A season removed from an OHL Championship, the Hamilton Bulldogs are re-stocking their depth chart with an eye to the future.
The Dogs picked up Whitby Wildcats forward Ryan Winterton with the eighth overall pick of the 2019 OHL Priority Selection. Reliability is the name of the game for Winterton, who demonstrated a commitment to playing responsibly in all three zones along with consistent offensive production throughout the season. The versatile 6-foot, 160Ib. centreman registered 72 points (38-34–72) over 36 games and recorded five points (2-3–5) in four outings at the OHL Cup Powered by Under Armour. He is the younger brother of Flint Firebirds forward Jacob Winterton.
Halton Hurricanes captain Lawson Sherk was Hamilton’s second round selection, going to the Bulldogs at 40th overall. Sherk recorded 50 points (15-35–50) over 31 regular season games before a big playoff showing that netted 16 points (5-11–16) over 11 contests. He was impressive at the OHL Cup with eight points (4-4–8) over five games. The 6-foot-1 centreman is hard to knock off the puck and helped the Hurricanes reach the quarter-final of the OHL Cup thanks to his outstanding play.
Both Winterton and Sherk have made official OHL commitments for the 2019-20 season.
Big 6-foot-4, 173Ib. left-shot defender Chandler Romeo of the OHL Cup finalist Toronto Red Wings was selected in the third round (49th overall). Romeo logged big minutes for the Wings this past season, recording 27 points (5-22–27) over 71 games while also serving as an effective shut down defender.
The Bulldogs had a pair of picks in both the fourth and sixth rounds, taking York-Simcoe Express 30-goal scorer Kaleb Nelson with the 69th overall pick before following up with another Red Wings defender in Owen Simpson at 73rd overall.
Halton Hurricanes goaltender Matteo Drobac, who will join Winterton and Sherk at Canada’s National Under-17 Development Camp, was taken with the 110th overall pick. Buffalo Jr. Sabres centreman Connor Pelc was selected with the next pick at 111th overall.
In total, the Bulldogs selected 14 players in the 2019 OHL Priority Selection, with three of the top four coming out of the OMHA.
Over 20 days in July ontariohockeyleague.com will take a look at the future of all 20 OHL clubs. See more from the OHL 20 in 20 series.