Two former North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) players, were recognized on the National Hockey League’s (NHL) ‘Prospects to Watch’ list for 2014 draft-eligible players with the release of NHL Central Scouting's preliminary list of players to watch in North America and Europe.
Both of the players, Alex Nedeljkovic and Devin Williams, are goaltending alumni of the Metro Jets. The selections continue to provide further proof why the NA3HL is the best training ground in the country by providing the best exposure and developmental vehicles available for student-athletes at the Tier III junior level.
The lists, comprised of "A," "B" and "C" players for the upcoming season in each of the main junior hockey leagues, are sent to NHL team scouts for the purpose of tracking the top draft-eligible players entering the 2013-14 season. All "A" skaters have been identified as potential first-round picks, while "B" players are considered second- or third-round candidates. The players on the "C" list are thought to be fourth-, fifth- or sixth-round possibilities.
One of the two ‘A’ list goaltenders on the NHL Central Scouting list is former Metro Jets goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic. The netminder from Parma, Ohio, appeared in nine games in the NA3HL with the Metro Jets during the 2012-13 regular season. He made an immediate impact as he was named as the NA3HL Goaltender of the Month in November. Nedeljkovic, 17, also was chosen for the U.S. Under-18 Select Team that competed at the 2013 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament. It capped off quite a year for Nedeljkovic, who spent the majority of the season playing in the major junior Ontario Hockey League (OHL) for the Plymouth Whalers. Not only did Nedelkjovic make the first-team OHL Rookie Team, but he was also named as the Whalers Rookie of the Year.
The other NA3HL alum was former Metro Jets goaltender Devin Williams, who was listed as a ‘C’ list prospect. Prior to his stint in the NA3HL, Williams played the 2010-11 season in the NAPHL as the goalie for the Motor City Metal Jackets 16U team. Williams continued his development during the 2011-12 season with the Metro Jets of the NA3HL. While playing with the Jets, Williams went 9-9-0 with a 3.88 GAA and a 89.6% save percentage playing in 19 games. This past season, Williams played the entire year for the Erie Otters in the OHL, where he appeared in 33 games.
NHL Central Scouting will release its midseason rankings of 2014 draft-eligibles in January, followed by its final rankings in April. The 2014 NHL Entry Draft will be at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, June 27-28.