Raiders acquire Hannoun from Royals

Jay Wallace/Victoria Royals Dante Hannoun, who is the leading scorer for the Victoria Royals this season, is now a member of the Prince Albert Raiders.

The Prince Albert Raiders have made their first major move ahead of the Jan. 10 trade deadline in the Western Hockey League.

On Thursday afternoon, the Raiders acquired overage forward Dante Hannoun, Brandon’s fourth round pick in the 2019 WHL Bantam Draft and a pick that orginally belonged to Prince Albert in 2019 from the Victoria Royals in exchange for overage forward Kody McDonald, 2000-born forward Carson Miller and a third round pick in 2020.

“We are excited to add a prolific scorer like Dante to an already potent lineup,” Raiders general manager Curtis Hunt said in a statement. “Dante brings speed, character, and compliments the leadership we already have in the organization.”

Hannoun, a 20-year-old from Delta, B.C., led the Royals in scoring this year with 36 points in 28 games and had 248 points in 286 games with the team after being selected 11th overall in the 2013 WHL Bantam Draft.

“It is never an easy decision to trade a player who has been with your club since being drafted,” Royals general manager Cameron Hope said. “Dante has been a tremendous player and person for our organization. We thank him for all he has done for our franchise and wish him success in Prince Albert.”

McDonald, a 20-year-old from Lethbridge, had 18 points in 30 games this season after putting up 30 points in 33 games with the Raiders last year following a trade with the Prince George Cougars in January 2018.

Miller, who is from Yorkton, is set to set a career high in points in his third campaign in the league as the former first round pick has 18 points in 38 games this season.

“We want to thank Kody and Carson for their contributions to the team on and off the ice,” Hunt said. “We wish them the best of luck going forward in their careers.”

Hannoun is expected to make his Raiders debut Friday at the Art Hauser Centre against the Moose Jaw Warriors.

Around the WHL

Thursday’s trade by the Raiders was the biggest among a number of moves that have taken place over the last couple of days, as teams look to improve their roster ahead of next week’s deadline.

A day after acquiring 19-year-old goaltender Liam Hughes from the Seattle Thunderbirds, the Lethbridge Hurricanes dealt fellow 19-year-old netminder Reece Klassen to the Spokane Chiefs Wednesday for a seventh round pick in 2020.

Klassen, who had an 11-4-3 record with a 3.57 goals against average and a .891 save percentage, will replace Dawson Weatherill in the lineup after the 19-year-old’s season came to an end with a hip injury.

The Saskatoon Blades improved their defensive depth Wednesday by acquiring 19-year-old Reece Harsch (2-8-10) from the Seattle Thunderbirds for 17-year-old blueliner Zach Ashton (0-1-1) and a fifth round pick in 2022.

They would then send 18-year-old defenceman Seth Bafaro (4-3-7) to the Vancouver Giants for a fifth round pick in 2021.

Wednesday’s last trade saw the Tri-City Americans acquire the rights to 18-year-old forward Nick Bowman from the Kootenay Ice for a sixth round pick in 2021.

Bowman, who had a two goals and an assist in 20 games this year with the Moose Jaw Warriors and the Ice, is currently with the AJHL’s Sherwood Park Crusaders and has 14 points in 10 games.

The Regina Pats were busy Thursday as they made a trio of trades.

They started the day off by dealing 18-year-old defenceman Marco Creta (2-7-9) to the Ice for 17-year-old forward Blake Allan (0-3-3), who is the older brother of Prince Albert Raiders defensive prospect Nolan.

The Pats would then deal 19-year-old forward Scott Mahovlich (5-4-9) and an eighth round pick in 2019 to the Hurricanes for a third round pick in 2019.

To round out the day, they picked up 17-year-old blueliner Tyson Feist (0-5-5) and 10th round pick in 2019 from the Chiefs for a fifth round pick in 2021 and an eight round pick in 2019 that originally belonged to the Edmonton Oil Kings..

Around the CHL

Thursday also saw a big move in the Ontario Hockey League as the Saginaw Spirit acquired 19-year-old forward Ryan McLeod from the Mississauga Steelheads in exchange for 17-year-old blueliner Duncan Penman (1-5-6), a third round pick in 2019 that originally belonged to the London Knights, a second round pick in 2020, third round picks in 2022 and 2024, plus a conditional second round pick in 2024.

McLeod, who was a second round pick by the Edmonton Oilers in the 2018 NHL Draft, was second on the Steelheads in scoring this season with 38 points in 32 games after posting a career high 70 points last year.