NANAIMO — Local hockey players have been getting plenty of NHL attention lately.
In the last two weeks the Vegas Golden Knights have signed Nanaimo's Dylan Coghlan and Lantzville's Dylan Ferguson to entry level contracts.
Earlier this week NHL Central Scouting came out with it's Players to Watch list, and a member of the Nanaimo Clippers was included.
17-year-old defenseman Maxwell Crozier was named a C level prospect.
He's only appeared in four games so far with the Clippers but has been on the radar with scouts because of two stellar campaigns at the Edge Prep School in Calgary.
Last season Crozier had 25 points in 24 games, and in 2015-16 he tallied 33 points in 30 games.
The North Vancouver product says his coach at Edge Prep Scott Atkinson has been crucial to his development.
"He really worked on our individual success and our team worked together really well," said Crozier. "I got lots of ice time with the penalty kill and the power play, so I got to work on all aspects of my game. I think that really pushed me and helped me out going into my first year of junior."
Crozier suffered a minor injury during the preseason and didn't play his first game until the BCHL Showcase in Chilliwack on September 22.
That night he set up an overtime winner by his brother Tristan and was on the ice for a last minute game tying goal the day after against the Wenatchee Wild.
NHL Central Scouting was on hand for both of those games.
Crozier says he didn't talk to any of their representatives, but he was approached by some college recruiters.
"I got some interest from some NCAA schools. Just talks for right now, nothing really going on. But I'm looking forward to hopefully getting something going in the next couple of months for sure," said Crozier.
Four other BCHL Players made the Watch List with Stanislav Demin from Wenatchee the only B level prospect.
Langley's Brendan Budy, Johnny Tychonick from Penticton, and Chilliwack's Powell Connor were ranked at the C level.
Back in June, Clipper alumni and current RPI defenseman Will Reilly was selected 217th overall in the seventh round by the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Jake Jackson was a 2013 seventh round pick of the San Jose Sharks before he played his one year with Nanaimo in 2014-2015.
The last time a Clipper was drafted straight from Nanaimo into the NHL was when goalie Marc Cheverie had his named called by the Florida Panthers in the seventh round in 2006.
There's almost a full season of development still ahead for Max Crozier, and Central Scouting will send out new rankings for the middle of the season and the end of the year.
With the potential he's already shown, Crozier could find his way into the mix come draft day in Dallas next June.
On twitter: @danmarshall
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