By Nick Patterson Herald Writer
The Everett Silvertips pulled off a major trade Monday, acquiring forward Landon Ferraro from Red Deer in exchange for center Byron Froese. There was also an exchange of draft picks as Everett acquired a conditional fifth-round pick in the 2012 Western Hockey League bantam draft and sent a third-round selection in 2012 to the Rebels.
Ferraro, who is entering his 19-year-old season, is one of the most talented players in the WHL. The 6-foot, 171-pound native of Vancouver, B.C., was the second overall pick in the 2006 bantam draft and was taken in the second round (32nd overall) by Detroit in the 2009 NHL draft. Ferraro also has good bloodlines. He’s the son of former NHL player Ray Ferraro.
But for all his talent, Ferraro has yet to realize his full potential in the WHL. He scored 37 goals in 68 games in 2008-09, but during an injury-plagued 2009-10 slumped to 16 goals and 30 assists in 53 games. Ferraro also didn’t see eye-to-eye with Rebels coach Jesse Wallin, and he stated publicly that he did not expect to be back with Red Deer for the upcoming season.
The Tips surrendered a lot to acquire Ferraro. Froese, who’s also entering his 19-year-old season, has been one of Everett’s top players the past two seasons. Last season he had 29 goals and 32 assists in 70 games, and he was a fourth-round pick by Chicago in the 2009 NHL draft. He was also the pivotman on Everett’s former “Kid Line,” which consisted of Froese, Kellan Tochkin and Tyler Maxwell.
Ferraro was probably the most coveted name on the WHL trade market this summer, so the Tips undoubtedly had competition in acquiring his rights. Ferraro should help replace some of the offensive skill that departed with the graduation of Shane Harper. Ferraro also plays center, so the depth chart remains intact.