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ICE, Wheat Kings Bolster Rosters in CHL Import Draft

By Bill Burfoot

Photo by Rob Wallator

The 28thannual Canadian Hockey League Import Draft took place on Thursday, with the two Manitoba clubs adding some recent NHL draft picks to their lineups.  

ICE, Wheat Kings Bolster Rosters in CHL Import Draft

The Winnipeg Ice had the 4thand 64thoverall selections, while the Brandon Wheat Kings selected 22ndand 82ndrespectively. The order of selection for the two-round draft rotated between the CHL’s three leagues, using an inverse order of final regular season standings from last year.  

With their first pick, the Ice selected 6’3, 187-pound forward Michal Teply (2001) with the fourth overall pick. The 18-year-old from Havlickuv Brod, CZE played 23 games for HC Benatky nad Jizerou in Czech2 during the 2018-2019 regular season, scoring four goals and 10 points. 

Teply, chosen in the fourth round, 105thoverall by the Chicago Blackhawks in the 2019 NHL draft, also represented his country at the 2019 IIHF U18 World Championship this past April, compiling three assists in five tournament games.  

With their second pick the Ice selected 18-year-old Nino Kinder from Berlin, Germany. The 6-foot, 163-pounder put up 41 points, including 17 goals in 33 games last season with Eisbaren Juniors Berlin U20 of Deutsche Nachwuchs Liga U20, and also represented Germany at the 2019 IIHF World U18 Hockey Championships in April.  Kinder is currently taking part in the L.A Kings development camp.  

The Wheat Kings added a pair of players to their roster who were taken in the 2019 NHL draft last week.  With the 22ndoverall pick, Brandon chose Finnish forward Marcus Kallionkieli.  The 6’2, 195 pounder from Helsinki played for the USHL’s Sioux City Muskateers this past season, firing home 29 goals and finishing with 83 points in 58 games and was ultimately named to the USHL’s All Rookie All Star Team.  The 18-year-old was chosen 139thoverall by the Vegas Golden Knights in the 2019 NHL entry draft last week.  

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With their second pick, Brandon stayed in the USHL, selecting Russian left-winger Vladislav Firstov 82ndoverall. Firstov was taken in the second round, 48thoverall by the Minnesota Wild in the 2019 NHL entry draft.  The 18-year-old scored 26 goals and finished with 58 points with the Waterloo Black Hawks last season.  The 6’1, 181-pounder has committed to play the 2019-20 season in the NCAA with the University of Connecticut. 

All CHL clubs are permitted to carry two import players on their roster each season, and when all was said and done, 30 players were selected from eight different nations by Western Hockey League teams.  

Bill Burfoot is a writer for Game On Magazine based out of Winnipeg MB. In addition to his love of writing and telling stories for gameonmag.ca, Bill also loves to tell the story of the Winnipeg Blues of the MJHL as their play by play announcer. Bill can be reached at burf17@live.c

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