The Prince Albert Raiders and Seattle Thunderbirds sent shockwaves throughout the Western Hockey League with a blockbuster trade on Wednesday afternoon.
Prince Albert dealt captain Nolan Allan and the rights to unsigned forward Reese Shaw to the Pacific Northwest in exchange for defenseman Easton Kovacs, forwards Brayden Dube and Gabe Ludwig along with six draft selections, a 2023 1st via KEL, 2024 1st, 2024 3rd, 2025 6th, 2026 2nd and a conditional 2026 6th.
Allan says he was shocked when he heard the news of the deal, but will always remember his time
“It’s always kind of a shock when you get traded. I’m very thankful for my time in Prince Albert. It’s a great organization. Great group of people and teammates. I look back at it fondly playing four years there and to spend my there.”
Allan was drafted by the Chicago Blackhawks in the first round in 2021 and when he returned from training camp to join the Raiders roster, he was named the captain.
16 games after he was named the captain, the 19-year-old is off to a new team more then 1800 kilometers away.
Allan says even though he didn’t wear the ‘C’ for a long period time, he is honored to have worn it.
“It wasn’t a whole long time. I feel super honored. Whenever you are named the captain, it’s a huge honor. With all the history in Prince Albert, to be named captain of that group is a huge honor.”
Allan says he has learned and grown a lot as a player throughout his time in a Raider uniform. He says he is going to continue to apply the lessons he learned in Prince Albert in Seattle and into pro hockey.
“There’s going to be up and downs throughout the career. Things might not always go the ways you want them to. Just keep going and work hard everyday and show up to the rink with a positive attitude. Playing hockey everyday is something a lot of kids dream of and not everybody gets the opportunity to play at this level. I’m very grateful to be able to do that.”
Although he never got into a game in the postseason, Allan appeared in seven regular season games during the Raiders championship season in 2018-2019 registering one assist.
Allan will join a team in a similar situation to what the Raiders were in during that 2018-2019 season. The Thunderbirds have already made another significant deal for their championship push acquiring Luke Prokop from the Edmonton Oil Kings earlier this season.
Allan says it was a special group in Prince Albert that season and he is hoping Seattle can replicate the playoff success.
“From what I can remember, when I was younger, I wasn’t around a whole lot. Seeing that group and how close everyone was and how they played every night was truly special. To join a dynamic like that again, it’s really exciting and hopefully we have a chance to chase the [Ed Chynoweth] cup like that.”
Allan and the Thunderbirds will be at the Art Hauser Centre on Jan. 13, 2023.