North Bay 5, Soo 1

Randy Russon
April 9, 2017

The facts are in the books. North Bay Trappers had five players selected at Saturday’s Ontario Hockey League draft compared to just one from their Great North Midget Hockey League counterparts, the Soo Greyhounds.

High-energy, high-skill forward Camaryn Baber of the Soo actually became the first player from the Great North to be picked when the Saginaw Spirit made the Northern Ontario Hockey Association player-of-the-year a third-round selection, 57th overall.

But that would be it as far as Soo midget players for the 15-round OHL draft.

While Baber would be the only player from the Soo midgets selected, North Bay would have no less than five skaters drafted.

For North Bay, it began when the hometown North Bay Battalion selected smart, skilled two-way defender Payton Vescio of the Trappers in the fourth round, 72nd overall.

The Trappers would then have four more players selected — including two by the Battalion.

In the eighth round, hulking forward Cole Craft was picked by the Sarnia Sting.

In the 10th round, small-sized forward Ryan Mills was picked by the Battalion.

In the 11th round, big defenceman Kobe Seguin got scooped up by the Soo Greyhounds.

And in the 12th round, big forward Matt Hardwick became yet-another pick by the hometown Battalion.

Final score: North Bay 5, Soo 1.

What you think about “North Bay 5, Soo 1”

  1. And so it goes Randy….as stated in my post from a previous article, the 01 group was one of the strongest to come along in years, however for some reason the majority were unable to crack ‘Panco’s’ lineup and sadly lost their only opportunity to expose themselves to the eyes of scouts. This same coach took 8 first year kids the year before but chose not to take 8 from a much higher skilled group this past year (in my opinion)?? There were at least 5 if not more that should’ve made that team but didn’t and had to play AA for Root River which made them uneligible for the draft. These kids will never get another chance.

    Congratulations North Bay on a job well done. Your development program gets it as shown by the 5 that were drafted.

    Congratulations to Nicholas, Camaryn and Cole. Three hard working highly skilled kids who will quickly contribute to the Greyhounds and Spirit organizations.

  2. Sault Major do the right thing. Bring in quality coaches and get rid of the dinosaurs you currently have. Hockey is a different game, you need to make changes to keep up.

    Wait till next year, no OHL drafted kids from the Soo.

  3. Geordie….. you truly are a narrow minded fool….. to think a players opportunity of furthering his career because he was not drafted at 15 is absolutely ridiculous…. I had the opportunity to coach so many wonderful players, who at 15 did not get drafted yet proved that your career is not over because of a 15 year old draft ….. players like Colin Miller, Jarrrt Burton, Zack Larue, Brett Findlay, Dave Radke, Brian Nanne….. and Matt D’Agostini who I never coached…… just to name a few…… don’t tell me these kids are now without an opportunity to further their hockey dreams…….give your head a shake….. I can’t believe how stupid you sound. It’s people like you, who are so ignorant to think a players chances to succeed have somehow totally disintegrated because they have not been drafted at this young age, that are a poison to the hockey world. Geordie, you are what is so wrong with hockey….. quick to place blame and talk senselessly, and hide behind some fake name.

    1. BTW Dom just wondering (sincerely) if any of this past season’s 16 and 17 year old players were offered a D1 package or invited to OHL camps in the fall?

  4. So instead of fixing the problem that has existed for years, we should continue on the same road that we have unsuccessfully travelled on for the past 20 years?? North Bay gets it Dom…you obviously dont… I can hardly wait for the outcome of next years draft, that’s if there are any eligible players left playing in the Sault that haven’t moved to progressive hockey centres.

    BTW the name calling shows your true character Dom. I can only imagine what your coaching communication skills are like.

    Have a great day.

  5. Would it be fair to say that having an ohl team back in Bay town has had quite an impact on the development of minor players? I say that because in the stretch of years after the Centennials left, the Bay seemed to be a wasteland when it came to the ohl draft. About the only time you ever heard a kid from North Bay being drafted was when they had gone away somewhere to play and got drafted while playing for an out of town club. I’m not saying the Battalion deserves the most credit for this change in fortunes but it sure doesn’t hurt the situation either.

  6. Gordie… which players on root river would of been drafted had they made the aaa team? Did you watch them play at all this year? Not saying that they didn’t have any good kids. ( which they did) but not one of them deserved to be drafted. They had kids that need a few more years of midget to develop. Minor midget isn’t the answer in Sault Ste. Marie unless it’s an elite age group. I’ve been through it. I can’t stress it enough. There isn’t enough good players in town to have a minor midget system. All it does is hurt the 4 or 5 kids who are good ohl prospects. It doesn’t work plain and simple. You think going to tournaments and loosing by 5 every game helps kids get better? I’ve witnessed a good defenceman with a lot of ohl potential fall down the rankings basically because he was the only defenceman on the team that belonged in minor midget. Which left him playing crazy minutes and getting exposed game in game out trying to make up for his partners mistakes. Your only as good as they guy your playing alongside. Confidence is a huge part of the game for kids at that age. If it’s your draft year next year do yourself a favour and play for a team that is competitive. ( major midget) I truly believe playing major midget in the soo gives you a better chance of going higher in the draft.

    1. I mentioned several players in a previous article’s post that, in my opinion, should’ve made the major midget team and Team NOHA. At least 4-5 others were shut out. Would they have been drafted? We could all speculate however, neither you, nor I, or anyone other than the OHL organizations can answer that question. The fact they didnt make the major midget team or the NOHA Regional Minor Midget AAA team that competed at the OHL Cup wiped their chances out completely. As previously stated Panco took 2 players to the OHL Cup from the Sault? Why wouldn’t he have matched the Sudbury and North Bay player numbers and given his local hometown kids that opportunity being the head coach for that regional team???? Our local 01 group won the NOHAs several years against the very same players that he chose.

      My concern is not whether these kids will make the OHL, Division 1 Colleges, NHL, beer leagues or the local pub dart team. I think we would all agree that it’s very difficult to compete with the big money centres based on our population and limited exposure due to this city’s proximity to Southern Ontaro. As a consequence the odds are already stacked against our hometown kids. So then knowing these unfavourable odds, why would he shut these kids out from their only opportunity at the ’15 YR OLD DRAFT’ as he did??

  7. Also gordie when you say that these kids will never get a chance again you couldn’t be more wrong. I hope your kid isn’t one of them who you believe is done because he didn’t make the major midgets. As dom already stated so many kids played as 17 and 18 years olds on that team and have continued on. Everyone peaks at different times. At the end of the day only 5 % will go to play pro anyways. If your son loves the game let him enjoy it. Tell him to be a good teammate and coachable kid because that will get him further then you would think.

    1. NOJ alum…..sorry not buying your comment that many undrafted 17 and 18 year olds have continued on…I would ask…. continue on to what?? I would argue a very few lucky ones may move on but they are the exception not the rule. Have you looked at St. Mary’s High School Hockey team?? That team is riddled with elite ex AAA hockey players. Players such as Ozzie Rowe, Johhny Dyer, Daniel Cicchini Johnny Hammond, Lucas Stefano , Josh Mannarino etc etc etc….please give me your comments as to why players of this caliber are playing high school hockey and not midget AAA…..BTW the few knights players were this years players, look back more years and you will find many many many more elite players that opted out of the AAA program to the high school program which I wouldn’t consider moving on in terms of getting closer projecting to higher hockey levels, with no offence to the High School leagues or coaches.

  8. Ironic to consider the Sault cannot support an all 15 year old minor midget program, yet some birth years now have as many as 4 elitist teams with 65+ players.

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