The 2017 NAHL Entry Draft is over, and now the New Jersey Titans start to build its roster for the 2017-18 season. Like most teams, there will be some new faces and names to get to know this year. With the club recently selecting eight skaters in the Draft, let’s take a look at a few in order to get you better acquainted to the newest Titans.
“The NAHL draft is an exciting time for players and organizations alike. To have the ability to add players of high quality and character to your organization is obviously a special opportunity. The entire hockey operations staff puts a lot of time and work into preparing for the draft and when it works out the way our draft did this year you can’t help but be pleased. We were able to add 8 skaters who we think the world of. Obviously, we targeted forwards with our roster having some holes up front after losing so much offense with our players moving on to college,” said Head Coach and General Manager, Craig Doremus.
“We really believe each one of the guys we were able to draft will be able to step in and play a role on our club next season. We drafted some really talented young players who we believe will be able to help our club chase and ultimately capture our first Robertson Cup. I know I speak for the entire staff when I say we can’t wait to see these players on our ice at main camp in late July.”
With only one pick in Round Four, New Jersey drafted forward Jack Sampson 88th overall from Fox Motors 18U. Sampson, ’98, tallied 62 points in twos season with his previous club.
“I am excited to be a part of the New Jersey Titans organization, and honored to have been drafted. I have heard great things about the Titan organization, and look forward to being a part of the Titan community,” Sampson, a Portage, MI product said.
“I plan to bring my play-making skills to the team, and look to contribute using my size and scoring abilities. I look forward to playing with highly skilled teammates that will help push me to be a better all-around hockey player.
“My goals for the upcoming season are to be an impact player right away, help the team win our division, contribute to a successful playoff run for the Titans, and establish myself as a player with Division 1 hockey potential.”
The Titans then selected forward Matt Headland from the Charlotte Rush Elite Hockey club 109th overall. Headland, ’98, had 85 points with the Rush last year before playing six games with the Titans, where he collected three points in four games.
“I’m honored to have been drafted by the Titans. Obviously, I spent some of my season with them last year and I loved the organization, the staff, the group of guys we had, everything was professional. So, to have been drafted by them means a lot to me,” Headland, a native of Great Britain said.
“I plan on bringing speed, intensity and a high compete level as well as skill and eyes for the back of the net,” the 5’10 winger added. “I want to win the Robertson Cup, and be the team with the most goals in the league. I would also like to be the team everyone hates to play against, a nasty team who is feared.”
With their final pick, the Titans selected defenseman Jimmy Dowd Jr., 110th overall, from the North Jersey Avalanche. Dowd, ’00, is a Penn State University commit.
“It is an honor to be drafted by such a great organization. I’m very excited to get things started with the team and get to know the coaching staff that I have heard great things about,” Dowd, a Ney Jersey native said.
“I plan on bringing a win only attitude. I will help the team with my offensive defensive style of play, joining the rush, making smart decisions, and making plays when the puck is on my stick.
I want to help lead the team to their first Robertson Cup appearance. I want them to develop me into the best player that I can be in order to prepare me for higher levels of hockey.”
Stay Tuned to Part II of this story as we meet the rest of the draftees.