Knights acquire hometown product Simpson, Bowen dealt to Petes
The London Knights came within two wins of an OHL championship last spring, and now they’ve acquired one of the key Peterborough Petes contributors who stood in their way.
The Knights, who came in as the top-ranked team in Monday’s inaugural edition of the OHL Power Rankings, add one of the league’s top goaltenders to an already competitive roster. Simpson recently returned from attending training camp with the Pittsburgh Penguins.
“With Michael we are bringing in a smart and mature goaltender with a lot of experience in our league,” said Knights General Manager Mark Hunter. “He has a history of winning and that’s what we want to continue to do this season, win hockey games. It’s the second year in a row that we have brought in a former London Jr. Knight to our team (George Diaco in 2022-23), and we know that’s special for Michael and his family as he plays his final year of junior hockey in his hometown.”
Simpson played to a 44-40-5-3 mark with a 3.11 goals-against average and .903 save percentage over the past two seasons. His 1,442 saves in 2022-23 were the most in the OHL as he posted a .914 save percentage before putting together a 16-11 record with a 3.25 goals-against average and .907 save percentage in 27 playoff contests last spring.
“I’d like to thank Michael for his four years of commitment to the Petes Organization and the city of Peterborough,” said Petes General Manager Mike Oke. “It’s very challenging to trade a player of Michael’s ability and character. We wish him the best as he joins his hometown team for his final year of Junior.”
Bowen joins the Petes after helping backstop London to a Western Conference title last spring. The Ottawa native was London’s fourth-round pick in the 2022 OHL Priority Selection and earned the league’s F.W. ‘Dinty’ Moore Trophy, putting together a 3.10 goals-against average to lead all rookies.
“Zach is a good young goaltender who already has a very impressive resume after one year in the league,” noted Oke. “We’re excited to add him to the team ahead of the season.”
London visits Peterborough on October 12th. The Petes visit Budweiser Gardens on January 26th.