I missed posting this earlier after initially Tweeting it, but the Trail Smoke Eaters have rid themselves of a player who didn’t report after they acquired him.
The Smokies haven’t released anything publicly, but the trade sending D Maddison Smiley (94) back to the Brooks Bandits is posted on the AJHL’s transactions page and was confirmed in the Brooks Bulletin newspaper.
Smiley was originally the future considerations to Trail when the Smoke Eaters sent D Tanner Hicks to Brooks back in January. In this trade, Smokies GM/Head Coach Bill Birks sends Smiley to the Bandits for future considerations, whether it’s financial considerations or a player to be named later (or both) is unknown at this point.
To Brooks Bandits:
Here’s the article from the Brooks Bulletin newspaper confirming the trade. I’ve bolded the main part of the article referring to Smiley:
Reed, Smiley dealt back to Bandits
Brooks Bandits forward RJ Reed and defenseman Maddison Smiley have returned to the AJHL championship club following trades that did not work out.
Reed was traded to Port Alberni for future considerations that had Dylan Nowakowski coming to Brooks last season.
Reed refused to report and his rights were eventually traded to the Calgary Mustangs.
The Bandits acquired Reed from the Mustangs in a deal that saw defenceman Devon Henes and forward Matt Heseltine going to Calgary.
Defenseman Maddison Smiley was at the team’s July 20-22 summer camp but would not have skated had his playing rights not belonged to the Bandits, said head coach and general manager Ryan Papaioannou. He was acquired from the Trail Smoke Eaters for future considerations.
Papaioannou said Smiley was initially traded to Trail as part of a future considerations deal that had Tanner Hicks coming to Brooks.
The Bandits also acquired goaltender Adam Weersink from the Sherwood Park Crusaders Thursday for future considerations. He was loaned to the Bandits to evaluate at the team’s summer camp.
Making trades and having players refusing to go to their new team is an ever evolving problem with the Canadian Junior Hockey League, said Papaioannou.
“I think the players are all smart enough now these days. They understand that in the most sense, they kind of run the show. If they don’t want to go somewhere, they don’t go and every coach is bound to use them as an asset. Otherwise, you’ve got a kid that won’t come and play for you. If you do the right thing and make him sit at home, then you are out that player.”
Papaioannou said it is not a good thing by any means and he is not happy the Bandits had two guys (Reed and Smiley) that didn’t want to report. But it is happening every where, every day, every trade.
“Making deals now is such a tricky thing. The problem that we have is there is too many players that form their own opinions about organizations and they won’t give people a chance.”
Papaioannou said the Bandits have been fortunate with only one player in the last four years traded to Brooks not reporting. He said there are other programs that get one or two a week.
This falls on two sides. He said the players need to be a little more respectful that people want them and there are opportunities so at least give people a chance. Papaioannou said it also falls on the organizations. They need to do better research to make sure they are at least trading for a player that will report to them and do what they can to strengthen their organizations.
“We spend hours and hours and many different resources figuring out what we are doing with trades and finding out everything we can about the players and their families. We are doing what we can to make sure we don’t make mistakes.”
Papioannou said they feel the team is in a good enough spot now that if a trade is made for a player, Brooks is a desireable enough location that people will report. This can all change quickly.