There was no trading deadline for the Saskatchewan Midget AAA Hockey League on Thursday, but the Prince Albert Mintos were still affected by the movement of players in the Western Hockey League and Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League.
Second-year defenseman Jordan Harris has been summoned to the WHL’s Prince George Cougars for the rest of the year and Teal Sobkowicz had his SJHL rights moved from the Nipawin Hawks to the Melfort Mustangs.
The 16-year-old Harris attended the Cougars’ camp in the fall, but was returned to the Mintos for another year of experience. But, when Prince George failed to make any trades on Thursday they opted to bring Harris back for the remainder of the year to get him acclimatized to the league as he is part of their plans for the next few years.
Harris, however, has been out of the Prince Albert line-up for more than a month after taking a hit to the head late in a game against the Saskatoon Contacts and had only just recently got back on his skates to get back into shape. Harris had 12 assists in 21 games this year for the Mintos while as a rookie last season he had four goals and 10 helpers in 43 games.
The Sobkowicz move in the SJHL does not affect the Mintos directly as the 16-year-old from Outlook will remain with Prince Albert, but another move that does force the team to adjust its roster is the release of defenseman Tye Antoniuk.
The 16-year-old from Saskatoon has had an injury-plagued rookie campaign and earlier this week he was let go by the team. In 20 games with the Mintos, Antoniuk had just one goal and one assist.
With the departure of the two defensemen, the Mintos have brought up Braxx George from the Liteway Electric Raiders and Jesse Haeusler from the Humboldt Broncos, both of the Centre-Four Hockey League Midget Division.
Haeusler is a 17-year-old who played several games for the Mintos last year and also went with the club to Calgary over the Christmas break for the annual Mac’s Invitational tournament. He has played in four league games with the team this year not having registered a point, but in 15 games with Humboldt he had four goals and seven assists.
George is 16 years old and in five games with the Mintos this year has one goal while with the Liteway Electric Raiders had one goal and six helpers in 19 matches. George also brings a bit of grit to the team as he had 48 minutes in penalties at the Midget AA level.
The Mintos have a little more than a week off from league play so the newcomers will have plenty of practise time to get used to their new teammates. The next game for the Mintos is Jan. 19 when they will take part in the inaugural Flaman’s Outdoor Classic.
Prince Albert will host the Saskatoon Blazers in the final game of the day with the A&W Bears taking on the Saskatoon Stars in a Saskatchewan Female Midget AAA Hockey League contest earlier that same day. There will also be a pair of atom division games to fill in the day’s activities.
Tickets are $15 for all four games and they can be purchased at the Prince Albert Raider office.