After a couple days of trade speculation between the Windsor Spitfires and Guelph Storm, general managers Mike Kelly (Guelph) and Warren Rychel (Windsor) finally got a deal sewn up Tuesday night.
The deal sees the Spitfires trading star forward, and the Windsor general manager’s son, Kerby Rychel as well as defenceman Nick Ebert to the Guelph Storm in exchange for winger Brody Milne and eight draft picks – Guelph’s second in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018, Kitchener’s third in 2016, Guelph’s fourth in 2015 and Windsor’s fourth in 2014.
Also included in the deal is a conditional 15th round pick in 2017.
The trade was originally expected to involve Windsor defenceman Slater Koekkoek, but Guelph completed the deal with Ebert, who was drafted in the seventh round in 2012 by the Los Angeles Kings.
Rychel has 16 goals and 39 points in 27 games this season with Windsor and was recently named to Team Canada’s final selection camp roster. Ebert has four goals and 20 points in the same number of games, while Milne has eight goals and 15 points in 28 games for Guelph.
“Obviously it’s a tough trade to make with two impact players on our team.” Rychel said in a press release, moments after the deal was approved. “But with an exceptionally tough Western Conference, we think it was important to take a step back now in order to take a big step ahead down the road.” Rychel said Milne is the type of player that can excel in a new role.
“We’re excited to get Brody here. We think he will do very well here with increased ice-time. He was playing for a very good team in Guelph, behind some very good forwards. He will get every chance to play here and have an impact,” Rychel said in the release.
Milne, a 6’0, 180-pound left winger, had 10 goals, 10 assists and 14 penalty minutes over parts of two seasons with the Storm.
Rychel had been living away from home, with a billet family, since he was drafted by Columbus in the first round of this year’s NHL Entry Draft.
The blockbuster deal is the second of its kind this year, with the Midwest division-leading Erie Otters acquiring Vancouver Canucks prospect Brendan Gaunce for a player and four draft picks last week.
Guelph and Erie are both playoff contenders who are looking at competing in the OHL’s Western Conference, with the London Knights, who host the Memorial Cup tournament this year.