The Moose Jaw Warriors expected to be over the WHL’s 20-year-old limit for a week.
© Times-Herald photo by Matthew Gourlie
Moose Jaw Warriors defenceman Zach Hodder skates away from Swift Current Broncos captain Colby Cave Saturday night in WHL pre-season action at Mosaic Place.
Instead they had four 20-year-olds for less than a day.
Thursday morning defenceman Zach Hodder decided to leave the team and return home to Delta, B.C. to weigh his future.
“He came in (Thursday) morning and after meeting with (head coach Mike) Stothers and I, he indicated that he needs to think about his future in the game. He felt it would be best to head home and look at other opportunities,” said Warriors general manager Alan Millar.
Wednesday the Warriors acquired 20-year-old defenceman Jesse Forsberg from Seattle in exchange for a third round draft pick in 2015. Forwards Sam Fioretti and Todd Fiddler are their other overagers.
“He maybe felt that the writing was on the wall,” said Millar. “We actually explained to him that we made the deal for Forsberg with no clear indication of what we were going to do with our three 20-year-old spots. He gave the indication that maybe the WHL wasn’t for him any longer. I can understand that, he’s a young guy that has bounced around a bit.”
Moose Jaw acquired Hodder from Medicine Hat for a conditional draft pick
Hodder had been healthy scratched in consecutive games after a rough outing against Red Deer. He finished with an assist in six games and with a minus-three rating.
Forsberg is battling a minor hip pointer injury and won’t dress Friday in Brandon. He will be evaluated Saturday morning and could make his debut at home against Regina that night.
“We had no set plan with what we were going to do with our 20s in the next couple of days,” said Millar. “We actually expected (Hodder) to be in the lineup in Brandon (Friday). Obviously, it hasn’t played out that way.”
WHL teams have to be down to the three 20-year-old limit by Wednesday.