Bill Bestwick was close to finalizing a trade on Friday night to bring goaltender Mike Stiliadis from the Oakville Blades of the Ontario Junior Hockey League to the Victoria Grizzlies for the rights to defenceman Stefan Gonzales.
The Grizzlies' general manager and head coach was just awaiting final approval from the OJHL after the two teams had already agreed in principle to the trade.
Stiliadis was given permission to skate with the Grizzlies and won a job with the club. Bestwick has worked the details of the deal over the last two days with the OJHL club. The netminder was solid in Tuesday night's 4-1 win over the Nanaimo Clippers in Sooke.
Depth at defence allowed Bestwick to make the swap for Gonzales.
"When a quality goaltender becomes available, you act as quick as you can," said Bestwick, whose troops continue to skate in preparation for the B.C. Hockey League regular season, which begins next weekend with the newly created Showcase tournament in Chilliwack starting Friday.
"Thank you, Victoria Grizzlies, for everything the past season and a half, going to be tough to bleed anything but black and gold," Gonzales stated on his Twitter account.
The six-foot-two, 185-pound defenceman played in 43 games for the Grizzlies last season, finishing with 11 assists and 40 penalty minutes after coming over from the Chilliwack Chiefs.
The 20-year-old had also played with the Quesnel Millionaires, Burnaby Express and Westwide Warriors.
The Grizzlies will play their final pre-season game Sunday as they entertain the Powell River Kings at
1 p.m. at Bear Mountain Arena. Admission to the game is $5.