(Greater Sudbury, ON) As the dust settled in the wake of the 2018 OHL Priority Selection presented by Real Canadian Superstore it was a great day at the draft table for the Sudbury Wolves Hockey Club. The day was carried by the selection and commitment of Quinton Byfield to the Club as the first overall choice and winner of the Jack Ferguson award. The balance of the day allowed the Wolves scouting staff and the hockey operations to select a complement of players that add speed, skill and character to the future Wolves Hockey lineup.
“Selecting Quinton as the number 1 overall pick is a great thing for the Sudbury Wolves and our city. For him to commit to the Sudbury Wolves and the OHL is tremendous for our hockey team and for our fans,” said Sudbury Wolves VP & GM Rob Papineau. “He is a special player who is equally as impressive off the ice as he is on it. We are very happy and excited that he will be in the lineup and part of our community this upcoming season.”
Of the newly drafted players, the Wolves scouting staff valued the Leadership quality which can be found throughout the newly drafted players. Four of the top six skaters from the 2018 draft were captains of their teams last season which speaks to the character and qualities that the team was looking for in the cadre of young recruits.
“We have been working on a 3-4-year plan from the scouting perspective to ensure we identify high quality players that combine speed with skill and solid hockey sense,” said Head Scout Mike Taylor. “It takes time to get all the right players in the right positions with the right amount of experience to help them perform at the OHL level, but with this year’s group added to last years group, we have made great strides in securing speedy and skilled players.”
“The first thing that stands out is how pleased we are as a group,” said Papineau, “when we reviewed our original rankings, we valued each player higher on our list than where we were able to draft them which allowed us to add great talent into the organization. We improved our depth by adding 5 defensemen, 8 forwards and the 2 goalies.”
The Wolves set up the draft headquarters in the pre-game media room at the Sudbury Arena, surrounded by most of the organization, the enthusiasm was palpable as the draft day unfolded and the first overall selection of Quinton Byfield was confirmed Saturday morning. Following the draft, Byfield confirmed his commitment to Wolves fans by signing with the Sudbury Wolves over the weekend.
Wolves Fans will get their first chance to see the new draft picks, including Byfield and his #55, this weekend during the Annual Rookie Orientation Camp which will be held at the Sudbury Arena. On Ice sessions will be held Saturday evening from 7-9pm and again Sunday morning from 11-1pm. Season ticket holders will receive free popcorn all weekend and all fans are invited out to see the newest Wolves along side many 2017 draft picks and 3 returning Wolves’ standouts, Blake Murray, Liam Ross and Anthony Tabak.
Season tickets will be on sale with a special new season ticket holder price of $55 off the regular full season ticket pricing for the month of April only. The Wolves office will be set up to answer questions and help choose seats this weekend and throughout the Telus Cup schedule during the last week of April.