MacKay Latest to Sign With Nailers

WHEELING – The Wheeling Nailers have announced their seventh player signing of the 2013 offseason. Wheeling has signed forward Max MacKay to an ECHL contract.

“Max is a highly skilled forward, who will put a lot of points on the board,” Nailers coach Clark Donatelli said. “He came in toward the end of last year, and made an impact right away. I am looking forward to seeing him continue his progress this season.”

MacKay, 22, began his professional career last season, appearing in eight games each with the Nailers and the AHL’s Bridgeport Sound Tigers. Max made his debut with the Sound Tigers on Nov. 16 against Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, then dished out two assists the next day, as Bridgeport blanked Manchester, 4-0. The rookie forward tacked on one more assist with Bridgeport, giving him three points in the AHL.

The Salt Lake City, Utah native was then assigned to Wheeling, where he made his ECHL debut on March 1 against Trenton. After being held off of the scoresheet that night, MacKay went on a four-game point scoring streak, picking up one assist each on March 2, 6, and 8, while mixing in two goals and an assist in a 6-4 victory against Kalamazoo on March 3. Max went on to suit up in three more games with the Nailers, before an injury kept him out of the lineup for the final nine games of the campaign.

“When I came to the Nailers last season, I had good players around me, and I saw the ice well,” MacKay said. “I was able to move the puck well underneath the dots and below the circles, making it easier to put points on the board.”

Prior to joining the professional ranks, MacKay spent one season with the Walpole Express of the Atlantic Junior Hockey League, racking up 25 goals, 37 assists, and 62 points in 29 games.

“I liked the atmosphere last year when I came to Wheeling, as it made it a fun place to play,” MacKay said. “I had a lot of fun, and I feel that this is also a good situation for me to move up in my career.”

The 2013-14 Wheeling Nailers begin their regular season at 7 p.m., Friday, Oct. 18, dwhen they play host to the Elmira Jackals at WesBanco Arena.