The Vernon Vipers have obtained the playing rights to 20-year-old Carver Watson from the Chilliwack Chiefs in exchange for 17-year-old Will Dow-Kenny in a B.C. Hockey League swap of defencemen.
Watson, an Applewood, Wis. product, compiled three goals and 15 points with the Green Bay Gamblers of the USHL last year after producing eight goals and 25 points with the with the Chiefs, as part of a team that went to the Fred Page Cup finals and the Western Canada Cup.
Watson is also the younger brother of former Viper d-man Cooper Watson, who is committed to Michigan Tech Huskies for next season.
“When you get an opportunity to add an offensive defenceman the calibre of Carver to bolster your blueline, you take it,” said Viper head coach Mark Ferner. “ He’s a very talented, puck-moving defenceman who has a ton of Junior A experience.” In dealing away Will Dow-Kenny, Ferner says, “Without question, this was a difficult decision. Will Dow-Kenny will be a great player in this league.”
The 5-foot-11, 170-pounder is the second-youngest of four brothers; his two older brothers, Cliff and Cooper, have played multiple USHL seasons. The oldest brother, Cliff, 22, is a junior D and co-captain for the Huskies that played 120 games with the Sioux City Musketeers from 2011-13. Cliff was drafted by the San Jose Sharks in the sixth round of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.
Dow-Kenny is a 6-foot, 170-pounder out of Abbotsford. He rang up eight goals and 30 points in 34 Major Midget games with the Fraser Valley Thunderbirds last season.