Rebels new centre settles into post

It’s like a snowball going downhill. It just keeps getting bigger as it reaches the bottom and one has to wonder where the bottom is for the snowball known as the Red Deer Rebels.

Owner and GM Brent Sutter continues to shuffle the deck in order to get the right pieces in place.

In no particular order he recently sent Colten Mayor and Stephen Hak to Regina for a fourth and sixth round 2015 Bantam draft pick.

He also managed to acquire 18-year-old defenseman Brady Gaudet from Kamloops in exchange for a third round pick in the 2013 Bantam draft.

I’m sure the phone in his hand was still warm when he pulled the trigger on another deal which had 18-year-old Chad Robinson packing his hockey bag and heading to Brandon for a seventh round Bantam pick in 2014.

It’s all part of the business side of junior hockey and these young men are getting a first-hand look at it.

Earlier this month the Rebels GM dealt captain Adam Kambeitz to Saskatoon and in exchange got back Christian Stockl .

He knew the Blades were looking to make some moves so it wasn’t a big surprise he got the call he was being sent to Red Deer. What might have caught him off guard though was being part of the equation which included a team captain.

“Getting traded for the captain is a big deal. I’m obviously not going to be able to fill that role right away but it’s something eventually I hope — that I can fill those shoes,” said Stockl.

Sutter explained Stockl will be put into situations where he can succeed and grow which is exactly what the owner likes to do with young players.

He is normally a right-winger but Sutter convinced the coaches to place him at centre.

“When you watch him play with his skill set, how he sees the ice, it’s almost you might say holding him back by playing the wing,” said Sutter.

Stockl said he sees his role as a simple one right now – work hard, do your job and one day be a leader on this team.

Apart from learning a new system he also has to fit into a new school.

“Coming from Manitoba and then going to Saskatchewan and now to an Alberta school it’s definitely hard,” said Stockl.

He said it does help that he already knows a couple of players on the Rebels roster but the way things are going he might have some new line mates before the month is out.

sports@reddeerexpress.com

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