Trade Alert: OJR acquire defenseman Oliver Melnychuk from Blazers

by Sebastian Abdon Ibarra

The Ontario Jr Reign have traded goalie Dominik Szkoda to the Bellingham Blazers for defenseman Oliver Melnychuk. The addition of Melnychuk provides solid depth to the Jr Reign roster as they prepare for their playoff run. 

Oliver has had an outstanding season with the Blazers, tallying 17 points (4 goals, 13 assists) in 31 games played. Notably, despite being the youngest defenseman on the Bellingham team, Melnychuk has emerged as the leading scorer among all Blazers defensemen. 

“Melnychuk (’06) is a big, physical d-man with a heavy shot with tremendous upside,” said Head Coach and General Manager Jeremy Blumes. “We believe that we can help this young man play at a higher level the following season as he joins us in our mission to compete for a national title in Utica.”

Szkoda made a single appearance in goal this season, and it was a notable one. In December, he took the net against the Long Beach Shredders, showcasing an impressive performance by stopping 15 of the 16 shots on goal, concluding with an impressive .938 save percentage.

Head Coach and General Manager Jeremy Blumes had nothing but praise for the goaltender, “Dominik Szkoda has been the consummate teammate and an absolute pleasure to coach. We will miss him greatly, but we believe that with all of his hard work and improvement this season he is deserving of more starts that Bellingham has committed to offer him.”