Some people consider major change daunting, but sophomore centre Cam Peters welcomed a move from North Bay to Niagara to reignite his major junior hockey career.
“I wasn’t having the best start in North Bay,” Peters recalled. “I had the opportunity to be traded to Niagara – which is the best thing for my career. The Burke’s were nice enough to help facilitate a trade.”
The 17-year-old, who entered the Ontario Hockey League as a highly-touted prospect, after being drafted in the second round (29th overall) by the Battalion in the league’s 2018 Priority Selection. The left-shooting pivot, however, never really showed the scoring touch that won him such a favourable draft position as an OHL regular, despite playing a complete style of game.
General Manager Joey Burke’s belief in the Toronto native’s ability and character, never wavered. He was pleased to finalize a deal with the Battalion, on January 10th, which included him as the main principle in the transaction.
“Cam adds a nice dynamic of speed, size, and skill. He’s is a guy I’ve wanted to bring in for two years,” Burke said. “I absolutely loved him in his draft year. He really helps contribute to our bright future.”
Known for his workman-like approach to the game, and his strong skating ability – attributes that give Peters a strong forechecking game – one of the best aspects of his overall play. Peters boasts 98 career games of experience under his belt, and 13 points (including 4 goals) to his credit. In these respects, he brings some experience to a young IceDogs’ lineup.
Unfortunately, he only appeared in ten games, wearing IceDogs’ silks, before suffering a season-ending, lower-body injury. A major setback, the 6-foot-1 185-pound centreman was just beginning to acclimatize to Niagara’s team systems and style of play.
Peters would have liked nothing more than to notch a few more games and ratchet up his point production before the end of the season. His aforementioned injury and the Covid-19 global pandemic however, prevented this.
“Not being on the ice is horrible. It’s really tough but it’s not a hundred-meter sprint, it’s a marathon. I just want to take it step-by-step, day-by-day.”
No matter what the future holds, Peters has found a new hockey home and will find new ways to impact games, once the OHL starts.
He is especially grateful to IceDogs’ supporters, who have been consistent in backing him through his adjustment process. “Win or lose, the fan support I have received in Niagara is surreal.”
In the long term, strong mentorship, and one of the best environments for player development in the OHL will help Peters develop into the most consistent and productive player he can be.