Sharks sign ‘15 first rounder Timo Meier


The San Jose Sharks have signed Timo Meier to a standard, entry-level contract, the club announced on Wednesday.

Meier was the ninth overall pick at last month’s NHL Draft.

“Timo is a dynamic forward who has outstanding finishing skills,” said Sharks’ GM Doug Wilson. “His big, pro frame allows him to be successful in all three zones, and his high hockey IQ has already become evident at our Prospects Development Camp. We look forward to watching his continued development.”

The 6-foot-1, 209-pound forward has spent the past two seasons with the Halifax Mooseheads of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. The Herisau, Switzerland native scored 44 goals and 90 points in 61 regular season games with Halifax during the 2014-15 season.

He was awarded the 2015 Michael Bossy Trophy given to the QMJHL player judged to be the best professional prospect.

Meier represented Switzerland at the 2015 World Junior Hockey Championship scoring two goals and four assists in six games.

“Timo is an accomplished goal scorer who had an excellent season in Halifax last year,” Sharks’ Director of Scouting Tim Burke said. “A strong body, good skater, and versatile player, we were very excited to take him with the 9th overall pick.”

Photo courtesy of the San Jose Sharks

Joseph Veleno granted exceptional status, eligible for QMJHL draft

Feb. 10, 2015 Bell Centre--. Joe Veleno receives a $1,500 bursary from the Montreal Canadiens owner Geoff Molson and the Quebec Foundation for Athletic Excellence. (FAEQ)

Joseph Veleno is the latest player to be granted exceptional status.

Hockey Canada informed Quebec Major Junior Hockey League commissioner Gilles Courteau of Veleno’s eligibily for this Saturday’s entry draft the league announced on Thursday.

Veleno, who turned 15 in January, spent this season playing midget hockey.

The 6-foot, 170-pound forward finished 12th in his league in scoring with 52 points in 41 games while playing with the Lac St. Louis Lions, according to an article in the Montreal Gazette.

“There is a talent there that plays a 200-foot game, which is rare at that age,” Veleno’s coach, Jon Goyens said. “We’ve been very lucky to be able to coach some of the most talented kids (Jonathan Drouin, Anthony Duclair, Louis Leblanc, Mike Matheson) to come out of Quebec in the last 10, 15 years. Not all of them necessarily had the 200-foot game in them; they might have had other elements, like stickhandling or vision, that might have been ahead of Joseph. But nobody at his age was playing, as a skilled forward, a 200-foot game, which is really, really rare.”

Connor McDavid, John Tavares, Aaron Ekblad and Sean Day have all been granted exceptional player status previously, but Veleno is the first player out of Quebec to receive the honor.

“If you’re going to be the first guy (in Quebec) to get exceptional status, right off the bat you’re going to be compared to the four or five guys who got it in the ‘O’ (Ontario Hockey League), and you’re going to be compared to those who didn’t get it,” Goyens said.

The Saint John Sea Dogs hold the first overall selection at the draft.

Photo courtesy of the Montreal Gazette

Trade: Rangers acquire draft pick from Bolts for Walcott

Saint John Sea Dogs v Blainville-Boisbriand Armada

The New York Rangers have re-acquired the seventh round pick for this month’s draft, which they initially sent to Tampa Bay in the Martin St. Louis deal last season.

In exchange, the Lightning receive prospect Daniel Walcott.

Walcott finished his second season in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League this year with the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada. The 5-foot-11, 165-pound, blue liner had seven goals and 41 points in 54 regular season games.

The 21-year-old also appeared in one American Hockey League game with the Hartford Wolf Pack registering a minus-1 rating.

Walcott was originally the Rangers fifth round selection (140th overall) in 2014.