Top-pick Strome enjoys being a Coyote

July 8, 2015

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Fans got to see top pick Dylan Strome skate in a Coyotes jersey for the first time Tuesday at the team's prospect development camp at the Ice Den.

The Coyotes signed the 18-year-old Strome, the No. 3 overall selection in last month's NHL Draft, to a three-year entry-level contract Monday.

"I'm going to go out there and do what I do best," Strome said. "I am going to try to impress the staff and everyone else that's watching."

Former first-round draft choices Max Domi (2013) and Brendan Perlini (2014) are participating in the camp in addition to forward prospects Laurent Dauphin, Anthony Duclair, Christian Dvorak, Ryan MacInnis and Maxim Letunov. Other prospects in attendance include this year's other first-round draft choice, Nick Merkley, along with the rest of the Coyotes 2015 draft class.

"It will be good to meet some new guys I've never seen before," Strome said.

Strome played for the Erie Otters alongside good friend and teammate Connor McDavid, who was chosen first overall in the draft by the Oilers, just after the Sabres selected Jack Eichel.

"I felt special to be the next tier behind those two guys," Strome said.

Coyotes General Manager Don Maloney said the main focus now is to help the 6-foot-3, 187-pound center grow and develop after he led the Ontario Hockey League in scoring with 45 goals in 68 games last season.

"He is a very articulate and intelligent person," Maloney said. "We just have to get him physically at an NHL level but from an intelligence standpoint he is just as good as anyone else in the draft."

Prospects will get the chance this week to make a good first impression in front of Coyotes head coach Dave Tippett and other staff in hopes of claiming a roster spot.

"Any team you go to they're going to give all the opportunities and its up to you to just prove that you deserve to be here and deserve to play, and if you're not ready they will send you back (down) and that's the way it goes," Strome said.

The prospect development camp is free and open to the public. It runs from 1:50 p.m. until 3:20 p.m. Wednesday and from 2:15 p.m. to 3:45 p.m. on Thursday.