By Roger Lajoie/Oshawa Generals
The Oshawa Generals have landed a defenceman that obviously believes the Ontario Hockey League is a perfect fit for him.
Oshawa coach-GM Chris DePiero announced on Wednesday that the club had come to terms with Jimmy McDowell, who played last season for the Detroit Little Caesars Under-16 team.
McDowell was the Generals' 12th-round draft pick in May’s OHL Priority Selection after turning in a strong season with the Little Caesars team. The promising young defenceman had a scholarship opportunity to go to Michigan State, so teams were leery about taking him with a high draft pick despite his strong potential.
But McDowell has decided to join the Generals and forgo Michigan State , as he’ll report to the Generals training camp next month.
“We’re absolutely delighted that Jimmy is joining our hockey club,” DePiero said. “He’s a promising young player with a lot of upside and we’re pleased he has decided to play in the OHL.
"This is a great coup for our organization. Jimmy’s family lives just 15 minutes from Michigan State, which has an excellent program, but he has opted to join us to pursue his hockey career. That speaks volumes about his commitment to making himself a better player, and says a lot about what the Generals and the OHL can offer a young player as well.”
McDowell goes 6-feet and 165 pounds and is a 1993 birthdate. DePiero says he will be given every chance to develop his game with the Generals as he learns to adjust to life in the OHL.
“We’ll make sure this is the best decision for Jimmy and his family and we’ll welcome him with open arms at training camp,” DePiero says.
On a side note, Jimmy's twin brother, Jacob, a forward, remains committed to MSU for 2011 and was not drafted by any OHL club in May.