The Saginaw Spirit, after spending the majority of the season at the bottom of the Ontario Hockey League’s Western Conference, have agreed with their Captain Mitchell Stephens to waive his no trade clause and now the Lightning’s 2015 2nd round draft pick is heading to the London Knights in return for all the draft picks. London is looking to win back to back OHL championships and Memorial Cups for the first time in franchise history. The Knights sent a 2017 3rd round pick, two 2018 2nd round picks, a 2019 2nd round and 3rd round pick, as well as a 2020 2nd round pick and a conditional 2021 3rd round pick (if Stephens returns as an overage player - 20 years - the Spirit get that pick).
Stephens came into the season as the Spirit captain, but all the leadership in the world couldn’t get the Spirit to soar to the top half of the OHL Western Conference. Stephens put up 11 goals, 17 assists for 28 points in 22 games with the team, and will now cross the Detroit river and be welcomed by one of the most powerful franchises in major junior hockey.
Mitchell Stephens spent most of December with the Canadian team at the World Junior Hockey Championships, and despite missing some time with an injury, he was a point per game player, winning silver after losing to the Americans in a shootout for gold.
Stephens will suit up for the London Knights this Friday the 13th of January, as the Knights host his former team, the Saginaw Spirit.