The host team for the 2013 RBC Cup Canadian junior A hockey championship tournament bolstered their offence, and received the news they were hoping to hear from 20-year-old defenceman Jason Seed.
First of all, Danny Chiasson, who leads the MHL (Maritime Junior Hockey League) with 53 points in 28 regular-season games, comes to the Caps as the centrepiece of a major deal with the Dieppe Commandos.
“We knew we needed a spark to our offence,” said Capitals general manger Pat McIver. “He’s (Chiasson) a 20-year-old, been around, brings some leadership, a lot of offence and is a hard-working player, which fits in with the group of guys we have now.
“We’ve seen a lot of Danny over the last two years, and any time we met we always said, ‘The best player in our league all around, and any way you look at it, is Danny Chiasson.’”
Along with Chiasson, the Caps also pick up the MHL rights to Moncton Flyers forward Alex Bradley and third-, fifth- and seventh-round draft picks this year. Bradley, who has family connections to Summerside, is the leading scorer in the New Brunswick/P.E.I. Major Midget Hockey League.
The Commandos receive the MHL rights to forwards Isaac Jay, Stephen Anderson, fourth- and sixth-round picks in 2014 and future considerations.
“The price was high, and I think Danny wanted to play in Summerside, which may have hurt Dieppe’s cause,” said McIver. “There may have been better offers on the table for Dieppe.
“They (Commandos) have hosted the Fred Page Cup and know what it’s like (building a host team), and Jean-Francois (Damphousse, Dieppe general manager) really understood. Not that he gave us too much of a break, but he was more than fair to deal with and they are a classy organization for sure!”
McIver also announced that Seed has committed to the Capitals for the remainder of the season. Seed joined the Caps on Dec. 5, but there was a possibility he could return to the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League if the Saint John Sea Dogs traded him.
“We knew we needed a spark to our offence. He’s (Chiasson) a 20-year-old, been around, brings some leadership, a lot of offence and is a hard-working player, which fits in with the group of guys we have now. We’ve seen a lot of Danny over the last two years, and any time we met we always said, ‘The best player in our league all around, and any way you look at it, is Danny Chiasson.’” - Capitals general manger Pat McIver
“When he flew home (to Ottawa) on the 19th after our game (against Campbellton) and after speaking with his parents and advisor, he called to advise us that he was staying,” said McIver. “He likes it here, likes the guys in the room and wants to help us win a championship.”
The news was a big relief to McIver.
“It’s really exciting,” he admitted. “He’s an elite defenceman in our league.
“We feel we’re as strong as anybody on the back end,” said McIver. “It gives us more depth and security moving forward.”
Another plus for the Capitals, notes McIver, is that Chiasson, who is from Edmundston, N.B., is a regional player and does not tie up an import position.
“That gives us a little bit of flexibility to maybe pick up a player or two from outside the Maritimes,” said McIver. “It seems to be easier to get players from outside the Maritimes than within our league.”
Chiasson has 17 goals and 36 assists this season, after posting 65 points, including 28 goals, in 48 regular-season games last year.
Bradley has 38 points, including 17 goals, with the Flyers while Anderson, who had 36 points in 31 games in his rookie season with the Caps last season, is currently playing with the Sea Dogs. He has seven points, including three goals, in 31 regular-season games.
Jay started the season with the Portage Terriers’ junior A team in Manitoba, and recently joined the Kensington Moase Plumbing and Heating Vipers of the Island Junior Hockey League.