Very little, it would appear, has changed regarding Victor Mete's stance at playing in the Ontario Hockey League this season with the Owen Sound Attack.
It is part of the hockey business. Mete's advisers indicated in April there was "no interest" no interest in the young defenceman joining the Attack after it chose Mete No. 8 overall in the OHL priority selection draft. On Wednesday, one of Mete's advisers with the Arc Sports Group, Darren Ferris, gave a guarantee the 16-year-old will not be at Attack's camp, citing "certain necessities which are not available in Owen Sound."
Here's Ferris' explanation, via Fred Wallace (@BayshoreFred):
At this point, I've had discussions with the family in trying to get them to consider the OHL. There are circumstances that are required in order for him to come to the league that have come up. In order for him to come to the Ontario Hockey League, there are certain requirements which have come up, which is a private thing I can't disclose, that has to do with his family. Some of that criteria didn't fit in Owen Sound. At this point, I think [Owen Sound GM] Dale [DeGray] is pursuing other teams to see what interest there is and whether there is a fit and if this criteria can be addressed by other teams.
... Sometimes families have certain requirements or issues beyond their control that don't allow them to just go anywhere. In this particular case, we've got that. Owen Sound is a great place to play and we're never reluctant to send players there. (Bayshore Broadcasting, Aug. 20)
There should be some expectation of privacy; hockey parents aren't public figures. Ferris went on to say there are "four or five [OHL markets] that can address those requirements" that would greatly increase Mete's willingness to commit to the OHL.
Mete, at this writing, appears to have lined up a roster spot with the Junior A Newmarket Hurricanes. The youngster also made recruiting visits to some NCAA schools in the spring, while the Waterloo Black Hawks have his rights in the United States Hockey League.
Major junior hockey is often looked at as a mini-NHL and there is still a vestige of thinking that maintains being drafted is a privilege and thus the 16-year-old should go wherever he's taken. It doesn't work that way. In any event, the ball is definitely in Dale DeGray's court. By OHL rules, the Attack would get extra first-rounder at No. 9 overall, along whatever they get in return, if they move Mete's playing rights to another team between Sept. 1 and 15. After that, he couldn't be traded again until the first 10 days of January.
Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Canada Sports. Follow him on Twitter @neatebuzzthenet.