WHEELING AND DEALING …
NUMBER OF TRADES (since Nov. 13): 25
BANTAM DRAFT PICKS: 32
CONDITONAL BANTAM DRAFT PICKS: 5
DEADLINE: Wednesday, Jan. 10.
THE DEAL: The Tri-City Americans acquired F Jake Bean, 19, from the Calgary Hitmen for F Carson Focht, 17, D Dakota Krebs, 18, a first-round selection in the 2019 bantam draft, a second-round pick in 2018 and a second-round pick in 2020.
THE NUMBERS: Bean, who was taken 13th overall by the Carolina Hurricanes in the 2016 NHL draft, has five goals and 22 assists in 25 games with the Hitmen this season. He has signed with Carolina. In his fourth season, he has 42 goals and 133 assists in 187 career games. . . . Focht, 6-foot-0 and 180 pounds, has nine goals and 15 assists in 101 career games with Tri-City. This season, he has six goals and 10 assists in 37 games. . . . Krebs, 6-foot-4 and 205 pounds, has been on Tri-City’s protected list since Sept. 28, 2014. In 151 games over three seasons, he has two goals and 10 assists. This season, he has eight assists in 37 games.
THE INFO: From Calgary, Bean was one of the big chips thought to be available with the Hitmen rebuilding and the Jan. 10 trade deadline approaching. . . . The deal was announced after the Hitmen had beaten the Hurricanes 6-1 in Lethbridge last night, and while the Americans were playing in Prince George. Bean, who won gold with Canada at the World Junior Championship in Buffalo and silver in the tournament last year, wasn’t in Calgary’s lineup. Neither Focht nor Krebs played for Tri-City. . . . Bean is expected to make his Tri-City debut on Friday against the visiting Portland Winterhawks. The Americans are scheduled to play in Kamloops today and in Everett on Wednesday. . . . Focht, from Regina, was a first-round pick by Tri-City in the 2015 bantam draft. He will turn 18 on Feb. 4, so is eligible for the NHL’s 2018 draft. . . . Krebs, from Okotoks, Alta., was ranked No. 153 among North Americans skaters eligible for the NHL’s 2017 draft, but he wasn’t selected. His younger brother, Peyton, plays for the Kootenay Ice.
WHY: “Jake Bean is an elite offensive defenceman and was the best player available,” Bob Tory, the Americans’ GM, said in a news release, which pretty much explains things from his club’s perspective. . . . When Juuso Valimaki returns from an undisclosed injury in what is hoped to be a couple of weeks, the Americans will have three high-end defencemen in him, Bean and Dylan Coghlan. . . . The Americans are in the case for top spot in the Western Conference and this trade will only help them. . . . The Hitmen signalled a rebuilding mode when they dealt F Matteo Gennaro and F Beck Malenstyn to Swift Current on Nov. 25. The Bean deal “provides us with another skilled 2000-born forward in Carson and a three-year veteran in Dakota, who will bring depth and experience to our defensive core,” GM Jeff Chynoweth said in a news release. In other words, the Hitmen, who are 11 points out of a playoff spot, are all-in on the rebuild.