McDonald off to QMJHL

It’s not often a junior hockey player will turn down the opportunity to play with the Vernon Vipers.

Bruin McDonald did that Wednesday, just hours after the Vipers acquired the 18-year-old blueliner from the Victoria Grizzlies in exchange for future considerations at the B.C. Hockey League Dec. 1 trade deadline.

McDonald, a Coquitlam product with Western Hockey League experience, instead opted to try his luck with the Gatineau Olympiques of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, according to Vipers’ head coach/GM Mark Ferner. Including his brush with the Snakes, it will be his fifth junior team in two seasons.

“You think you have your team settled and something like this happens,” shrugged Ferner.

“I’m not going to have a kid here that doesn’t want to be here,” he added, noting there is no working player agreement between the BCHL and QMJHL.

The Vernon bench boss doesn’t plan on releasing the rights to McDonald until he collects on the future considerations.

The Dec. 1 deadline reduces each team’s allotted cards from 35 to 25, and with the McDonald deal collapsing, Ferner will still have the full 25 available (22 roster players plus three spare cards). Barring injury, he believes the Vipers can manage with six defencemen.

“We have some APs (affiliate players) that can step in,” said Ferner, who plans to keep searching for another defenceman.

The Vipers brought McDonald in to replace outgoing d-man Elliott Richardson, who was sent to the Quesnel Millionaires along with netminder Bryton Udy in exchange for goaltender Kirby Halcrow in an earlier deal Wednesday.

McDonald appeared in 14 games for the Grizzlies, collecting one goal and four assists. He spent last season with the WHL Prince George Cougars, and started this year with the Spokane Chiefs.

Just Posted

Penticton victim in Kamloops shooting may be a case of mistaken identity

Rex Gill, 44, was not previously known to Kamloops police unlike second shooting victim

Okanagan ski resort officials displeased with Family Day roll-out

From one peak of the Okanagan to the other, resort officials have raised concerns

Vernon set to fill the stands for Special Olympics

BC Winter Games opening ceremony and events ready to shine

Vernon Vortex speed skater wins Canada Games bronze

Laura Hall helps B.C. finish third in team pursuit; Vernon biathlete cracks top-10

Third set of Vernon Chamber finalists unveiled

Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce recognizes the Top 20 Under 40 professionals

‘Our entire municipality is heartbroken’: Seven children die in Halifax house fire

A man and woman remained in hospital Tuesday afternoon, the man with life-threatening injuries

A Mother’s Wish: Ryan Shtuka’s mother wants her son to be ‘forever known’

‍‍‍‍‍“Let me tell you a story …. it all began with a boy named Ryan”

B.C. high school robotics team ranked first in the world for programming

The Surrey team was also named tournament finalists at VEX Robotics Competition on Feb. 1

New trial ordered over banning whales, dolphins at Vancouver aquarium

Park board’s appeal reverses previous decision that found it had no right to implement a ban

Letter: United We Roll a working-class protest

The United We Roll movement makes me proud to be a Canadian.… Continue reading

Vernon falls to Kelowna on the road

Ringette action sees U12 Okanagan rivals face to face

Payless to close 248 Canadian stores, saying it’s ‘ill-equipped’ for market

The company will begin closing stores at the end of March

Fundraiser started for Kelowna foreign aid worker trapped in Haiti

Laura Allan can’t return home due to civil unrest in the Caribbean country

Former Shuswap teacher remembered for staying true to beliefs

Celebration of life for Dr. Richard Zigler taking place Saturday, Feb. 23

Most Read