By Bert Richardson
Station Nation Staff
Trade rumors and speculations have begun with the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League’s trading window opening up on Friday morning in Drummondville, Quebec.
The trade window opens on Friday morning at 9:00 am and ends at 11:00 am on Saturday prior to the QMJHL entry draft.
Just like every other season, there are a number of blockbuster deal that have been expected to go down since Santa Clause's arrival last December.
One of the biggest involves Edmonton Oilers draft pick and current Cape Breton Screaming Eagle net minder Olivier Roy, who has been long rumored to be traded to Lewiston. From there, the star goaltender could be heading from one struggling market to another.
“Roy will supposedly then be dealt to the Bathurst Titan as part of a deal that would net the Maineiacs Bathurst’s fifth overall pick,” reports Willy Palov in the Chronicle Herald.
Roy struggled a bit last season while playing in the league’s toughest division. He finished the regular season with a record of 34-21, a goals against average of 2.62, and save percentage of 0.908%. Despite his solid stats, Roy got off to a slow start that began with a quick exit from Oilers training camp.
Cape Breton general manager Mario Duroucher didn’t appear to deny that Roy would be traded. The Eagles will likely make Alexandre Verroneau their starter next season pending any possible trades.
"Verroneau is my No. 1 right now so I think I will look for an older guy with experience to help him," Durocher said. "I just want to make sure I don’t burn him (out). If he has a bad game, he can have a rest and then go back in. That would be the best to manage Alex."
But according to Palov on Twitter, the Eagles will get some support in net on Friday.
“Screaming Eagles have acquired a 19-year-old goalie for a 2011 fifth-round pick,” he reports. “Will let you know his name in another day or two.”
Palov also reports that the Titan want to “go for it” this year, a bit of a surprise for a team that finished fifth in the Atlantic division last season and has no real "superstars."
Bathurst does have a stock pile of picks in this year’s draft, however. That includes one in the first round, two in the second, and one in the third. Overall, the Titan will select 16 players unless the squad does some work on the trading front.
In other expected trades, The PEI Rocket and Victoriaville Tigres are expected to complete a transaction that took place during the holiday trading period.
Andrej Nestrasil and Travis McIsaac are reportedly off to the island to complete the trades that saw Joel Champagne and Chris Doyle head to Victoriaville.
The import Nestrasil scored 16 goals and added 35 assists in 50 regular season games with the Tigres last season. In 16 playoff games, the right winger registered two goals and four assists.
McIsaac, a Uigg, PEI native, scored 22 goals and recorded 35 assists while playing in all 68 regular season games. In the post-season, he recorded seven goals and six assists.
According to several folks, the trade period will be used more as a building tool than a buyers device.
“Teams are gearing for the (2012) Memorial Cup and they have their 19-year-olds available right now,” a scout told Metro Halifax, adding that there are still impact players on the market.