By Mervin Brass

Ethan Bear spoke a few times with the Edmonton Oilers before the NHL draft but was still shocked when they called his name.

“First of all I couldn’t believe it when I stood up to hug my dad. Did I actually just hear my name,” says the 18-year-old member of the Ochapowace Nation. “I just couldn’t wait for my name to be called. Once I heard it, it was just amazing.”

Bear shared the moment with his parents. “I think my mom was crying,” he adds describing the emotional occasion. “They were just proud, I was really thankful they were there for me.”

The Oilers drafted Bear 124th overall adding to an already young promising team who also selected Connor McDavid number one in this year’s draft.

“They’re going have a lot of young guys and they’re all going to want a shot. I can’t let up! I just got to work hard! They said they like the way I play,” says Bear talking to Treaty 4 News from Florida. “It’s time to pick it up. This is my dream and I want to play in the NHL.”

Bear finished his second season with the Seattle Thunderbirds of the Western Hockey League with 38 points on 13 goals and 25 assists. He had a goal and two assists in six playoff games. In two seasons with the T-Birds Bear has 57 points on 19 goals and 38 assists in 128 games.

“The Oilers are a great organization. It was exciting this whole day, especially getting picked by Edmonton,” says Bear during his first interview with the national media as an Edmonton Oiler. “I know they made a few trades and especially with Connor McDavid,” says Bear. “It’s exciting being picked by the Oilers.”

Bear was ranked number 97 in the NHL Central Scouting Final Rankings for 2015 Draft eligible players.

Bear won a bronze medal with Team Canada at the 2015 Under-18 World Championship April 16-26 in Zug and Lucerne, Switzerland.

Bear was a member of Team Canada’s Under-18 Team that won Gold at the 2014 U18 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup, August 11 to August 16, 2014 in Breclav, Czech Republic and Piestany, Slovakia.

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