Throughout the month of August, we’re celebrating the class of WHL Graduates from the 2021-22 season. Join us as we go Club by Club in recognizing the achievements of the 20-year-old players from this past season moving on to access their WHL Scholarship or to professional hockey.
We continue our 22-part series with the 2022 WHL Champions, the Edmonton Oil Kings and their graduating trio of Simon Kubicek, Carter Souch and Josh Williams.
Kubicek was originally selected by the Seattle Thunderbirds in the second round of the 2018 CHL Import Draft, spending two seasons in Washington state from 2018-2020.
The product of Jindrichuv Hradec, Czechia totalled 28 points in his rookie WHL season in 2018-19, a year that included a two-goal performance versus the Edmonton Oil Kings October 13, 2018.
Kubicek added seven more goals and 27 more points in 52 appearances during the 2019-20 season, making the first of two appearances at the IIHF World Junior Championship for Czechia over the holiday season.
He returned to Europe for the 2020-21 campaign, during which his WHL rights were dealt from Seattle to Edmonton, but came back to North America in the fall of 2021 to play out his 20-year-old season in the Alberta capital.
Kubicek picked up where he left off, scoring 14 times and leading the Oil Kings blue line with 41 points and 232 shots on goal, earning a nod on the WHL Central Division Second All-Star Team in the process.
He added 11 points during the 2022 WHL Playoffs, helping Edmonton capture the Ed Chynoweth Cup against his former Club, the Seattle Thunderbirds.
Kubicek will move on to professional hockey this fall after signing a two year contract with the AHL’s Manitoba Moose earlier this month.
Souch was selected by his hometown Edmonton Oil Kings in the 2016 WHL Draft and went on to make 292 regular season, playoff and Memorial Cup appearances for the Club.
His first WHL goal was Edmonton’s lone marker January 13, 2018 in a loss to the Swift Current Broncos, and after a rookie season that saw him register nine points in 38 games, Souch’s production went up dramatically over the remainder of his WHL career.
He put up 45 points in his sophomore campaign with the Oil Kings, then registered 18 goals in the 2019-20 season including his first and only WHL hat-trick October 12 against the Calgary Hitmen.
While Souch certainly proved his worth as a shooter during his WHL career, he developed into a premier set-up man for the Oil Kings, closing out his career with a 49-assist, 71-point season in 2021-22. In fact, 131 of his 191 regular season points were assists.
But Souch turned marksman during Edmonton’s run to the 2022 WHL Championship, finishing second on the Club with 12 goals from 19 post-season games.
Souch closed out his WHL career as a League Champion, helping his hometown Club lift the Ed Chynoweth Cup on home ice this past June.
Originally selected fifth-overall in the 2016 WHL Draft, Williams started his WHL career with the Medicine Hat Tigers, scoring his first of more than 100 goals in the league February 21, 2017 versus the Moose Jaw Warriors.
The product of Langley, B.C. would go on to score 20 more times in a Tigers uniform before being dealt to the Edmonton Oil Kings at the 2019 WHL Trade Deadline.
Williams played 37 post-season and Memorial Cup games as an Oil King, 15 of which came in the spring of 2019 as Edmonton reached the Eastern Conference Championship series.
After a 25-goal, 52-point season in 2019-20, the right-shooting forward broke the point-per-game barrier in each of his final two WHL campaigns, topping out with a 34-goal, 82-point year in 2021-22, finishing second in team scoring with an output that included 14 power-play markers.
Williams was leaned upon heavily during the Oil Kings’ run to the WHL Championship this past spring, collecting 16 points (4G-12A) in 19 games during the 2022 WHL Playoffs, including five points in the final three games of the 2022 WHL Championship series versus the Seattle Thunderbirds.
Williams posted 242 career points over his 310 WHL regular season and playoff games.