Swiss defenseman Nico Gross has committed to the team that drafted him, the Oshawa Generals. Gross was the 40th overall pick in the first round of the CHL Import Draft by the Generals after some solid seasons back home.
In 2013-14 for the U-15 St. Moritz club, Gross put up 37 goals and 28 assists for 65 points in only 19 games, that’s pretty amazing for a defenseman even though it was in a minor league. He would move onto the Zug U-15 team the following season playing 12 games for the club scoring 15 goals and adding seven assists for 22 points. Later that year he’d move onto the Elite Novizen league in Switzerland for the Zug U-17 team and after 19 games for them, Gross put up another seven goals and added five assists for 12 points.
In 2015-16, Gross would return to the Zug U-17 team this time as an alternate captain putting up 17 points in 21 games. He’d later move to the Zug U-20 team where he saw his production drop with only two points in 20 games. Gross would again play for the U-20 squad in Zug during the 2016-17 season but for only seven games. In those seven games, Nico managed to put up four points which is pretty decent along with only 16 penalty minutes.
Later in the year though, Nico improved his progression as he moved on to the NLB league for the EVZ Academy and after 33 games he put up just nine assists and 44 penalty minutes with a minus nine rating. Gross would also get some International play with Team Switzerland in both the U-18 World Junior Championships and U-20 World Juniors as well. In five games with the U-18 team he only managed a single assist, the same output he would tally with the U-20 team.
Going into Oshawa it’s clear Gross has a potential shot at becoming a top pair defenseman, however, he could always fall to the second pairing if his training camp doesn’t go as planned.