(Marc Smith) The last time that the Moose Jaw Warriors made a deep playoff run, they had a 15-year-old first round pick from Calgary join their team at the end of the season and for the playoffs.
Brayden Point started his legend in the Friendly City during that run, scoring seven goals and posting ten points in 14 playoff games.
Coming off a stellar season with the Calgary Northstars, 16-year-old forward Brayden Tracey — the team’s 2016 first round pick — has joined the Warriors for the rest of the season.
Tracey said he’s excited about the opportunity in front of him, “It’s a thrill,” he said, “After the season, we were pretty sad, but coming here, you know it’s going to be a lot of fun, so you’ve got to enjoy it.”
After being unable to crack the Warriors’ roster out of training camp this season, Tracey went back to midget AAA for another season and put up some big numbers. He struck for 21 goals and 52 points in 30 games during the regular season, both which ranked third overall in the Alberta Midget Hockey League.
Tracey also had the chance to play for Canada Red at the 2017 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge last November.
“I got a lot more ice time than I would have here and was able to get a lot stronger and faster,” said Tracey. “I also became a better two-way player, it’s definitely better be able to play at both ends of the ice than just offensively.”
The Northstars were eliminated from the AMHL playoffs last week in four games. Tracey finished with two goals and four points in the series.
With his club team done for the season, that gave the Warriors the opportunity to add Tracey for the rest of the season. He said he’s going to try to learn as much as possible from the veterans.
“They’ve welcomed me pretty well, so it’s been awesome,” said Tracey.
“Obviously I want to get out there and play a game, but it’s cool to see how they do everything (day-in and day-out) and learning from them, it’s awesome.”
Point stepped into the lineup and made a big impact for the Warriors during the 2012 WHL Playoffs. The Warriors aren’t putting that expectation on Tracey in anyway, but the fellow Calgary product feels that he can step up if called upon.
“I feel like I could make an impact,” he said. “Just play my role and have an impact on the game, it would be lots of fun.”
The Warriors continue their stretch drive towards the playoffs on Wednesday when they host the Lethbridge Hurricanes at Mosaic Place.