OHL Priority Selection History
The “midget draft” has its roots dating back to the late 1960’s when it was held under the auspices of the OHA Junior “A” series as part of the Ontario Hockey Association’s annual meetings at the Royal York Hotel.
Through the years, the OHL Priority Selection was held at various locations in Toronto until 1981 when it found a home for 10 years at North York Centennial Arena. Its first time outside of Toronto was in 1991 when the Kitchener Rangers were the host.
The draft order is typically based on reverse order of the overall regular season standings beginning with non-playoff teams.
In 2021, a total of 299 players were selected in the 15-round process from 83 different teams across Ontario and parts of the United States. The selected players included 177 forwards, 94 defencemen and 28 goaltenders. While 296 of the players chosen were 2005-born athletes, an additional three from U.S.-based programs were born in 2004.
The Priority Selection was held over a span of two days for the first time since first being conducted online in 2001, with the order of selection determined through the League’s first-ever Priority Selection Lottery held on May 5. History was made when the Sarnia Sting selected Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs goaltender Taya Currie in the 14th round (267th overall), making her the first female player ever chosen in the OHL Priority Selection.
The Oakville Rangers also made their mark on Priority Selection history, matching a record set by the Richmond Hill Stars in 2004 for the most players selected from one team with 16. The Rangers set a new benchmark, developing five of the first 11 players chosen in the first round.
The Greater Toronto Hockey League led the way with 83 players selected from across 12 different organizations. The Toronto Jr. Canadiens and Toronto Marlboros each produced 14 selections while the Vaughan Kings trailed with 10. The Ontario Minor Hockey Association produced 80 selections from across 19 different teams. The Oakville Rangers led all clubs with the aforementioned 16 players chosen while the Hamilton Jr. Bulldogs featured the OMHA’s next-highest total of eight. The Minor Hockey Alliance of Ontario produced a total of 45 selections from across 12 different teams led by the Waterloo Wolves with nine. The Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs trailed with a total of six. Hockey Eastern Ontario featured a total of 29 players chosen from across 12 different programs, with the Navan Grads producing six picks followed by the Kemptville 73’s developing five. The Northern Ontario Hockey Association produced three players from two different clubs while an additional four players were selected out of other Canadian prep or varsity programs. A total of 55 players were chosen from across 27 different American-based teams led by the Detroit Honeybaked 15’s squad that produced eight selections. The Buffalo Jr. Sabres, Chicago Mission, Detroit Compuware and Florida Alliance 15’s programs each produced four selections.
Pre-1998 OHL Priority Selection Historical Results:
Results from 1998 to present can be found here.
Archived Draft Shows:
Historical Draft Media Guides: