Victoria Royals defencemen drafted by NHL team

Victoria Royals defenceman Gannon Laroque is shown: (Victoria Royals / Twitter)

A 17-year-old Victoria Royals player was drafted by the NHL's San Jose Sharks over the weekend.

The defenceman, Gannon Laroque, was drafted in the fourth round by the Sharks on Saturday.

According to the Royals, Laroque logged the most minutes on the ice out of all players during the last season. He also received the Royals Top Defenceman Award for the last two seasons.

"We’re incredibly proud and happy for Gannon today," said Royals GM and head coach Dan Price in a release Saturday.

"He has incredible work ethic, moves the puck well and is extremely physical. He has a bright future ahead of him," said Price.

The 6'2" tall, 196-pound defenceman says playing in the NHL is something he's long hoped for.

"This is a dream come true for me," said Laroque in a release Saturday.

"I’m excited and grateful to the Sharks organization for selecting me and giving me an opportunity," he said. "I’ve wanted to play in the NHL since I was a first-year novice player and I recognize that being selected by San Jose is just the next step towards my ultimate goal of becoming a full time NHL player."

Hey @SanJoseSharks fans, you're going to love what @LaroqueGannon brings to the table ��

— Victoria Royals (@victoriaroyals) July 24, 2021

Laroque is the 11th Victoria Royals player to be drafted over the last nine years, according to the team.

"I’m grateful for the opportunity to develop with the Royals who have allowed me to immerse myself in hockey and become a student of the game," he said.

"I’m looking forward to getting back to Victoria to work with my teammates and am excited to work with the Sharks to get to my goal of playing in the NHL."