HALIFAX - Zach Fucale will get to take another run at the MasterCard Memorial Cup, but it won't be with the Halifax Mooseheads.
Halifax traded the 2013 Memorial Cup-winning goaltender to the Quebec Remparts along with defenceman Matt Murphy and a 2015 fifth-round draft pick in exchange for goalie Eric Brassard, first- and third-round picks in 2016 and first- and second-round picks in 2018.
"This was obviously a difficult decision to make for myself and the franchise but we are happy that Zach and Matt will get the opportunity to play for the Memorial Cup once again," Mooseheads general manager Cam Russell said Friday in a release.
The Remparts are in second place in the East Division, while the rebuilding Mooseheads are third in the Maritimes Division.
Fucale, one of Canada's goaltenders at the world junior championship, was 13-9-1-1 this season with a 3.20 goals-against average and .890 save percentage.
Canadian world junior coach Benoit Groulx, whose regular job is head coach of the Gatineau Olympiques, excused Fucale's bad numbers in the QMJHL.
"They had a very bad start. They were missing many players. They were hit by a lot of injuries," Groulx said this week. "When it's your fourth year in the league and you've been playing with three solid teams and then you've to come back for a fourth one, sometimes it's tough to start the engine. But I thought he got better in November."
Rumours of the trade began to surface Wednesday as Fucale practised with his world junior teammates in St. Catharines, Ont. The 19-year-old from Rosemere, Que., said it would be tough to leave Halifax but brushed off concern about it.
"I'm not focused on that," Fucale said. "I can't control what goes on over there. I'm just concentrating on helping (Canada) win."