nd Round Pick (2020)

To Erie:

- Nick Baptiste (1995 born RW)

Erie Otters assistant coach Jay McKee had this to say of the acquisition, ” Baptiste is a high end player that you know wasn’t finishing the year in Sudbury.. Kind of a no brainer targeting him.” McKee was fully aware of the heavy price tag and didn’t expect to be able to land the player any cheaper than they did.

The line of Debrincat-McDavid-Baptiste will be a threat to say the least and the combination of Baptiste and McDavid may continue into the NHL at some time in the future as Baptiste is a Buffalo Sabres prospect.

Erie is now the a shoe-in for the Memorial Cup.

The Mississauga Steelheads have announced the acquisition of the rights to 1996 born defender, Justin Bean.

Before the acquisition, the Steelheads had 6 defenders on their roster. Jared Walsh did not dress for them in London, leaving them with five active with a suspension looming for disgruntled Nick Zottl as a result of receiving a match penalty and a game misconduct for cross checking Knights enforcer Tait Seguin.

In return for Bean, who has yet to dress in an OHL game this season, the Bulls receive a 7th round pick in 2015.

 

 

SaultSteMarieFor the first time all season the Soo Greyhounds were pushed to extra time, but no one is to blame but the Soo Greyhounds themselves. After a good start, and an amazing 2nd period, the Greyhounds fell into a 3rd period slump. Read the rest of this entry »

Having a coach who also acts as GM is kind of like having a CEO who is also the chairman of the board. There are so many ethical issues with structuring any organization like that. Relative to the Steelheads, coach/GM James Boyd needs to make it past the first round of the playoffs in order to ensure his job for next year. Read the rest of this entry »

The Guelph Storm have acquired overage forward Chris Marchese and a 10th round pick inGuelph 2017 from the Windsor Spitfires. In exchange, the Storm send a 2017 3rd round pick to Windsor.

The Spitfires recoup their 3rd round pick as it is the same pick Guelph acquired from Sarnia yesterday in exchange for Stephen Pierog, The pick originally belonged to Windsor.

 

 

PeterboroughGreg Betzold and Stephen Nosad are facing discipline from the team as a result of being heavily intoxicated while at a game they were both not participating in. The incident occurred on Saturday November 15th when their Peterborough Petes hosted the Niagara IceDogs, a game they won 5-1. Read the rest of this entry »

The Kitchener Rangers have acquired 1995 born Defender Thomas Welsh from the Mississauga Steelheads.

To Kitchener:Kitchener-Rangers

- Thomas Welsh

To Mississauga:

- 9th Round Pick (2016)

The Guelph Storm have begun the unloading process by trading overage center Stephen Pierog to the Guelph Storm. The deal leaves the Storm with 1 overage player and the Sting at their max of 3. Sarnia

To Sarnia:

- Stephen Pierog

To Guelph:

- 3rd Round Pick (Windsor, 2017)
– 10th Round Pick (Sarnia, 2016)

Pierog, a native of Guelph, has appeared in 20 games this season for the Storm notching 8 points consisting of 3 goals and 5 assists.

It’s well documented all of the current lawsuits involving the CHL but now one of the most well respected and honourable owners in CHL history is facing a $4.5 million lawsuit. A lawsuit was filed in an Erie court on Wednesday by the Ontario Major Junior Hockey Corp, a subsidiary company of the NHL’s Edmonton Oilers. The lawsuit is a result of an aborted sale.

The Ontario Major Junior Hockey Corporation loaned Bassin a total of $4.2 million as part of a deal that would have resulted in the sale of the OHL franchise by December 26, 2013, that deal was never completed. The corporation had plans to move the team to Hamilton.

The lawsuit seeks repayment plus interest.