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Scouts watching 3 Kelowna Rockets for NHL draft

Image Credit: Kelowna Rockets
September 26, 2014 - 10:02 AM

KELOWNA - Three Kelowna Rockets are on the radar for 2015 NHL Entry draft.

Scouts have identified second-year players Nick Merkley and Joe Gatenby along with European rookie Tomas Soustal for the NHL Central Scouting's initial list of players eligible to be taken in next year's NHL draft, according to a press release.

Merkley, was named rookie of the year during 2013-14, one of the Rocket's top players throughout the season in the playoffs. He was 16 then and finished fifth in team scoring 25 goals, 33 assists and 58 points in 66 games. During the playoffs, Merkley was second, scoring 17 points in 14 games.

Merkley is an A prospect, one of five in the WHL and that puts him in the first round selection so far.

Gatenby and Soustal are both listed as C prospects, which will likely put them in a fourth to sixth round selection. Gatenby at age 16 played in 44 games as a rookie defenceman last season, and played 14 more during playoffs. Soustal, at a menacing 6'3" heralds from the Czech Republic and was the Rocket's lone import draft pick this off-season.

The next two games for the Rockets takes place in Prince George this weekend against the Cougars, Friday and Saturday. They return home to host Vancouver next Wednesday.

To contact the reporter for this story, email Adam Proskiw at or call 250-718-0428. To contact the editor, email or call 250-718-2724.


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