(Supplied by the Ontario Hockey League)
A pair of northern rivals swapped team captains today before the OHL overage player deadline.
The North Bay Battalion sent Brad Chenier to the Sudbury Wolves in exchange for Shane Bulitka, a third-round pick in the 2023 OHL Priority Selection and a conditional eighth-round selection in 2022.
Both players are overage, and the deadline to deal them was 12:00 p.m. today, while the trade deadline for all other players is 12:00 p.m. Friday.
In 38 games for the Wolves this season, Bulitka scored 16 goals and as many assists, good for 32 points on the season. In just over four seasons in Sudbury, Bulitka has accumulated 50 goals, 90 assists for 140 points in 235 games. He was originally a second-round pick, 28th overall in the 2015 OHL draft.
“Shane brings the leadership qualities that this young team needs going down the stretch,” said general manager Adam Dennis. “He’s a quality player who will ensure the Battalion continues in the push for a playoff position. We welcome Shane and look forward to his time as a member of the Battalion.”
It will be a homecoming of sorts for Chenier, who is a resident of Hanmer in Greater Sudbury. The now-former Battalion captain has netted 19 goals this season to go along with 23 assists for 42 points in 37 games.
“Brad has done a lot for this franchise and will no doubt leave his mark on the city of North Bay as well as the teammates and staff who were lucky enough to get to know him,” Dennis stated. “This opportunity guarantees Brad a chance to compete for an OHL championship in his final season while returning to his home town. We thank Brad for his hard work and dedication over his time in North Bay.”
Originally a fourth-round pick in 2015, Chenier finishes his Battalion career with 73 goals and 81 assists for 154 points in 241 games. He ranks 14th on the all-time Battalion franchise scoring list, and fourth in the North Bay era behind Justin Brazeau, Mike Amadio, and Brett McKenzie.
The Troops take to the ice tonight against the Mississauga Steelheads at Memorial Gardens. Puck drop is at 7:00 p.m.