Brian Liesse / Seattle Thunderbirds photo

Brian Liesse / Seattle Thunderbirds photo

Kootenay Ice receive Jeff de Wit from Pats for Sidaway, draft pick

Experienced 1998-born forward joins Cranbrook club in exchange for gritty sophomore role player

The Kootenay Ice announced on Tuesday night the acquisition of 1998-born forward Jeff de Wit from the Regina Pats in exchange for 1999-born forward Tanner Sidaway and a seventh-round draft pick in 2018.

A Red Deer, Alberta native, de Wit has four WHL seasons and over 40 playoff games under his belt. In 22 games with the Pats during their run to the WHL Championship Final last spring, he had seven points. The 19-year-old also participated in the 2016 Memorial Cup as a member of the Red Deer Rebels.

“Jeff has played on winning teams in Red Deer and Regina, two very good programs,” said Matt Cockell, President and General Manager. “We look forward to getting him in our lineup.”

de Wit was originally a first-round draft pick (14th overall) by the Rebels in 2013 and has put up 53 points in 211 regular season games. Although the power forward has not been a consistent point producer throughout his career, he has shown flashes of exceptional talent including a hat trick during the Pats’ 2017 preseason opener.

Sidaway departs Kootenay after spending one season with the team. He recorded two goals and eight points in 65 regular season games as a rookie in 2016-17. This season, as a fourth-liner he had one goal and two points in five games with Kootenay.

Sidaway originally joined the Ice in January 2016, in the deal that sent Kootenay captain Luke Philp to Red Deer and also brought defenceman Ryan Pouliot to Cranbrook.

Kootenay will play de Wit’s hometown Red Deer Rebels in their next game at Western Financial Place on Thursday.