Paper Kings and Wolves

August 27, 2022

A small market Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League team has managed to secure an affiliation alliance with a nearby member of the Ontario Hockey League.

That is, Sudbury Wolves of the OHL have officially confirmed a player alignment with the Espanola Paper Kings of the NOJHL for the 2022-2023 season. Wolves general manager Rob Papineau noted the player development prowess of the Espanola franchise, which recently rebranded as the Paper Kings from its former Express moniker.

“We are excited to announce our affiliation with the rebranded Espanola Paper Kings for the 2022-2023 season,” relayed Papineau. “Espanola has done a great job over the past few seasons in developing players for the next level of hockey. Having a place for us to develop some of our young players in the North is very important to us. Espanola is a terrific community with all of the services to support the players both on and off the ice. It is just a short drive down Highway 17 from Sudbury to Espanola. Espanola has a rich hockey history that we, the Sudbury Wolves, look forward to building on with the Paper Kings this coming season.”

On the flip side, Espanola owner and head coach Jason Rapcewicz used the word “excited” more than once in describing the NOJHL Paper Kings new affiliation with the OHL Wolves.

“The Espanola Paper Kings are so excited to enter into an affiliation agreement with an established OHL franchise such as the Sudbury Wolves,” gushed Rapcewicz. “We are beyond excited and ready for the opportunity to assist in the development of Sudbury Wolves draft picks. The Wolves organization does a great job at identifying high end hockey players and we are excited that they have entrusted us in assisting with the development process. We most certainly would like to thank Rob Papineau and the Sudbury Wolves for the opportunity and look forward to a strong, quality relationship. This is a great day for the newly rebranded Espanola Paper Kings.”

Meanwhile, Marc Gagnon, who was recently hired by the Paper Kings as general manager to work alongside Rapcewicz, likewise welcomes the bonding with the OHL Wolves.

“We all know that Sudbury is a great hockey town and we are looking forward to the special relationship we will have with the OHL Wolves,” noted Gagnon, who, prior to being hired as the GM in Espanola earlier this summer, was with the Huntsville Otters of the Provincial Jr. C Hockey League as the GM and coach.

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