For the 64th time in franchise history, the Brandon Wheat Kings have announced the name of the team’s newest captain. This past week, Braden Schneider was selected to wear the ‘C’ for the Wheaties for the 2020-21 season.
Albeit a shortened, 24-game, ‘bubble’ season, it will be a season nonetheless, and if all goes well, Schneider and Co. will be able to enjoy competition within the Western Hockey League’s East Division – set to be played entirely out of the Brandt Centre in Regina, SK.
“It’s an honour to be part of the leadership group again this season,” Schneider said in a team-issued press release. “It means a lot to me that our coaching staff has put the trust in me to lead our group. With so much history in this club, it’s a really special honour to be named a captain of the Wheat Kings.”
The Prince Albert, SK. product will now join the likes of Kevin Cheveldayoff, Kelly McCrimmon, Mark Derlago, Brayden Schenn, Mark Stone, Ryan Pulock and Nolan Patrick as players to have previously served as the captain of the Wheat Kings.
Schneider, a fourth-year Wheat Kings’ blueliner has seen significant growth with the team since breaking into the scene in 2017-18. With his point production and points-per-game rate steadily increasing over his first three seasons of WHL play, Schneider tuned in to the 2020 NHL Entry Draft this past fall and watched as the New York Rangers announced him as the club’s 19th overall selection.
“Braden was a part of our leadership group last year and he’s a big part of our hockey club,” Wheat Kings head coach Don MacGillivray said in the release. “He’s coming back for his fourth year and is a respected leader on the ice and in our dressing room. He’s a player who has always done everything he’s asked and he was the obvious choice to lead our group this season. He’s a great person to show our players how to play in the Western Hockey League and how to be a Wheat King.”
After putting up eight goals and 24 points in 58 games with Brandon in 2018-19, the 6-foot-2, 210-pound defenceman scored seven times and added 35 assists for 42 points in 60 games this past year. Through 199 total WHL contests, Schneider has 16 goals, 95 points and 88 penalty minutes to his name. He skated in the 2021 World Junior Hockey Championship with Canada this past winter, earning a silver medal in the process.
As a member of the Rangers organization, Schneider was assigned to the Hartford Wolfpack to begin the 2020-21 season. He dressed in two American Hockey League games, earning one assist, while also picking up a minor penalty. He has since returned to the Wheat Kings, where his team will look to begin the 2020-21 WHL season on March 12 in Regina.