Cut by Steve Spott at World Junior camp, Frank Corrado acquired by Spott’s Rangers

Back in December, Sudbury Wolf defender and Canucks’ 5th round draft pick Frank Corrado very nearly made Team Canada. Or, at least, that’s what it looked like. Corrado, something of a surprise invite, was also a surprise standout at the World Junior camp, scoring twice in exhibition while showing his strong defensive play and physicality. People tracking the camp liked what they saw. Corrado looked poised to steal one of the few spots up for grabs on Team Canada’s blueline.

But it seemed that Steve Spott, head coach of Canada’s World Junior squad as well as the OHL’s Kitchener Rangers, saw things differently. Corrado was the first cut of camp — one final surprise for the Canuck prospect. I guess Spott didn’t like Corrado’s game quite as much as the rest of us.

Or maybe Spott just didn’t want to risk Corrado getting hurt before he could help the Kitchener Rangers down the OHL’s playoff stretch. On Tuesday, Corrado was part of a six-player trade that sees him go from Sudbury to Kitchener, where he’ll be playing for Steve Spott after all. From the Kitchener Rangers:

In the deal, the Rangers send goaltender Franky Palazzese, defenceman Cory Genovese and forward Matt Schmalz to Sudbury. Kitchener also sends a fourth round pick in the 2014 OHL Priority Selection (from Oshawa), a sixth round pick in 2013 (from Owen Sound), a seventh round pick in 2014 (from Windsor) and a first round pick in the 2013 CHL Import Draft (from Plymouth). In addition, the deal includes two conditional picks, a conditional second round in 2017 if Palazzese does not return to the Wolves for his overage season and a conditional second in 2019, if forward Joshua Leivo plays in the OHL during the 2013-14.

In exchange, Sudbury sends Leivo, defenceman Frank Corrado and goaltender Joel Vienneau to Kitchener, along with Sudbury’s first round pick in the 2013 CHL Import Draft, a sixth round pick in 2015 and an eighth round pick in 2013. The deal also include a conditional third round pick in 2014 if Sudbury trades Palazzese during the 2013-14 season.

That’s right: Spott put Corrado on layaway. Or perhaps, after Canada allowed 11 goals in the two games after the round robin stage, Spott simply decided it was time to rethink his approach to defensive scouting?

The trade could be good news for Corrado’s experience in his final year in junior hockey. While the Sudbury Wolves are going to make the playoffs, largely because the OHL is like the CFL in that you have to be truly, genuinely dreadful in order to miss the cut (8 out of 10 teams make it), they weren’t going to go much further. Clearly, they suspected as much, which is why they traded away three veterans, their best player included.

As for Kitchener, while they’re hardly running away with the Western Conference, this deal makes them better. Maybe even good enough to punch through to the Western Conference Final. They’ll be hard-pressed to knock off the powerhouse London Knights, but you never know, especially if Corrado continues the stellar year he’s having.

That is, unless Corrado attends Canucks training camp and looks really, really good, which might be easier to do since Cam Barker will be there to help with the contrast.

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6 comments

  1. Nee
    January 8, 2013

    I’m still bitter that Corrado was cut from the WJC roster : /

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    • Mel
      January 8, 2013

      Yeah, every time there was a defensive lapse, we kept saying, “Shoulda kept Corrado.” And we said it a lot.

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  2. Jesse
    January 8, 2013

    One interesting thing to note. Corrado will now be playing with another highly regarded Canucks defense prospect in McEneny on the Rangers.

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  3. Josh D.
    January 8, 2013

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Corrado stole a depth spot for us in training camp. It would be a much better choice than Cam Barker.

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    • Jesse
      January 8, 2013

      I would. You don’t keep a developing 19 year old prospect in the press box.

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      • Daniel Wagner
        January 8, 2013

        Agreed. He’ll only be on the team if they think he can play on the bottom pairing at minimum.

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