Tips Tips acquired 19-year-old goaltender Cole Holowenko from Prince Albert today in exchange for defenseman Evan Morden and goaltender Andy Desautels. More to follow …
—- UPDATE, 4:15 p.m.
More on today’s trade:
Holowenko has one full season of WHL experience under his belt. The Penticton, B.C., native ended up as Prince Albert’s primary goalie last season, going 13-26-1-1 with a 3.98 goals against average and .890 save percentage for the team that finished with the league’s worst record. He was originally a second-round bantam pick by the Chilliwack Bruins in 2008. Holowenko became available because Prince Albert acquired overage goalie Luke Siemens, a former Silvertip, from Moose Jaw during the offseason.
Tips general manager Garry Davidson said he’d been seeking an experienced goaltending option for some time — as evidenced by his acquisition of the rights to overager Brandon Anderson earlier in the offseason. Everett was in a situation where the Tips were relying on 17-year-old sophomore Austin Lotz, along with one of 18-year-old rookies Desautels and Troy Trombley, to carry the load in goal. This gives Everett an experienced option to pair with Lotz. Davidson said Holowenko and Lotz would split duties this season, with ice time determined by performance.
The two players Everett surrendered were both on the bubble for making the team. Morden, a 19-year-old from Swan River, Manitoba, spent the previous two seasons with the Tips. However, he had yet to establish himself as a top-four option, and this season he was looking at competing with Everett’s influx of rookie d-men for playing time. Desautels, an 18-year-old from White City, Saskatchewan, was engaged in a battle with fellow 18-year-old rookie hopeful Troy Trombley for Everett’s second goaltending position and was no better than a 50-50 shot to earn to spot.
Trombley was subsequently reassigned to the Melville Millionaires of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League. Davidson said Trombley would remain on Everett’s 50-player protected list.
The moves bring Everett’s roster down to 25 players — 15 forwards, eight defensemen and two goaltenders. That pretty much looks like an opening-night roster to me, especially with forwards Ryan Harrison and Manraj Hayer out suspended, and defenseman Ryan Murray only around until the NHL lockout concludes.