While the Barrie Colts were looking to the future on the trade front earlier in the day on Dec. 28, their offensive woes on the ice continued in Kitchener later that night.
Just hours after trading veteran defenceman Joey Keane to the London Knights, the struggling Colts drew a blank in a 2-0 loss to the Rangers at the Kitchener Memorial Auditorium.
The Colts (15-18-1-0) have now lost four straight and seven of their last eight games, and now find themselves ninth and out of a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference standings, a point behind both the North Bay Battalion and Hamilton Bulldogs.
Barrie was shutout for just the second time this season and have now scored just 15 times in its last eight games.
Kitchener (14-17-3-0), which has had its own struggles of late coming, snapped a four-game losing skid and won for just the second time in its last eight games.
The Rangers got all the offence they would need when Isaac Langdon scored the winner on the power play at the 12-minute mark of the third period, before Nick McHugh sealed the win with an empty-net goal with just four seconds remaining.
Barrie native Luke Richardson stopped all 26 shots he faced in the Kitchener net to earn his second shutout of the season, while Kai Edmonds had a strong effort in goal for the Colts, making 29 saves.
Earlier in the day, the Colts completed a deal to send Keane to the Knights in return for second-year forward Dalton Duhart, a second-round pick in 2020 (Niagara), a conditional third-round pick in 2023 and conditional second-round pick in 2024.
Duhart, who was in the lineup in Kitchener, posted 16 points in 65 career OHL games with London.
The talented 17-year-old forward, who had 42 points in 31 games with the Bell Tire U-16 team, was a third-round pick (47 overall) of the Knights in the 2017 OHL Priority Selection.
“Dalton is a skilled forward with very good hockey sense and compete level,” Colts general manager and head scout Jason Ford said. “He eagerly wants to better himself as a hockey player and will get that opportunity here as we welcome him to the Barrie Colts family.”
Keane, a third-round pick (88 overall) of the New York Rangers in the 2018 NHL Entry Draft, had 20 points in 29 games with Barrie and will get the opportunity in London to play with younger brother, Gerard, who was selected by the Knights in the third-round of the 2018 OHL draft.
Barrie returns home Saturday, Dec. 29 to host North Bay at the Barrie Molson Centre. Game time is 7:30 p.m.
PHOTO: With the OHL trade deadline quickly approaching, the Barrie Colts continued to look to the future. The Colts traded defenceman Joey Keane to the London Knights on Friday, Dec. 28. In return, Barrie got forward Dalton Duhart, a second-round pick in 2020 and a pair of conditional picks. TERRY WILSON/OHL IMAGES