Gropp to Rangers, Kolesar to Blue Jackets, Bear to Oilers
KENT, June 27, 2015 — Three Seattle Thunderbirds were selected Saturday morning at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, Florida, in the second day of the 2015 NHL Draft.
Left wing Ryan Gropp was selected by the New York Rangers, right wing Keegan Kolesar was selected by the Columbus Blue Jackets and defenseman Ethan Bear was selected by the Edmonton Oilers.
The Rangers selected Gropp in the second round, 41st overall, in the Draft. Gropp was the 11th pick overall on Day 2 of the Draft.
The Rangers made a trade with the Anaheim Ducks to that included the 41st pick. The Rangers received Emerson Etem and the 41st pick in exchange for the rights to Carl Hagelin and the 59th and 179th picks in the Draft.
Gropp, an 18-year-old from Kamloops, British Columbia, has played two seasons with the T-Birds. Last season Gropp had 30 goals and 28 assists to lead the T-Birds in scoring with 58 points. In his rookie season Gropp had 18 goals and 24 assists for 52 points. In six playoff games he had a goal and seven assists.
Gropp was ranked number 71 in the NHL Central Scouting Final Rankings for 2015 Draft eligible players.
The Blue Jackets selected Kolesar in the third round, 69th overall, in the Draft.
Kolesar, an 18-year-old form Winnipeg, Manitoba, finished last season with 19 goals and 19 assists for 38 points in 64 games. He did not play in the playoffs due to an injury. Kolesar had two goals and six assists for eight points in 60 games in his rookie season.
Kolesar was ranked number 65 in the NHL Central Scouting Final Rankings for 2015 Draft eligible players.
The Oiler selected defenseman Ethan Bear in the fifth round, 124th overall, in the Draft.
Bear, an 18-year-old from Ochapowace, Saskatchewan, just finished his second season with the T-Birds and had 38 points on 13 goals and 25 assists. He had a goal and two assists in six playoff games. In two seasons with the T-Birds Bear has 57 points on 19 goals and 38 assists in 128 games.
The Oilers selected Bear in the fifth round, with the 124th overall pick, in the Draft.
Bear was ranked number 97 in the NHL Central Scouting Final Rankings for 2015 Draft eligible players.
Bear won a bronze medal with Team Canada at the 2015 Under-18 World Championship April 16-26 in Zug and Lucerne, Switzerland.
Bear was a member of Team Canada’s Under-18 Team that won Gold at the 2014 U18 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup, August 11 to August 16, 2014 in Breclav, Czech Republic and Piestany, Slovakia.
Center Mathew Barzal was taken by the New York Islanders on Friday with the 16th overall pick in the Draft.
The T-Birds announced their 2015-16 regular season schedule on Wednesday.
The Seattle Thunderbirds home opener for the 2015-16 season is Saturday, October 3, against the Prince George Cougars at 7:05pm at ShoWare Center.
T-Birds single game tickets for the 2015-16 season will go on sale Wednesday, August 26, at 10am. Fans will be able to purchase single game tickets online or at the ShoWare Center box office.
T-Birds 2015-16 season tickets are currently on sale. Season tickets can be purchased by calling the T-Birds office at 253-239-7825.