Before the final pieces of the offseason puzzle fit themselves together at the team’s preseason training camp, the Lewiston Maineiacs have a few more options to add, including a pair during the Canadian Hockey League Import Draft on Tuesday.

And make no mistake: According to Lewiston GM Roger Shannon, despite the team’s efforts to trade down in the draft — twice — the Maineiacs anticipate bringing in two impact players this summer.

“We have two guys we’ve been looking at, since January, really,” Shannon said. “We’ve been looking at them and speaking with their agents, and we feel they’re going to be there when we pick.”

The Maineiacs originally had the seventh selection in the draft — the third pick among Quebec Major Junior Hockey League teams — but Shannon traded that pick to Moncton for three draft picks at the league’s midget draft earlier this month. Now, Shannon has completed another deal, this time with Gatineau, moving down a couple more spots while picking up a fourth-rounder in 2011’s midget draft.

“We feel we’ve done a good job of keeping the players we want off the radar,” Shannon said.

Both Shannon and team president and coach Don MacAdam confirmed this weekend that the team plans to select one forward and one defenseman.


“The players we take, we hope they’ll be able to come in and contribute right away,” MacAdam said. “They’re not going to be treated special or given any chances more than any other player just because we pick them in this draft, though.”

Shannon said Monday that the forward the team is looking at is “younger.”

“We’re looking for him to come in this season and play and mature, and be a true impact player on this team at 18 and 19,” Shannon said.

On the flipside, the team is eyeing a defenseman who Shannon said will “help solidify the defense.”

“I would consider our defensive group rather young,” Shannon said. “The player we’re bringing in, we feel will help stabilize our young defense. He may be only here one year. We could keep this young man as a 20-year-old the following season, or we could go out and draft another player. That will be our option next season.”

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