The Kimberley Dynamiters have added veteran experience to their lineup as they acquired forward Ryan Skytt from the Columbia Valley Rockies, in exchange for Connor Zdan.
“An opportunity came up to acquire a player that we have liked for a long time, who has been a thorn in our side when we play him” head coach and general manager Derek Stuart said. “Unfortunately we had to give up a good player.”
Skytt hails from Drumheller, AB and was in his third season with the Rockies. In 98 career KIJHL games, he has 33 goals and 34 assists. Skytt helped the Rockies get into the second round of the playoffs last year, scoring six goals in 11 playoff games.
“He was [the Rockies] best player against us last year in the playoffs.
“We really like his ability to take faceoffs, and go on the penalty kill. The experience and the strength gives us a little more security in veteran forwards.
Skytt learned about the possibility of the trade via text message while at work. He said he knew the trade was going to happen, he was just waiting for it to be official.
“I don’t think I have won a game in the Kimberley [Civic Centre] before.” Skytt said, saying how often the Nitros have manhandled opponents, “I’m excited to be on the other side of that.”
Zdan is in his inaugural season in the KIJHL. He has played in 15 games, and his five points on the season came in the first four games of the year. Zdan will have an opportunity to shine on the power play line in Columbia Valley for the remainder of this season, and potentially two more after that.
This is the second season in a row where the Nitros have acquired a player from their divisional rival
“We are in a position to seriously consider making a run for the championship again,” Stuart said, “adding a guy like Ryan makes us a better hockey club.
“We are just excited to get a guy like that, it doesn’t matter what team he comes from.”
Skytt is expected to be in the Dynamiters lineup next weekend when the Nitros host the Nelson Leafs on December 7th.
The Rockies and Dynamiters play each other next on December 15th, when the Rockies come to town.
The trade was made before the December 1st roster deadline. On the first, teams need to be down to 25 players and open cards. The Dynamiters currently sit at 23, which is the maximum for the January 10th roster deadline.
“We are very happy with the 23 guys that we have right now.”