IceDogs add locals late in draft
The Niagara IceDogs selected local goaltender Finn Moffett in the 10th round. Photo: BILL POTRECZ
The Niagara IceDogs chose a pair of local players in the Ontario Hockey League Priority Selection Saturday, selecting goaltender St. Catharines residents Finn Moffett and Ben Arnold.
The IceDogs selected Moffett in the 10th round (183rd) followed by Arnold in the 11th round (203rd).
Moffett, a 16-year-old student at Eden, was the lone goaltender chosen by Niagara.
“It was pretty surreal growing up in Niagara watching them so it was pretty cool to be selected by them,” Moffett said. “I was watching it all day. I was getting a bit nervous. You don’t know if you’re going to get called and then see your name.”
Moffett, who previously played for the Niagara North Stars, suited up for the Oakville Rangers this season where he compiled a 2.52 goals against average.
“It helped me a lot. The organization was great, the coaches were great. A very development mindset organization so it was great.”
IceDogs goaltending coach Jason Barron is familiar with Moffett.
“Finn is a kid I’ve know a long time. He’s a great kid and a great person,” Barron said. “I’ve seen his game grow throughout the years.”
Barron said Moffett is a strong technical goaltender who moves well in the net.
“For a guy of his size, just short of 6-2, he is a good combination of size and mobility,” Barron said.
Moffett is excited to compete for a spot at training camp.
“Just have fun and enjoy the experience and play as hard as I can and hopefully get a spot,” he said when asked for his mindset. “A lot harder shots, faster game so I’m just going to work harder this summer and get faster, bigger and stronger and be ready to go.”
Barron is eager to see Moffett at training camp.
“We’re obviously excited for him to come in and showcase himself,” he said. “Coming in, you always want them to compete for a spot. Everything else unfolds on its own. My advice for him is to be come in, show us what you can do, and compete for a spot.”
Arnold is a 16-year-old student at Denis Morris who patrolled the blueline for the Hamilton Bulldogs U16 AAA squad this season.
“It’s a very surreal experience,” Arnold said of being selected by Niagara. “I grew up going to the games and to be here now, it’s a great experience.”
Arnold collected three goals and 17 points for the Bulldogs this season and is confident he can play at the junior level.
“I think I can make a big difference, just gain strength and big improvements as well like skating and physicality,” he said. “I think I can get it done.”
Arnold feels he is a thinking defenceman.
“I am a very high IQ player who has great passing skills and has great stick on puck,” he said.
Arnold moved to Hamilton this season after previously playing for the Niagara North Stars.
“I made the decision to switch because of the coaching staff and I had an invitation there as well,” he said. “It was a great experience.”
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