2010-11: Conner Bleackley had nine points in five midget AAA games with the Keystone Raiders in Alberta — and was one of the top scorers for the Okotoks Oilers bantam AAA team. He scored 7 goals with 2 assists and had 4 penalty minutes with the Raiders. In 29 bantam games he scored 36 goals with 32 assists and had 62 penalty minutes. Playing with the South Senators in the 2011 Alberta Cup he scored 3 goals with 2 assists. Bleackley was selected by Red Deer in the first round (21st overall) of the 2014 WHL Bantam Draft.
2011-12: Bleackley skated in 16 WHL games with Red Deer as a 15-year-old — spending most of the season with the UFA Bisons midget AAA team in the Alberta league — and won a gold medal with Team Alberta at the 2011 Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup. Bleackley scored 2 goals and was minus-5 with 6 penalty minutes skating for the Rebels. In 26 AMHL games with the Bisons he scored 13 goals with 17 assists and had 41 penalty minutes. Bleackley scored 2 goals with 2 assists in four games for Team Alberta.
2012-13: Bleackley played in the WHL with Red Deer and represented Canada Pacific in the 2013 U17 World Hockey Challenge. He scored 9 goals with 9 assists and was minus-4 with 28 penalty minutes in 66 regular season games for the Rebels. Red Deer finished third in the Central Division and reached the second round in the playoffs. In nine playoff games Bleackley scored 2 goals with 1 assist and was minus-1. An assistant captain for Canada Pacific, he scored 3 goals with 1 assist and had 12 penalty minutes in five games at the WHC.
2013-14: Bleackley was a team captain for the Red Deer Rebels in his second WHL season and played for Canada in the 2014 U18 World Juniors. He was the Rebels’ leading scorer with 29 goals and 39 assists and was plus-3 with 48 penalty minutes in 71 games. Red Deer missed the WHL playoffs; finishing fifth in the Central Division. An assistant captain for the Canada U18 team, he scored 1 goal with 1 assist and had an even plus/minus with 4 penalty minutes in seven games. Canada won a bronze medal at the tournament in FInland. Bleackley was ranked 35th amongst North American skaters in the Central Scouting final rankings and was selected by Colorado in the first round (23rd overall) of the 2014 NHL Draft.
Bleackley’s hard work earned him a “C” with Red Deer at the age of 17 and his work ethic and ability to help chip in points make him a key player for the Rebels. He is not a highly-skilled offensive player but does have finishing abilities. He appeared overwhelmed at his first training camp with the Avalanche but is young enough to learn from the experience.
Bleackley attended his first training camp with the Avalanche before being returned to Red Deer for the 2014-15 season. He skated for Team WHL in the Subway Series against Russia and had an outside chance of playing for Canada when it hosts the 2015 World Juniors. Still early in his growth curve in terms of development, Bleackley will likely need time to reach the NHL level. Long-term he projects as an effective two-way forward with some size who can provide supplementary offense.