The Western Hockey League trade deadline has come and gone with the Wheat Kings announcing one move early this evening.
One day after making a change on defence by sending Schael Higson to the Kelowna Rockets in exchange for blueliner Braydyn Chizen the club has dealt 19 year-old Chase Hartje to the Kootenay Ice in exchange for a 3rd round draft choice in this year’s draft. The draft pick, originally owned by the Red Deer Rebels, figures to be in the lower half of the 3rd round based on today's standings. When added to picks obtained at last year’s deadline and the BWKs’ own selections, the club has what could be considered an embarassment of riches heading into the 2019 bantam draft.
Hartje is of course no stranger to last minute deadline deals, having been part of the package acquired from Moose Jaw on d-day last season in the blockbuster move that sent Kale Clague to the Warriors. In 73 regular season and playoff games over two seasons with the Black and Gold the product of Bemidji, Minnesota had 7 goals and 22 points.
The Wheat Kings are in a fight for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, currently six points behind the Calgary Hitmen. They next play tomorrow night when the Red Deer Rebels visit Westoba Place in a game that's expected to include the debut of Chizen wearing jersey #5.
Update, Jan. 11: Corrected that draft pick obtained originally belonged to Red Deer