With fewer than 24 hours before the WHL trade deadline, the Victoria Royals made a serious statement by making a blockbuster trade with the Moose Jaw Warriors.
“I think it makes us a better hockey club,” said Royals General Manager Cameron Hope.
The Royals acquired 2019 Anaheim Ducks first rounder Brayden Tracey and 19-year-old goaltender Adam Evanoff plus a 2020 fourth-round draft pick and 2023 fifth-round draft pick.
In exchange, the Royals have sent forward Logan Doust, goaltender Brock Gould and defenceman Nolan Jones to the Warriors. In addition to the players, the Warriors will also receive the following draft selections: 2020 third round, 2021 first round and 2022 second and fourth round selections. The move is clear for both teams: the Royals are buyers, the Warriors are sellers.
“I think that the group we have right now has earned the right to make a run,” said Hope. “They are a special group that has been put together little by little over the past year or so and I think this adds a special element to the club.”
The 18-year-old Tracey is the reigning WHL Rookie of the Year and has 38 points (15 goals, 13 assists) in 28 games with the Warriors this season.
“Tracey is an elite scoring player in our league,” said Hope. “He is a first-round pick in the NHL and that’s new territory for us.”
Tracey and Evanoff are expected to arrive in Victoria later tonight and Hope says Tracey could suit up as early as Friday night when Victoria hosts the Portland Winterhawks.
The Royals are coming off an impressive 4-1 road trip and currently sit 2nd in the BC Division with a record of 22-13-2.
Tracey’s arrival makes him the current leading scorer on the team.