Ethan Bear will have his work cut out to top the kind of year he just finished.

Bear is the 2015 Treaty 4 News top newsmaker for the incredible year the 18-year old Ochapowace band member has had playing hockey.

“I say it’s pretty special, I guess I have been accomplishing a lot for myself, it’s a pretty special feeling,” Bear said upon learning of his selection as top newsmaker. “It’s nice to see that my hard work is getting noticed.”

The Seattle Thunderbird defencemen had an amazing year that included representing Canada at the U-18 World Championships to getting drafted by the Edmonton Oilers to participating in the First Nation Summer Games to ending 2015 as the top defenceman in the Western Hockey League according to Sportsnet.

“The Edmonton Oilers prospect is one point away from his career-best season and leads all WHL defencemen in scoring with 36 points. The Oilers may have found themselves a diamond in the rough,” Andrew Eide wrote for Sportsnet. “Bear has yet to go two games in a row without recording a point and may have the best slap shot in the league.”

Bear says his number one memory from the past year is the NHL Entry Draft.

“It was a huge day for myself and it’s something I’m always going to remember,” said Bear. “It’s a surreal feeling. It’s kind of a relief and enjoyment at the same time so it’s a special feeling.”

Bear said the goal for 2016 is to continue the good season he’s having right now and to make sure he’s consistent and playing well to earn a contract with the Oilers.

“I would like to thank my parents for all their hard work and determination throughout my years,” said Bear. “And all the support they gave me and especially from my community, Ochapowace. They always support me and they’re always there for me.”

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