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Forward Liam Greentree’s enthusiasm to join the Windsor Spitfires has only grown since the club selected him in the Ontario Hockey League draft last month.

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On Thursday, the Spitfires officially brought Greentree into the fold by signing minor midget product Markham Majors to a standard player and education package.

“He’ll be a great Spitfire for us,” said Spitfires general manager Bill Bowler, who signed defenseman and first-round pick Anthony Cristoforo last month. “He’s a player we really like and I can’t wait to see him with this group.”

Some scouting services had the 6-foot-2, 193-pound Greentree in the first round of last month’s draft, but he slipped in the second round and Bowler won him back with the 34th overall pick.

“Whether it’s round one, round two or round three, I’m in a great position,” Greentree said. “I just can’t wait to get there.”

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Greentree, 16, from Oshawa, got a taste of that experience last month when he attended a Spitfires playoff game.

“I love the fanbase so much,” Greentree said. “I get real chills when I see everyone screaming and the atmosphere and the environment. It’s so exciting.

Greentree played center for much of his minor hockey with the Clarington Toros, who produced former Spitfire Greg Nemisz, but switched to right side when he joined the Majors.

“I played everywhere,” Greentree said. “I played center for a lot of my minor hockey with Clarington and moved to the wing with Markham.”

He had 13 goals and 25 points in 22 games with the Majors and added three more goals and seven points in six games in the OHL Cup showcase before the draft.

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“Talking before the draft, we knew he was a player we were targeting and we were happy to see him there in the second round and sign him now,” Bowler said. “As for the upset, we were pleasantly surprised to have a powerful winger with scoring ability at this pick.

“He’s a big body that can play and go to the areas he needs to go to be rewarded.”

Neither Bowler nor Greentree were ever afraid to sign him for the 2022-23 season.

“Today, next week or next month, I knew it was going to happen,” Greentree said. “(Signing to play in the) OHL is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and it’s amazing.

While the Spitfires are currently focused on fighting for an OHL title, Greentree is focused on the forward heading into training camp.

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“They had a great year,” Greentree said. “I want to work on improving my physical condition and my much more powerful legs.

“Whatever the team needs, I’m the guy to do it. I think they’re going to see a lot of smart games. In my opinion, the best part of my game is my shooting. I’ve had a good shot all my life, but I have to work on that too.

As the club announced his signing on Thursday, the OHL announced that Greentree and Cristoforo were among 40 league draft picks invited to Hockey Canada’s National Under-17 Development Program.

A total of 100 players from across Canada will attend the camp, which will take place July 10-16 in Calgary.

The camp is the first step in selecting 66 Hockey Canada players to participate in the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, which will take place in British Columbia from November 5-12.


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