Several local midget-age players were taken in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League Draft over the weekend. The top local pick was right winger Jacob Melanson of the Pictou County Weeks Major Midgets, taken in the first round, 15th overall by the Quebec Remparts. Goaltender Kenzie MacPhail of the Cape Breton West Islanders was picked in the sixth round by the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles, while another local goalie, Oliver Arnfast of the Weeks Major Midget was selected in the eighth round by the Rimouski Oceanic.
A couple of forwards from the Weeks Major Midgets were chosen in the 13th round, Sam Archibald by the Charlottetown Islanders and Merle Putnam by the Halifax Mooseheads.
Also, the Moncton Wildcats made a special pick, Oliver Smith of the Antigonish PeeWee “AAA” Bulldogs, the inspiration for Ollie Bots. In announcing Oliver’s pick, the Wildcats said
Oliver demonstrates courage, teamwork and passion for hockey, and it’s an honour to have a player of his character join its organization.