The annual WHL Bantam Draft takes place tomorrow morning in Calgary starting at 8:30am. The Swift Current Broncos pick 10th in what they feel will be a good draft in the first two rounds that peters out later on. I had a chance to chat with Broncos Assistant GM Jamie Porter on the draft earlier this week.
Interview with Broncos AGM/Head Scout Jamie Porter (Download):
So it appears the Broncos have a list of eight players they would be thrilled to take in the first round and they pick tenth. Some things will have to fall their way.
For anyone who wants to follow the draft one of the best sources if not the best source is the Western Elite Hockey Prospects newsletter. Full disclosure I do a podcast with them at least I have been in the last few months, but it’s a great way to get a basic idea where guys stand. Anyone interested in tomorrow’s draft would probably enjoy their annual draft preview newsletter. It would certainly help you follow along with the draft.
So who might the Broncos pick? In Jamie Porter’s time as head scout the Broncos have gone forward, forward, defence, forward, defence, defence, forward, forward, defence. There really isn’t a one year to the next trend. They’ve generally stated that they look to take the best player available. That is unless there is a tie in which case they would go with the player who best suits their needs.
When you look at the organization right now they certainly appear to have more depth in defensive prospects. That doesn’t mean they automatically go with a forward. I suspect if all things were equal they would take the forward. However, if there is any player on that list of eight left I’m sure they will go with that player regardless of position.
There appear to be quite a few forward options available from Saskatchewan in the first two rounds. It will be interesting to see if the local teams try to mine from that group knowing they would likely be very enthusiastic about playing close to home.
For those who haven’t listened yet I’ll post links to all seven episodes of the Western Elite Hockey Prospects podcast I did to compliment their newsletter. The podcasts are focused on interviewing some of the talents that will be up for grabs tomorrow. Perhaps one of them will be a future Bronco?
- Podcast 1 (Carson Focht & Koby Morrisseau)
- Podcast 2 (Ty Smith & Cole Fonstad)
- Podcast 3 (Zach Huber & Kale Clouston)
- Podcast 4 (Dawson Barteaux & Brodi Stuart)
- Podcast 5 (Sean Comrie & Bryan Lockner)
- Podcast 6 (Jackson Shepard)
- Podcast 7 (Brendan Benoit & Reid Perepeluk)
I really enjoyed getting to talk to those 13 young men and I wish nothing but the best to all of them tomorrow morning. Hopefully we will see them all play and succeed at the WHL level. The bantam draft is a very difficult process and a ton of work has gone into tomorrow. Congrats to all the scouts and managers for the hours they’ve put in. I hope it pays off tomorrow… especially at the Broncos draft table.
Also best of luck to all the young players waiting for the call including Broncos Coach/GM Mark Lamb’s son Hunter. There is lots of talent from our area even in some down years. I hope a few of them get a good opportunity.