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Compared to the trade deadline movement in the other Canadian Major Junior A leagues, the Western Hockey league enjoyed a relatively quiet passing of its deadline on Jan. 10. In total, there were 13 transactions consummated, involving 24 players and 13 draft selections.

Tri-City traded stay-at-home defenseman Ryan Gillen to Calgary in exchange for a seventh-round draft pick in the 2008 WHL Bantam Draft. The Americans also traded defenseman Nicholaus Knudsen, still recovering from a broken cheekbone, and a sixth-round pick in the 2008 Bantam Draft to Lethbridge in exchange for defenseman Mitch McColm, who becomes an affiliate player for the Americans, and a draft pick.

Calgary not only landed Gillen, but also scored defenseman Dan Mercer, 19, from Spokane in exchange for D Curtis Kelnar, an 18-year-old stay-at-home defender. Calgary also moved defender Michael Hengen and his 20 points to Moose Jaw for a draft pick.

Aside from adding Hengen, the Warriors traded forward Andre Herman to Seattle for a draft pick. The 19-year-old Herman had 12 points for Moose Jaw, but was a minus-21.

Saskatoon hauled in depth forward Craig Cuthbert from Kelowna in exchange for a draft pick and landed Derek Hulak and a pick from Regina in exchange for Michael MacAngus and two picks. Hulak, 17, had 10 points in 19 games with Regina, while MacAngus, 18, had 23 points in 40 games with the Blades.

Regina also added tough forward Myles Stoesz, 19, from Chilliwack, shipping D Brayden Metz to the Bruins.

Vancouver, attempting to solidify its roster for a deep playoff run, added defenseman A.J. Thelen from Prince Albert, offloading D John Flatters and D Nathan Deck in the process. Thelen, an over-age player drafted by Minnesota in the first round of the 2004 NHL Entry Draft, had 12 points in 23 games with Prince Albert. The Giants also added playoff tested Mike Wuchterl from Lethbridge in exchange for Kyle Lamb and a draft pick. All of this after the Giants had captured Wacey Rabbit, 20, and property of the Boston Bruins, from Saskatoon earlier in the week in exchange for 18-year-old forward Kenton Dulle and a pick.

Swift Current moved rugged two-way D Dane Crowley, F Jordan Mistelbacher and a draft pick to Everett in exchange for 17-year-old offensive defenseman Eric Doyle, who will play in this week’s NHL/CHL Top Prospects Game.

Finally, Portland made a pair of moves to change its roster. First, the team traded over-age forward Robert Klinkhammer, 42 points in 37 games, to Brandon for Teegan Moore and a second-round pick. Moore, also an over-ager had 14 points in 35 games and is one of just eight players in Brandon’s history to play 300 WHL games with the club. Then, the Winter Hawks took on 18-year-old forward Matt Schmermund from Kamloops, sending forward Sasha Golin to the Blazers. Golin, 18, had just seven points with Portland this season.

Not only did Tri-City make some aggressive moves leading up to the trade deadline, but the team also added 19-year-old defenseman T. J. Fast, who had been playing for the University of Denver. Fast, a second-round choice of the Los Angeles Kings in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, has three assists in his first three games with the Americans.

Medicine Hat forward Chris Stevens was named WHL Player of the Week after scoring two goals and six points in three games. Stevens, 20, is in his second season in the WHL, and is undrafted by the NHL.

Mark Derlago is Brandon’s new captain, replacing Teegan Moore, who was traded this week.

Chilliwack’s Nick Holden was named an alternate captain this week after trades left leadership vacancies.

Kamloops goalie Dustin Butler set a single-season franchise record Saturday, notching his seventh of the season, breaking the single-season mark he had shared with Devan Dubnyk and Corey Hirsch.

Moose Jaw released rookie D Patrick Vrana back to his Czech club, HC Sparta Praha.

This week, Portland became the first visiting team to win in regulation in Everett this season as Frazer McLaren’s empty-net goal with 1:01 left sealed a 3-1 victory.

Prince George acquired goalie Scott Bowles, 20, from Windsor of the OHL. Bowles was released by the Spitfires and returned to the Cougars, his previous WHL team.
 
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