Quake Look to Build Through Draft | | Big Horn Radio Network | Wyoming

Quake Look to Build Through Draft

Written by on April 23, 2020

THE YELLOWSTONE QUAKE WILL BE PARTICIPATING IN THE 2020 NA3HL DRAFT LATER TODAY. THE QUAKE COMING OFF AN IMPRESSIVE 2019-20 CAMPAIGN WILL BE LOOKING TO BOLSTER THEIR ROSTER FOR NEXT SEASON. THE DRAFT WILL FEATURE FOUR ROUNDS. HEAD COACH PHIL OBERLIN GIVES INSIGHT INTO THE QUAKES BIGGEST NEEDS.

“EVERYBODY NEEDS DEFENSE-MEN. I THINK THAT’S GOING TO BE A BIG HOLE THAT WE’RE GOING TO HAVE TO FILL THIS YEAR. DEFENSE IS PROBABLY THE BIGGEST BUT THEN AGAIN, I THINK SOME DEPTH SCORING AS WELL. MAYBE HIGHER END FORWARDS AS WELL. WE HAVE THREE GUYS THAT I THINK ARE RETURNING THAT CAN BE SOLID IN THAT FOR US, SO I DON’T REALLY THINK THAT, THAT’S SOMETHING THAT WE’RE LOOKING AT IN THE DRAFT BUT I THINK DEFENSE IS GOING TO BE A BIG HOLE TO FILL THIS YEAR.”

THE NA3HL IS CHANGING UP THE DRAFT THIS YEAR. IN PAST YEAR THEIR WERE 8 TOTAL ROUNDS, THIS YEAR THAT’S BEEN CHANGED AND THEIR WILL BE JUST FOUR ROUNDS. COACH OBERLIN EXPLAINS WHY.

“AT THIS LEVEL ONCE A KID GETS DRAFTED, HIS RIGHTS BELONG TO THAT TEAM. ONE OF THE THINGS WAS, THE LEAGUE WAS SEEING A LOT OF, 34 TEAMS WITH EIGHT PICKS EACH, THAT’S A LOT OF NAMES. I THINK THE LEAGUE WAS SEEING A LOT OF KIDS GOING TO OTHER OPTIONS AND LEAVING OUR LEAGUE OR NOT COMING TO OUR LEAGUE BECAUSE THEY GOT DRAFTED AND THEY ONLY HAD THAT TEAM TO WORK WITH. ITS DROPPED DOWN TO FOUR PICKS SO IT’S A LITTLE BIT SMALLER OF A DRAFT BUT I THINK THAT’S A BETTER THING OVERALL FOR THE LEAGUE CAUSE IT LEAVES A LOT MORE KIDS AVAILABLE TO RECRUIT POST DRAFT.”

THE NA3HL DRAFT IS UNLIKE ANY OTHER. JUST BECAUSE A TEAM DRAFTS A PLAYER DOES NOT NECESSARILY MEAN HE WILL PLAY FOR THAT TEAM. COACH OBERLIN ON THE CHALLENGES THE DRAFT PRESENTS.

“WE HAVE THESE TENDERS THAT ARE ESSENTIALLY LIKE A LETTER OF INTENT, THAT, WITHIN OUR LEAGUE IF A PLAYER WANTS TO PLAY FOR OUR PROGRAM BUT HE ISN’T READY TO SIGN A CONTRACT YET, THEY CAN SIGN A TENDER FORM. WHICH, HIS RIGHTS BELONG TO OUR PROGRAM WITHIN OUR LEAGUE. IT REALLY IS JUST A ‘HEY IF I DECIDED TO COME TO THE NA3 I’D LIKE TO COME PLAY FOR YOU.’ THAT’S SIMILAR TO THE DRAFT WHERE YOU CAN DRAFT A PLAYER BUT HE’S STILL ABLE TO GO AND EXPLORE OTHER LEAGUES, EXPLORE OTHER OPTIONS. JUST WITHIN OUR LEAGUE, HIS RIGHTS BELONG TO US.”

COACH OBERLIN GOES ON TO TALK ABOUT THE KIND OF PLAYERS THE QUAKE ARE LOOKING TO SIGN.

“OBVIOUSLY WE WANT GOOD KIDS OFF THE ICE BUT WE WANT GUYS THAT CAN PLAY AT THIS LEVEL AS WELL. SO REALLY THE GUYS THAT WE HAVE BEEN PURSUING IN THE LAST YEAR AND MOVING FORWARD, ARE THOSE BUBBLE TRIPLE-A KIDS. THE GUYS THAT ARE PLAYING IN THE TOP 80 TRIPLE-A TIER ONE PROGRAMS THAT ARE MAKING THAT JUMP FOR THEIR FIRST YEAR INTO U-18. SO WE WANT TO BE AN OPTION FOR THOSE GUYS. SO THAT’S KIND OF WHERE WE’RE TRYING TO PULL KIDS FROM.”

AND LASTLY COACH ADDS THE IMPORTANCE OF HAVING LOCAL TALENT ON THE ROSTER.

“I THINK WE’RE GOING TO FOCUS A LITTLE BIT MORE THIS YEAR ON OUR GUYS THAT ARE KIND OF OUT IN THIS AREA. THERE’S SOME GOOD PLAYERS THAT ARE COMING OUT OF THIS STATE. AND SO OBVIOUSLY WE WANT TO BE THE TEAM THAT THOSE PLAYERS WANT TO COME TO. WE DON’T WANT THEM GOING TO SHERIDAN OR GILLETTE. SO WE WANT TO BE THAT PREMIER PROGRAM THAT’S WITHIN WYOMING IN JUNIOR HOCKEY.”

THE 2020 NA3HL DRAFT GETS UNDERWAY TODAY AT 2PM MOUNTAIN TIME. STAY TUNED TO THE BIG HORN RADIO NETWORK FOR MORE YELLOWSTONE QUAKE HOCKEY UPDATES.


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