The Erie Otters have officially signed their top four picks in the 2010 OHL Priority Selection – left wing Chris Marchese (first round), defenseman Adam Pelech (second), center Connor Crisp (second) and left wing Luke Cairns (third). The club also has signed a pair of defense prospects from the 2009 draft – Mark Gazdic (10th round) and Kris Grant (11th).
All six have earned roster spots for the 2010-11 OHL season, said Sherry Bassin, Otters managing partner and general manager.
The Otters have eight defensemen in the rotation – veterans Brady Austin, Brett Cook, Mitch Gaulton, Derek Holden, Tyler Hostetter and David Shields and rookies Grant and Pelech. Gazdic, younger brother of former Otters winger Luke Gazdic, will be an extra player that will “continue to develop,” Bassin said. “We signed him on those conditions.”
Bassin wants to start the regular season next week with eight defensemen in the rotation. That likely makes Evan Accettura the odd man out for the second straight season. Accettura, who was acquired from the Brampton Battalion for winger Sean Jones in August 2009, spent the first two-plus months of the 2009-10 season in Erie before being assigned to the Wheatfield Blades, a Junior B club in North Tonawanda, N.Y., last December. Bassin didn’t disclose his plans for Accettura on Tuesday.
- Victor Fernandes