March 30, 2009 - Western Hockey League (WHL) - Seattle Thunderbirds
Kent, March 30, 2009 - Seattle Thunderbirds general manager Russ Farwell today announced two T-Birds have been assigned to American Hockey League teams by their National Hockey League parent club.
Defenseman Thomas Hickey will join the Manchester Monarchs for the rest of their season. The Monarchs are the top minor league affiliate of the Los Angeles Kings. In four seasons with the T-Birds Hickey appeared in 262 games and had 39 goals and 138 assists for 177 points. He had a plus/minus rating of plus-73 with 208 career penalty minutes.
Hickey, selected by the Kings with the fourth overall pick in the 2007 NHL Draft, was a two-time T-Bird captain. He won consecutive gold medals with Team Canada at the World Junior Championships in 2008 and 2009. Center Jim O'Brien is joining the Binghamton Senators for the remainder of their season. The Binghamton Senators are the top minor league affiliate of the Ottawa Senators. In two seasons with the T-Birds O'Brien played in 133 games and had 48 goals and 69 assists for 117 points. He has a career plus/minus rating of plus-38 with 121 career penalty minutes.
O'Brien was selected by the Senators in the first round, 29th overall, in the 2007 NHL Draft.
The T-Birds season came to an end when they were eliminated by the Spokane Chiefs in the first round of the playoffs. They lost the best-of-seven series 4-1.