Kootenay Ice president and general manager Jeff Chynoweth has called it one of the most important days on the calendar.
The 2015 WHL Bantam Draft gets underway from the Deerfoot Inn in Calgary Thursday morning at 8:30 a.m. (Mountain).
Chynoweth and his team of scouts, led by director of scouting Garnet Kazuik, hold 10 selections in this year’s edition of the WHL’s annual restocking, but won’t call their first name until the second round of the draft.
Kootenay’s 2015 first-round pick was dealt to the Kamloops Blazers (and then the Saskatoon Blades) in the deal that brought French scoring sensation Tim Bozon to Cranbrook in October 2013.
Players eligible for the 2015 WHL Bantam Draft include 2000-born players who reside in Alberta, B.C., Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Northwest Territories, Yukon, Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Washington or Wyoming.
The Townsman has your 2015 WHL Bantam Draft coverage all day long.
Follow along for live, pick-by-pick updates through the first round. From the second round through 12th round, Kootenay Ice selections will be updated, along with any potential league transactions.
For up-to-the-minute information on the WHL Bantam Draft, follow sports editor Taylor Rocca on Twitter.
The first round of the 2015 WHL Bantam Draft can be found streaming live online at whl.ca.
2015 WHL Bantam Draft – 1st Round:
1) Spokane (via Saskatoon) – Ty Smith, LD (Delta Hockey Academy); 5-foot-10, 161 pounds (Mar. 23)2) Lethbridge – Calen Addison, RD (BDN Wheat Kings AAA); 5-foot-8, 174 pounds (April 11)3) Vancouver – Tyler Popowich, L/C (Okanagan Hockey Academy); 6-foot-4, 190 pounds (April 29)4) Moose Jaw (via Kamloops) – Jett Woo, RD (Winnipeg Warriors); 5-foot-11, 190 pounds (July 27)5) Prince Albert – Cole Fonstad, C (Estevan Bruins); 5-foot-9, 145 pounds (April 24)6) Moose Jaw – Luke Burzan, LW (North Shore Winter Club); 6-foot, 170 pounds (Jan. 7)7) Tri-City – Carson Focht, F (Notre Dame Hounds); 5-foot-9, 154 pounds (Feb. 4)8) Prince George – Jackson Leppard, LW (North Shore Winter Club); 6-foot-1, 180 pounds (Jan. 18)9) Spokane – Koby Morriseau, LW (Parkland Rangers); 6-foot-1, 168 pounds (Oct. 18)10) Swift Current – Riley Stotts, L/C (WPG Monarchs AAA); 5-foot-11, 152 pounds (Jan. 5)11) Edmonton – Ethan Cap, LW (North Shore Winter Club); 6-foot-2, 195 pounds (April 17)12) Saskatoon (via KTN via KAM) – Jonathan Tychonick, LW (CGY Flames); 5-foot-11, 155 pounds (Mar. 3)13) Victoria – Eric Florchuk, F (Ft. Sask Rangers); 5-foot-11, 140 pounds (Jan. 10)14) Regina – Dawson Barteaux, D (Yellowhead Chiefs); 6-foot, 156 pounds (Jan. 12)15) Seattle – Elijah Brown, F (Edmonton SSAC); 5-foot-9, 151 pounds (Jan. 5)16) Red Deer – Jacob Herauf, D (Sherwood Pk Flyers); 5-foot-10, 168 pounds (May 16)17) Portland – FORFEITED18) Medicine Hat – Ryan Chyzowski, C (Kamloops Jardine Blazers); 5-foot-11, 175 pounds (May 14)19) Saskatoon (via EVE) – Chase Wouters, RW (Lloydminster Heat); 5-foot-10, 162 pounds (Feb. 8)20) Calgary – Tristen Nielsen, F (Edge Mountaineers); 5-foot-10, 167 pounds (Feb. 23)21) Prince Albert (via KEL) – Carson Miller, C (Yorkton Terriers); 5-foot-9, 160 pounds (Feb. 10)22) Brandon – Caiden Daley, C (WPG Warriors); 5-foot-11, 147 pounds (Feb. 5)
2015 WHL Bantam Draft – Kootenay Ice selections:
34) Keenan Taphorn, RW (Yorkton Terriers); 6-foot, 155 pounds (Jan. 3) – 24GP, 30-46-7656) Loeden Schaufler, RD (Notre Dame Midg AA Hounds); 6-foot, 169lbs (April 27) – 35GP, 10-22-3278) Eli Lieffers, C (Saskatoon Maniacs); 6-foot, 150 pounds – 31GP, 19-14-33122) Benjamin Sanderson, LW (Calgary AAA Flames); 5-foot-10, 155 pounds – 25GP, 6-6-12123) Via Victoria – Bobby Russell, LD (Delta Bantam Prep); 5-foot-10, 155 pounds – 15GP, 0-1-1144) Michael King, C (Winnipeg Sharks); 5-foot-10, 147 pounds – 28GP, 11-10-21166) Luke Penner, LD (Saskatoon Generals); 5-foot-7, 160 pounds (April 4) – 27GP, 4-6-10188) Michael Araki-Young, C (Richmond Blues); 5-foot-11, 145 pounds (Jan. 24)210) Lucas Gaudet, LD (POE Bantam Prep); 6-foot, 165 pounds (April 18) – 13GP, 0-1-1232) Austin Wong, F (Airdrie Xtreme); 5-foot-7, 135 pounds (Aug. 26) – 33GP, 19-14-33
2015 WHL Bantam Draft Trades:
1) Saskatoon Blades acquire F Connor Gay from Red Deer Rebels in exchange for 2015 3rd round pick (50th overall – Raiders)
2) Red Deer Rebels acquire F Ivan Nikolishin from Everett Silvertips in exchange for 2015 3rd round pick (60th overall – Rebels) and 2017 conditional 4th round pick (Silvertips)
3) Kamloops Blazers acquire 2015 4th round pick (82nd overall – Royals) from Victoria Royals in exchange for 2016 4th round pick (Blazers)
4) Edmonton Oil Kings acquire 2015 6th round pick (115th overall – Americans) from Tri-City Americans in exchange for 2017 6th round pick (Oil Kings)
5) Everett Silvertips acquire 2016 conditional 6th round pick (Hitmen) from the Calgary Hitmen in exchange for F Andrew Fyten
6) Moose Jaw Warriors acquire F Riley Zimmer from the Regina Pats in exchange for a 2017 conditional 10th round pick (Warriors)
7) Spokane Chiefs acquire 2015 9th round pick (185th overall – Chiefs) from Lethbridge Hurricanes
8) Saskatoon Blades acquire 2015 11th round pick (225th overall – Americans) from Tri-City Americans