North Bay Battalion

by | Sep 28, 2022 | News, Sports

In October of 2013, the Battalion arrived in the City of North Bay and instantly became one of the city’s top attractions. Relocating from Brampton, the Battalion were the second Ontario Hockey League franchise to call North Bay it’s home, following the departure of the North Bay Centennials after the 2002 season.

Situated just three hours north of Ontario’s capital city of Toronto, North Bay boasts a wide variety of entertainment options all year long, but from the beginning of the fall to the end of the spring, the Battalion really holds the city’s attention, and for good reason.

The Battalion finished as the runners-up in the Eastern Conference in 2021-22 and they show plenty of signs that the 2022-23 season, and beyond, are years that fans will have high expectations for.

Ty Nelson #24 in a game against the Ottawa 67s. Photo by Tom Martineau

Seven of their players are National Hockey League draft prospects. That includes Ty Nelson, who was selected 1st overall in the OHL draft just a few years ago and immediately became one of the league’s most exciting young defensemen before the Seattle Kraken selected him in the third round of the 2022 NHL Draft.

Captain Liam Arnsby #11 battling for the puck along the wall. Photo by Tom Martineau

Other drafted players include Captain Liam Arnsby who was drafted by the Florida Panthers, Goaltender Dom DiVincentiis, drafted by the Winnipeg Jets, Edmonton Oilers prospect Matvey Petrov, Justin Ertl is a prospect with the Dallas Stars, Tnias Mathurin with the Detroit Red Wings, and joining Nelson in Seattle is Kyle Jackson.

Outside of a strong returning cast of players, the Battalion are also excited about their young prospects, looking to make an impact with the team as early as this season.

It starts with Ethan Procyszyn – who was General Manager Adam Dennis’ 1st round selection (20th overall). The 6’2” 182-pound forward had an impressive season with the North Central Predators scoring 52 points in 27 games, with the production split right down the middle with 26 goals and 26 assists.  He’s expected to be joined by Jacob Therrien, a third-round selection (44th overall) who is a hardworking, physical forward. On the blue line, the team is looking at Brayden Turley, another third-round selection who, at 6’6” and 185 pounds, was an attractive piece to add to the Troops defense corps.

Ty Nelson #24 with Avery Winslow #8 trying to clear the puck. Photo by Tom Martineau

Some of the top players in the world come out of the Ontario Hockey League, and you may only have a few chances in your lifetime to see them up close. Back in March of 2015, Connor McDavid was heading into his NHL draft year and 4241 fans packed the Gardens to get a glimpse of the future face of the NHL.

The Major Junior Hockey experience doesn’t get any more authentic than in the 50,000-person community of North Bay.

With the capacity to host over 4,000 people per game, the Battalion home games at Memorial Gardens are an exciting, fun filled event where fans can get right up close to glimpse the next stars of professional hockey. There’s no shortage of young fans lining up for high fives in between periods or waiting outside the dressing room post-game hoping for an autograph from their favourite players.

Whether you’ve been to Major Junior games in the past or are looking to cross that off your bucket list, taking in a North Bay Battalion game at Memorial Gardens is something you should look to fit into your itinerary on your next trip through northern Ontario.

About Matthew Sookram

Matthew Sookram is a Canadore College graduate. He has lived and worked in North Bay since 2009 covering different beats; everything from City Council to North Bay Battalion.

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