Giants acquire defenceman

Vancouver ships first round pick for former ninth overall selection

While some Western Hockey League contenders continue to load up ahead of this week’s trade deadline (Jan. 10), the Vancouver Giants got into the fray, making a move of their own.

However, the Giants’ move is for down the road.

Vancouver announced the acquisition of 2002-born defenceman Joel Sexsmith from the Swift Current Broncos on Sunday in exchange for the team’s first round pick in the 2019 WHL bantam draft.

The Broncos had selected Sexsmith in the first round, ninth overall, in the 2017 WHL draft.

At the time of the draft, Swift Current director of hockey operations Jamie Porter described Sexsmith as a potential first pairing defenceman.

“He is a very good skater, great vision, good hockey sense and he displays very high character,” Porter said.

“Joel Sexsmith is a top-end, highly skilled two-way defenceman that we followed very closely during his draft year,” said Giants general manager Glen Hanlon.

“We made this move to better our future but it didn’t come at the expense of any players on our current roster. We’ve played great hockey as of late and it’s our goal to make sure that we’re still in the mix for a top spot in the B.C. Division for the remainder of this season.”

The Giants are coming of back-to-back wins this weekend and they are 3-0 to start a five-game road trip which wraps up this week in Prince George. They are 23-14-3-2 on the season and with 51 points, sit second in the WHL’s B.C. Division and are fifth overall, as well.

In his final bantam season, the six-foot-one, 165-pound Sexsmith had 16 points in 30 games last year with the Rink Hockey Academy. He has one goal and three assists in nine games this season with the North Xtreme midget prep team. Sexsmith, who is from Edmonton, also played for Team Alberta at the 2017 WHL Cup with a goal and two assists as they won silver. He finished +6 for the tournament.

“We are very proud of our 2017 draft and to add another player like Joel to our organization from that 2002-born group sets us up very nicely for the future,” Hanlon said.

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