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Blazers acquire forward from Blades

Braid expected to play Saturday night
By Gregg Drinnan
October 8, 2015 8:14 P.M.
Chasetan Braid, the newest member of the Kamloops Blazers, should play for his new club on Saturday night. (Photo: Saskatoon Blades)

The Kamloops Blazers are searching for answers as they search for what is proving to be an elusive first victory this WHL season.
The Blazers have played five games in 2015-16 and have lost them all. Their next opportunity at victory comes Saturday against the visiting Victoria Royals (5-1-0). The Royals have two victories against the Blazers and two against the Portland Winterhawks (0-3-0).
The Blazers could have a new face in the lineup that night, too, as they have acquired forward Chasetan Braid, 18, from the Saskatoon Blades for a fifth-round selection in the 2017 bantam draft.
The 6-foot-0, 165-pound Braid, who is from Chauvin, Alta., had four points, including one goal, in 57 games with Saskatoon last season. This season, he had played in three of the Blades five games, scoring once and drawing an assist.
The Blades are carrying four 16-year-old forwards on their roster, so Braid was going to have a tough time getting playing time there.
Braid played with the minor midget Lloydminster Rage in 2012-13, putting up 31 points, 15 of them goals, in 30 games. In 2013-14, with the midget AAA Lloydminster Bobcats, he had 32 points, including 15 goals, in 35 games.
He is the younger brother of Chance Braid, who played in the WHL with the Prince Albert Raiders, Prince George Cougars and Kelowna Rockets. He played out his eligibility with the Rockets last season and now is with the ECHL’s Idaho Steelheads.
When the Blazers lost 4-3 to the visiting Tri-City Americans on Wednesday night, they dressed only 11 forwards, and that included Jackson Shepard, a West Vancouverite who was making his WHL debut. The Blazers had selected him in the second round — he was their first pick — of the 2015 bantam draft.
By bringing Braid in, the Blazers are trying to add some experienced depth to a veteran forward group that has struggled to find any offence through five games. Kamloops’ roster includes 10 forwards off last season’s roster, but the team has scored just 13 goals in its first five games.
The Blazers also are going to lose a player off their roster between now and Oct. 15, the 20-year-old deadline. They are carrying four — forwards Luke Harrison and Matt Needham, and defencemen Marc McNulty and Ryan Rehill. Teams have to declare a maximum of three 20-year-olds by the deadline.
Teams are allowed to dress three 20-year-olds per game. Harrison was scratched Wednesday as the Blazers went with the other three. He has missed two of the team’s five games.
Braid is scheduled to skate with the Blazers on Friday and suit up Saturday night.
JUST NOTES: Game time on Saturday will be 7 o’clock. . . . The Royals are scheduled to play in Kelowna on Friday before journeying to Kamloops. . . . The Prince Albert Raiders (4-1-0) practised in Kamloops on Thursday. They are en route to the U.S. for a five-game swing that opens Saturday in Kent, Wash., against the Seattle Thunderbirds. The Raiders will finish the trip in Cranbrook against the Kootenay Ice on Oct. 17.
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There’s more WHL news with Taking Note at TheCoachesSite.com.

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