Swift Current Broncos Head Coach and General Manager Dean Chynoweth announced the players wearing captain letters this season. The Broncos are taking a new approach to the leadership of the hockey club this season. Chynoweth will be using the rotating system with captains and assistant captains for more players to fill a leadership role with the hockey club.
Chynoweth says: “We graduated a number of players from last year (Zack Smith, Dale Weise and Levi Nelson) that helped our group take the next step in developing back into a competitive team in the WHL. With the group we have now, there are a number of individuals that fit the same mold as that previous group and will wear letters for our hockey club. We are going to take a page of the Minnesota Wild’s leadership book and rotate our captain each month. This will give each player the opportunity to wear the letter. We will name a permanent Captain sometime in the second half of the season.”
For the month of October, 19 year old Derek Claffey will wear the Captain “C”.
Chynoweth says: “Derek has been one of the guys for us from the second half of last season that took on a greater leadership responsibility and continued to improve his play. He has come in this season and continued to provide steady play, along with a strong work ethic and has the respect of his teammates.” Claffey, from Red Deer Alberta, is in his third season on defense with the Broncos. He was drafted by Swift Current in the 2004 bantam draft in the third round. Derek has 3 assists in 4 games this season and has 1 goal and 24 assists in 126 career WHL games.
On home ice, the assistant captains are: Matt Tassone, Cody Eakin and Eric Doyle.
Tassone, from St. Albert, Alberta is a Dallas Stars’ draft pick and in his third season with the Broncos. Matt, a 19 year old, was selected in the 2004 bantam draft by the Broncos in the 8th round.
Eakin, 17 years old from Winnipeg is in his second season with the Broncos. Cody is coming off a strong rookie campaign and a summer where he helped Team Canada capture gold at the World Under-18 Championships. Eakin was the Broncos 1st round selection in the 2006 bantam draft.
Doyle, in his third WHL season, and second full season with the Broncos was acquired in a deal with the Everett Silvertips. Eric, 19 years old, from Calgary is an offensive defenseman and has put up 4 points in 4 games this season.
On the road, assistant captains are: Keegan Dansereau, Geordie Wudrick and Jan Dalecky.
Dansereau, a 20 year old, is the Broncos most experienced player. Keegan has played over 300 games in the regular season and playoffs and continues to be one of the WHL’s most gifted offensive players. Dansereau hails from Saskatoon and was acquired from Calgary at the beginning of last season.
Wudrick, 18 years old, is in his 3rd season in Swift Current. He is the highest Broncos’ player selected in the bantam draft going 2nd overall in 2005. Geordie was selected by Los Angeles in the 3rd round of this past spring’s NHL entry draft.
Dalecky, from Kladno in the Czech Republic, was selected by Swift Current in the 2007 import draft. Last season Jan had 15 points in his first season in North America.