The Prince George Cougars first hooked on to Jaren Brinson a year ago when they selected him in the second round of the WHL bantam draft.
On Monday the Cats finally netted the coveted 16-year-old defenceman when he signed a standard player agreement.
Picked 36th overall in 2019, Brinson played last season for the Edge School Mountaineers midget prep team in the Canadian Sport School Hockey League and in 32 games he collected eight goals and 34 points, second among defenceman in the league.
“Jaren’s commitment is another positive step forward for our organization,” said Cougars general manager and head coach Mark Lamb, in a team release. “He made big strides in his development this past season and he’ll be a key piece in the future of this team.”
The six-foot-one, 159-pound native of Airdrie, Alta picked up 11 points in 28 regular season games a year ago for the Edge bantam prep team. He played for Team Alberta Blue at the 2019 Alberta Cup and won the Alberta Major triple-A bantam championship in 2018 with the Airdrie Xtreme.
“Jaren is a young, smart defenceman who is very driven,” said Cougars director of scouting Bob Simmonds. “He fits perfectly into what we’re building, and his upside is significant.”
The Cougars have now signed their top four picks from each of the 2020 and 2019 draft classes.