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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Chiefs trade Riley Whittingham, get Presten Kopeck from Ice

The Spokane Chiefs have acquired 20-year-old forward Presten Kopeck from the Kootenay Ice in exchange for 20-year-old forward Riley Whittingham and a fourth round pick in the 2017 WHL Bantam Draft.

“We feel this trade will help our depth with our forwards as Presten Kopeck can play all three positions,” Chiefs general manager Tim Speltz said on Monday. “We will use (Kopeck) to kill penalties and he will also contribute offensively. He is a leader and a competitor.”

Kopeck, a 6-foot, 174-pound center out of Medicine Hat, Alta., has played 224 career WHL games between the Portland Winterhawks and Red Deer Rebels. He was traded from the Rebels to Kootenay on Jan. 3 and had not yet suited up for the Ice.

Originally a third-round pick in the 2010 WHL Bantam Draft by Portland, he scored 14 goals and 15 assists in 88 games with the Winterhawks before being traded to Red Deer in December of 2013. He scored 21 goals and 27 assists in his first full season with the Rebels last season before racking up 5 goals and 13 assists in 37 games this season. Kopeck has 23 games of WHL Playoffs experience, recording 7 assists.

Whittingham, from Calgary, Alta., was originally a third-round pick by Spokane in the 2010 WHL Bantam Draft. He played 228 games over four seasons with the Chiefs – 42nd in franchise history – and scored 46 goals and 49 assists while piling up 295 penalty minutes. He added 19 games of playoff experience, scoring twice and adding two assists.

Kopeck is expected to be available for Spokane’s next game on Saturday versus the Regina Pats at Spokane Arena.

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