Toronto, ON – The Canadian Hockey League in association with Sherwin-Williams today announced the captains and alternate captains for the 2017 Sherwin-Williams CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game to be played on Monday January 30 in Quebec City, hosted by the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League’s Quebec Remparts.
Nolan Patrick of the Brandon Wheat Kings and Nico Hischier of the Halifax Mooseheads have both been named captains for the 22nd annual showcase of the CHL’s top-40 NHL Draft eligible players. Patrick will lead Team Cherry along with alternate captains Maxime Comtois of the Victoriaville Tigres, and Owen Tippett of the Mississauga Steelheads. Hischier will lead Team Orr with alternates Nicolas Hague of the Steelheads, and Michael Rasmussen of the Tri-City Americans.
“I’m excited about the event, to be named as a team captain is an honour,” said Patrick. “I’m just looking forward to getting to Quebec City and playing with some great players, it should be an entertaining game with that much talent on the ice together.”
An 18-year-old from Winnipeg, MB, Patrick also serves as captain for the Wheat Kings playing in his third full WHL season after being selected by the club fourth overall in the 2013 WHL Bantam Draft. Last season he was named WHL Playoff MVP helping the club secure their third league title contributing 30 points in 21 post-season games. Patrick has been limited to just eight games this season but has recorded six goals and seven assists for 13 points including a four-point performance Friday night in his return from injury.
“It feels really good (to be named captain) because it’s an honour for me and I’m really excited about it,” said Hischier. “It’s a good experience and a chance to meet new friends so it should be fun.”
An 18-year-old from Naters, Switzerland, Hischier is playing in his first full QMJHL season after being selected by the Mooseheads sixth overall in the 2016 CHL Import Draft. He currently leads all QMJHL rookies in scoring with 30 goals and 30 assists for 60 points in 36 games which ranks sixth among all players. Hischier was one of 55 CHL players to compete at the 2017 IIHF World Junior Championship leading his country in scoring and named one of Switzerland’s Top-3 Players with four goals and three assists for seven points in five games including an appearance in the Quarter-Finals.
Over the past 21 years, 18 Wheat Kings and 18 Mooseheads have competed in this event. Patrick is the first from his club to be named captain, while Hischier follows Nathan MacKinnon who captained Team Cherry on home ice in 2013.
Team Cherry leaders also include a pair of forwards who excelled at the 2016 CIBC Canada Russia Series. Comtois, an 18-year-old from Longueuil, QC, has 13 goals and 17 assists for 30 points in 42 games playing in his second QMJHL season after being selected third overall by the Tigres in the 2015 QMJHL Entry Draft. He scored twice while representing Team QMJHL against the Russians on November 17 in Baie-Comeau. Tippett, an 18-year-old from Peterborough, ON, is tied for the OHL lead with 34 goals and ranks fifth overall in league scoring with 57 points in 41 games. Playing in his second career season after being chosen fourth overall by the Steelheads in the 2015 OHL Priority Selection, he also competed against Team Russia and was named Player of the Game for Team OHL November 10 in North Bay recording two assists.
Team Orr leaders include a pair of towering figures on the blue line and up front. Hague, an 18-year-old defenceman from Kitchener, ON, is playing in his second career season with the Steelheads who chose him in the second round of the 2014 OHL Priority Selection. The 2016 OHL Scholastic Player of the Year stands 6’5’’ and currently has 14 goals and 17 assists for 31 points in 41 games. Rasmussen, a 17-year-old from Surrey, BC, also stands 6’5’’ and currently ranks fifth in the WHL with 30 goals while adding 21 assists for 51 points through 46 games. Playing in his second career season, the former seventh overall pick in the 2014 WHL Bantam Draft opened the season in style for the Americans with a career-high four goals September 24 against the Spokane Chiefs.
Since 2010, Team Cherry captains have included Jakob Chychrun, Anthony Beauvillier, Sam Reinhart, Nathan MacKinnon, Ryan Murray, Sean Couturier, and Taylor Hall, while recent Team Orr captains include Matthew Tkachuk, Connor McDavid, Aaron Ekblad, Seth Jones, Colton Sissons, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, and Tyler Seguin.
Team Cherry and Team Orr coaching staffs will be announced later this week.
The 2017 Sherwin-Williams CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game is proudly supported by title partner Sherwin-Williams, and CHL associate sponsors CIBC, Cooper Tire, and autoTRADER.ca. The game will be broadcast live on Sportsnet and TVA Sports.