Kelowna Rockets make big trade at WHL bantam draft

Leading scorer Shane McColgan en route to Saskatoon for B.C> native Ryan Olsen

The Kelowna Rockets have added a B.C.-born player and two 2012 draft picks in a trade announced during the 2012 Western Hockey League Bantam Draft in Calgary.

The Rockets have acquired 18-year-old forward Ryan Olsen along with a 2nd and a 5th round draft picks from the Saskatoon Blades. In exchange the Rockets have sent forwards Shane McColgan and Jessey Astles to Saskatoon.

A native of Tsawassenn, Olsen is a 6-foot-2 centre who had 15 goals and 32 points last season with the Blades, his second full season in the WHL.

“We were looking for a big forward and Ryan has good size,” said Rockets general manager and president Bruce Hamilton. “We wanted to add size and this trade also addresses our needs at this draft. We now have a second round pick and we think Ryan is going to be a great addition.”

Hamilton thanked both McColgan and Astles for their commitment to the Rockets organization. Both players spent three seasons in Kelowna.

“In losing Shane, we’re losing our leading scorer,” said Hamilton. “I think a fresh start will be good for him. With Jessey, we have a number of guys that play like him and that allowed us to move him. We wish both players all the best.”

The Rockets now have two additional draft picks in the 2012 bantam draft in Calgary. With their first pick, Kelowna selected Calgary native Nick Merkley, a forward who captained the Calgary Bisons AAA bantam team. Merkley had 118 points in 56 games with the Bisons last season.

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