Brandon, MB. – The Brandon Wheat Kings have completed a Western Hockey League trade with the Lethbridge Hurricanes on the eve of their 2012 Training Camp which is scheduled to start this week at Westman Communications Group Place.
Wheat Kings’ general manager Kelly McCrimmon has announced the acquisition of 20-year old center Nick Buonassisi from the Hurricanes in exchange for a fifth round pick in the 2014 WHL Bantam Draft.
A 5’10” 175 lb Coquitlam, B.C. native, Buonassisi will be entering his fifth and final season in the WHL. After scoring eighteen goals and 53 points as an 18 year old member of the Prince George Cougars in 2010-11, he scored sixteen goals and 49 points in 69 games last season.
An eleventh round pick of the Prince George Cougars in the 2007 Bantam Draft, Buonassisi has scored 137 points, including fifty goals, while accumulating 224 minutes in penalties in 270 career WHL Games.
“This trade adds an experienced offensive forward to our team, which we felt we needed,” says McCrimmon. “Nick has been a consistent performer posting back to back 50 point seasons, and while scouting Lethbridge last year, we were impressed with his play.”
Sunday’s deal marks the second time in two weeks that the Wheat Kings have added an overage veteran to their lineup. Earlier this month, Brandon obtained veteran defenceman Tyler Yaworski from the Prince Albert Raiders.
The Wheat Kings will open camp this week with four 20-year olds on their active roster. In addition to Yaworski and Buonassisi, Brandon has blueliner Ryley Miller and forward Dominick Favreau.
Training Camp begins this week with Rookie Registration on Tuesday night and on ice sessions Wednesday morning. The Wheat Kings’ annual Intrasquad game will be played Sunday afternoon at Westman Place, beginning at 2pm.