Thursday, June 14, 2012

Merritt-Chilliwack Trade:


Less than a month after acquiring F Austin Plevy (94) from the Langley Rivermen, the Merritt Centennials have flipped him to the Chilliwack Chiefs along with the junior 'A' rights to G Keith Hamilton (92) for F Derek Huisman (92).

I've heard lots of rumours as to how this deal came about and I'm not going to speculate on them here, but the trade sees Plevy reunited with his 2010-11 coach, Harvey Smyl and a Chiefs organization he's very familiar with. In Huisman, the Centennials acquire a bonafide first line centre who can not only score (he had 30 goals last season), but is also physical, plays well defensively and can play both the power play and penalty kill.

I mentioned at the time of Merritt acquiring Plevy that I thought he was poised for a breakout season in 2011-12 and I stand by that. However just like Jakob Reichert, Centennials head coach and GM Luke Pierce has smartly dealt him to a team in the opposite conference so any damage on the score sheet that Plevy could do to the Cents is only during two games - one in Chilliwack and one in Merritt.

The inclusion of Hamilton's rights in the trade is curious as the Kelowna native has spent the last two seasons in the WHL and is set for his 20-year-old season with the Victoria Royals. If he comes back to the BCHL for whatever reason, I can't see Hamilton being a back up to Mitch Gillam (92) so it's likely the Chiefs would move his rights elsewhere. Chilliwack also has Bryton Udy (93) to consider as well although he's no longer listed on their roster and I'm trying to figure where he's gone.

To Merritt:
F Derek Huisman (92)
To Chilliwack:
F Austin Plevy (94)

G Keith Hamilton (92)

Here's the release from the Centennials website:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Merritt, BC - June 14, 2012

The Merritt Centennials are pleased to announce the acquisition of forward Derek Huisman (92) from the Chilliwack Chiefs in exchange for forward Austin Plevy (94) and goaltender Keith Hamilton (92).

Husiman, who's from Smithers, has 94 points in 116 career BCHL games, including 65 points in 58 games during the 2011-12 season. He was second on the Chiefs in scoring last season after finishing fourth on the Quesnel Millionaires in scoring as a rookie in 2010-11.

Prior to that, Huisman played with the Sicamous Eagles of the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League for parts of two seasons, compiling 49 points in 64 games.

The Cents organization looks forward to seeing Derek on the ice in training camp in August and wishes both Austin and Keith all the best in their hockey futures.

For further information, please contact Cents Head Coach & GM Luke Pierce at 250-378-3607.

The Merritt Centennials, proudly celebrating 40 seasons as the BCHL's longest continuously run franchise, are a non-profit, community owned Junior 'A' Hockey Club run by a dedicated team of investors, directors, and volunteers.

Here's the release from the Chiefs website: 

The Chilliwack Chiefs have acquired 18 year old forward Austin Plevy along with the playing rights to 20 year old goaltender Keith Hamilton from the Merritt Centennials in exchange for 20 year old forward Derek Huisman.

Plevy is entering year 3 in the BCHL and has tallied 17 goals and 28 assists in 111 career games, which included 43 points in 58 games last season in Langley.

He was also on Team West at the Canadian Junior Hockey League Prospects Game in November 2011 and played for the Chiefs in Langley two seasons ago. 

Head Coach and General Manager Harvey Smyl on acquiring Plevy, “Austin is a hard working, extremely skilled forward, who has a very high compete level, he will bring the effort and attitude we expect from a Chief.”

As for Plevy he is thrilled for the chance to play in Chilliwack, “I am so excited to get the opportunity to play for Harvey Smyl and the Chiefs again. Chiefs fans are amazing and Prospera Centre is one of the premier places to play junior hockey.” 

The Chiefs organization would like to thank Derek Huisman for his hard work on and off of the ice in Chilliwack.
 

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