The four-division, 20-team OHL Cup is slated for this week in Toronto. The annual tournament of games features top minor midget aged talent who will be showing their skills to a bevy of general managers and scouts ahead of the April 6, Ontario Hockey League priority selections draft.
Team NOHA, representing the Northern Ontario Hockey Association with players from the Great North Midget League, is one of the entrants participating at the OHL Cup.
And Mark Seidel, who is the director of operations for Team NOHA, told Hockey News North that he likes the makeup of the squad.
” I think this is arguably the best compilation that the North has ever sent to the OHL Cup,” Seidel began. “We feel like we have the best goal-tending in the tournament.
“Our defensemen are mobile and can get pucks up the ice which will allow us to play how we want to and we have a skilled, deep forward group that shouldn’t have trouble creating offense,” Seidel added.
“With that being said,” Seidel continued, “this is an incredibly deep tournament with the best minor midget teams in North America, so we will have our hands full.
Kyle Brick, from the Blind River Beavers of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League, is the Team NOHA head coach. Brick will be assisted by Alex Cruise of the Soo Major Thunderbirds of the GNML as well as Miguel Beaudry, who has many years of experience as an OHL goalie coach.
Team NOHA is stocked with talent aplenty from the GNML, several of who are projected to go within the top three rounds of next month’s OHL priority selections draft.
Via a cross section of OHL general managers and scouts, the following performers from the Great North loop are poised to be among the top 60 players taken at the upcoming priority selections draft.
They are goalie Ben Gaudreau of the North Bay Major Trappers, defensemen Jack Matier and Tyler Dunbar of the Soo Minor Thunderbirds and forwards Chase Stillman, Max McCue and Devon Savignac of the Sudbury Minor Wolves.
In all, more than a dozen players from the Great North who were born in 2003 are being projected as possible draft picks ahead of the looming, April 6, priority selections process.
Besides the aforementioned six of Gaudreau, Matier, Dunbar, Stillman, McCue and Savignac, there are several others from the Great North who project as mid to late round picks ahead of the upcoming OHL priority selections draft.
They are forwards Chris Innes (who can also play defense), Mitchell Martin and Zacharie Giroux and defensemen Joshua Kavanagh, Brandon Hass and Teegan Dumont of the Sudbury Minor Wolves, defenseman Jimmy Blanchard of the Sudbury Nickel Capital Wolves and forward Stephen Pszeniczny of the Soo Minor Thunderbirds.
Meantime, a number of players who were not picked for Team NOHA are seen as being darkhorse candidates as later round picks for the April 6 OHL draft.
They are defenseman Thomas Irwin and forwards Jake Kovacs and Dylan Szabo of the Soo Minor Thunderbirds as well as forward Landon Deforge and defenseman Mason Berthiaume of the Timmins Majors.