Neilson nabs Wings franchise awards

With six games still to play in the 2021-22 regular season, veteran forward Cade Neilson has already grabbed some Wings franchise awards, both during the single season and during his three-year tenure in Aberdeen.

Neilson, 20, will head to the University of Alaska-Fairbanks next season. When he heads there, he’ll do so holding the career franchise record for most points earned in the regular season, tallying 142 points so far over his three seasons.

What’s more, he’s nearing a milestone point total as well. Including his seven points from last season’s playoff run, he’s currently sitting at 149 total points — and with the six games left this season, he just needs one more goal or assist to reach an impressive 150 total points wearing the Wings sweater.

Looking at this season alone, last weekend’s four-point affair means that Neilson has also surpassed former Wing Brad Belisle as the current leader for most points earned in a single season, tallying 70 so far on the year.

Those 70 league points put Neilson tied for third overall in the North American Hockey League. He’s also currently tied for first place in the league’s assist column, grabbing 47 so far on the season.

Here’s a breakdown of his seasons’ points totals:

  • 2019-20: 46 games played — 9 goals, 18 assists
  • 2020-21: 55 games played — 12 goals, 33 assists
  • 2020-21 Playoffs: 11 games played — 7 assists
  • 2021-22: 52 games played — 23 goals, 47 assists

This season, he’s also notched four game-winning goals, five power play goals and a shorthanded goal. He was named the Central Division Star of the Week for Nov. 15-22, 2021, as well as the NAHL Forward of the Month for November 2021. He’s put up points in 37 of his 52 games played this season, averaging 1.35 points per game.