The New Jersey Devils selected Michael McLeod, who played for Mississauga in the OHL, with the 12th overall selection at the 2016 NHL Draft.
New Jersey originally held the 11th overall pick, but traded it to the Ottawa Senators in exchange for the 12th overall pick and a 3rd round pick (80th overall) in this year’s draft.
Dan Marr, Director of NHL Central Scouting said, “He has great quickness and speed, is smart and skilled but also very reliable. A coach can put him out in any situation and feel comfortable. His speed allows him to create offense off the rush, making him very difficult to defend.”
In 2015-16, McLeod skated for his hometown Mississauga Steelheads of the Ontario Hockey League, finishing second in team scoring with 61 points (21 goals and 40 assists) in 57 games behind linemate and No. 3-ranked North American skater Alexander Nylander, who had 75 points (28 goals, 47 assists).
McLeod added three goals and six assists, nine points in all, in seven postseason contests – including a pair of three-point outings – before the Steelheads were eliminated in the first round by Barrie.
In 2013-14, McLeod registered an astonishing 57 points (21 goals and 36 assists) in 33 games for the Toronto Marlboros of the Greater Toronto Hockey League, coached by Hockey Hall of Fame defenseman Paul Coffey.
At the 2014 OHL Cup, he produced seven goals and four assists (11 points total) in seven games to lead the Marlboros to the OHL Cup championship and was named Most Valuable Player of the tournament.
Internationally, McLeod was part of Canada’s gold medal entry at the 2015 Ivan Hlinka Memorial and skated for his country at the 2016 Under-18 World Championship.
McLeod is part of a hockey family: his older brother, Matthew, played for Canisius College in 2015-16 and his younger brother, Ryan, played alongside Michael as a teammate on the Steelheads.