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London Knights trade Sahil Panwar to Firebirds

Sahil Panwar of the London Knights.
Sahil Panwar of the London Knights. Luke Durda/OHL

In any other year, the London Knights would be getting ready for their home opener later this week.

The last roster tweaks would have been made by now and the biggest questions would centre around whether Luke Evangelista and Tonio Stranges were back from their first National Hockey League training camps and whether Connor McMichael was going to make the Washington Capitals’ opening night roster.

Read more: Defenceman Isaiah George joins the London Knights

With COVID-19, things are moving a little more slowly. Training camps will not begin in the Ontario Hockey League until mid-November with the season set to open on Dec. 4.

However, that does not mean that movement is at a complete standstill.

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On Monday the Knights traded forward Sahil Panwar to the Flint Firebirds in exchange for a fourth-round pick in 2021.

Panwar was drafted by the Knights in the second round of the 2018 OHL Priority Selection and has spent two seasons in London.

He had six goals and 11 points in 74 games with the Knights.

Read more: Ontario Hockey League announces more key dates, training camps to start Nov. 15

The move takes Panwar back to the state of Michigan, where he played his U16 year of hockey before entering the OHL.

London general manager Mark Hunter called Panwar a quality person who “always demonstrated a strong work ethic while here in London.”

“We believe that Sahil has a bright future ahead of him and we thank him for his commitment to our organization and wish him all the best in Flint.”

Read more: London Knights: Back in time — The speech that turned the 2016 final around

Panwar was born in Mississauga, Ont., but moved to California and grew up playing hockey there. He lived in Cerritos, Calif., which is a hot spot for Hollywood movie crews looking for neighbourhoods.

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Coneheads and Wayne’s World were filmed in Cerritos.

Panwar will join a Firebirds club that saw huge improvement in 2019-20. They went from the 19th-best record the year before to the fifth-best winning percentage before the season was stopped in February and eventually cancelled due to COVID-19.