Saturday, April 7, 2018 – the 2018 OHL Priority Selection. It’s a date that’s been circled on the calendars of Minor Midget “AAA” players since the start of the season, and in some cases, for the majority of their life.
“I’ve been dreaming about the draft throughout my entire minor hockey career,” said Toronto Marlboros forward Cameron Peters. “I’ll be very humbled and extremely honoured to be selected to play in the OHL next year.”
The excitement and anticipation of draft day also comes with mixed emotions, signaling the end of lengthy and memorable minor hockey careers.
“This past year has been amazing with all the boys,” explained Peters. “Bonding as a team, winning tournaments, and the best of all winning the GTHL Championship. That being said, although I’ve dreamed about this for years, I’m experiencing mixed emotions – anxious about where I’ll be playing next year but excited to be playing with very skilled hockey players. I’ll be very humbled and extremely honoured to be selected to play in the OHL next year.“
After names are called, players will be turning their focus to off-season training as they prepare for the next step.
“The next level is a big step as I will be playing against older players including some who will be looking at making the move to the NHL the following season,” explained Toronto Marlboros defenceman Lleyton Moore. “It’s important I have a strong summer of development so when regular season starts I can make an impact.”
That development looks a little different for each player. For Peters, it means he will be in the gym and on the ice four days a week until June, followed by group training throughout the summer months. Like Peters, Vaughan Kings forward Ty Tullio will also be training physically but added that he will be taking steps to mentally prepare himself for the next level.
Like many of his peers, Mississauga Reps goaltender Tristian Lennox will be one of many GTHL players waiting to hear his name on Saturday. Once drafted, that’s when the real work will begin.
“This summer I am going to work harder than I ever have,” said Lennox. “We have big plans to step up our game in every way and I am going to show up for my first OHL camp ready for anything – ready for everything.”
Live results from the 2018 OHL Priority Selection will be posted live on the OHL website starting at 9 am on Saturday, April 7.