Former Brandon Wheat Kings captain Jayce Hawryluk has been claimed on waivers by the Ottawa Senators.
It’s great news for Hawryluk who was used sparingly by the Florida Panthers. He was placed on waivers on Sunday night by the Panthers and had he cleared, he would have been assigned to the American Hockey League’s Springfield Thunderbirds. Now, he’ll get a legitimate chance to play at the NHL level with the rebuilding Senators.
Hawryluk, a fearless player who is only 24, had a goal and three points in 15 games for the Panthers this season, but missed 28 games with an upper-body injury. He is expected to be in the lineup when the Suns face the Buffalo Sabres at Canadian Tire Centre on Tuesday night.
“Jayce Hawryluk is a highly competitive two-way forward,” Senators general manager Pierre Dorion said. “He’s an energetic, puck pursuit-type player who should mesh well under [coach] D.J. Smith and our current roster.”
Hawryluk has eight goals and 15 points in 67 games during two NHL seasons with the Panthers, who selected him in the second round (32nd overall) of the 2014 NHL Draft.
The 5-foot-11, 195-pound centre/rightwinger, was born in Yorkton, Sask., but grew up playing all his minor hockey in Roblin, Man. As a Bantam player with the Russell Rams in 2010-11, he had 138 goals and 264 points in 54 games. He starred with the Triple A Midget Parkland Rangers and then moved on to the Wheat Kings where he had a tremendous career, culminating ion a Western Hockey League championship in 2016. That year, he had 47 goals and 106 points.
As a professional, he’s worked his way through the ECHL and AHL to finally get a real shot with the Senators this week.