A trio of OHL graduates will be starting the 2020-21 season overseas.
The Los Angles Kings prospect threesome of Aidan Dudas, Akil Thomas and goaltender Jacob Ingham have been loaned to the Berlin Polar Bears of the German Elite League, a club that, like the Kings, is owned by Anschutz Entertainment Group.
The three OHL alumni were selected by the Kings in the 2018 NHL Draft, each signing entry-level NHL contracts and graduating after four seasons in the Ontario Hockey League.
A 5-foot-8, 168Ib. centre, Dudas served as captain of the Owen Sound Attack in 2019-20, finishing with 53 points (15-38–53) in 48 games. The 20-year-old from Parry Sound, Ont. was a member of Canada’s gold medal-winning National Junior Team and was LA’s fourth round (113th overall) pick in 2018. The 10th overall pick of the 2016 OHL Priority Selection, Dudas played four seasons with the Attack, amassing 201 points (80-121–201) over 240 career regular season contests.
Thomas was Los Angeles’ second round (51st overall) pick in 2018 and split the 2019-20 season between the Niagara IceDogs and Peterborough Petes as he recorded 84 points (24-60–84) in just 49 games. The 20-year-old originally born in Toronto but who spent his childhood years growing up in Florida scored the golden goal for Canada at the World Juniors, lighting the lamp with 3:58 seconds left in the third period to push the Canadians past Russia. Thomas was the 12th overall pick of the 2016 OHL Priority Selection and finished his OHL career with 315 points (105-210–315) over 241 regular season outings. His 275 points are the third-most in Niagara IceDogs history behind Andrew Agozzino and Ryan Strome.
Ingham comes off his best OHL season to date, leading the OHL in wins (33) and saves (1,501) while posting a 2.96 goals-against average and .917 save percentage in 46 contests with the Kitchener Rangers. The 20-year-old Barrie, Ont. native was Los Angeles’ sixth round (175th overall) selection in 2018 and was the OHL’s Humanitarian of the Year as well as a second team all-star in 2019-20. Ingham entered the League after being selected in the second round (26th overall) by the Mississauga Steelheads in 2016. He played to a record of 93-61-9-8 with a 3.23 goals-against average and .899 save percentage with five shutouts over 177 regular season outings.
Dudas, Thomas and Ingham are set to return to North America once NHL training camps for the 2020-21 season get underway. The DEL regular season is slated to begin on November 13th.
The Berlin Polar Bears last won the DEL Championship in 2013, the last of a stretch of seven titles in a span of nine years.