John Paddock had to delay a planned interview with some members of the Regina media Tuesday afternoon because he had to answer a phone call. The Pats head coach and general manager admits he has been doing a lot of that and likely will continue doing that until the WHL trade deadline hits on Wednesday afternoon.
“It’s the same as it’s been since before Christmas. I don’t know if they can be considered big calls, but whether you are buying or selling that’s the way it is at this time of year.”
The Pats have already made four trades in an attempt to improve their team as it makes a final run for the playoffs and the Memorial Cup as they have acquired Jared Legien from Victoria, Libor Hajek from Saskatoon, Austin Pratt from Red Deer and Jesse Gabrielle and Jonas Harkins from Prince George.
Paddock doesn’t know if a fifth or a sixth trade will occur, but he is happy with what he has done especially in the deal that got them Hajek.
“Some pro scouts will tell you we might have gotten the best defenceman in the league so that’s big.” Paddock declared. “Getting someone of his calibre that can move in alongside (Cale) Fleury and Josh (Mahura) is big. He gives us a high-level defenceman that will hopefully make us more effective.”
In getting Hajek, it meant the team had one more European player on their roster than allowed so defenceman Egor Zamula was put on waivers. He has been picked up by Calgary.
The Pats will hit the ice Wednesday night hours after the deadline when they are home to the Edmonton Oil Kings in a 7 o’clock start in a game you can hear on 620 CKRM starting at 7.