When you think about the best WHL players of the 2010s, four-year Seattle Thunderbirds defenseman Shea Theodore should absolutely come to mind. His play on the ice speaks for itself, and everybody knew it when watching him play, especially Thunderbirds fans.
Shea Theodore, Still Leading
In his four seasons with the Seattle Thunderbirds, as well as four games as an affiliate player, Theodore put up 212 points in 257 regular-season games. Throughout his career in the WHL, the blueliner from BC only earned himself 119 minutes in the penalty box.
Theodore’s 212 points give him the current record for points by a Thunderbirds defenseman, and there hasn’t been anybody close since. In three playoff runs with the Thunderbirds, Theodore contributed another 16 points in 22 games.
He would finish his WHL career having been the Thunderbirds 2011-12 Rookie of the Year, 2013-14 Thunderbirds MVP and top scorer, as well as a three-time Thunderbirds Defenseman of the Year.
The 2013-14 season saw Theodore named to the WHL Western Conference First All-Star Team and picked up WHL awards for both most assists by a defenseman and most points by a defenseman.
In the following season, 2014-15, Theodore was named captain of the Seattle Thunderbirds. He was once again named to the WHL Western Conference First All-Star Team, picking up the Bill Hunter Trophy as the WHL’s top defenseman along the way.
On the international stage, Theodore shined for Canada. He won Gold at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament, World U18s and World Juniors during his time in the WHL. He is only one of five players to achieve this feat during their WHL careers joining Sam Reinhart, Josh Morrissey, Brent Seabrook and Madison Bowey.
Having a standout career with the Seattle Thunderbirds, Theodore left behind a fanbase that will forever support him. He has given so many reasons to be remembered, not only in Seattle but in the WHL as a whole. Collecting team awards and WHL awards year after year, Theodore left his mark on the WHL and showed that a high-offence defenseman is a viable and valuable skill to include on a roster.
A top player of the 2010s? Absolutely. The best of the best? That’s for you to decide (but yes).