Arizona Coyotes prospect Clayton Keller. Photo by Norm Hall.

Arizona Coyotes Sign Clayton Keller To Entry-Level Contract

Published On March 26, 2017 | By Jason Harrison | News

Clayton Keller has signed his entry-level contract with the Arizona Coyotes and is expected to make his NHL debut on Monday night.

The future has arrived a little ahead of schedule for the Arizona Coyotes.

2016 first round draft pick Clayton Keller has signed with the team after Boston University was eliminated from the NCAA tournament by Minnesota-Duluth.

Keller’s arrival in the desert is met with an immense level of hype from the team’s faithful. The 18-year-old has had accolades piled upon him since being selected 7th overall by John Chayka, and he topped that with a very strong season at BU.

Corey Pronman of ESPN named Clayton Keller the top prospect not in the NHL in January following Team USA’s World Junior championship. A championship led in no small part by Keller who was the team’s top scorer.

Similar pronouncements have come from other media sources. Everyone is in love with the way this kid plays.

A while back, I wrote a piece predicting Keller would be in the NHL next season. It looks like I undersold him. Within it, I wrote:

Elliotte Friedman’s ’30 Thoughts’ had a great tidbit about a similar trait in Auston Matthews and Jack Eichel from their former US national team under-18 coach Danton Cole.

“The thing they had in common? They could both be driven,” he said last weekend. “They understood what it takes to be successful.” Eichel, asked about that, agreed. “I don’t mind being pushed. Neither did (Matthews).” Style-wise? “Similar,” Cole answered. “Eichel is more north-south, Matthews is more flamboyant. Both great players who wanted the puck and wanted to win.”

The final note in that section?

“Cole added that Arizona’s Clayton Keller is another one unafraid of being pushed.”

Can you hear Dave Tippett and company salivating? I’m champing at the bit.

Clayton Keller may well be the crown jewel in this team’s extremely deep prospect pool.

We’ll see him get started in his home town tomorrow night against the St. Louis Blues.

Are you ready?