Rockets pick OHA defenceman with 1st round Bantam pick


May 1, 2014, Kelowna (ISN) – The Kelowna Rockets selected a defenceman from the Okanagan Hockey Academy with its first round selection at the 2014 Western Hockey League’s bantam draft, being held today in Calgary.

Picking with the final selection in the first round (22nd overall) the Rockets drafted defenceman Jonathan Smart, a 5-foot-10.5-inch blueliner who played in OHA’s bantam program this season.

“The thing about Jonathan is his intelligence and play-making ability,” said Rockets assistant GM Lorne Frey. “He makes excellent decisions with the puck and he competes.”

Smart had 42 points in 48 games with OHA this past season. His father Jason Smart was a 6-foot-4 defenceman who played for Saskatoon in the WHL.

Frey said Jonathan is an offensive defenceman with good size.

“He’s so good offensively, he’s another high end offensive guy and I think the defensive side of his game will come,” said Frey. “We think his intelligence is as good as anyone out there at this stage and I think we are fortunate to acquire him.”

The WHL bantam draft is continuing today in Calgary. 

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