Nelson native Dryden Hunt, who has been with the Regina Pats for four years, has been traded to the Medicine Hat Tigers amidst a successful season that has seen the left winger rack up 47 points.
“It’s obviously a surprise. It’s tough to leave somewhere you’ve been for four years. I’ve built a lot of relationships, and it’s tough to say goodbye to my friends, my billets. But I’m pretty excited to be in Medicine Hat, and we’re going to make the long run this year,” said the 19-year-old.
Hunt moved from the third best team in the eastern conference to the second best. Medicine Hat is also the top-ranked team in the tough central division.
Hunt said he’s thrilled to be playing alongside Trevor Cox and Cole Sanford, the top scorers in the league.
“Any time you play with skilled players like that, it’s easy on your game,” he said.
He said the transition has been a little surreal.
“It was weird the first day to walk into the dressing room and see a new jersey hanging there in my locker,” he said.
Hunt has been on a hot steak since the trade, winning two of three games. The most recent one in Kelowna saw them beat the Rockets, who are currently top team in the country, 5 to 3.
“It was an unreal atmosphere. We’re in this sold out arena. We were down a couple goals, they went on a power play for like four minutes. Then we got two penalty kill goals, which gave us all this momentum. We took it from there,” he said.
“It was probably one of the biggest wins of my WHL career.”
Hunt said he’s excited to meet his new billets and teammates. His teammate and close friend Kyle Burroughs, who played with him on the Pats, came over in the same trade.
Hunt said he anticipates he’ll have a prominent place in the Tigers’ lineup.
“Medicine Hat’s one of the smaller teams, and I’m one of the bigger forwards. So I’ll bring a different type of game. I’m strong on the puck down low, and this team’s obviously fast and buzzing all over the ice, but I’m a player who wants to take the puck to the net,” he said.
Hunt will play against his old team tonight in Medicine Hat. For more information visit tickershockey.com.