Friday, 8 June 2012

Papirny Expects to Push Issue

Jordan Papirny
Jordan Papirny is certainly giving the Brandon Wheat Kings cause for pause.

The Wheat Kings haven't had a 16-year old netminder on their roster since Trevor Kidd's rookie season in 1988-89 but Papirny could be the exception to the anomaly.

Papirney was one of two first round picks for the Wheat Kings in the 2010 WHL Bantam Draft, the first goaltender Brandon had ever selected in the first round.

If his play at this past weekend's Prospects Camp is any indication, he'll be showcasing his skills in a Wheat Kings' uniform on a full-time basis very soon.

"I feel a lot stronger, faster and I feel like I can keep up to the play," said the 6-foot-0, 160 pound Papirny, "Watching the guys out there, and the shots too. Jens (Meilleur) and Ryan (Pulock) were out there with us, and it's a big adjustment and I really want to make the leap."

It he were to make the roster this fall, it would make sense for the club to committ to playing him in 20-25 games (1,200 MP).

However, with Corbin Boes returning for his 19-year old season and 18-year old Curtis Honey appearing to be a capable backup for the 2012-2013 season, the Wheat Kings have no reason to rush Papirny.

The team wouldn't want to find themselves in the same situation as Portland and Vancouver were this past season, 16-year old backups that played sparingly in Brenden Burke (754 MP) and Jackson Whistle (863 MP) respectively.

For his part, Papirny says he's going to come to Brandon's training camp this fall with a mindset that he's going to be a Wheat King.

But first, he's got a big summer ahead.

"Just keeping getting stronger and faster and stuff like that," said Papirny, who dressed for two games as a backup with Brandon last December, "There's little things that I talked with (Goaltender coach) Matt Cockell about but it's just getting strong and faster and being ready to play."

Papirny spent last season with the South Side Athletic Club (SSAC Athletics) in the Alberta Midget Hockey League, posting a 3.67 goals against average and .871 save percentage.

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