Casey Nelson
Image: Fred Kfoury/Icon Sportswire

Casey Nelson


Wisconsin Rapids Wisconsin

Currently Playing In:






Eligible for draft:








Free agent signing, 2016


183 lbs.

<<<<<<< Updated upstream

2012-13: Casey Nelson competed for the Alaska Avalanche of the NAHL in the prior two seasons, but moved over to the Johnstown Tomahawks of that league for the 2012-13 campaign. In 56 games for that club, Nelson scored 10 goals and added 22 assists for 32 points. He registered no points in two playoff games. Nelson committed to Minnesota State University Mankato beginning with the 2013-14 season.

2013-14: Nelson competed in his freshman season Minnesota State Mankato, a season in which the Mavericks were the WCHA champions. In 19 games, Nelson scored 1 goal and chipped in 4 assists for 5 points.

2014-15: Nelson took a major step forward in his sophomore season with Minnesota State Mankato. In 40 games, he scored 7 goals and added 26 assists for 33 points while also posting a +19 rating. Nelson’s strong season did not go unnoticed as he was named to a WCHA Second Team All-Star. The Mavericks won a second straight WCHA title in 2014-15.

2015-16: Nelson competed in his junior season for Minnesota State Mankato, a season in which he added even more honors. In 40 games for the Mavericks, Nelson scored 6 goals and added 16 assists for 22 points to go along with a +14 rating. Nelson gathered up the hardware after MSU’s season ended as he was named WCHA Defensive Player of the Year while also garnering a WCHA First All-Star Team spot. In addition, Nelson also was named to the WCHA All-Academic Team and WCHA All-Tournament Team to round out his postseason awards. Nelson elected to forego his senior season to sign a contract with the Buffalo Sabres in March of 2016.


Talent Analysis

Nelson's possesses a combination of a fluid skating stride and puck-moving ability that is a cut above that of the average NCAA defender. He is an excellent skater who has good speed and agility, and is blessed with great hands. Nelson moves the puck well and the ability to make beautiful, tape-to-tape passes. He can also quarterback the power play, and has a good, accurate shot from the point. Nelson's defensive positioning is solid, as he has become adept at keeping opposing players to the outside while taking away time and space. He is by no means a physical player, but is instead a technician with some offensive upside.


Nelson has signed his first pro contract with the Buffalo Sabres, and is likely to begin his career in the minors for the duration of the 2015-16 campaign.

NCAA Prospects Notebook, March, 2016: Hobey Hat Trick finalists, end of season awards, and NHL signings

by DJ Powers
Jimmy Vesey - Harvard University

Photo: Harvard University forward Jimmy Vesey has completed his senior season with the Crimson, one in which he has received a second consecutive Hobey Hat Trick nomination as one of the finalists for college hockey’s top individual award (courtesy of Richard T. Gagnon/Getty Images)



The final full month of the 2015-16 college hockey season is in the books, with only the 2016 NCAA Frozen Four remaining on the schedule. With season’s end comes the presentation of major awards, as well as the end of college hockey careers for a number of seniors and players signing with NHL clubs. Read more»