Former Prince George Cougars defenceman Josh Anderson is about to play for the biggest prize in major junior hockey.
Anderson, now a member of the Western Hockey League champion Swift Current Broncos, will be manning a spot on the blueline during the Memorial Cup tournament, which starts on Friday in Regina. In their first game, on Saturday afternoon, the Broncos will take on the Acadie-Bathurst Titan, winner of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League playoffs.
In round-robin play, the Broncos will also skate against the Hamilton Bulldogs (Ontario Hockey League) on Monday and the host Regina Pats on Wednesday.
The Broncos claimed the WHL title when they beat the Everett Silvertips four games to two in the best-of-seven championship series. In 26 playoff games, the 19-year-old Anderson - known more as a stay-at-home style of defenceman - has two assists and 15 minutes in penalties.
The Cougars traded Anderson to the Broncos in January, in exchange for first-round bantam draft picks in 2018 and 2019. The Cats' 2018 selection ended up being goaltender Tyler Brennan, whom they selected 21st overall.
Anderson, from Duncan, was a bantam draft pick of the Cougars in 2013 (first round, third overall). His most successful season in Prince George was 2016-17, when he played in 69 games and recorded 11 points (three goals, eight assists).
Anderson was an NHL draft pick of the Colorado Avalanche the previous season, a year in which he missed 33 games because of a fracture in his back. The Avs liked him enough that they took him in the third round, 71st overall.