February 26, 2019
With files from Terry Koshan, Toronto Sun
Delta native Nic Petan was part of the excitement at the NHL Trade deadline on Monday, traded from the Winnipeg Jets to the Toronto Maple Leafs, for Par Lindholm.
Petan, a 5’9″ 179 lb, 23 year old, played bantam at NSWC in 2009-10 (76G-63A, 139), and then for GVC in the BCMML the following season (first all star), before moving to the Portland Winterhawks of the WHL.
He was drafted #16 overall by Portland in the 2010 bantam draft.
He scored 120 points in 71 games in his second WHL season, and 113 points in 63 games in his third year, before finishing with 89 points in just 54 games in his final year, 2014-2015.
He won a WJC gold medal that season, and also put up the most WHL playoff points.
He was drafted in 2013, #43 overall by the Jets.
In this first year with the Jets organization out of junior, in 2015-16, he played 26 NHL games, and 47 AHL games with the Moose.
In this third NHL year last year, he scored 15G-37A with the Moose for 52 points in 52 games, but didn’t see much action this year on the Jets roster, posting just 2A in 13 NHL games.
No longer waivers exempt he was a press box prisoner in Winnipeg.
Wearing #19, Petan joined his new teammates in Toronto Tuesday, the day after the trade, and was the 13th forward at the MasterCard Centre – unexpected as he hadn’t played since December 22.
“Life in pro sports is all about confidence and the NHL can suck the confidence right out of you,” Leafs coach Mike Babcock said.
“You arrive out of junior and an organization picks you and they are excited about you, and for whatever reason, it doesn’t go necessarily the way you want. That doesn’t mean it can’t go that way your next stop.
“Our job is to provide an opportunity for him to grow and it’s his job to earn himself confidence. As much as you would like to give him confidence, you can’t. He has to earn it.
“I don’t know when he is going in the lineup. We will check him out in the next few days here and figure out when he can go in and go from there.”
Petan simply is happy to hit reset on his career.
“Very excited, very happy to get a fresh start,” Petan said. “Things happen, so you have to pick yourself up. I’m just excited for a new opportunity.”
Why didn’t it work for him in Winnipeg?
“A lot of things — wrong fit, I played quite a bit of games but I don’t know if it was in the right or wrong position and things like that,” Petan said, “but an unbelievable organization over there. Nothing but respect for all those guys.”