All-star honours for Rockets’ Lind

Kole Lind named to WHL’s Western Conference second team

Even general manager Bruce Hamilton admits he didn’t see it coming.

Thanks to a breakout 87-point season, Kelowna Rockets’ forward Kole Lind has been named to the WHL’s Western Conference second all-star team.

Lind, 18, who was also named the Rockets’ most improved player in 2016-17, boosted his point production by 46 points over last season.

“I think I’d be lying if we thought Kole would carry on the way he did all season,” said Hamilton, the Rockets president and GM. “I think that as a young guy, he’s accomplished a lot this year.

“He’s been very good for us, a real nice surprise.”

The Shaunavon, Sask. native, in his second full season with the Rockets, had 30 goals and 57 assists for a team-high 87 points.

“It’s pretty cool to get a league award, nice to be recognized,” Lind said. “I think this is as much a team award, one that comes because of my coaches and teammates helping me out. The success comes from them.”

Lind’s exploits on the ice this season have also piqued the interest of pro scouts.

The 6-foot-1, 175-pound forward was listed 21st in Central Scouting’s latest rankings of North American skaters, making him a potential late first round or early second round choice in this summer’s NHL entry draft.

Hamilton executive nominee…

Rockets president and general manager Bruce Hamilton is the Western Conference nominee for the WHL’s executive of the year award.

The team’s only GM dating back to the birth of the franchise in 1992 in Tacoma, Hamilton’s club finished strong in the 2016-17 regular season with nine wins in its last 10 games.

The Rockets (45-22-5-0) ended up just a point back of the Prince George Cougars for top spot in the B.C. Division.

Hamilton is also the chairman of the WHL’s board of directors. He is the longest serving chairman in league history, having filled the role from 1998 to 2004, and again from 2008 to the present.

The Eastern Conference nominee for the executive of the year award is Regina Pats’ GM John Paddock.

Kelowna Rockets

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