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Bader heads to Prince Albert as Hitmen kickstart 2019 WHL Trade Deadline

Candice Ward/Calgary Hitmen

 

The Prince Albert Raiders added some young depth to open the 2019 WHL Trade Deadline, acquiring 17-year-old left winger Bryce Bader from the Calgary Hitmen in exchange for the rights to Quinn Olson on Thursday morning. The deal also sees the two teams swap conditional sixth-round picks at the 2021 WHL Bantam Draft.

Bader, a 6-foot-1, 205-pound product of Sherwood Park, Alta., was originally a second-round selection (38th) of the Hitmen at the 2016 WHL Bantam Draft. In 14 career WHL games, Bader has amassed four goals along with 11 penalty minutes.

He landed high on WHL radars prior to the 2016 WHL Bantam Draft after posting 69 points (25G-44A) in 36 games with the Sherwood Park AAA Bantam Flyers of the Alberta Major Bantam Hockey League.

The most intriguing piece heading to Calgary comes in the form of Olson, previously a sixth-round selection (128th) of the Raiders at the 2016 WHL Bantam Draft.

Olson, a 5-foot-11, 170-pound forward, is a product of Calgary and currently committed to the NCAA’s University of Minnesota-Duluth for the 2020-21 season.

There’s no questioning Olson’s ability to produce at the junior level as he has proven his worth with the Okotoks Oilers of the Alberta Junior Hockey League, tallying more than a point per game over the past two seasons. In 84 contests with the Oilers over the past two seasons, Olson has 31 goals and 95 points to his credit.

“Olson is highly skilled forward who we believe can be a very good player in our league,” said Jeff Chynoweth, general manager of the Hitmen, in a team release.  “We are excited to start the recruitment process with the goal of having Quinn play for the Calgary Hitmen.”

Noteworthy is the fact that Olson is the younger brother of Tri-City Americans forward and Anaheim Ducks prospect Kyle Olson.

Earlier this season, Chynoweth was able to convince Josh Prokop to leave the Vernon Vipers of the BC Junior Hockey League as well as his commitment to Ohio State University in exchange for a WHL opportunity. So far, that has worked out well for the 18-year-old Prokop as he has helped the surging Hitmen with 18 points (6G-12A) in 39 games.

Following a 4-1 loss at the hands of the visiting Seattle Thunderbirds, the Raiders will look to get back on track when they host the Portland Winterhawks on Friday (7 p.m. CT). Meanwhile, the Hitmen look to remain hot as they tour the East Division, set to face the Saskatoon Blades on Friday (7 p.m. CT).

The 2019 WHL Trade Deadline arrives Thursday afternoon at 3 p.m. MT.

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