The Red Deer Rebels will be missing a familiar piece of their blueline when the puck drops on the 2019-20 WHL season.
Carson Sass, 20, of Melville Sask. was put on overage waivers and was picked up by the Tri-City Americans. In exchange, Red Deer received a waiver fee.
Sass, a six-foot, 188-pound blueliner played 202 regular-season games with the Rebels. He was picked by Red Deer in the third round, 47th overall in the 2014 WHL Bantam Draft. During his tenure, Sass recorded nine goals and 27 assists over four seasons and also played 17 playoff games for the club.
Sass’s departure leaves forwards Cam Hausinger and Brett Davis, along with defenceman Ethan Sakowich as the three 20-year-olds for the upcoming season.
Zaytsev unlikely to return
The Rebels seem content to move on from import forward Oleg Zaystev. The first round pick in the 2018 CHL Import Draft is leaning towards staying home in Russia, which means the Rebels will likely only have one import next season.
“We’re moving forward and making plans like he’s not going to be here. I’m not holding my breath for that to change,” Sutter told Greg Meachem of www.reddeerrebels.com.
If Zaytsev does not return, Red Deer will move ahead with Finnish defenceman Christoffer Sedoff as their lone import. Sedoff, eligible for the 2020 NHL Draft, was selected by the Rebels in the first round, 25th overall in the 2019 CHL Import Draft.
Rebels list trio of players
With training camp set to start on Aug. 24 at the Centrium, Red Deer added three players to their list that will attend camp. They picked up forwards Braden Fischer and Luke Fennig, as well as goalie Chase Coward.
Fischer, 16, was picked in the seventh round of the 2017 WHL Bantam Draft by the Brandon Wheat Kings. The five-foot-10, 161-pound forward picked up 15 goals and 15 assists in 30 games last year at Rink Hockey Academy in Winnipeg.
Fenning, 17 played for the Battlefords North Stars of the Saskatchewan Midget AAA League last year. In 44 games, he scored 24 goals and added 18 assists. He also suited up for two games in the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League for the North Stars and signed with the Drumheller Dragons of the AJHL for next season.
Coward, a Swift Current product suited up for 18 games at the Prairie Hockey Academy in the Canadian Sport School Hockey League. The 16-year-old had a 2.71 goals against average and a .911 save percentage.