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Arizona Coyotes select Nicholas Merkley with No. 30 pick

The Coyotes added more offense by selecting Nicholas Merkley with the No. 30 selection in the NHL Draft.

“I’m kind of surprised,” Merkley said in a press conference on Friday. “Going in the first round is pretty surreal for me.”

Merkley is an 18-year-old right winger who played for the WHL’s Kelowna Rockets last season. He led his team with 90 points and helped them win the WHL championship.

“A lot of things have gone wrong lately with the franchise, that was a good one today that he actually fell as low as he did,” Coyotes general manager Don Maloney said.

The 5-foot-10, 190 pound Merkley is a playmaking winger who consistently sets up his teammates. 70 of Merkley’s 90 points last season were assists.

“Nick is really the prototypical for the smaller stature player,” Maloney said.

“He’s solid, very smart, plays hard, and competes.”