The North Bay Battalion went for winners on draft day, coming away with three OHL Cup Powered by Under Armour champions with their first three selections.
Dependable two-way centreman Liam Arnsby led off the proceedings at ninth overall before twin brothers and Don Mills Flyers teammates Paul and Alex Christopoulos followed in the second and third rounds.
A late 2003-born forward, Arnsby earned a reputation for a quick stick in the faceoff circle and showed a commitment to playing a 200-foot game throughout the season. The Ajax, Ont. native collected 70 points (21-49–70) over 49 games on an elite Flyers squad, playing in all situations.
The Christopoulos twins are the OHL’s newest tandem. Defenceman Paul was selected 38th overall. He proved to be an efficient puck mover this past season, recording 67 points (22-45–67) in as many games from the back end. He added six points (4-2–6) in seven games at the OHL Cup.
Chosen 50th overall, 5-foot-10, 190Ib. winger Alex showed he isn’t afraid to go to the dirty areas to get things done and will bring a physical edge to the Battalion. He finished the campaign with 93 points (49-44–93) over 43 games before an impressive OHL Cup performance yielded 10 points (6-4–10).
Three picks, three champions and the fourth was a finalist. Toronto Red Wings forward Justin Ertel went to the Troops four picks later at 54th overall. The left-winger recorded 61 points (27-34–61) over 70 games in the GTHL this past season and has ties to North Bay as father Tyler played for the Centennials from 1988-90.
The Battalion made eight selections inside the top-100, adding Navan Grads defenceman Ty Hollett at 64th overall. A trio of fifth round picks included Brantford 99ers forward Steven LaForme (91st overall), Florida Alliance 16U forward Clint Levens (94th overall) and Burlington Eagles forward Joshua Ziliotto (99th overall).
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.