The newly-rebranded Neepawa Titans continue to have a strong 2021 offseason in preparation for the coming year of hockey ahead. After having already made a number of deals the team has announced a trade that saw 2003-born Aiden Dufault shipped to the Winnipeg Freeze.
In exchange for the services of the 17-year-old Dufault, the Titans have received two draft selections for use in the 2023 MJHL Bantam Draft. Coming over from Winnipeg is a second round and a sixth round pick.
Dufault, who starred with the Winnipeg Sharks before joining the U-18 Winnipeg Thrashers, was only able to skate in six games last year for Neepawa prior to the league’s early COVID-19 related shutdown. With the Thrashers, the Winnipeg product had five goals, 19 points and 20 penalty minutes in 34 games from 2019-20.
Prior to dealing away Dufault, Ken Pearson’s crew picked up 2001-born goaltender Emerik Demers from the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League’s Estevan Bruins in exchange for future considerations. That trade was made just days before moving fellow backstop Dawson Green to the Winnipeg Blues for another 2023 second round draft pick.
Demers, 20, is a product of Quebec, who has spent the past three seasons in three different leagues. After posting a 23-7-0 record in 32 games for the Quebec Junior Hockey League’s Valleyfield Braves in 2019-20, he was only able to suit up in five games for the Bruins in 2020-21. He went 3-1-1 with a 2.93 goals against average and a .906 save percentage for Estevan.
The Titans begin development camp on August 31, which runs three days until September 2. It is open to all 2004-06 players who are interested in joining the program. Neepawa is also still in need of both permanent and temporary billet homes for Titans players for the coming season. Should you be interested, contact Mary Ellen Clark at 204-476-6077 for more information.