One of the longest serving members of the Brandon Wheat Kings and their most decorated forward is on the move with a chance to pursue a championship awaiting him in Portland.
The Wheat Kings announced today they had traded captain Nate Danielson to the Portland Winterhawks. In exchange, the Wheat Kings receive 2005-born forward Nicholas Johnson, 2005-born defenseman Rhett Ravndahl, a first-round pick in 2025, a first-round pick in 2027, and a fifth-round pick in 2026.
“It’s honestly the hardest day of my career since being in this position,” said Wheat Kings head coach and GM Marty Murray. “To have to move a player like Nate is very, very difficult. For us, we felt like it was an opportunity for us to continue to push, that’s going to be a really important message to our guys that we feel we have the troops to be a playoff team and keep growing and make strides. At the same time, it’s hard to move a player like Nate.
Originally a first-round pick by the Wheat Kings, 5th overall, Danielson suited up with the team for 171 games and amassed 176 points. In his tenure as a Wheat King, not only was the talented, classy star named captain he was also selected ninth overall in the NHL draft by the Detroit Red Wings and named to Canada’s roster at the World Junior Championships.
“He deserves a spot on the wall of fame,” said Murray. “He’s one of the highest draft picks in Wheat Kings history, he’s an unbelievable hockey player as we all know, and more importantly he’s a great human being. He wore the jersey with pride.”
Johnson, a Calgary-born forward, has five goals and 13 assists for 18 points in 29 games with the Winterhawks this season. He also comes to Brandon with a plus-17 rating.
“He’s a guy that’s just kind of scratching the surface,” Murray said. “He’s a guy that plays kind of a power forward type game and has the ability to put up some numbers. We’re looking forward to getting him into the lineup.”
Ravndahl, a native of Birch Hills Saskatchewan, is in the middle of his second season with the Winterhawks. He had two assists in 27 games with Portland this season.
“Rhett is a good puck mover, he skates well,” said Murray. “We feel he has the opportunity to really develop here as a defenseman.”
In addition, the Wheat Kings announced today they have traded Evan Groening to the Prince George Cougars for a tenth round pick in 2027. They have also reassigned defenseman Tre Fouquette to the Nipawin Hawks of the SJHL. The Wheat Kings wish both Evan and Tre the best of luck in their continuing hockey careers.
Source: Wheat Kings Release