Goaltender Nick Malik will not be returning to the Soo Greyhounds when the Ontario Hockey League season kicks off in the fall.
With the Canadian Hockey League Import Draft set for Wednesday, the Greyhounds had until Monday to determine whether they would protect Malik and make one selection in the two-round draft.
On Monday afternoon, Greyhounds general manager Kyle Raftis confirmed that Malik would not be returning and the team would select two players in the draft.
“With us and the conversations with Nick, he was excited about coming back last year and with missing a year of hockey (due to COVID-19), he didn’t really want to wait and see,” Raftis said. “He’s moved forward and started playing pro in Finland.”
The Greyhounds currently hold the 6th overall pick and the 116th pick, though the second round pick could likely be earlier as teams pass on using their second round selections.
The team will maintain the rights to forward Jaromir Pytlik due to his status as a potential overage player for the team next season.
The Import Draft is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. Wednesday.