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Panthers first-round pick Crouse returned to juniors

by Staff

Florida Panthers forward Lawson Crouse, the 11th pick of the 2015 NHL Draft, was returned to his junior team Monday.

Crouse, in a post on his verified Twitter feed, thanked the Panthers for the opportunity he got at training camp and expressed his excitement to be returning to the Kingston Frontenacs of the Ontario Hockey League.

The 6-foot-4, 210-pound left wing had one assist in three preseason games.

Last season with Kingston, Crouse had 29 goals and 51 points in 56 games, and also had one goal and two assists in seven games to help Canada win the gold medal at the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship.

Crouse's return to junior meant five players picked in the first round of the 2015 draft remain with their NHL teams: Connor McDavid of the Edmonton Oilers (No. 1), Jack Eichel of the Buffalo Sabres (No. 2), Noah Hanifin of the Carolina Hurricanes (No. 5), Pavel Zacha of the New Jersey Devils (No. 6) and Mikko Rantanen of the Colorado Avalanche (No. 10). Also, two players picked in the second round remain, forward Daniel Sprong of the Pittsburgh Penguins (No. 46) and defenseman Brendan Guhle of the Buffalo Sabres (No. 51).

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