Lethbridge, AB – The Lethbridge Hurricanes Hockey Club selected a pair of American-born players – Nathan Tobey and Riley Bassen – Wednesday in the first ever WHL U.S. Prospects Draft.
With the 10th overall pick, the Hurricanes selected Tobey. The 2005-born defenseman appeared in nine games with the Dallas Stars Elite 14’s where he registered three points (1g-2a). The Oklahoma City, Oklahoma rear-guard who is 5’11, 137-pounds is a right-hand shot defenseman.
“He’s a big defenseman who has really good skill and moves around the ice really effortlessly,” said Hurricanes general manager Peter Anholt. “Tobey jumps out at you as soon as you watch his team play and he’s both an offensively and defensively gifted play that we had earmarked right from day one and we’re pleased and kind of surprised to be able to get him at 10.”
The ‘Canes then took Bassen with the 35th overall selection. The product of Frisco, Texas played four league games also with the Dallas Stars Elite 14’s where he collected one goal with two penalty minutes. The 2005-born forward stands 5’6 and weighs 115-pounds. He is also the son of former Medicine Hat Tiger and NHLer Bob Bassen.
“Bassan is an interesting case as his dad played in both the WHL and NHL, so he’s got some pedigree to play at our level. He’s a real competitive player that has an excellent hockey sense,” added Anholt. “We don’t feel a rush to have him play for us at 16; we can take our time with him and when he’s ready to play we think he’s going to be a really good Hurricane.”
The Hurricanes and the WHL will conduct the WHL Bantam Draft on Wednesday, April 22nd via an online draft at www.whl.ca. The ‘Canes will hold the 16th overall selection in the first round of the Bantam Draft.