Team USA standout Bracco traded to Windsor

Jeremy Bracco just got his World Juniors gold added to his resume, when Team USA beat Canada, 5-4, last week to take the title in the annual U20 tournament.

Now he’ll get a shot at a Memorial Cup.

The skilled forward from New York was traded by the Kitchener Rangers to Windsor in a OHL trade deadline deal on Monday, the team announced. Windsor hosts the Memorial Cup, gaining an automatic bid as a result.

The Rangers get forward Cole Carter, defenseman Andrew Burns, and three draft picks in return. The Spitfires received a pair of draft picks to go along with Bracco.

Bracco, who joined Kitchener late in 2015 after a short-lived stint in the NCAA at Boston College, had 38 goals and 115 points in 76 games for the Rangers. He had 51 points in 27 games in the 2016-17 season, which began with a 26-game point streak.

The Maple Leafs prospect will bring a much-needed boost to the front-end for Windsor, which is 12th in the OHL with 128 goals, scoring a clip of 3.37 per game. Aaron Luchuk is the Spitfires leading scorer with a 14-18=32 line. The addition of Bracco, along with Ottawa first round pick Logan Brown continuing to gain his footing after missing time with a wrist injury. Windsor remains the envy of many on the back end, led by Canadiens prospect Mikhail Sergachev along with NHL prospects Logan Stanley (Winnipeg) and Sean Day (NY Rangers).

At 25-8-4, Windsor is in a two-team race with Sault Ste. Marie for the top spot in the OHL West, in which the Spitfires trail the Greyhounds by five points, but have two games in hand. The Spitfires are ranked fifth in the latest CHL poll, which features three OHL clubs in the top five (London, No. 2; Soo, No. 4).

The addition of Bracco will make Windsor that much more of a factor as it searches for its first Memorial Cup title since winning back-to-back in 2009-10.

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Three Stars of the Midweek

NHL

Auston Matthews, Toronto: Do we really need to explain this? At one point it was looking like he was going to bury eight. The savior has arrived in Toronto.

Connor McDavid, Edmonton: The first overall pick in 2015 prior to Matthews being selected first in June logged defenseman-like 23:27 in the Oilers 7-4 win over Calgary. Oh, and he had two goals and an assist to boot.

Vladimir Tarasenko, St. Louis: His second goal was an empty-netter, but his goal with 32 seconds left in the second period set the tone for the Blues three-goal third period in their 5-2 win over Chicago.

CHL

Nicolas Hague, Mississauga: The Steelheads poured it on Guelph with an 11-3 win on Wednesday. Hague, a defenseman, accounted for three of the goals, finishing with four points while finishing with a plus-four. A projected first round pick in 2017 with dimensions of 6-foot-5/216 pounds, the 17-year-old has five goals and eight points in seven games.

Jeremy Bracco, Kitchener: More good news for Leafs fans. Bracco, a second-round pick by Toronto in 2015, had three goals and five points in the Rangers 8-4 win over Guelph on Monday. He factored in four of the five powerplay goals for Kitchener, including two of his three goals. The Long Island native has five goals and nine points in three games, following up a strong first OHL campaign in which he put up 64 points in 49 games after leaving Boston College to join Kitchener. He had 14 points in nine games in the 2016 OHL playoffs.

Michael Bullion, Portland: Coming off a rough outing in which he allowed seven goals on 28 shots in a 7-3 loss to Swift Current, he stopped 48 of the 52 shots he faced in the Winterhawks 5-4 win over Regina on Wednesday night.