Wings select UNC's Chris Cloutier in draft's first round

Matt Leon
September 26, 2018 - 4:19 pm
Chris Cloutier

Dana Feigenbaum/Philadelphia Wings

Categories: 

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — The National Lacrosse League's annual Entry Draft took place Tuesday night at Xfinity Live, and it was a big night for the expansion of the Philadelphia Wings.

Not only was the draft held on home turf, but the Wings held the No. 2 overall pick, which they used to select University of North Carolina star Chris Cloutier. 

The forward said his draft status still feels unreal.

"It's not going to feel real until the first game," he said, "because I haven't stepped on the floor and I haven't really gotten to know the city yet, so it's still kind of (an) out-of-body (experience). It's a lifelong dream to get drafted and it's still kind of just sinking in."

Although he hails from Ontario, Canada, and spent his college days in the American South, Cloutier does have a special connection to Philadelphia. As a sophomore at UNC in 2016, he scored the national championship winning goal in overtime in Philly, which gave the Tar Heels their first title in a quarter of a century.

"It's almost like I was destined to be here because of the success I've had at the Linc playing against Maryland, and actually Matt Rambo, who is also (now a teammate) with Philly," he said. "It's crazy to think that I'll be playing in the same city (where) the biggest accomplishment of my life thus far (took place)."

Cloutier scored 111 goals during his time with the Tar Heels, the seventh highest total in program history. 

"I'm a big body," he added, "so I bring a more physical game for a forward player. I use my body to get to the net. I kind of push through guys rather than try and go around them. Once I get inside, I have softer hands so I use my hands to try and fake the goalie and score."

Cloutier and the Wings begin training camp on Nov. 3.

You can follow Matt Leon on Twitter @Mattleon1060.