The Trail Smoke Eaters have continued to add to their veteran depth on the blue line with the addition of Rajan Sidhu from the Cowichan Valley Capitals today. The deal is for future considerations and is also part of clearing up any futures Cowichan owed Trail in a complicated arrangement dating back to the Colin Lidster for Mitch Kaufmann trade to Alberta. The bottom line is Sidhu for futures.
In Sidhu the Smokies get another potential hidden gem of an offensive defenceman. He put up 3 goals and 15 assists in only 43 games for Cowichan last season. Take those numbers and project them for a full season, and we're talking about 25 points. With the Smokies last season that would've been enough to finish second among defencemen. As a rookie on a struggling team you can't complain about that kind of production.
Sidhu also has good size at 6'3 and 190lbs. He was also a scoring force in Junior B. He scored 21 points in 37 games as a 16 year old before following that up with 32 points in 36 games as a 17 year old. In his second season he had started the year with Penticton before going back to Richmond. I'm sure in the end he didn't mind as the Sockeyes went on to not only win the PIJHL Championship, but the Cyclone Taylor (over Nelson) and Keystone Cups as well. He put up 15 points in 24 playoff games over two seasons in Richmond as well.
As you can see from his profile on the PIJHL website he is also an academic achiever who was the MVP of the Mission Super Series Tournament at 10 years of age. He also enjoys playing golf and basketball. I'm sure if that's the case he won't mind the beautiful courses we have out here.
I'll try to get Rajan on the phone tomorrow and we'll see if we can get him on Overtime.
This certainly makes training camp even more interesting on the back end. This move and the Cole Gelley addition recently brings the number of defencemen with at least one year of BCHL experience up to 7. There might even be more than that depending on who we see at camp. Could we see the Smoke Eaters keep 8 defencemen out of camp like they did two years ago? If not there are going to be some very tough decisions for the coaching staff. The vets better come to camp with their working boots on.
The players are already starting to make that trip in to Trail with camp set to go on Monday. I had the chance to catch up with Ben Matthews and Brett Slobodzian so far this week. I'll have that for you on the blog shortly. That and those promised interviews with Tim Kehler and Randy Williams. I've been a bit distracted but we're back on course heading into Monday.
BCHL News & Trades:
5 hours ago