Thursday, 1 May 2014

Wheat Kings Choose 11 in Bantam Draft


  One of the residual effects of having the #1 pick in a draft is that, at the end of it, you're going to be happy regardless of how the rest unfolded.

  The Brandon Wheat Kings chose Winnipeg product Stelio Mattheos with the first overall pick in the 2014 WHL Bantam Draft Thursday, making him the fourth Manitoban ever selected at #1 and forever the answer to the trivia question 'who is the only player the Wheat Kings have chosen first overall in the WHL Bantam Draft."

  From all accounts, the 6-foot-2 1/2, 180 pound Mattheos is the complete package and the fact he happened to be Manitoban was the cherry on top of the sundae.

   "When we made our selection, we looked at a lot of factors.  The body of work through the entire year, but the one thing that was really significant for our group was that Stelio had an injury at the Western Bantam Championship,” said Wheat Kings’ Director of Scouting Wade Klippenstein, “Just to see his team without him , and how much he meant to his team, really meant a lot to us.  Sometimes it’s how a guy looks when he plays but, in this case, it was how his team looked without him.  That was a big evaluation for us.  All year, he had a great season, he was the leader of a very good provincial championship hockey team, and we’re very happy to have him.”

  Mattheos had 65 goals and 124 points in 42 regular season and playoff games in leading the Winnipeg Monarchs to the Manitoba Bantam title and their spot in the Western Canadian Championship.

  The scoring stats are, obviously, impressive but Klippenstein indicated that Mattheos attributes include a lot of things off the ice as well.

  “Not just the player, it goes much further.  He’s a great person, he’s an excellent student from a strong family that’s going to be a great addition to our organization, not just during his playing time, but it’s a lifetime,” “When you play for the Brandon Wheat Kings, you become part of the Brandon Wheat Kings’ family for a lifetime and we’ve excited to have he and his family join our group.”

  For Mattheos’ standpoint, being selected by the Wheat Kings was a good fit for him.

  "I set a goal for myself to become the #1 pick I accomplished that goal, and it feels really good to accomplish a goal like that,” said Mattheos on Thursday evening, “ I’m so excited to be part of the Brandon Wheat Kings.  You can tell they have a really bright future, and I’m happy to be part of that.”
Stelio Mattheos
  There was some question on whether Mattheos would join the Western Hockey League or pursue the U.S. College route for the next stage of hockey career,  but he was quick to answer that question Thursday, saying he’s fully committed to the Brandon Wheat Kings and the WHL.

  “I want to be a great player in the NHL, and I thought that the WHL would be the best place for me to go,” said Mattheos, “Brandon taking me really sealed the deal, I think, because it’s a great organization and, as an added bonus, it’s close to home.”

  For some reason, the rest of Thursday’s draft seemed anti-climatic after the Wheat Kings selected first overall, but the team did add ten more prospects the rest of the day.

   Brandon selected five forwards, four defencemen and two goaltenders with six players from Manitoba, three from Alberta and one each from Saskatchewan and the state of Minnesota.

  The Minnesotan was Mickey Anderson in the 11th round, the younger brother of 2013 ninth round selection Joey Anderson.

  Both players have committed to the Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs.
 
  The rest of Brandon’s picks Thursday were:
RD/OV
Name
Pos
Sh
Ht
Wt
Hometown
2013-2014 Season
League
GP
G
A
Pts
Pim
2 - 32
Ian Mitchell
D
R
5'9"
150
Calahoo, AB
PAC Saints
AMBHL
24
4
17
21
26
3 - 54
Jarrod Gouley
D
L
6'1"
185
Calgary, AB
Calgary Bisons
AMBHL
32
5
24
29
52
4 - 76
Jeremy Klessens
C
L
5'10"
180
Red Deer, AB
Red Deer White
AMBHL
31
27
18
45
42
5 - 106
Connor Gutenberg
C
R
5'8.5"
130
Brandon, MB
Brandon Wheat Kings
WMHA
32
20
20
40
6
RD/OV
Name
Pos
Sh
Ht
Wt
Hometown
2013-2014 Season
League
GP
GAA
W
L
T
5 - 109
Hunter Arps
G
L
6'1"
145
Pleasantdale, SK
North East Wolf Pack
SBAAHL
23
2.3
11
6
5
RD/OV
Name
Pos
Sh
Ht
Wt
Hometown
2013-2014 Season
League
GP
G
A
Pts
Pim
6 - 120
James McIsaac
C
R
5'9"
155
Winnipeg, MB
Winnipeg Warriors
WMHA
31
31
26
57
110
8 - 164
Leif Mattson
RW
R
5'8.5"
153
Stonewall, MB
Interlake Lightning
WMHA
33
35
33
68
16
9 - 186
Dane Hirst
D
L
6'0
177
Lac Du Bonnet, MB
Eastman Selects
WMHA
33
4
12
16
26
RD/OV
Name
Pos
Sh
Ht
Wt
Hometown
2013-2014 Season
League
GP
GAA
W
L
T
10 - 208
Justin Klassen
G
L
5'11.5"
159
Portage la Prairie, MB
Central Plains Capitals
WMHA
23
4.40
5
13
1
RD/OV
Name
Pos
Sh
Ht
Wt
Hometown
2013-2014 Season
League
GP
G
A
Pts
Pim
11 - 223
Mikey Anderson
D
L
5'10"
185
Roseville, Minnesota
Hill - Murray School
USHS
25
1
5
6
10

   “I was very happy with our staff and how prepared we were.  The picks that we made were guys we had in those slots.  It was a bit of a strange year where there wasn’t a lot of guys we had ranked really high that we were able to take in later rounds,” said Klippenstein, “We had a good mix of guys, couple of goaltenders, defence, forwards, guys from Manitoba, guys from other provinces.  Pretty happy, overall, with the mix of players.”

  As far as Western Manitobans were concerned:
Team
RD/OV
Name
Pos
Sh
Ht
Wt
Hometown
2013-2014 Season
League
GP
G
A
Pts
Pim
Moose Jaw
1 - 4
Josh Brook
D
R
5'10"
148
Roblin, MB
Notre Dame Hounds
SSMHL
32
6
20
26
50
Team
RD/OV
Name
Pos
Sh
Ht
Wt
Hometown
2013-2014 Season
League
GP
GAA
W
L
T
Medicine Hat
2 - 39
Rilan Rommenleare
G
R
5'11.5"
154
Boissevain, MB
Southwest Cougars
WMHA
18
3.40
8
10
0
Team
RD/OV
Name
Pos
Sh
Ht
Wt
Hometown
2013-2014 Season
League
GP
G
A
Pts
Pim
Prince Albert
3 - 52
Cody Thompson
D
L
6'3"
185
Killarney, MB
Southwest Cougars
WMHA
29
8
11
19
44
Brandon
5 - 106
Connor Gutenberg
C
R
5'8.5"
130
Brandon, MB
Brandon Wheat Kings
WMHA
32
20
20
40
6
Seattle
9 - 193
Reginald Pohl
RW
R
6'1.5"
186
Douglas, MB
Southwest Cougars
WMHA
32
6
14
20
44
Kootenay
9 - 198
Sam Huston
D
L
6'3"
160
Brandon, MB
Brandon Wheat Kings
WMHA
30
5
12
17
32
Edmonton
11 - 227
Brian Harris
C
L
5'10"
160
Wawanesa, MB
Southwest Cougars
WMHA
24
11
11
22
16

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