REGINA PATS TRADE GOALTENDER
DANIEL WAPPLE TO VANCOUVER
Photograph by: TROY FLEECE , Regina Leader~Post
Regina Leader Post: - Friday, November 6, 2005 - The Regina Pats always knew there was a chance they would end up trading Daniel Wapple. The only surprise was how quickly it came to fruition.
Head coach/GM John Paddock pulled the trigger on Thursday when the veteran goaltender was dealt to the Vancouver Giants for a fourth-round pick in the 2017 WHL bantam draft.
Wapple was one of four 20-year-olds on the Pats’ roster — one more than the league limit. Regina didn’t have to make a decision until the return of captain Colby Williams, who’s ahead of schedule in his recovery from a severe arm laceration.
Even though Williams won’t play this weekend, it could happen sooner than later.
“It was inevitable that an overage had to move but I probably thought it would be at a later date,” said Paddock, who settled on Williams and forwards Taylor Cooper and Aaron Macklin as his three 20-year-olds. “I don’t know if all signs pointed towards Daniel (being the odd-man out). I don’t think they did but circumstances popped up (and impacted) the whole situation.”
Although the Pats would have received a 14-day grace period to make a move after Williams returned, their timetable changed when Vancouver came calling with a deal that Paddock didn’t think would be on the table for long.
So he jumped at it.
“Overage goalies have moved in the league already this year and there was no compensation,” Paddock noted. “We were able to get a decent pick so it was the right time. It was the right time for Daniel for sure. I believe and hope it’s the right time for us, but I think it was as much about him and a place he could go where the coach was really going to stake this year’s future on him. That was the biggest factor. Vancouver was going to go somewhere else (if the deal didn’t happen). He was their first choice.”
Wapple’s departure will have a domino effect on the Pats’ roster. Not only does it clear the way for promising backup Tyler Brown to become the starter, it also creates room for top prospect Jordan Hollett, a first-round pick (13th overall) in the 2014 bantam draft.
The Pats called up their goalie of the future on Thursday from the Ridge Meadows Flames of the B.C. junior B ranks, where he went 3-4-1 with a 3.29 goals-against average and .923 save percentage, facing an average of 42 shots per game.
“He’s a young goalie with lots of potential,” said Paddock. “I don’t think this is really a league for 16-year-olds but you have to start somewhere. We have a plan for the future. At some point Jordan Hollett had to get here and start playing some games.”
The Pats are taking a similar approach with Brown, who will get a chance to prove he can handle the No. 1 job. The 18-year-old netminder has been a standout in at least three of his five starts this season, going 2-3-0 with a 3.65 GAA and .903 SP.
Brown’s best performance may have come Saturday, stopping 38 of 41 shots in a 4-3 OT win over the Moose Jaw Warriors.
“He hasn’t done anything I didn’t expect him to do,” said Paddock, adding that Brown has “the complete trust” of his coaches and teammates. “He improved every day he was here from last year on. He’s a good goalie in this league.”
So is Wapple, who took control of the No. 1 job after being acquired midway through the 2013-14 season from the Medicine Hat Tigers. The Saskatoon native went on to post a record of 46-23-5-7 in Regina with a 3.01 GAA, .907 SP and two shutouts. He also backstopped the club to the second round of the playoffs last season for the first time since 2007.
Despite his accomplishments, Wapple was an obvious trade candidate due to the fact that he’s in his final junior season and the Pats are building for the future.
With him gone, the future is now for Brown and Hollett.
“I don’t know if (Wapple) was holding them back as much as it’s the big picture of the organization,” added Paddock. “This is still a young team. It’s necessary for the future years when there can be no mistake and (the goalies) have to be top-notch.”